European Mistletoe Aerial

Mistletoe was used historically in Old Europe for treatment of epilepsy and other convulsive nervous disorders, and was used extensively in the 16th and 17th centuries. Mistletoe is a nervine and a narcotic that has a profound effect on the nervous system. Eating the berries can cause convulsion in children.

Medicinal Uses:
used primarily with difficult to treat cancers such as ovarian cancer, leiomas, sarcomas
Tumour inhibition is due to special protein or lectin, not cytotoxic
Does not need to be injected near the tumour, can be injected in the abdomen like insulin (subcutaneously)
Injections appear to be safe in pregnancy and lactation [2]
Cardiovascular Conditions
hypertension with headache, vertigo, decreased energy, irritability from elevated blood pressure, moderate to mildly severe hypertension (160/100); well tolerated long term, but generally used to get hypertension down and transfer to another herb
heart conditions with weak, irregular heart with hypertrophy, shortness of breath, valvular insufficiency, nervous tachycardia, nervousness with inability to lie down due to heart symptoms
Other Conditions
pains which are tearing, neuralgic or rheumatic, osteoarthritis
epilepsy, congestive headache, insomnia
anxiety, panic attacks, hysteria, flushed face

Therapeutic Uses, Benefits and Claims of Mistletoe
The active constituents present in the plant are mistletoe lectins I, II and III (glycoprotein); viscotoxin (protein); galacturonan, arabinogalactan (polysaccharides), and alkaloids.
Mistletoe was a sacred plant of the Celtic peoples; the Celts and Gauls called it “all-heal” or “cure-all”.

Shakespeare called mistletoe ‘baleful Mistletoe’, a reference to the Nordic mythology when Baldur, the god of peace and beauty, was slain by an arrow made from mistletoe and then brought back to life by the other Nordic gods.

Mistletoe is used by traditional herbalists as a nervine, antispasmodic, tonic and narcotic and European herbalists considered it to be a specific remedy for St. Vitus’s Dance, epilepsy and other convulsive nervous disorders.
It has a long history as an herbal treatment for delirium, hysteria, neuralgia, and nervous debility and mistletoe tincture was used as a heart tonic in typhoid fever.

Herbal practitioners have used this herb as a treatment for urinary disorders, heart disease, and other symptoms arising from a weakened or disordered state of the nervous system.

Mistletoe has been used to lower blood pressure and heart rate, ease anxiety, and as an herbal sleep aid.
The herb was traditionally used throughout Europe as a remedy for headaches, dizziness, loss of energy and irritability.

It has been used as a traditional herbal remedy for the treatment for cough, especially convulsive cough, bronchial asthma, and asthmatic attacks due to psychological tension.

Traditional herbal medicine uses the herb as a natural treatment for arthritic pain and it is believed to be an effective external treatment for leucorrhoea, gout and sciatica.

Numerous studies have reported that the plant lectins, in Viscum album possess toxic, cytotoxic, antitumor, and anticarcinogenic properties.
Mistletoe (Viscum album)
Mistletoe (Viscum album) – Illustration
Research is currently being done in Europe to determine their potential in cancer chemotherapy and in Germany, extracts of European mistletoe is sometimes used as a treatment for certain types of cancer.

In Europe, the plant is used in oncology therapies under the trade names Iscador® and Helixor®.

The German Commission E has approved it as a treatment for degenerative and inflamed joints and as a palliative therapy for malignant tumors.

The closely related species American mistletoe (Phoradendron leucarpum) is rarely used medicinally. Some herbalists believe that it has an opposite effect from the European mistletoe (Viscum album).
However, both the American and European species contain toxic proteins which are similar in their chemical composition and produce similar side effects, including hypotension, bradycardia, and vasoconstriction in test animals.

American mistletoe often called false or oak mistletoe is believed by some herbalists to stimulate smooth muscles, causing a rise in blood pressure and increased uterine and intestinal contractions.

Native Americans used American mistletoe as a treatment for paralysis, and it was also used as an oral contraceptive and to stop bleeding after childbirth.