Poisonous in large doses Mistletoe

(Viscum album)


The mistletoe is a very strange plant, that you can see only in wintertime, when the trees, where the mistletoes grow, lost their leaves.

It grows in the form of balls on different kind of trees where it sucks water and minerals, what makes it a partial parasite.

In former times the mistletoe was a very important magical plant, that was collected by the druids with golden sickles. The mistletoe was not allowed to fall on the ground because this would stop their special abilities.

Because of the magical importance the mistletoe was believed to be a remedy for all medical problems.

In the time of the winter solstice and as christmas decoration twigs of the misteltoe are put at the doors of houses to prevent the house from harm. Who ever kisses under a mistletoe will become a happy couple.

In modern herbal medicine the mistletoe is used against high blood pressure and against cancer. But it has much more uses.

Medicinal Uses

  • Calming
  • Stops bleeding
  • Inflammation-inhibitory
  • Diuretic
  • Spasm-dissolvent
  • strengthening
  • High blood-pressure
  • Heart weakness
  • Fast heartbeat
  • Arteriosclerosis
  • Edemas
  • Fever
  • Digestive weakness
  • Constipation
  • Stomach weakness
  • Pancreatic weakness
  • Diabetes
  • Gall weakness
  • Nervous weakness
  • Headaches
  • Giddinesses
  • Joint inflammation
  • Chronic joint problems
  • Arthrosis
  • Rheumatism
  • Menopause complaints
  • Menstrual complaints
  • Uterine pain
  • Uterine bleeding
  • Uterine tumors
  • Discharge
  • Epilepsy
  • Hay fever
  • Varicose veins
  • Eczemas
  • Ulcers
  • Wounds
  • Cancer (beside medical therapy)


Used Parts:Leaves, branches
Substances:Viscotoxin, Viscin, Viscalbin, Asparagine, Bitter essence, Histamine, Oleanolic-Acid, Saponins,
Time to collect:Late Autumn, Winter and Spring


The main use of the mistletoe is high blood pressure. It is also used against cancer beside the medical treatment of doctors.

The mistletoe has also a lot of other abilities. In former times it was thought to be a remedy against every disease.

The mistletoe is a little bit poisonous and should used with care therefore.

Internally as tea

A tea from the mistletoe should always be made as a cold infusion. This is important, because in cold water the poisonous substances don't resolve and therefore a cold infusion of the is not poisonous. Also the healing abilities of the mistletoe could be weakend in a hot tea.

The tea can be used to lower a blood pressure, that is to hight. It also helps against other circulatory problems like a weak heart or arteriosclerosis.

When someone has a low blood pressure the mistletoe can help to raise it. This sound not logical, but when we understand, that the effect of the mistletoe works by strengthen the heart and making the blood vessels more elastical, we understand, that the mistletoe can modify the blood pressure in both directions.

The mistletoe can also strengthen the digestive system and the metabolism.

Because of this effects the mistletoe also helps against rheumatic complaints.

It also strengthens the nerves and can thus be a remedy against headache und dizziness. It can also help against epilepsy.

In the menopausal time the mistletoe can help against the typical problems. It also helps against menstrual problems. With its blood stopping ability the mistletoe can stop menstrual bleeding that is too strong. Thus the mistletoe is very helpful after birth.

Externally as tea

The cold infusion of the mistletoe can be used for bathing and poultices.

It can help against varicose veins and ulcers of the lower legs.

Also eczemas can be treated with mistletoe infusions.

A mistletoe poultice can allay rheumatic and neuralgic pains. External treatments with mistletoe are also good against arthrosis.

Against hay fever you can take a snuff of mistloe infusion.

Mistletoe as a treatment of cancer

Accompanying to a chemical medical cancer treatment mistletoe extracts can be used. They are offered (i.e. in Germany) as a special preparation for this use.

These preparations can help to allay the side effects of the chemical treatment and to raise the healing rate of the therapy. This is examinend by several studies.

Mistletoe preparations are not able to cure cancer as a standalone medication.


The berries of the mistletoe are a little bit poisonous. Kids should be warned not to eat the berries.

Plant description

The familiy of santalaceae has a lot of members around the world. In Europe and northern asia the mistletoe is the single member of this family.

The mistletoe is a partial parasite that grows on trees. It sucks the juice and minerals from the tree. But it has its own green color and can do photosynthesis.

Trees that have lots of mistletoes suffer from them and finally die from them. But mistletoes grows slowly and single plant wouldn't harm huge trees.

Some kinds of trees have mistletoes more often than other trees. Specially apple trees, poplars and firs are the most favourite trees for mistletoes.

The mistletoes put their root through the bark of the trees into the wood. There they anchor and suck water and minerals.

The branches of the mistletoes ramify again and again until they have the form of a ball.

At the tip of the small twigs there always grow two leaves that have the form of a long and narrow egg with the wide side at the outer edge.

For me, the leaves of the mistletoes look like funny ears.

From the end of february the mistletoes blossom. There are plants with femals flowers and other plants with male flowers. Both types of flowers are yellow and very small. The smell like an orange what makes them attractive to insects.

In september the white berries start to ripen. They are like glue and inside they have a seed.


The mistletoe is very seldom in lots of countries and may not be collected. (i.e. Germany)