Herbalist Notes on Sarsaparilla:
Sarsaparilla’s most enduring recommendations have been for rheumatism and psoriasis. Given these are famously hard health problems to get better from it shows how high is the regard held for this herb that it is still widely used around the world for these problems to this very day.
The ancient Greeks and Romans linked European Sarsaparilla to the treatment of poisons but when the Spanish explorers discovered the Caribbean species (a prickly; zarza, vine; parra, that was little; illa) that it was called ‘Sarsaparilla’ and went on to become an extremely popular medicine for many centuries.
T. Bartram calls Sarsaparilla a powerful blood tonic, anti-inflammatory and anti-rheumatic and goes on to list its potential benefits for rheumatism, gout, chronic skin eruptions, psoriasis and eczema.
In 1494 an unusually violent epidemic of syphilis swept through Europe and for a long time Sarsaparilla was the main treatment used for this deadly disease. Nicholas Culpeper called Sarsaparilla the best treatment for the French disease (the English name for syphilis) and also recommended it for ‘eye problems, head colds, gas pains, pimples and all manner of aches in the sinews or joints’. (1)
Consider with venereal diseases, eczema, psoriasis, cancer, ulcerative colitis, and arthritis. Use for itchy skin, rashes of any type, and for indigestion or lack of appetite. Attributes: Diuretic (clears fluid retention), anti-fungal, blood cleansing/purifying, and increases testosterone levels. Organs affected: Skin, blood, bladder, and liver. Cautions: None.
Sarsaparilla is an ingredient in True Clear Skin, which is an invention of desperate need. Our oldest daughter, Savannah, was exposed to poison ivy, and she had a very strong reaction. I think it was a systemic reaction, which means the toxins or allergens, whatever causes that rash, sinks deeper and finds the blood, which delivers it all over the body. She wasn’t totally covered, but it found some very delicate parts.
I used muscle testing to find what best strengthened her body, and True Clear Skin was created. Our first case, Savannah, was a success. Then a patient mentioned their kid got into it, so we shared the recipe. Another success. Everyone who tried it said it worked amazingly well. It was part of my Sclerodema resolution, and helped a patient with psoriasis heal his skin “better than Methotrexate.”
Meanwhile, Savannah grew up and reaches puberty, which can bring on acne. Another success. We recently offered it for purchase on our website. The first few people who tried it sent emails declaring amazement at its effectiveness with acne. I never thought about it, but of course, if it can heal scleroderma and psoriasis, acne should be nothing to its healing effects!
Sarsaparilla is part of a formula that significantly helps Hepatitis! (2)
Doctors in China also consider this plant for cancer. They discovered that “Sarsaparilla exerts growth inhibitory effect on multiple cancer cells in vitro and in vivo” (in a petri dish and in animals/humans). (3)