From the May 2003 Idaho Observer:

Cayenne Pepper: The #1 herb for today's illnesses

by Ingri Cassel

This month we will continue to share with you the miraculous virtues of cayenne pepper. I am continually amazed at the persistent belief that the only aspect of today's medical model that is of value is if you are in an accident where you need a surgeon to set a bone or repair a body part that has been mutilated or severed. Due to this belief, we feel compelled to share with you a few stories regarding the application of cayenne in such emergency situations followed by testimonies of the value of comfrey root in the June 2003 Back to Basics column. Although we do not recommend that you avoid consultation with a medical doctor concerning a severe injury, we do suggest that you test out the power of these herbs on minor injuries such as a cut from a kitchen knife. Our personal experience has given our family complete confidence in the power of cayenne and comfrey in wound healing, saving us from the financial burden incurred from emergency room visits. We hope you will be likewise inspired to have these herbs in your herbal medicine chest for such minor family emergencies. But first, we will start out where we left off with the value of cayenne for the heart muscle. The following is a continuation from Dr. John Christopher's newsletter Cayenne, Volume 1, Number 12:

“Most hearts are suffering from malnutrition because of the processed foods we are eating, but here it gets a good powerful dose of real food [cayenne tea -- 1 teaspoon of cayenne in a cup of warm water]. This is something that everyone should know how great it is, because a heart attack can come to your friends or loved ones at anytime. And even yourself. The warm tea is faster working than capsules or cold tea because the warm tea opens up the cell structure -- makes it expand and accept the cayenne that much faster, and it goes directly to the heart, through the artery system, and feeds it in powerful food.”

To show what a wonderful heart food cayenne is, a few doctors on the east coast put some live heart tissue into a sterile beaker filled with distilled water, and fed it nothing but cayenne pepper, cleaning off sediments periodically and adding nothing but additional distilled water, since it needed to be replaced periodically due to evaporation. During the time they were feeding the heart tissue, they would have to trim it every few days because it would grow so rapidly. Having no control glands such as pituitary and pineal glands, the tissue kept growing. The doctors and associates kept this tissue alive for over 15 years, before they decided to destroy it so they could do further research on it. This shows the high food value that cayenne gives specifically to the heart muscle. This is the reason behind so many seemingly miraculous recoveries from heart attacks after the victim receives just one cup of cayenne tea. The heart hasn't had a decent meal for so long that it is practically starved. The cayenne tea provides the heart with needed nutrition instead of whipping it into gear with nitroglycerine, digitalis or some other type of drug to force it to beat rapidly, neglecting to provide the heart muscle with the food it needs to operate on its own.

One of my favorite cayenne testimonies comes from a student of Dr. Christopher who had recently learned from the good doctor the value of cayenne as a styptic or herb that equalizes the blood pressure and effectively stops hemorrhaging or excessive bleeding.

She was home when she heard the sound of a gun next door and panicked when she realized that two young boys were over there alone. She ran next door to find that her neighbor's boy had gotten into his father's guns and had accidently shot his playmate. There he lay in a pool of blood. She impulsively searched the spice cabinet for cayenne pepper, found it, and poured most of the contents into the wound before calling 911. When the ambulance arrived, the paramedics asked what in the world was in the wound, thinking she could have made the injury worse. When she told them it was cayenne, they truly thought she was crazy, and berated her for believing herbal folklore would help such a severe wound. Later that day, after the boy had been safely transported to the hospital, the paramedic called her and apologized. While in the ambulance and after taking the boy's vital stats, he and his partner realized that this boy would have lost too much blood and been dead before they arrived if it were not for the cayenne pepper. It was reported that for several years after this incident, the paramedics of Provo, Utah always carried cayenne pepper with them along with their other emergency supplies.

Our family uses cayenne on all our cuts and wounds to not only stop the bleeding but to insure against infection. But to me one of the most valuable aspects of cayenne to know about, especially if you live up north where it gets cold, is its ability to reverse frostbite, even the most severe kinds where the doctors of today see amputation as the only remedy. The following story is from Pridy Meek's journal from the mid 1800s as recorded in Dr. John R. Christopher's book, Capsicum:

An incident took place in Parowan, Iron County, the same winter that Colonel Johnston came against Salt Lake City with the Untied States Army. There was a teamster by the name of James McCann, a young man, started to back to the states by way of California. He reached Parowan with both feet frozen above his ankles. He was left with me to have both feet save his life without amputation. I was at my wits end to know what to do. I saw no possible chance for amputation. An impulse seemed to strike my mind as tho by inspiration that I would give him cayenne pepper inwardly and see what effect that would have on the frozen feet.

I commenced by giving him rather small doses at first, about three times a day. It increased the warmth and power of action in the blood to such a degree that it gave him such pain and misery in his legs that he could not bear it. He lay down on his back and elevated his feet up against the wall for three or four days and then he could sit up in a chair. The frozen flesh would rot and rope down from his foot when it would be on his knee, clear down to the floor, just like a buckwheat batter, and the new flesh would form as fast as the dead flesh would get out of the way. In fact the new flesh would seem to crowd the dead flesh to make room for the new flesh.

That was all the medical treatment he had and to my astonishment and to everyone else that knew of the circumstances, the sixteenth day after I gave him the first dose of pepper he walked nine miles, or from Parowan to Red Creek and back, and said that he could have walked as far again. He lost but five toe nails all told.

Now the healing power of nature is in the blood and to accelerate the healing power of nature and I am convinced that there is nothing will do this like cayenne pepper; you will find it applicable in all cases of sickness.” ~Utah Historical Quarterly, Vol. 10, 1942, p. 207

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