Herbs for Coping with Radiation and Chemo



DNA damage reduction

  • Eat foods rich in carotenes to reduce DNA damage – Dark leafy greens, carrots, sweet potatoes, winter squash, pumpkins, cantaloupe, watermelon, pink grapefruit, papaya, apricots
  • Vegetables – beets grated raw, broccoli, brussel sprouts, cabbage, carrots
  • Miso – classic food for prevention of radiation damage. Drink 1-2 cups a day, add to soups and sauces
  • Seaweed – neutralizes radioactive isotopes. Strontium binds to the algin in brown seaweeds. Bladderwrack tea, kelp powder
  • Burdock root – removes radioactive isotopes from the body. 2 cups of tea day
  • Reishi mushroom reduces damage from radiation. Also Maitake and shitake rooms added to foods
  • Dried Beans especially Lentils can reverse DNA damage caused by radiation

Skin Damage

  • Aloe Vera Gel relieves and repairs damaged skin
  • Arnica Gel topically to ease burning sensation
  • St. John’s wort Oil or calendula oil topically on the skin
  • Teas made with yarrow, calendula, or St. John’s wort a few weeks before treatment can strengthen the skin
  • St. John’s wort tincture and Skullcap tincture internally for pain called Relief-tea


  • These foods are easy to digest – Bananas, apple sauce, porridge, mashed potatoes, almond butter, graham crackers
  • Whey protein powder shake. Blend 2 cups soy milk, 1 banana, 1 scoop whey powder, 1 tbls. Molasses in the blender and drink
  • Tangerine essential oil. Inhale or spray In the air before meals


  • Nettle tea 2 cups a day for the hair, adrenals, nerves, high in natural iron, increased energy
  • Seaweeds nourish the hair follicles 1/4 cup a day or ½ every other day


  • Astragalus root protects the adrenals, improves bone marrow activity, improves energy
  • Siberian Ginseng increases energy, helps the body cope with physical and mental stress
  • Wheat grass, barley greens, mint tea, carrot juice


Protecting the liver

  • Milk thistle or silymarin extract 15 minutes before chemo then no later than 15 minutes after. The healing factors occupy the liver receptor sites so liver damaging substances do not
  • Schisandrae berry tincture prevents liver damage, encourages sleep, prevents ulcers, increases energy. Chinese adaptogen herb that contains the sour flavor and helps drain the liver and remove excess ammonia, a by-product of protein digestion, from the body
  • Dandelion, Yellowdock or Burdock tincture 20 drops 2-3x a day

Immune system support

  • Echinacea root promotes the function of white blood cells and have anti-tumor agents
  • Astragalus root restores bone marrow activity, improves interferon response, protects the adrenal cortex during chemo
  • Reishi Mushroom helps to resist infection, strengthens the immune system
  • Burdock root binds with cytoxic agents after they have killed cancer cells and escorts them out of the body before damaging bone marrow


  • Inhale Peppermint essential oil or drink the tea
  • Ginger root tea, soda, candy
  • Plain yoghurt slowly by the spoonful – this also helps any yeast imbalance
  • Seaweed balances electrolyte balance, eat it directly, or make a tea. Bladderwrack, Kelp
  • Drink up to a gallon of water a day

Diarrhea and Constipation

  • Triphala tablets tone the intestines and improve elimination. To order call 208-883-9933 or email drlinda@spiritherbs.com
  • Slippery Elm power or lozenges eases sore throats, moth sores, irritated bowels, relieves diarrhea and constipation


  • Nettles reduces, anemia, fatigue, liver and kidney damage, hair loss, helps build strong veins
  • Apricots, pau d’arco, nettle, seaweed, dandelion roots all keep iron levels high
  • Oat tops tea eases nerves and helps you sleep. Use in place of Decadron corticosteroid
  • St. John’swort oil when applied topically may reduce scalp tenderness

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