Celiac disease is a malabsorption syndrome and chronic digestive disorder. The intestine is not able to absorb vital dietary nutrients from foods containing gliadin, an alcohol-soluble portion of gluten. This condition which is often hereditary means the sufferer has a serious intolerance to wheat (including durum, semolina and spelt), rye, oats, barley, and related grain hybrids such as tritaclae and kamut.

Arthritis refers to inflammation of the joint. The most common form of arthritis is osteoarthritis which is characterised by joint degeneration and loss of cartilage. Rheumatoid arthritis is a type of inflammatory arthritis which is also an autoimmune disorder. In this case the body's immune system attacks its own cartilage and tissue surrounding the joints.

Some detoxification experts advocate fasting, while others do not. It is known that the components of any well-designed detox program will stimulate the body to cleanse itself, but people who are underweight, are undernourished, have weak hearts, have blood sugar issues or are ill should avoid fasting. Some studies have shown that restricting food intake can actually lead to bingeing.

Hemorrhoids are extremely common in industrialised countries and it is estimated that fifty percent of persons over fifty years of age have symptoms of hemorrhoidal disease. Although most people may begin to develop hemorrhoids in the twenties, the symptoms do not become evident normally until in ones thirties!

Breast infections - Mastitis - natural treatments and remedies

What is mastitis?

Mastitis is an infection and swelling of the breast, usually occurring as a result of bacteria entering the nursing mother's breast through cracks and fissures in the nipple.

It may not be immediately apparent that you have mastitis – it may feel like a ‘flu with headache’ , fever and general aching. Check in the mirror for red areas on the breast and feel for hot, lumpy or tender places. As mastitis progresses, there will be intense pain in these hot, tender, red, lumpy areas and the woman will feel extremely unwell, usually with a fever.

It may not be immediately apparent that you have mastitis – it may feel like a ‘flu with headache’ , fever and general aching. Check in the mirror for red areas on the breast and feel for hot, lumpy or tender places. As mastitis progresses, there will be intense pain in these hot, tender, red, lumpy areas and the woman will feel extremely unwell, usually with a fever.

How do I treat mastitis naturally?

Small grouped blisters in the infected area like the genitals (namely, penis scrotum, vagina, cervix, or labia), around the genitals (such as anus or inner thighs) mouth, lips, tongue, gums, or throat; the blisters can then become ulcers (raw sores) and later crust over
Burning, itching, pain, or tingling sensations often precedes the appearance of the blisters
Enlarged lymph nodes near the infected area
Fever, headache, and flu-like symptoms (such as muscle aches and malaise [generally feeling bad]), particularly when you first contract the virus
Vaginal or penile dischargePain with urination

Sunlight and stress are the two main triggers of the herpes simplex 1 virus, which causes cold sores. The first line of defence is to boost your immune system. Here, complementary health really comes into its own with a combination of herbal, homoeopathic, and nutritional steps to suppress the virus and keep it dormant.

How do I treat cold sores naturally?

Once mastitis has set in it can take 12 to 24 hours to significantly reduce the infectious and inflammatory process with natural remedies, but it would take this long with antibiotics as well. Of course, prevention is better than cure so to avoid the onset of a breast infection take these precautions:

  • Ensure lots of rest – forget the housework and sleep when the baby does.
  • Maintain a nutritious diet and a high fluid intake.
  • Check the bra fits well and does not create pressure on any area of the breast. Keep the breasts warm; it's and old wife's tale that is true. This stops the milk ducks from constricting and causing a backlog.
  • Don't stop breast feeding if you can. Feed baby on both breasts, helping to ensure that full, tender lumpy areas are softened several times a day. Change baby's position at the breast and massage lumps gently towards the nipples. If lumps are persistent, hot pack the breast/s (as below) before feeding.

Breast infections - natural treatments and remedies

  • Bed – organize a helper/nurse if at all possible.
  • Hot packs –pour boiling water onto thinly sliced root ginger (ground ginger would suffice). Use a nappy or hand towel to apply hot packs right over the breast, as hot as the mother can bear. Apply several times before a feed. A soak in a hot bath can help too. Occasionally, a breast pump may be required to help empty the breast.
  • A poultice made of of hot comfrey relieves for blocked ducts.
  • Pokeroot tincture may be used externally on the breasts: 1-2 drops two to three times a day – mix into oil and, massage on or add to ginger packs or plain hot water packs. Pokeroot tincture may be obtained from a herbalist or good health food store. Pokeroot (phytolacca americana) can also be used internally – it is extremely effective at shifting breast lumps but it is potentially toxic and therefore needs to be use in small (drop) doses under the close supervision of a medical herbalist experienced in its use.
  • Cabbage leaves are powerfully anti-inflammatory and can be put, as is, on to the breasts, between feeds as hot packs. Use only for a few hours at a time as they can dry up the milk.
  • Vitamin C. Although it world be desirable to give the mother large doses, this can make the baby very uncomfortable. Take 1000 mgs every two hours or 2000 mgs every four hours.
  • Echinacea tincture – take 5 mls every second hour for the first four to six hours and then 5 mls, three to four hourly, depending on level of improvement.
  • Essential fatty acids such as evening primrose oil and omega 3 fish oils should be taken internally. Take 2 -3,000 mgs, one or two times a day. This works as an anti-inflammatory agent.
  • Vitamin A – either as fish liver oil cap's or as beta-carotene. This will give immune support.
  • Garlic is an antibacterial –eat two to three small clovers a day, freshly chopped and swallowed.
  • A herb good for draining the glandular breast tissue is cleavers (Gallium aperine or common names, goose grass / bidibidi). Cleavers are quite often found as acommon weed in the garden. Fill a bowl with cleaver's, cover with water and leave for 12 hours. Drink this as your only fluid for the day. Fresh juice of cleavers is better still, take 3 mls twice a day, this can also be bought ‘fixed’ as a cleavers succus in 25% alcohol – take 1-2 mls three times a day.
  • Infusions: Fenugreek tea will help detoxify the body through its lymphatic cleansing action. Saga tea will be useful but only if mother is not wishing to breastfeed as it dries up the milk. Licorice tea is anti-inflammatory and is invigorating. Ginger tea (as for hot pack) will sustain and improve circulation and warm up a chilly mother.

When the mastitis has gone, take a few days to wean off herbs and supplements. 1.000 mgs of vitamin C and 5 mls of echinacea per day can be used to prevent reoccurrence.


Homoeopathy helps too and if the correct remedy is chosen, results can be swift and dramatic. They can be used at the same time as herbs and supplements as they work on a vibrational level. Choose a remedy which best fits the following symptom picture. Take two to three doses in a 30c potency several hours apart and watch for improvement.

Belladonna - use for:

Redness, throbbing, pulsating pain; red lines radiating out, often from the nipple; sudden onset; uncomfortable pressure (bra); heaviness, backache, high fever; right sided; thirst.

Bryonia- use for:

Hard, heavy, stone/ breasts that are not very red; for slower onset. Good for use at onset (a sweat after use will justify this choice); for tearing, burning pain; when better for holding breast and applying firm pressure but worse for movement and jarring; for when better for fresh air, but still want to be covered; thirst and hot skin; when wants to be alone; bursting headache. Take care as this remedy can dry up milk.

Phytolacca - use for:

A variety of breast infections, abscesses; hard painful lumps, pus; when pain radiates over whole body with ache in bones; chill followed by fever; left sided pain; when cause likely to be linked to stress or weaning; red tip of tongue; when there is lots of sweating

Silica - use for:

Pain in back or uterus when feeding; increased menstrual blood flow when feeding; thin, watery, offensive pus; abscesses; when better for heat and wrapping up well; when mother is thin, worn out and anxious; cracked and sore and possibly drawn-in nipple.

Other remedies to check into are Hepar sulph, Sulphur and Sepia.

For recurrent mastitis, consult a naturopath, homoeopath or herbalist or contact us for a personalised consultation either online, by telephone or at one of our clinics.

Happy feeding!