Bacterial Infections

Bacteria are microscopic single-celled organisms. They live in soil, in the ocean and inside the human body, primarily in the digestive system. We have more microbial cells than human cells in our bodies. Some bacteria aids digestion but other bacteria can wreak havoc by causing infections.

If we are interested in caring for ourselves, we are concerned with increasing good bacteria and avoiding bad bacteria. We introduce bacteria into our bodies, or an open wound, through contact with a contaminated person, animal, or surface.  Coughing, sneezing, kissing, intercourse, contaminated foods or water, and certain insect bites all can infect us with bacteria.

Medicine has long treated bacterial infections with antibiotics, and perhaps more quickly than they should, which has caused some strains of bacteria to become resistant. Because of bacteria’s ability to become resistant to antibiotics, these medicines should be used only when absolutely necessary. For many years, physicians treated viruses with antibiotics as well, and some may still do so, but antibiotics are not effective against viruses.

There are some natural ways to treat bacterial infections at home so that you can resort to antibiotics only when you really need them.  Remember that while you can eat foods and spices and you can drink tea, essential oils should be administered in other ways—not orally. Most substances on this list can be used in the form of food/spices, essential oils, or tea.  Some of these are particularly good at treating specific kinds of infections.


  • Anise
  • Basil
  • Benzoin
  • Bergamot
  • Black tea
  • Cinnamon
  • Clove
  • Coconut oil
  • Coriander
  • Cranberry
  • Cumin
  • Echinacea
  • Eucalyptus
  • Garlic
  • Ginger
  • Goldenseal
  • Green tea
  • Honey (esp. Manuka)
  • Hyssop
  • Lavender
  • Lemon
  • Marjoram
  • Mint tea
  • Moringa
  • Nutmeg
  • Onion
  • Oregano (especially essential oil of oregano)
  • Peppermint
  • Pimento
  • Pineapple
  • Pomegranate tea
  • Rosehip tea
  • Rosemary
  • Sage
  • Sassafras
  • Tea tree
  • Thyme
  • Turmeric
  • Wine
  • Wintergreen
  • Wormwood tea
  • Yogurt