Elixir of longevity

I was doing research on elixirs when I came upon a very interesting recipe called Swedish bitter, which is a very old European tonic that claims to heal a great variety of health problems, rejuvenate the immune system, help with digestion, strengthen the vital organs…

The creation of this elixir of longevity is credited to Paracelsus in the 16th century, but the original recipe is lost. What we call today Swedish Bitter is a formula that was rediscover by the Swedish physician Klaus Samst through a family tradition. Dr Samst was 104 years old when he died, not of old age but from a riding accident.

In the second half of the 20th century, this remedy was popularised by the Austrian herbalist Maria Treben who published the recipe in her book ‘‘Health through God’s pharmacy’’ with her personal experience with the tonic.


10 gm. Aloe Ferox (but other mention the use of aloe vera instead. It can be replaced by Artemisia Absinthium or Gentiana). Use powder of dried aloe juice.

5 gm. Myrrh (Commifora molmol)

0.2 gm. Saffron (Crocus sativus)

10 gm. Senna leaves (Cassia angustifolia)

10 gm. Camphor (Cinnamomum camphora) Only natural Chinese Camphor

10 gm. Rhubarb roots (Rheum Palmatan)

10 gm. Angelica roots (Angelica archangelica)

10 gm Zedoary roots (Curcuma Zedoaria)

10 gm. Manna (Fraxinus Ornus) some recipe mention to use the resin while other specify the fruit (the seed of the Manna Ash is a fruit called samara)

10 gm. Carline Thistle root (carlina acaulis)

10 gm. Theriac venezian (the Theriac venizian is a very old mixture of different ingredients which varies from one herbalist to the other. Some recipes use as many as 100 different plants, minerals and even animals parts! Older versions used ingredients that are either illegal or impossible to find! I’ve heard that some herbal store sell theriac venizian, but some Swedish bitter recipes mentioned to use Burnet Saxifrage (Pimpinella saxifraga) instead)

This blend is put into a 2 litre wide mouth jar and 1.5 litre of 40% alcohol (rye or fruit alcohol) is poured over it. The bottle is left sitting in the sun or in a hot area for 14 days and shaken daily. The liquid is then strained and poured into small bottles and stored in a cool place. The older the mixture is, the more effective it becomes. It needs to be well shaken before using it.

Swedish Bitter can be use internally or in compress.

***Important: All stated amounts of Swedish Bitters should be taken diluted with herbal tea or water.

Here is copy of Old Manuscript, a document detailing how to use it (I apologize for the length of it):

(Transcript of Swedish Bitters’ curative power)

1.If they are frequently breathed in or sniffed, the base of the skull is moistened or a moistened cloth applied to the head, they dispel PAIN AND DIZZINESS and strengthen the brain and MEMORY.

2.They aid dim eyes and take away redness and all pain, even if the EYES ARE INFLAMED. They rid them of SPOTS AND CATARACTS, if the corners are moistened In time or a moistened piece of cloth is applied to the closed bids.

3. PUSTULAS AND ECZEMA of all kinds, as SCABS in the nose or elsewhere on the body, are heeled, if they are often and well moistened.

4. For TOOTHACHE, a tablespoon of these drops is taken with a little water and kept in the mouth for a little while or the aching tooth is moistened. The pain soon eases and the putrefaction disappears.

5.BLISTERS ON THE TONGUE or other infirmities of the tongue are frequently moistened with drops and healing soon occurs.

6. If the THROAT IS HOT OR INFLAMED, so that food is only SWALLOWED WITH DIFFICULTY, these drops are swallowed slowly, morning, noon and evening and they take away the heat and heal the throat.

7. Tor STOMACH CRAMPS, 1 tablespoonful is taken.

8. For COLIC, 3 tablespoons are taken slowly, one after the other, and relief will soon be felt.

9.They rid the body of WIND[GAS] and cool the liver, eliminate all troubles of the intestines and stomach and help CONSTIPATION.

10. An excellent remedy for STOMACH DISORDERS, if the DIGESTION is faulty or food cannot be kept down.

11. They are beneficial for PAIN IN THE GALL BLADDER. 2 tablespoonful daily in the morning and evening and at night compresses and soon all pain will disappear.

12. For DROPSY, 1 tablespoon in white wine is taken in the morning and evening for 6 weeks.

13. For PAIN AND BUZZING IN THE EAR, a piece of cotton wool is moistened and put into the ear. It is very beneficial and brings back LOST HEARING.

14. For MORNING SICKNESS, 1 tablespoon of the drops in red wine is given in the morning for 3 days, half an hour later a walk is taken. Then breakfast with no milk. These drops should not be taken after drinking milk.

15. In the last 14 days of PREGNANCY, if 1 tablespoon of the drops is taken mornings and evenings, it PROMOTES THE BIRTH. For easy EXPELLING OF THE AFTERBIRTH, a coffeespoonful is given every 2 hours, until the afterbirth is expelled without pain.

16. If, after a birth, when the MILD DRIES UP, inflammation develops, it quickly subsides, if a moistened piece of cloth is applied.

17. They EXPEL WORMS, even TAPEWORMS, in children and adults, the amount taken by children being according to age. A piece of cloth moistened with drops is applied to the navel and kept moist.

18. They rid children of PUSTULAS. The children are given these drops according to age, diluted with water. If the pustulas start to dry up, they are moistened frequently with these drops and no scars will develop.

19. For JAUNDICE, very soon all complaints disappear, if 1 tablespoon or these drops is taken 3 times daily and compresses are applied to the SWOLLEN LIVER.

20. They open all HEMORRHOIDS, and heal KIDNEY, rid the body of all unnecessary liquids without further treatment, taking away MELANCHOLY AND DEPRESSION and improve appetite and digestion.

21. HEMORRHOIDS are reduced, if in the beginning, they are moistened frequently and if the drops are taken internally, especially before going to bed, they will soften the hemorrhoids.

22. If someone has FAINTED, open their mouth if necessary, give them 1 tablespoon of the drops and they will come to.

23. This remedy rids you of the pain of SPASM [CRAMPS] so that it will cease in time.

24. For CONSUMPTION, take them daily in the morning or on an empty stomach and

continue the treatment for 6 weeks.

25. If the MENSTRUAL FLOW CEASES for a woman or is too heavy, she takes these drops 3 days and repeats it 20 times. They will, what is too much, lessen and, what is too little, even out.

26. This remedy also helps to cure “WHITES” {white vaginal discharge}.

27. If someone is afflicted with EPILEPSY, he has to be given these drops on the spot and he should then take this remedy exclusively, since it strengthens the affected nerves as well as body and rids it of all sickness.


29. They heal also hot PUSTULAS AND ERYSIPELAS.

30. If someone has FEVER, be it hot or cold, and is very weak, he is given 1 tablespoon of the drops and the patient, if he is not overloaded with other medications, will in a short time come to, the pulse will start to beat again aand the fever, no matter how high it was, will pass and the patient will soon be better.

31. The drops also heal CANCER, OLD ROCK MARKS, WARTS AND CHAPPED HANDS. If the wound is OLD OR FESTERING OR PROUD FLESH has developed, everything is washed well with white wine and a piece of cloth moistened with the drops is laid upon it.

32. They heal, without danger, all WOUNDS, be they from a stab or a hit, if they are moistened frequently. A piece of cloth is taken, moistened with the drops and the wounds covered therewith. They take away the pain in a short time, permit no BLEMISH OR PUTREFICATION and heal also old wounds which were caused by a SHOT. If there are holes, the drops are sprinkled into the wound which need not necessarily be cleaned beforehand. Through repeated applying of the moistened cloth healing occurs in a short time.

33. They take away SCARS, even if very old, WOUNDS AND CUTS, if moistened up to 40 times with them. All the wounds heal and leave no scars.

34.They heal all FISTULAS, even if they seem incurable, be they as old as may be.

35. They heal all BURNS AND SCALDS, be they caused by fire, not water or fat, if the injuries are moistened frequently. No blisters form, the heat is taken out and even festering blisters are healed.

36. They serve against SWELLING AND BRUISES, be they caused by a blow or a fall.

37. If someone cannot eat with APPETITE, they bring back the lost taste.

38. In ANEMIA, they bring back the lost color, if taken for a period in the morning. They cleanse the blood and form new blood and promote circulation.

39. RHEUMATIC PAINS in the limbs are eased if the drops are taken morning and evening and a moistened cloth is applied to the aching parts.

40. They heal FROST BITTEN HANDS AND FEET, even if there are open parts, if a moistened cloth is applied as often as possible, but especially at night.

41. For CORNS, a cotton ball, moistened with the drops, is applied and kept moist. After 3 days the corns fall out or can be removed painlessly.

42. They heal too, BITES of mad dogs and other animals, if taken internally since they heal and destroy all poison. A moistened cloth is laid upon the wounds.

43.For PLAGUE arid other INFECTIOUS DISEASES, it is well to take the drops repeatedly, since they heal PLAGUE BOILS AND SWELLINGS, even if already in the throat.

44.He who cannot sleep at night takes these drops before going to bed. For nervous SLEEPLESSNESS, a piece of cloth moistened with diluted drops is laid upon the heart.

45.A DRUNK can be sober on the spot with 2 tablespoonfuls.

46.He who takes these drops mornings or evenings daily needs no further medication, since they strengthen the body, tone up the nerves and the blood, take away the TREMBLING OF HANDS AND FEET. In short, they take away all illnesses. The body stays supple, the face young and beautiful.

IMPORTANT: All stated amounts of Swedish Bitters should be taken diluted with herb tea or water.

The wonderful healing power of this herb mixture is shown in the above text of the ‘old manuscript.’ It can be said, and rightly so, that there is hardly any illness where Swedish Bitters is not of benefit, or at least is effective as a basis for every treatment.



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