(Marrubium vulgare) Evelyn recommended the use of white horehound in beer instead of hops, and horehound beer was an East Anglian specialty (Clair). Randall records how his mother would always put a sprig of horehound in her brew, to improve the flavour, and to improve appetite. In Dorset, horehound and wood sage boiled and mixed with sugar made a cooling drink called woodsage beer, which was drunk at harvest time (Dacombe). Candied horehound was made, too (Grieve. 1933). But the herb is best known in folk medicine. This horehound candy was popular in American medicine before it became popular as a confection (Lloyd). The leaf expectorant has always been used (as an expectorant) to cure coughs and colds (Vesey-Fitzgerald; Dacombe), and it is still used in lozenges to control a cough (Cameron). As long ago as the Anglo-Saxon period it was prescribed for colds in the head (Cockayne), and leechdoms of similar date are recorded for coughs (Dawson. 1934). Gerard, too, recommended the infusion, for it "prevaileth against the old cough", and the syrup made from the leaves "is a most singular remedy against the cough and wheezing of the lungs ..."
Similarly, horehound was used for all pains in the chest, and for lung disease. The Lacnunga prescribed a draught for lung diseases: "boil marrubium in wine or ale; sweeten somewhat with honey. Give it warm to drink after the night's fast. And then let him lie on his right arm as much as he can" (Grattan & Singer). A tisane of this herb is often taken for weak stomach, lack of appetite, etc. (Fluck), and horehound was remembered in Cheshire as the cure for loss of appetite (Cheshire FWI). Indigestion and dyspepsia, too, were treated with this preparation. Even the Navajo Indians were reported to use this herb for indigestion (Wyman & Harris), and it is certainly an American domestic medicine for dyspepsia still (Henkel). There is nothing new in this. The Anglo-Saxon Apuleius prescribed it "for sore of maw" (Cockayne), and it went on to advise its use for "tapeworms about the navel", a recipe still in use many centuries later, as candy or tea in Alabama (R B Browne), or simply by using the powdered leaves (Macleod).
Horehound has still more uses, one being as an application to wounds (Fluck). In Africa, it is used for fevers, especially typhoid (Watt & Breyer-Brandwijk); the Navajo, too, used it to reduce fever (Wyman & Harris). In Wales, the infusion of the chopped herb is used both externally and internally for eczema and shingles (Conway). Oedema is another condition to be remedied with this plant. A 16th century recipe from France reads: "pisser, neuf matins sur le marrube avant que le soleil l'ait touché; et à mesure que la plante mourra, le ventre se desenflera" (Sebillot) - but that is a simple transference charm. It is a counter-poison, too, or rather it was thought to be one. There are a number of authorities, though, who were sure of it, the Lacnunga for one, and the Anglo-Saxon Apuleius, and into the 14th century, too (Henslow). Perhaps the strangest use was in a sleeping draught, used in the Fen country. It was made of white horehound and rue, followed by a good dose of gin mixed with laudanum. It is quoted as being a last resort means of stopping a mother giving birth on 1 May (an unlucky day). It just put her to sleep for twenty-four hours (Porter. 1969).
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Gastroesophageal reflux disease is the medical term for what we know as acid reflux. Acid reflux occurs when the stomach releases its liquid back into the esophagus, causing inflammation and damage to the esophageal lining. The regurgitated acid most often consists of a few compoundsbr acid, bile, and pepsin.