by Lindsay Wolsey
Dr. Christopher considered Lobelia to be one of the greatest herbs in the world, and he used in over 20 of his herbal formulas. Lobelia is known as the “thinking herb” because it will go to the part of the body that is ailing, often taking constituents of other herbs with it. One of the greatest aspects of Lobelia is that it removes obstructions and congestion within the body, especially the blood vessels. It will also help the body eliminate toxins, choosing the best elimination channel. Dr. Christopher used Lobelia prolifically throughout his practice, and with great success.
Lobelia has an unfair reputation as being a dangerous herb or a poison, because it is an emetic. Dr. Christopher once accidentally swallowed four tablespoons of Lobelia, mistaking it for Apple Cider Vinegar. After vomiting profusely, he felt fine, and suffered no damage whatsoever. Dr. Thompson was once taken to court for killing a man with Lobelia-the man who was supposedly dead showed up to give witness against him! The case was thrown out. No deaths have ever been proven to have been caused by the use of Lobelia.
In the 1980's the Federal Food and Drug Administration tried to ban the use of Lobelia, because of the alkaloid lobeline. The FDA based their decision upon written sources in poisonous plant book, because they didn't have any actual case files of damage. Lobelia is still legal to use, and is not considered toxic by the FDA. Scientific tests have been done to determine a toxic amount of Lobelia. It has been determined that it would take four pounds of Lobelia being injected into the body to kill a person. No person is going to intake four pounds of Lobelia in one sitting. They would start vomiting before they made it to one pound! Dr. Christopher never had to use more than three teaspoons of Lobelia with a patient.
Lobelia is an expectorant, a diaphoretic, an anti-asthmatic, an anti-spasmodic and an emetic. It has been used in combination with Mullein for an excellent glandular formula. The American Indians used Lobelia as a cure for syphilis, as a diaphoretic, and to expel worms.
When combined with False Unicorn, Lobelia is used to prevent miscarriages. Dr. Christopher had multiple successes in stopping miscarriages. Some of Dr. Christopher's students used the False Unicorn/Lobelia to help a woman who was miscarrying. Because the bleeding didn't stop, they took her to a hospital. When they got her to the hospital, her body expelled the fetus. The doctor was amazed, because the fetus had been dead for several weeks. He explained that in this type of situation, they usually have to surgically remove particles of the placenta, but this woman's uterus was clean.
Lobelia has also been used as a painkiller. One of Dr. Christopher's students smashed his hand with a hammer. He soaked the hand in Lobelia tincture, and the pain subsided in minutes! Dr. Christopher stressed that Lobelia should be used to relieve pain only if the pain is acute, and not for minor pain relief. Lobelia can be applied externally or internally to relieve pain.
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