La Culebrilla

Last month, a dear friend contacted us because her mother was suffering from shingles. It took me a little bit to realize I knew what it was. In Spanish we call it "Culebrilla". I remember being little and imagining Culebrilla as little snakes that would go inside people's bodies. Shingles is a very painful virus that leaves rashes all over your skin depending on how weak your inmune system is. First thing to be aware of, if we ever get it, is our diets. Since it's a condition that debilitate us, we got to reinforce our inmune system: eliminating acidic foods replacing them with alkaline rich foods; having a moment to meditate and relax our minds, be mindful and stay hydrated. 

I started my research and I also made a few calls to friends and family members that got it in the past. In my country, Venezuela, people treat this condition with a curandero, who performs rituals to cure them. They write specific prayers on their skin. This seems to work for people that believe in the power of prayers but another thing that everybody told me that worked wonders for them was to make a decoction with Yerba Mora's leaves (Solanum Nigrum - Black Nightshade) and drink it and put it directly on the skin. This plant has a long history of medicinal usage, treating many conditions because of its many properties. The juice of the plant is used for ulcers and skin diseases. Infusions are used to treat fevers, dysentery and stomach complaints. In the north of India, leaves and berries are boiled to alleviate liver related sickness. Although the plant can be very toxic, if it's prepared the right way it can give us many benefits and help us soothe the pain this herpes produces. 


by Gabriela Serra