Herbal treatments for malaria and dengue

Discussion in 'Planting, growing, nurturing Plants' started by Peter Clements, Dec 1, 2005.

  1. Peter Clements

    Peter Clements Junior Member

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    There are reports of a herbal treatment for malaria, being artemisinin/sweet wormwood. https://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/health/1364080.stm
    Has anyone heard of herbal treatments for dengue fever? These two diseases are a real problem for anyone intending to live in the tropics.
     
  2. christopher

    christopher Junior Member

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    Peter,

    Thanks for that! I'm going to see if I can source some seed for it.

    I have never had malaria, and with 20 years here, I have been very lucky. Part of it is that the last 17 years I have lived three klicks from a population center, and malaria has missed me. Also never had cholera, which swept through Belize late 80s.

    I have, however, had dengue, and it is the only time in my life where I was indifferent to the thought of living or dieing. I just didn't care one way or the other, and I though to myself, well, if I die, all of this pain stops, and that's okay.... I was utterly wiped out for five days, high fever, bones and joints fell like I was breaking into pieces, ugh, and I had the retroorbital pain. It took me two months to get strong again. The matress was drenched with sweat, and I had hot/cold/hot/cold sensations, and pain, pain, pain, pain. The only thing worse than laying and breathing awake was trying to sleep. It was the worst, most unpleasant time to be inside my body in my whole life.

    I wouldn't wish dengue on anyone.

    Thank you for that info! That looks likea plant specie we should be cultivating. Will keep my eyes/ears open to source some from anywhere.

    Thank you!

    Christopher


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  3. Peter Clements

    Peter Clements Junior Member

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    Herbal suppression

    Hi Christopher,
    Glad I could share that info with you, where it can be put to good use. That's what I love about permaculture- no matter how times you use information, it never wears out! Regarding herbal remedies, I have come across a theory of pest control that says don't try to wipe the pest out, otherwise it will become resistant- instead suppress it to a low level where it becomes less of a problem, thus avoiding resistance. Here in Australia we use tea tree oil to control disease in potting mix, based on this principle of suppression.
     
  4. sab

    sab Junior Member

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    I had dengue too in Manila. It took about a year before I could walk without joint pain again. My son was three when he got it. He was crying, "My legs don't work." We got through it without medication mainly because we didn't realise till we saw a documentary where it was called break-bone fever when we realised what we'd had.
     
  5. Jez

    Jez Junior Member

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  6. SueinWA

    SueinWA Junior Member

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    Dengue Hemorrhagic Fever:

    Since the Chinese seem to often have a better grip on herbal treatments, I was surfing around and found an alternative medicine site that said "Using traditional Chinese diagnostics and herb therapy [for DHF], the results are better than using modern drug therapy".

    The treatments are at the following site, but it appears that you would need the assistance of a good Chinese herbalist:

    https://alternativehealing.org/dengue_fe ... rmulae.htm

    Sue
     
  7. forest

    forest Junior Member

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    In my nursing days, I used to work on Cape York, Thursday Island and often travelled to PNG with the flying doctor for clinics. We saw all those tropical diseases like Hanson's Disease (leprosy), malaria, TB etc. The thing that made the most difference in the long term, was the use of mosquito nets. When they started using them the incidence of passing the disease on was cut right back.
     
  8. christopher

    christopher Junior Member

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    Mozzie nets do cut back on the rate of infection of the diseases like malaria and dengue, which are transmitted via mosquito.

    Also, reducing the amount of litter, like old cans, bottles, tires, discarded rubber boots, etc, will reduce the populatio of mosquitos, therefore reducing their ability to act as a vector for these mosquito borne diseases.

    Part of the poblem here is that in a preindustrial society, all the tamale wrappers and containers were made of material which will break down when disposed of. There would be no "trash" because the clay bowl, the leaf for tamale wrapping, the wood for the bowl, or other local rpoduct would be made out of a material that could return to the earth pretty easily. With plastics, there is no breakdown.... and the containers, not beiong porous, will hold water and create habitat for mosquito breeding.

    So this creates a problem, increased access to disposable goods, increased creation of habitat for mosquitos and subsequently increased rates of infection by population of mosquitos that has exploded.

    The urual methods of dealing with mosquitos is to spray, usually malathion here, though they were still using DDT in the 1980s when I first got here. They go into a house, spray the walls and under the bed, and believe that this miraculously eliminates mosquitos. It does kill some, but it also kills the spiders and flies and wasps, and birds, and eventually, the mosquitos take not notice because they have become immune.

    There is an entrenched interest in that method of dealing with the problem. Lots of rich countries will "donate" sprayer trucks, train technicians (often young, uneducaqted, inexperienced and, after training, brainwashed into thinking the chemicals are "safe"), send in experts, etc, but noone wants to buy impoverished people mosquito nets.....

    Forest, you are right. Starting from a place of prevention is better than dealing with the symptoms. An ounce of prevention is worth a tonne of cure!

    C
     
  9. SueinWA

    SueinWA Junior Member

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    When I was looking at the malaria & DHF sites, they all talked about how the local people (in poor countries where mosquitoes are rampant) keep filling the storm/rain drains with debris, causing them to back up, pool water and, of course, breed mosquitoes.

    I wonder if anyone ever EXPLAINS to them WHY they shouldn't do this, or do they just tell them not to? Maybe that would be too simple for any government... :cry:

    Sue
     
  10. bazman

    bazman Junior Member

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    I spent two years in PNG, and a lot of people get malaria up that way, there are three main stains from memory, one gets into your brain and is really bad news, I didn't really worry about it to much as I got bitten all the time, anywhere I would go I got bitten, Rebecca on the other hand never got bitten, we would go to a BBQ and I would get bitten 20 times and she got none.

    So guess who got malaria? Bec was really sick for a few weeks, but found the treatment worse, it was a two week treatment, she was sick as a dog for the whole time.

    I don't have any idea why I didn't get it, might have had something to do with all the drugs and booze, heh. :lol: Expat life in Port Moresby was pretty wild.
     
  11. SueinWA

    SueinWA Junior Member

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    I've always wondered why some people attracted biting insects and others didn't. When my Mom was a kid, the family would say, "Send Lorraine through the bushes first. If there are any ticks, she'll get them and leave it clean for us." And my youngest sister is the same.

    'Tis a mystery.

    Sue
     
  12. christopher

    christopher Junior Member

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    Sue,

    We notice from hosting volunteers that those who eat a great deal of sugar are more likely to get bit, and new arrivals here are more likely to have reactions (swelling bites, itches, etc).

    I have a theory involving microscopic scar tissue, mozzies seeing me and saying "forget this guiy, all the sugar done been suc ked out of him, long time"... and my being an old battle horse.... but I'll spare you, cuz its more of a joke.

    I get bit a fair amount, but not too bad, and I don't react much.

    We have sand flies here, and there is a sand fly borne diseas called leishmaniasis, which is a nasty little flesh eating virus that is also called "chiclero disease" since the chicleros used to get it. It can eat your nose or ear off. I had it on my ear and treated it with boiling water. Painful but.... I still have my ear! I'd be in trouble if it had hit my nose.....

    There are conventional treatments, but they are expensive, painful and toxic. My pain threshhold at the time was bigger than my cash reserves, so.....

    C
     
  13. Peter Clements

    Peter Clements Junior Member

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    Mozzie trap

    Here's some ideas on building mozzie traps of pots filled with small fish...

    "Richard Melton of Kailua learned how to use guppies against mosquitoes during a trip to Bali, Indonesia, and has since cut down drastically on the mosquito population around his home.

    Like many Balinese villagers, Melton has placed large ceramic pots of water with guppies on his porch and lanai. The mosquitoes lay eggs in the pots, and the eggs are then eaten by the fish.

    "We used to have a terrible mosquito problem, and now they've pretty much disappeared," said Melton, who works at the Hawaiian multi-service organization Alu Like Inc."

    https://the.honoluluadvertiser.com/artic ... ln02a.html
     
  14. christopher

    christopher Junior Member

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    Peter,

    Thank you for this latest wonderful information!

    How beautifullly simple. (Can you eat the guppies, thinkig an aquaponics :wav: tie in, here ..... :lol: )I am hoping to try it myself...

    We do the same with various flies. We make a compost bin, add all of the various things we can't feed to the chooks, coffee grounds, tea bags, onion peels, etc, and it attracts flies who lay their eggs. After about a week there will be plenty of maggots at the bottom, wriggling about, making noise (you can HEAR them towards the end, if you listen carefully).

    We then haul the bin off to the area we want the partly composted material sheet mulched, and then we dump the whole mess, and its crawling with maggots. Chooks go nuts, compost gets spread, maggots get eaten, chooks manure the area, andt the fruit of the flies procreation doesn't make it past the maggot stage....

    I like the thinking behind letting the insects fruitlessly procreate.....

    C
     
  15. Mike_E_from_NZ

    Mike_E_from_NZ Junior Member

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    Hi Peter

    Very cool idea about the guppies. Do you know anyone (except the guy in the article) who has tried this?

    The questions I have are these
    1. Does a supplied body of water attract mosquitoes away from other breeding places? Are the puddles of water where I don't have guppies eschewed in favour of my trap?
    2. If not, are mosquitoes territorial? That is, do the mosquitoes that breed in my supplied water chase off mosquitoes that breed further away?

    I am trying to think of a multifaceted design solution to this. We can't really remove all mosquito breeding places without getting rid of nature. And while I could suggest that on other forums, it might be bad taste here.

    But guppies have got to be part of it.

    Mike
     
  16. Richard on Maui

    Richard on Maui Junior Member

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    Uh, I've tried it... in that we have stocked guppies in all our ponds and rain barrels and lily ponds and every standing body of water any where near the house big enough for guppies. And we still have mozzies!
     
  17. Peter Clements

    Peter Clements Junior Member

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    mozzie experiences

    Thanks Richard for the real-life feedback on the guppies/mozzies. Is this common practice in Maui? It may have some effect on the mozzie population, but obviously not completely effective.
    Regarding herbal remedies, I was recently in Penang Malaysia and visited the Tropical Fruit Farm https://www.tropicalfruits.com.my
    The farm features hundreds of tropical fruit tree species, for both eating and medicinal uses. "Morinda" fruit is used to stabilise blood pressure. Young coconut milk cures diarrhea, and most interesting "Putat" fruit is boiled as a soup for insulin.
    They fertilise the trees using a compost of fruit tree leaves, in what looks like a biodynamic technique. Their specialty is "dragonfruit"- the fruit of a cactus plant which is delicious. Also coffee, cocoa trees etc...
     
  18. Richard on Maui

    Richard on Maui Junior Member

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    Yeah, I dunno if keeping guppies around is that common here. There are certainly plenty of old tires lying around and half degraded plastic buckets, and beer bottles thrown out of cars etc so lots of habitat. Then there are all the plants like the heliconias and others that have water holding anatomy that make great mosquito breeders... Apparently we have 18 different species of mosquito in Huelo alone! There were none here at all before the Haoles (white fellers) came...
     
  19. Mike_E_from_NZ

    Mike_E_from_NZ Junior Member

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  20. ho-hum

    ho-hum New Member

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    Mike,

    I havent made mossie traps but make fly-traps with the same basic principle. No need to cover them in black paper though.

    Use the little blood soaker pads that are under supermarket style packed meat. I add a sprinkle of sugar and a few mills of water to help them along. I prefer 2 litre bottles with the black bottom on them for this. Three or four of these around the yard will break the fly cycle. I found more success hanging them up on string under a tree than standing them up.

    2l bottles also are nice and deep and great for starting cuttings off in water. The black bottoms. if ripped off. are handy little seedling pots. Although thinking about it, the black plastic bottoms may be a thing of the past.


    floot
     

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