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Goldenseal Root Powder 2 oz - Natural Antibiotic WC

Goldenseal Root Powder 2 oz - Natural Antibiotic WC

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Botanical Name: Hydrastis canadensis
Origin: United States
2 oz. of wild-crafted Goldenseal Root Powder

Common Names: Indian plant, yellow Goldenseal

Hydrastis canadensis

American herbalist Jethro Kloss described goldenseal as "one of the most wonderful remedies in the entire herbal kingdom … . When considering all that can be accomplished by its use, and what it actually will do, it does seem like a real cure all." The indigenous people of North America used goldenseal for centuries for all types of diseases and ailments and introduced this wonder herb to the early settlers. Today it has become very expensive due to the demand for the herb and over-harvesting of the wild goldenseal patches. Native to Canada and the Eastern United States, the main ingredients in goldenseal are berberine, hydrastine and canadine. The root is the most commonly used part of the plant.


Goldenseal is an excellent antibiotic which has many times equaled or outperformed allopathic antibiotics, but without the side effects. It destroys harmful bacteria and germs and is very helpful against staph and strep. It is very potent for intestinal, antibacterial activity. Goldenseal was very successful in treating cholera during the cholera epidemics in Calcutta, India in 1966 and 1967. In fact, it was more effective with less side effects than regular antibiotics. (See Cautions.) Goldenseal is considered an alterative which works by purifying the blood and promoting a cleansing action of the spleen, liver, kidneys and bowels.

Muscles, Membranes and Inflammations

Goldenseal is very favorable to mucous membranes and inflammations. It is helpful for problems concerning the stomach and intestines and also affects the female reproductive system very well. With superb anti-inflammatory and antiseptic qualities, it is very useful for urinary and uterine problems, especially infections. It helps control uterine hemorrhaging. Goldenseal helps promote menstruation (emmenagogue) and small doses can prevent morning sickness during pregnancy. Historically, goldenseal tea enemas have been used successfully to reduce inflammation of hemorrhoidal tissue. Although goldenseal is very bitter, the tea is a marvelous mouthwash for ulcerations in the mouth. Drinking or gargling the tea can help with tonsillitis and throat problems. A goldenseal eyewash can reduce inflammation in the eye.


Great for stomach complaints such as indigestion, nausea and heartburn, goldenseal is very helpful in stimulating the production of bile from the liver (cholagogue) which helps break down fats for easier digestion. The berberine in goldenseal conditions the walls of the stomach and intestines. This is helpful for diarrhea and gastritis and can work as a mild laxative. Because of its soothing and anti-inflammatory effect on mucous membranes, goldenseal is very beneficial for peptic ulcers. The antibacterial action of goldenseal is also beneficial in treating giardia and amoebas which can be disastrous on the intestinal tract. Studies indicate that goldenseal outperforms established anti-giardia drugs.


The astringent and antiseptic properties of goldenseal make it fantastic for topical uses. It is found to be beneficial for skin disorders such as sores, eczema, poison ivy, canker sores and ringworm. Goldenseal has also been used for inflammation of the ear. For most topical uses the tincture or tea can be used.

Colds and Flu

The great natural antibiotic quality of goldenseal and the ability to combat infectious agents make it very attractive during cold and flu season. Goldenseal soothes and conditions the mucous membranes which are easily infected by colds and flu. Goldenseal helps restore the body after fevers and, being an alterative, helps tone the body to maintain good health and vitality to overcome disease.


Large doses of goldenseal can be toxic and dangerous. Hydrastine stays in the system for a long time and accumulates. It can destroy intestinal bacteria and reduce the absorption of B vitamins over prolonged periods. Avoid large doses during pregnancy and if you have hypoglycemia.


The Herb Book, J. Lust, Bantam Books, 1974.
A Modern Herbal, M. Grieve, Dover Publications, 1971.
Natural Healing with Herbs, H. Santillo, Hohm Press, 1990.
Potter’s New Cyclopaedia of Botanical Drugs and Preparations, R.C. Wren, Saffron Walden, 1988.
Rodale’s Illustrated Encyclopedia of Herbs, C. Kowalchik & W. Hylton, Rodale Press, 1987.
Scientific Validation of Herbal Medicine, D. Mowrey, Cormorant Books, 1986.

From Fall 1996 Herbal Insights.
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