Kiss under the Mistletoe

In his famous work Naturalis Historia Pliny the Elder pays tribute to Gallic druids, even though he was a Roman through and through, and as such a natural enemy of the Celts. These barbarians, uncouth, rough savages – as labelled by the Romans – had special powers and knowledge which were passed from generation to generation. In a comic book series about Asterix the Gallic Celt, brought to life by its creators Rene Goscinny and Albert Uderzo, the famous druid Getafix is seen either meandering around the woods picking plants or protecting the magic potion whose recipe the greedy Romans could not succeed to obtain. The Celts did not leave behind any written traces about their culture; paradoxically, we can learn all about them from historical records kept by the Romans who tried their best to tarnish Celts’ reputation.

A good portion of our genes in the Balkans is Celtic. Before the Romans reached the Balkans, the Celts had lived here for millennia. Belgrade’s modern-day suburb of Karaburma used to be populated by the Celts; the location where the current farmers’ market stands used to be a large necropolis. The Celts used to roam the banks of the Danube, they adored tall trees, the oak in particular, a tree that also occupies the central position in Slav mythology. And it was in the tall strong trees where they used to find the key ingredient for the preparation of their “magic potion” – mistletoe.

It is precisely because of mistletoe that Pliny the Elder paid tribute to them. The Celts did not view it as an unimportant parasitic plant – as it appears to be on first glance – but a plant that has great powers. Mistletoe was the basis of their myths, legends and rituals – and what is most important – of their medicine. How powerful the druids were is best illustrated by the fact that the Romans understood that they first had to get rid of the druids if they wanted to subjugate the Celts. In the first century AD, the Roman Emperor Tiberius launched a massive campaign to execute the druids in Gall, but the later Roman Emperor Claudius brought in a law to ban those executions. Those Celts who adopted Christianity interwove its belief system with their pagan beliefs and continued passing their legends from generation to generation.

Why is mistletoe so special? And what is it that the druids understood in those ancient times when there was no chemical research, no labs or microscopes?

First of all, it was the way it reproduces – a bird needs to eat its ripe berry; after eating the white flesh of the berry, the bird has to wipe its beak on twigs and branches, leaving behind the seed. Once the sticky content is dried and hardened, the firmly attached seeds germinate, stealing nutrients and water from their host. The ancient Celts believed that the mistletoe, apart from the nutrients, also takes over the spirit of the tree, and thus remains green even in wintertime, when most of the vegetation is dormant.

Mistletoe’s modus vivendi – its ability to draw energy from its host – can be regarded in a new light when we learn that this exceptional plant has the power to destroy tumour cells. This fact has been recognised by modern medicine, and some hospitals use mistletoe to treat tumours as it has been scientifically proven that it prevents the growth of blood vessels of malign tissues. One has to be mindful of the fact that mistletoe berries are very poisonous and therefore this plant can be used only if professionally processed.

In addition to suppressing malignant cells, mistletoe has the power:

  • to regulate blood pressure and prevent arrhythmia
  • to prevent dizziness and cramps
  • to regulates hormones
  • to improve metabolism
  • to prevent diabetes
  • to accelerates the work of the lymphatic system
  • to eliminate hot flashes and irritability
  • to have a beneficial effect on the glands with internal secretion

Irritability, palpitations, mood swings, insomnia, hot flashes – these are the symptoms that every woman entering a menopause can recognise. As the druids used to have their magic potion in the times long past, Herba Svet nowadays has its own magic potion – Femisan B. Mistletoe is one of five plants that are ingredients in this precious food supplement.

In the end, let’s not forget the famous ritual that is practised all over the world at Christmas time: if a woman stands under the mistletoe, a man has the right to kiss her, without risking a slap on the face. Because that is exactly when hot flashes have begun and she is totally irritable…

Herb Robert, Our Super-Hero

There is an element which is known to have extraordinary powers. Germanium stimulates the body’s immune response, it prevents the effects of free radicals, transmits oxygen – thus nourishing the cells, increases the levels of interferons which stimulate anti-bodies… Germanium is a super-hero which protects our body from bacteria, viruses and tumours.

Double Nobel laureate Dr Otto Warburg established that the main cause of cancer is a lack of oxygen in cells, after he had discovered that cancer cells could not survive in fully-oxygenated environments. And it is exactly germanium that showers the cells with oxygen. It is the one mineral which brings us energy, vitality, immunity, and restores balance when there is a lack of it. Germanium is found in the nature, in some mushrooms (e.g. shiitake), in ginseng, garlic and in one exceptional medicinal plant – red geranium, herb robert.

Herb robert, Geranium robertianum, also known in the West as Robert, was named after a monk who lived in the 13th century and who used this plant to heal many people. Throughout history it has been the symbol of happiness and it was frequently depicted next to storks, as a symbol of fertility.

In a sea of medicinal plants, herb robert is often overlooked, which is a pity as it can prevent the emergence and development of cancer. It can be eaten, fresh in salads; in its desiccated form it can be used in delicious herbal infusions and is excellent in combination with other herbs. A powerful scent of a freshly picked plant rubbed into the skin repels mosquitos.

Its exceptional antibiotic and antibacterial powers help with open wounds, cracked ulcers, internal bleeding and nosebleeds, toothache, and it is a woman’s best friend. Herb robert is great in regulating the menstrual cycle, preventing ovarian inflammations, and is an excellent fighter against sterility in both sexes. That is why herb robert is an inevitable ingredient of Femisan A. With another five plants in Femisan, herb robert does what it does best – it produces miracles.

This low-growing plant with small pretty pink flowers grows throughout Europe and was also brought to America. Its reproductive process is very interesting: when it flowers it produces seed pods which break, suddenly spreading seeds in a five-metre radius. This inspired many folk stories and fairy tales, one of which was even embodied in the character of Puck in Shakespeare’s Midsummer Night’s Dream.

Herb robert is a very persistent weed – you can try to cut it and remove it, but it always comes back. Maybe, its persistence does have a message for us.

Herb for Heroes and Hajduks

Achilles, an almost invincible hero of the Trojan War, owed his immortality to his mother Thetis, a nereid – a sea nymph – who regularly dipped him in the river Styx; however, he was left vulnerable in one part of the body – that by which his mother held him while dipping him in the river: his left heel which never touched the sacred waters of the river Styx. Thetis also used other methods in an attempt to strengthen her son. Some unorthodox methods which were opposed by her husband Peleus involved Thetis anointing the boy in ambrosia and holding him over a fire in order to burn away the mortal parts of his body. After she had been stopped by Peleus, she abandoned both her husband and her son in a rage and returned the the depths of the sea.

Peleus entrusted the upbringing of Achilles to Chiron the Centaur who achieved a feat that even modern medicine would be envious of – he carried out the first transplantation. He implanted the bone of the giant Damiso, a famous runner, in Achilles leg, thus making Achilles an extraordinary runner. Achilles had all the advantages of the most modern education of the time: his diet consisted of the intestines of lions and wild boar (so that he should become strong) and honey to make him sweet and eloquent. In effect, Achilles had all the advantages of the traditional medicine of the period.  

As the Greek fleet gathered in Aulis, Achilles mother gave him Hephaestus weapons, a divine horse and the slave Mnemon. Legend has it that the Greek army first reached Mysia on its way to Troy. Convinced that they had arrived in Troy, they set out to ravage the city, until Telephus, the son of Heracles, appeared. After Telephus had stumbled on a vine, Achilles struck him in the thigh with a spear.  

After many adventures Telephus and Achilles met in Greece again. Telephus’ wound was not healing and – as he leant from the oracle – it could be healed only by the person who inflicted it. Therefore Telephus donned beggar’s clothes and went searching for Achilles. In Aulis, he managed to get medical help thanks to his cunning: he promised the Greek army to show them the way to Troy if Achilles healed his wound.

A version of the story says that Achilles scraped pieces of his spear onto Telephus’ wound, which miraculously healed. According to another version, he used herbal medicine – he applied yarrow to Telephus wound. We all probably know how Achilles ended his life and how his heal became legendary, but that is not all. In year 1753 his healing powers inspired Carl Linnaeus to name a very special plant by Achilles’ name. That is how yarrow was given its scientific name Achillea millefolium. 

Many heroes’ wounds were healed by this herb.  In our region it became legendary thanks to hajduks (legendary anti-Ottoman freedom fighters and highway brigands in West Balkans), who are fated to have carried it on themselves, just in case. Centuries have passed, but yarrow (in Serbian called hajdučka trava /hajduks’s herbs/) does not cease to fascinate. It has a beneficial effect on the liver and kidneys, the reproductive system, digestive organs, the nervous system, and circulation; it lowers blood sugar, relieves the symptoms of the flu and colds, regulates blood pressure and cures haemorrhoids. As Achilles and hajduks have known for centuries, it can stop bleeding and can promote wound healing. 

Yarrow has a very good reason to be one of the ingredients used in Femisan A and B. Thanks to achilleine and tannin this precious plant soothes lengthy and heavy bleeding and has a positive effect on the hormonal balance. With its soothing effect on the nervous system it calms its oversensitivity in perimenopause and menopause, and after the onset of menopause it has a positive  effect on the cardiovascular system by preventing diabetes and strengthening immunity. 

Myths a legends are one thing but reality is something completely different. We all know that women are in effect the biggest silent heroes. That is why this heroes’ herb is here to ease their way through many heroic deeds – both those experienced on a daily basis, but also some momentous events in one’s life. 

The protector of women

The first description of lady’s mantle dates back to 1539, when the German botanist and physician Hieronymus Bock, known also by his Latin name Tragus, kicked off the process of modernisation of medieval botany. Bock laid the foundations of modern science with his catalogue of 700 plants based on observation and detailed description. Kreutterbuch, literally translated as the “plant book”, first appeared unillustrated. In the following 1546 edition it contained excellent drawings by the artist David Kandel. This particular book later served as a basis for Carl Linnaeus’ bionomial nomenclature, the modern system of naming organisms.

Bock knew well where each plant grew, which shows that he must have travelled a lot researching vegetation in the field. It is not an accident that a German scientist classified lady’s mantle in his book as a very important and useful plant; the plant was highly respected by the ancient German tribes and devoted to Frigg, the goddess of beauty and fertility.

Lady’s mantle was given its scientific name Alchemilla vulgaris thanks to alchemists’ belief that dew on its leaves could lead them to philosopher’s stone which has the ability to transform base metals into gold. Lady’s mantle is a pretty plant on whose leaves one can see droplets shining like little pearls throughout the day. Probably it was its beauty that first attracted our ancestors who soon realised that lady’s mantle’s biggest value were its medicinal properties. Women were particularly convinced of that.

 

Lady’s mantle can be found all over our hilly Balkan peninsula and has been used in folk medicine since time immemorial. Apart from helping with stomach upsets and diarrhoea, it helps to heal wounds and calm skin infections. It is most useful to women. Its precious ingredients – tannins, bitter glycosides, flavonoids, phytosterols, salicylic acid, saponins, ethereal oil – have anti-inflammatory, anti-bacterial and anti-fungal properties.

This natural hormone balancer helps with irregular or heavy periods, cysts, polycystic ovaries, uterine fibroids, endometriosis, but is also known to ease labour pain, speed up wound healing and recovery after childbirth. Tannins and astringents prevent increased bleeding and lessen period pains. With its anti-fungal properties it can help fight fungus and bacterial vaginitis; thanks to its power to prevent bacterial growth, some experience shows that it helps even to fight staphylococcus. Research has shown that lady’s mantle is useful in treating conditions caused by the human papillomavirus and that its ingredient agrimoniin prevents breast cancer.

A legend has it that women used to believe that dew droplets from lady’s mantle leaves can help them remain forever young. But the ritual was not simple: at midnight, only on the nights when the Moon is full, fully naked, they would have to dip their small toe in the dew on lady’s mantle. Today we know that we do not have to be naked and wait for midnight, but lady’s mantle can certainly help us remain young for longer: in addition to using its leaves to treat skin conditions, it is excellent in reducing wrinkles and age spots. But the biggest aesthetic benefit is that lady’s mantle can enable us to maintain a good hormonal balance and thus remove the unwanted symptoms of such imbalance: obesity, acne, greasy skin, increased hairiness. And when the menopause time comes it can reduce its symptoms too.

 

Youthfulness and the future generations can be helped by lady’s mantle: this plant, in addition to its other beneficial properties, helps women with sterility issues. It is not by accident that lady’s mantle was devoted to Frigg, the goddess of fertility, and later in the Middle Ages, to Virgin Mary, our Lady, whose mantle or protector it was. Once upon a time women used to pick lady’s mantle and kept it in vases at home to increase femininity and attract love. Today we know that lady’s mantle increases the growth of progesterone, normalises the levels of hormones, strengthens the endometrium – the uterine lining, stimulates the ovaries and ovulation, and thus not only increases fertility but also ensures that pregnancy is free from complications and does not result in a miscarriage.

Lady’s mantle can be used on its own, but it is best used in combination with other herbs, such as yarrow, marigold, herb robert, shepherd’s purse and parsley. Nowadays we do not have to go in search of these herbs because they can already be found in their clearest and most usable form and perfect proportions in the completely natural preparation in our pharmacies. Femisan A, “cloaked in lady’s mantle” has been a woman’s best friend for two decades.

Ancient Knowledge, Modern Approach

Starting in 1950s, a cave in the Zagros Mountains in northern Iraq has been in spotlight of archeologists and anthropologists from all over the world. The spacious Shanidar cave has given shelter to the remains of eight adult and two infant Neanderthals for over 60 000 years, as well as numerous remains of the later Neolithic age. Apart from human bones, stone tools and animal skeletons, this cave holds another piece of precious evidence: pollen of eight plants that are believed to have been chosen for their specific medicinal properties. Out of eight of them, seven are still in use today by modern phytopharmacy.

One of the plants used by these pre-historic ancestors of ours that had sought refuge in the cave was yarrow. Millennia later, in the 11th century, on the other side of the Caspian Sea, the same plant was used by the well-known physician, philosopher and Father of Chemistry: Ibn Sina. Having become a qualified physician at the age of 18, Ibn Sina plunged into the enormous field of research, eager to help and treat as many patients as possible, and for free. During the 58 years of his prolific life, this brilliant scientist of the Islamic Golden Age authored numerous books that were used not only in the Islamic world, but in Europe as well, up to the 18th century.

In his Canon of Medicine, a five-volume work that encompasses all known medical knowledge of the time, Ibn Sina explains that the best way to treat a patient is to improve the power of his body – to increase the immune system. He was the first to use quarantine as a public health measure against an infectious disease, to define syndrome, and to use controlled studies in medical research. All this 10 centuries ago.

Believing that plants have the ‘vegetable’ soul, Ibn Sina took great care not only in using them for treatment, but in collecting them: the second book of the Cannon of Medicine contains detailed instructions on collection and storage of medicinal plants. As for yarrow, he used it to treat numerous diseases, from headache, nasal congestion, stomach pain, urinary tract disorders, to female disorders, irregular and heavy periods.

Ibn Sina was very interested in alchemy, and there are two alchemical treatises attributed to him. It is interesting that another medicinal plant derives its scientific name from the Arabic ‘alkemelych’ – the alchemist, because of its leaves that collect dew which was thought to be able to turn metal into gold: the lady’s mantle. Today we know for certain that its dew is more decorative than magical, however its medicinal properties have not changed, and have been confirmed by modern research. Lady’s mantle is a very powerful astringent and can efficiently stop the bleeding of wounds. It’s leaf is the greatest protector of women: it can help with menstrual disorders, cysts, uterine fibroids, endometriosis, it can boost fertility and help the body recover after childbirth.

Ibn Sina was a famous doctor with well documented work. However, there are numerous women and men all around the world who possess great, undocumented knowledge on medicinal properties of herbs. Women in Mecca, for example, are the primary household health carers and can skillfully treat most common ailments, especially gynecological problems, pregnancy and childbirth. Plants available locally play an important role in their home pharmacy. Similarly, lady’s mantle has been used all around the world by women – to help women. With the arrival of modern medicine, traditional medicine was regarded as healthcare of the poor, but today we are witnesses of its grand revival. We are aware that, even though modern medicine has numerous cures, it lacks holistic approach to the patient, and there are still disorders that remain a mystery. Modern medicine also usually provides a quick fix which is inefficient in the long-run. This is particularly the case in female disorders, which are usually treated with artificial hormones.

In the Middle Eastern region, there are more than 2600 known plant species, and approximately 250 of them are still being used for the treatment and prevention of health disorders. However, modern, urban way of living, pollution and climate change is making it impossible for us to collect, preserve and use herbs properly. This is why we need to approach herbal remedies in a new, modern way.

Phytopharmacy today fills the gap between tradition and science: it collects all the knowledge of our ancestors and processes it in modern laboratories. One of its products is Femisan A – a modern herbal medicine based on centuries-old tradition. Apart from yarrow, used by Ibn Sina, and lady’s mantle – the ancient, great protectress of women, Femisan A also contains marigold, crane’s bill, shepherd’s purse, golden maca root and zinc. The best plants from all over the world are there, collected in a capsule, for women all around the world.

Who we are

Twenty years ago we had a vision about our own assortment of high-quality herbal dietary supplements. Over the time, we grew into a company employing over 20 pharmacy and phytotherapy professionals. Our program includes an array of products designed to preserve health and prevent numerous disorders and diseases, in both women and men.

From our early days, quality has been our main priority. Our choice is not only to include the best and most natural ingredients in our products, but also to systematically implement the ISO9001:2015 standard and HACCP system.

Herba Svet is a company based in Belgrade, capital of Serbia, situated in the Balkan Peninsula. It is a region with pristine fields and untouched nature, rich in medicinal plants that have been used for centuries in traditional medicine. Today our life significantly differs from that of our ancestors: we breathe polluted air, eat food saturated with pesticides and antibiotics, we are constantly under stress and we spend most of our time indoors, away from nature. Modern way of life is taking its toll, and the list of disorders that we are experiencing today is getting bigger. Official medicine usually offers us drugs to relieve individual symptoms, not to cure the disease.

It is obvious that we need to approach the patient and the problem holistically, and use the knowledge of our ancestors that had helped numerous generations before us. It is exactly this knowledge that Herba Svet relies on when creating the products, however it is implemented in a modern, scientific way. That is why our preparations contain carefully selected medicinal herbs, in proportions that give the best synergistic effect.

Our hard work is not unrecognized: Herba Svet has been receiving awards over the last two decades for supreme quality, including over 30 gold medals, several golden cups, and continuous Golden Certificates of Creditworthiness Rating by Bisnode. However, our best awards are the news we get from our users:

  • I got pregnant after 5 years of sterility, or
  • The fibroid has shrank to half its size,
  • The cysts are gone, my doctor couldn’t believe it,
  • I avoided surgery,
  • The pain’s gone,
  • I no longer get hot flashes,
  • My eczema is history,
  • My acne scars disappeared…

…these are just few of the comments we get every day that give us the strongest motivation to continue our mission.

Today Herba Svet products can be found globally, all around Europe, in America, Australia and Asia, and recently we have introduced some of them in the Middle East region. Our plan is to keep expanding and bringing best quality herbal remedies to people all around the world. Because we came from nature and we cannot exist without it.

A Cup of Grandma’s Mint Tea a Day Keeps the Doctor Away

To understand the delightful scent of the mint herb (Mentha) and its healing properties we must go back to ancient times and Greek mythology. Myths and deities were pretty much like today’s soap operas: filled with intrigue, happy or unrequited love, infidelity and revenge. Such was the story of the famous couple, Hades and Persephone.

Hades, today mostly known as the Underworld, the world of the dead, in ancient Greek times, however, was a god, later called Pluto in ancient Rome. His two brothers, Zeus, the god of the sky and thunder, and Poseidon, the god of the sea were both attractive and desirable, but the goddesses were not really mad about Hades. He was in love with Persephone, but he had to kidnap her to make her marry him. However, the story didn’t end there. Despite being in love with Persephone, the lustful Hades was restless, and very soon the beautiful nymph Minthe caught his eye. Enraged by Hades’ infidelity, Persephone took revenge on Minthe by turning her into a plant. Hades, miserable for not having the power to reverse the spell, gave Minthe a delightful scent that would lavish anyone walking on her green leaves.

Hades also had his temple at the foot of the mountain Minthe in ancient Elis, and throughout history, he had been passed on from myth to myth until he ended up in Christianity as the place where the souls of sinners go. And what happened to Minthe? Called Meta in Rome, she was the symbol of the metamorphosis of beauty. But, as she sailed from myth into reality, turning into the fragrant and delightful plant called mint, it has become an integral part of our lives.

Mint has been used since prehistoric times; from the ancient Egyptians, through Hippocrates, Dioscorides, Pliny, Islamic medicine and Serbian herbalists, all the way to modern industry. Whether used as a herbal tea or in chewing gums it has become indispensable. The fact that associated it with Hades in ancient times was that, along with rosemary and myrtle, it was an essential part of funeral rites.

The classification of genus Mentha contains many species, but the ones most important to us are the wild mint, Mentha spicata, better known as spearmint used in toothpastes and chewing gums, and Mentha piperita, also known as peppermint. It was as early as the 14th century that mint ended up in a toothpaste, and in the 17th century the famous English herbalist, Nicholas Culpepper used its healing properties to treat over 40 ailments.

It is no accident that in Serbia, the word “nana” is used for both the plant and as a nickname for grandma. Grandma is always there when we are in pain, to comfort us with her warmth and gentleness. Just like what a healthy cup of mint tea does to our body. But whether it be made by our grandma or by a scientist in a laboratory, the undeniable fact is that this herb has exceptional antimicrobial properties and a very beneficial effect on the gastrointestinal tract and nervous system. According to experts, its ingredients that make wonders are: pulegone, menthon, isomenton, menthol, borneol and piperitone. Mint as a remedy is not just an old wives’ tale. It has been scientifically proven to be of help for digestive disorders. Menthol relaxes intestinal muscles, thus relieving the symptoms of irritable bowel syndrome, which has been confirmed in nine clinical studies with over 700 participants. It is also an excellent remedy for indigestion, abdominal pains and cramps, bloating, gases, belching, nausea and diarrhea.

The German Commission E, which regulates the use of medicinal herbs in this country, has approved mint leaf for the treatment of cramps in the gastrointestinal tract, bile and for the alleviation of gases in the intestines. The wonderful scent that Hades had bestowed upon the nymph Minthe is really powerful: a study with 144 participants proved that peppermint oil improves memory and alertness. It also reduces fatigue, anxiety and frustration. When inhaled, mint oil helps relieve cold symptoms. And we all know that a mint successfully kills bad breath.

Apart from being therapeutic, mint can also be used in cooking: it can be added to lemonades, sauces, salads and cocktails. In hair treatment, a mint infusion strengthens the hair and gives it gloss, and mint leaves added to our bath help us relax and sleep better. Dried sprigs of mint and lavender will get rid of moths in the closet.

It is the beneficial properties of mint in treating digestion disorders that made this plant become a part of Equigal – the all-natural preparation based on 6 medicinal plants that promotes digestion, eliminates constipation and gases, and prevents water retention. It is great for spring and autumn body cleanse and, as it reduces the feeling of hunger, it helps us reach the desired weight in a healthy way and get rid of cellulite. If you don’t believe it, ask your grandma!

Tea of Freedom

As 1773 was drawing to a close, an iconic event in the history of North America took place. For years Britain had been collecting taxes in its North American colonies on a great number of food products, including tea, yet not giving anything in return, not even parliamentary representation. This situation outraged the colonists who organised protests along the Eastern Coast, culminating in “the sons of freedom” marching to the Boston port and throwing overboard a newly arrived shipment of tea into the Boston harbour. The 45 ton-shipment was worth a small fortune – around 10,000 pounds at the time.

After the incident, as the sea was brimming with soggy tea for days, the American Revolution was gaining momentum in 13 colonies, a revolution that finally led to independence and the birth of the United States of America in 1783. This event gave a very bad name to the traditional English tea. Naturally, alternative drinks had to be found. Tea’s misfortune was fortunate for coffee and another plant which grows all over the world – goldenrod.

Goldenrod, or solidago, which became known in America as the “tea of freedom” became massively popular and was exported even to China. Actually, goldenrod has a very interesting trading history. In the 12th century, the Egyptian Vizier Saladin who fought Richard the Lion Heart in the 3rd Crusade, believed that goldenrod had good healing properties. Via the Middle East, goldenrod’s good name reached England, where it was included in the English herbal treasury in Elizabethan times. It is interesting that the English had paid a lot of gold for this plant in the Middle East, until they finally realised that it grew in abundance in English wilderness too.

Goldenrod grows everywhere. It was used by American Indians and it was also part of Greek mythology. Astraea, the virgin goddess in ancient Greece, fleeing from the wickedness of humanity, ascended to heaven to become the constellation Virgo which can still be seen twinkling in the sky on a clear night. The moral decline of humanity was punished by a flood; after the flood waters receded leaving behind mud, Astraea’s tears of compassion were fated to have watered a seed of a gold-flowered plant, a symbol of faith in a better future: Solidago virgaurea herba.

The fact that this plant has so many names – wound wort, Canada goldenrod, northern goldenrod, Missouri goldenrod, giant goldenrod, yellow weed, Aaron’s rod – speaks best of its popularity. What are its medicinal properties that have been known for centuries – to the ancient Greeks, Saladin, he Elizabethans and to the people in the Balkans?

Apart from helping in a great number of ailments – from tonsillitis to bronchitis and depression, goldenrod is a highly regarded herbal remedy used to treat urinary tract infections. It acts as a mild diuretic and antiseptic, and helps to “cleanse” the urinary tract. As it has the power to flush out excess water from the body, goldenrod is very useful in the treatment of all ailments which infections additionally complicate, such as rheumatoid arthritis, gout and hypertension. It is also used for the treatment of fungal and bacterial infections of the urinary and vaginal tracts, as well as infections of the mucus membrane of the mouth and the throat. It also helps flush out sand and stones. Apart from cleansing the urinary tract, it also has a spasmolytic effect: it relaxes the bladder, thus relieving pain that frequently accompanies infections.

The three-pronged action of this plant – anti-inflammatory, diuretic and spasmolytic – is the reason why it is a very frequent ingredient of herbal mixtures used to cleanse the urinary tract and is also used as a supplementary therapy alongside antibiotics. This is how it has found its way into Nefrovit. Nefrovit is a natural formula used to revitalise and maintain the health of kidneys, urinary organs and the prostate. Its diuretic properties help maintain the right balance of fluids in the body, calm acute and chronic infections of the kidneys, the bladder and urinary organs and help with bacterial infections, including the most persistent one – Escherichia. Nefrovit also prevents the appearance of sand and stones and helps flush them out.

As goldenrod – the tea of freedom – many years ago brought a great deal of relief to the North American colonists it continues to the present day to offer relief to those who suffer from urinary infections.

Goldenrod, wound wort, giant goldenrod, yellow weed, Aaron’s rod… Nefrovit. Another name of Freedom!