Friday, 9 October 2015

Benefits of Sagebrush

SAGE BRUSH, Artemisia tridentate

One day, when I was traveling across those broad, barren valleys of Nevada where all you can see is sagebrush, someone had put up a sign that read, “Free sagebrush, put some in your trunk and take it home with you.” You guessed it, there were no takers. However, if folks really knew just how good and useful sagebrush can be, there might have been cars parked along the road, with people picking sagebrush.

Now, sagebrush is not to be confused with garden sage. Although they both smell similar and have some of the same properties, they don’t even have the same genus or common ancestry, that is, according to some authorities. However, there are some who feel that there is a close tie between these two plants.

Sagebrush comes from the wormwood genus Artemisia which belongs to the Compositate family. This family has approximately 180 different species in it. History says that the word Artemisia comes from the word Artemis which was the Greek name for the great Diana, who used this herb to heal the sick.

Sagebrush is easy to identify. The most common species of sagebrush is tridentate, or three teeth. The leaf is about an inch or an inch and a half in length and a quarter of an inch wide, with three lobes on one end looking like three teeth. A lady I know calls this herb “bunny foot” because it looks like a long bunny foot with three toes. The leaf is silvery gray and covered with fine hairs. Veins run from the base of the leaf to the tip of each lobe. The flowers are small, round, silver-gray balls that grow off of an extended stem above the plant.

Sagebrush has many uses. It is very good all-around bitter tonic. It is an excellent tonic for the stomach and a digestant aid. As a diaphoretic, it will stimulate sweating in dry fevers. As a vermifuge, it will help to expel intestinal worms. As a emmenagogue it helps to suppress cramping, regulate the menstrual cycle and settle frayed nerves. It has also been used by the Native Indians as an agent to fight cancer.

One time when I was living with the Indians, I asked the Chief’s wife about sagebrush. She told me about a favorite dog sha had that had gotten sick. She said the dog had laid around for two or three days and that the dog wouldn’t move. She told me she was sure the dog would die that day and them she was inspired to gather a lot of sagebrush and put it in a wash tub of real hot water. When the water cooled down enough, she carried the dog to the tub and put him in it. She propped his head up on the side of the tub, and the dog just laid there. She checked him every little while, but the dog didn’t move. She said she was sure she would lose him. Just before dark an old truck drove past their place. She heard a dog barking and chasing the truck. She looked out and the sick dog was now well enough to chase that old noisy truck, thanks to sagebrush.

I also know of a doctor who had a tumor partially removed from her brain. She was told by her fellow doctors, who had operated on her that she had less than six months to live, so she had better get her affairs in order. Later on, she was told by a friend that herbs would help her but she would also have to change her diet from meat to a diet of fruits and vegetables. She was also told that she should get the stress out of her life and that she should drink sagebrush and chaparral tea every day. She stopped eating meat and started to drink sagebrush and chaparral tea. When the six months came around and she should have been dead, she was almost all well. Maybe the Lord knew what he was doing when He made so much sagebrush and chaparral. They are free, very accessible and about the best blood cleansers you can get.

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