Arsenic: From Poison to Healing Medicine
Nearly 500 years ago, Swiss physician Paracelsus famously wrote, “All things are poison and nothing is without poison; only the dose permits something not to be poisonous.” Such is the case with arsenic. Well known for its lethal abilities, arsenic has long been wielded as a weapon for murder. However, in homeopathy, microdoses of this substance hold healing power.
Arsenic Through the Ages
Arsenic is an element found in nature and first identified by German alchemist and theologian St. Albertus Magnus in the 1200s, though its toxicity was recognized by ancient civilizations. It occurs in mineral ores and rocks that contain other valuable metals like copper and gold. For this reason, drinking sources from groundwater are sometimes contaminated.
During the founder of homeopathy Samuel Hahnemann’s time (1755-1843), conventional medical practices were brutal. Physicians would apply powered arsenic to wounds and skin lesions, often with fatal outcomes. Thankfully, progress in science and medicine now allows for the successful use of arsenic in medical treatments. Today, an injectable drug made with arsenic trioxide is prescribed in the treatment of a type of leukemia by using arsenic’s destructive power to target cancer cells.
Known in homeopathy as Arsenicum album, this medicine is primarily used for treating gastrointestinal issues. It’s made from a careful and controlled preparation of arsenic trioxide with a dilution process that eliminates its toxic properties. Arsenicum album 30C relieves digestive cramps and diarrhea, often associated with traveler’s diarrhea or food poisoning when taken after each bowel movement.* In a 6C dilution, it’s also indicated for intense burning from frostnip improved by heat.* This medicine can be taken up to four times a day.
*Claims based on traditional homeopathic practice, not accepted medical evidence. Not FDA evaluated.
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