“You should take some …” is a bit of advice I’m slightly sick of hearing. No, I know that people are trying to help but at the moment I’m on so much medication that morning pill-taking counts as breakfast.


I have become slightly appalled at the things that are available as over-the-counter remedies advertised as “totally natural”. This is taken to mean herb-based and everyone assumes inoffensive. Sorry but although I am not an expert I dabble in herbs and have had to learn a fair bit about them. Were I to pick a random fungus off the ground and offer it to you, you’d want to know what it was and be sure it was safe – right?


Herbs = natural = safe isn’t a good mantra. Belladonna and monkshood are herbs. They are also deadly poison. In my own case I’m already taking a Valerian-based medication for my Bipolar condition and most of the “natural” sleep aids are full of things that would combine with that to give me an overdose; only worrying if I want to keep breathing in my sleep. These include large doses of Valerian (again) Hypericum (St. John’s Wort) and other plants which have the same active ingredient. It would be like taking paracetamol, codeine and ibuprofen at the same time, which none of us would dream of doing.


Even creams have to be examined carefully as their molecules get into the blood stream …you see where I’m going? Over the years I have worked out what I can and can’t take, read labels like a demented Fair-Trade shopper and know what works. You’ll understand why I steam quietly. These people are trying to do me a favour, the stuff is freely available and I need some sleep…oh dear, we didn’t mean to kill her! Is this the original “killing with kindness”?


8 thoughts on “Naturally…

  1. You are quite right to be cautious, Ailsa, and this is something people should clue up on if they want ‘natural’ cures. We should be naturally suspicious of anything we don’t recognise, and if we don’t know, we should learn!

  2. Well well, I didn’t realise we both enjoyed the same breakfast so much. I look like a chemist’s shop with all the sprays and tablets round here. I haven’t got room for anything else no matter how well meaning the purpose.
    Many people will see that something ‘Natural’ is good for something specific but as you say won’t look to see what it reacts with or against. Even normal people can suffer if they take two natural remedies for two different things that don’t react well together.
    Best advice, take nothing that hasn’t been prescribed or OK’d by your doctor.
    xxx Massive Hugs Ailsa xxx

  3. I have so much medication that taking an extra can unbalance the rest. My last medication that knocked me bandy for a few days is one. I do take supplements, but not hefty ones. B12′ which has been short in my body that GP gave me a serious if injections for it still ongoing. But you really have to be careful what you take. So, I agree in principle.

    1. Thanks to both of you. It’s something that most people don’t even consider and as Bisondog says – if stuff your medic prescribes can knock you sideways…what havoc can you wreck messing about on your own???

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