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Natural Health from A to Z
Wednesday, January 9, 2013 • Posted January 9, 2013

Blood Purifiers are one of my favorite classes of herbs and one that truly is at the heart of herbalism. Blood purification is an old fashioned classification of herbs that are good for just about anything - including acne, arthritis, eczema, cancer and more.

Many things in our modern life lead to blood impurities - these include stress, poor diet, and exposure to many chemicals in our daily environments. The human body is designed to clean and heal itself. Herbs help this process; while many of the drugs used in conventional medicine interfere with this process.

Any herb will have multiple properties and any of the herbs that support the liver and kidneys will also clean the blood. Most of these herbs will help restore alkaline balance to the body. Two blood cleaners that I often recommend are dandelion and burdock. Both of these will help to purify the blood, and both to some degree also support and clean the kidneys and liver.

Dandelion is very helpful for teenage acne. And it is included in many popular herbal liver and kidney cleaners.

Burdock is another herb that is a blood cleaner - I recommend it most commonly for the lymphatic system, but it works for the kidneys too. One of the more useful properties of burdock is that it will help clean both the kidneys and the joints, softening and removing excess calcium. Burdock is included in many of my horse formulas because it is very gentle, yet effective (and tasty if you are a horse.)

Echinacea is a well-known blood purifier. It is both a blood and lymph cleaner. And it also stimulates the immune system.

The are several blood cleaners that are used in traditional herbalism when the body is seriously out of balance in conditions such as cancer. These include burdock, sheep sorrel, red clover, galangal, blood root, pau d’arco and graviola. These herbs are useful for removing impurities and alkalizing the body. These herbs are part of an alternative and/or complementary approach to health as the underlying assumption is that the body can heal itself if the blood is “clean”.

Here are some of the blood cleansing formulas. Essiac, a well-known formula of several blood cleaning herbs, has been studied clinically and is known for helping to shrink tumors. The Hoxey formula is still used in some of the cancer clinics in Mexico. This is a blood purifying formula that contains red clover. And there are also the Native American herbs that are blood cleaners.

Formulas like these have fallen out of popularity as they are not understood by most people. We tend to look for remedies that I call “one hit wonders” that are supposed to cure everything. All of these blood purifying herbs and formulas can be useful depending on the challenges facing the body. But, remember that they are are just one step in restoring health to the body.

Margaret Durst owns The Green House, a vitamin, herb and health food store in Mason, Texas. www.naturalcowgirl.wordpress.com

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