Salmonella poisoning usually occurs after eating tainted fish, meat, poultry or eggs and results in food poisoning. Initial symptoms of food poisoning may include diarrhea, nausea, vomiting and abdominal cramping. If left untreated, salmonella poisoning can appear in the joints and uro-genital tract in a condition called Reiters Syndrome. In some cases, symptoms of Reiters Syndrome become permanent. Certain herbal and alternative remedies may be effective in reducing symptoms and speeding recovery. Some herbs can cause side effects, so consult a medical doctor before using herbs for these symptoms.
Drink plenty of fluids to replace those lost through vomiting and diarrhea. Include garlic tea as part of the fluid replacement. The Hospitality Institute of Technology and Management reports that the active ingredient in garlic is effective for halting the growth of gram-negative and gram-positive bacteria in salmonella. Make a tea by adding two cloves of crushed garlic to one cup boiling water and steep for 15 minutes. Drink throughout the day. More can be made as needed.
Take homeopathic Arsenicum album to relieve food poisoning symptoms. Arsenicum is helpful for treating diarrhea accompanied by nausea and vomiting, all producing burning pains throughout the digestive tract, according to Frans Vermeulen in his book, the “Synoptic Materia Medica." The remedy may relieve cramping, restlessness and anxiety, all symptoms that may occur during an attack of salmonella poisoning. The patient may be fearful, chilly and thirsty during an attack. Arsenicum is available in health food stores and from online homeopathic pharmacies. If symptoms continue after several doses, another remedy may be necessary. Consult with a homeopath for assistance in choosing remedies and for dosing guidelines.
Take some activated charcoal to help absorb the poisons in the gut. The charcoal comes from burnt remains of various plant materials, which are treated to increase the surface area, making it extremely porous. Take as soon as symptoms appear to prevent or stop diarrhea and dehydration, recommends the Earth Clinic.
Use oil of oregano for its antimicrobial properties, recommends O. Peter Snyder of the Hospitality Institute. The active ingredients found in essential oil of oregano include phenol, which is known for being able to destroy the bacteria-causing salmonella poisoning. The powdered spice of oregano may be helpful, but oregano oil is more potent. It is available in health food stores. Because it may cause side effects, consult with an herbalist who can supervise treatment.
Additional foods that contain the compounds found in garlic are onions, leeks, chives and green onions. They can be added to the tea with garlic to make it more potent and alter the flavor.
Do not sweeten the garlic tea. Sugar may encourage the grown of salmonella bacteria.
As soon as possible, after vomiting subsides, drink some Gatorade or Powerade to replace lost electrolytes.
If vomiting and diarrhea persist for more than a few hours, seek medical assistance. Do not hesitate to take a child showing signs of food poisoning to the hospital. Severe dehydration can set in quickly in children.
These suggestions are not meant to replace medical advice, but only for informational purposes.
- Earth Clinic: Food Poisoning: Activated Charcoal
- Hospitality Institute of Technology and Management: Antimicrobial Effects of Spices and Herbs, O. Peter Snyder
- “Synoptic Materia Medica"; Frans Vermeulen; 1992
Jean Bardot is a freelance writer and natural health practitioner. She started writing in 1994 and has contributed articles to publications such as "Similimum" and the "IFH Journal." She has a Bachelor of Science in public health from the University of North Carolina and a Master of Science in holistic nutrition from Clayton College of Natural Health.