The Uses and Benefits of Boneset

This perennial plant is a potent antiviral, and can also be used to treat toothache and osteoporosis.

| November 2015

  • Bee on boneset
    Boneset is a fairly common plant that can be used as a treatment for osteoporosis, or consumed as a tea to induce sweating.
    Photo by Fotolia
  • Heal Local book cover
    In "Heal Local: 20 Essential Herbs for Do-it-Yourself Home Healthcare," author and herbalist Dawn Combs demonstrates that by harnessing multifaceted whole plants, we can rely on homegrown or regionally-produced herbs for medical needs.
    Cover courtesy New Society Publishers

  • Bee on boneset
  • Heal Local book cover

In Heal Local: 20 Essential Herbs for Do-It-Yourself Home Healthcare (New Society Publishers, 2015) author and herbalist Dawn Combs makes herbal healthcare less intimidating and more attainable, helping locally-minded gardeners and non-gardeners alike take back food, goods and services from pharmaceutical corporations and sourcing them from small growers, producers, artisans and entrepreneurs. This section on Boneset comes from the chapter “The Herbs.”

You can purchase this book from the Mother Earth Living Store: Heal Local.

Boneset (Eupatorium perfoliatum)

Properties: Stimulant, diaphoretic, antimicrobial, antitumor

Harvest notes: This perennial is native where I live. Its leaves along with everything above ground are harvested in summer when the plant is in full bloom.

Boneset is a fairly common plant that is not widely used in today’s herbal practices. I don’t know why. It is a very potent antiviral, and when used as a hot tea it is also a diaphoretic.

There is some argument about whether or not this herb is useful for broken bones, but I am convinced that it is. It can be used to recalcify teeth, ease bone pain and repair crushed and broken bones. It seems to do that by increasing the blood flow to the periosteum, the thin tissue surrounding our bones. It is also helpful for osteoporosis and osteomalacia. Complimentarily it seems that boneset also works on the joints and nerves that are part of the skeletal system. It can be used for multiple sclerosis and it has been shown to rebuild the myelin sheath.

Boneset is heavily antibacterial and especially useful to our immune system addressing such issues as flu, measles, mumps, scarlet fever, yellow fever, Staphylococcus aureus, typhoid fever and Rocky Mountain spotted fever. It was one of the most successful herbs during the 1918 flu epidemic when nothing else worked. In the digestive system its action is due to its profound bitterness. It is good for acid reflux and indigestion.

Contraindications: It is not advisable to eat large amounts of boneset as it can act as an emetic or cathartic.

Natural Remedies for Toothache

• Boneset
• Echinacea
• Plantain

A toothache can be a symptom of another problem or the result of an injury. If you have a toothache as a result of an injury to the mouth or you have a broken tooth it is important that it be assessed by a dental professional.

Learn more about local, natural remedies in The Health Benefits of Lobelia.

This excerpt has been reprinted with permission from Heal Local: 20 Essential Herbs for Do-it-Yourself Home Healthcare, by Dawn Combs, published by New Society Publishers, 2015. Purchase this book from our store: Heal Local.

12/6/2015 5:31:58 PM

I could not find the boneset article in the November 2015 issue. I don't like to print these articles if they are already in the magazine.



February 15-16, 2020
Belton, Texas

Join us in the Lone Star state to explore ways to save money and live efficiently. This two-day event includes hands-on workshops and a marketplace featuring the latest homesteading products.


Subscribe today and save 58%

Subscribe to Mother Earth Living !

Mother Earth LivingWelcome to Mother Earth Living, the authority on green lifestyle and design. Each issue of Mother Earth Living features advice to create naturally healthy and nontoxic homes for yourself and your loved ones. With Mother Earth Living by your side, you’ll discover all the best and latest information you want on choosing natural remedies and practicing preventive medicine; cooking with a nutritious and whole-food focus; creating a nontoxic home; and gardening for food, wellness and enjoyment. Subscribe to Mother Earth Living today to get inspired on the art of living wisely and living well.

Save Money & a Few Trees!

Pay now with a credit card and take advantage of our earth-friendly automatic renewal savings plan. You’ll save an additional $5 and get six issues of Mother Earth Living for just $19.95! (Offer valid only in the U.S.)

Or, choose Bill Me and pay just $24.95.

Facebook Pinterest Instagram YouTube Twitter

Free Product Information Classifieds

click me