Discussion paper : Malaria prophylaxis and treatment with Artemisia annua anamed
We are often asked whether visitors to the Tropics can take Artemisia tea as a prophylaxis against malaria. The answer is not simple, so please read the following carefully:
- In this paper by “Artemisia tea” we mean the organically grown dried leaves (Folia!) of Artemisia annua anamed (abbreviated to A-3). This is a breed with 20 times the usual content of active ingredients. This tea must have either been bought from anamed or grown from original A-3 seeds which have been carefully sown and the plants cared for according to our recommendations. These notes do not apply to other species of artemisia, e.g. wormwood, not for wild forms of Artemisia annua which may be bought from the pharmacy or via the internet either as tea or in capsules, and also not for the whole plant (Herba!) Artemisia annua, which mainly consists of stems.
- We are legally bound not to recommend any unregistered treatment as a malaria prophylaxis. In order to avoid any legal problems, therefore, we cannot recommend artemisia tea as being suitable for prophylaxis. If you do, nonetheless, take artemisia tea with you as prophylaxis, you should also take a conventional malaria treatment with you. If, in spite of your precautions, you do get malaria you must use both a full dosage of artemisia tea AND this conventional treatment.
- The word "Prophylaxis" is often misunderstood: Even with the best prophylaxis, one may still catch malaria.
- Scientifically speaking, because of the short half-life of about only 2 hours of what is considered to be the main active ingredient, artemisinin, artemisia tea is not thought to be effective as a prophylaxis.
- Nonetheless, many anamed co-workers in Africa have found that when they regularly take artemisia tea, they have malaria much less frequently if at all, and if they do, then much less seriously than previously. Today, out of enlightened self interest, some large firms (for example in Burundi, Cameroon and Uganda), recommend their workers to drink artemisia tea as a malaria prophylaxis.
- Development workers, health workers or missionaries who wish to try this tea should proceed as follows: Pour one cup (200ml) of boiling water over about 1.25 g of dried Artemisia annua anamed (about one teaspoonful) every morning before breakfast. After at least 15 minutes, e.g. after breakfast, filter and drink this tea. The tea should be drunk all at once, and not over the course of the day. In this way the concentration of artemisinin in the blood is, for a short period of time, four times the level required to kill the malaria parasites.
- Children should take less, according to their bodyweight.
- Those who cannot drink this bitter tea should take the same amount of leaves, pulverise them, and every morning mix 1.25 g of this powder with some yoghurt, groundnut butter or honey.
- Please start with this on the day of arrival, take daily whilst abroad, and continue for at least 3 weeks after returning home.
- If you do catch malaria, take 5 g of artemisia for 7 days as described in our documentation (order number 204). In addition, you must always carry with you a conventional medicine such as Quinine, Doxycyclin, Malarone or Fansidar. You should take this in addition to the artemisia tea. When the very first symptoms of malaria appear you must take this medicine in addition to artemisia tea.
- After your return home, you must carry this conventional medicine and the artemisia tea with you wherever you go. If malaria like symptoms do appear, go immediately to the nearest clinic which specialises in tropical diseases, even at the weekend. If this is not possible, take the conventional medicine and the artemisia tea and visit the tropical clinic as soon as ever possible. Inform your General Practitioner. On no account say “I have a headache, I must go to the doctor on Monday” – because by delaying you are risking your life!
- Now calculate how much artemisia you need. For example, for 4 weeks travel: 4 weeks plus 3 weeks afterwards = 7 weeks x 7 days x 1.25 g Artemisia gives around 65 g. In case you do catch malaria, you need an additional 35 g. This gives a total of 100 g. Please therefore order 2 or better 3 packages of 50 g.
- However please consider that wherever you are, people will ask: What are you drinking? Can I try? Do you have more for my dying child…?
- When you do order artemisia tea from us, please order also the malaria documentation (Order nr. 204 in English, 202 in German, 203 in French…). This provides you with all the information you could possibly need, and saves you from having to ask unnecessary questions.
- In order to cause us no legal problems, please order as follows:
"Please supply the Artemisia documentation in...(language and order number) together with… sachets of 50 g of tea of Artemisia annua anamed, order number 411, as raw material, not medicine", and send this order to us by email, website or post: www.anamed-edition.com or www.anamed.net/English
- Also in order to cause us no legal problems, we advise you that all prophylaxis and treatment of any sort should be under proper medical supervision. We do know, however, that in rural Africa this is often impossible. Please be aware that, in a malaria area, any fever or headache could be malaria, even if the outcome of a laboratory test is negative. The overwhelming majority of those who use A-3 as a prophylaxis give us positive feedback, but there are cases where this method has not been effective. In these cases, not to treat the malaria promptly is to risk one’s life!
- After you return home, please give us feedback about your positive or negative experiences with artemisia tea.
- If the tea has helped you, please help us to help others in the Tropics in a similar way. Please give a donation to anamed international! We will advise you as to how to do this upon request.
- In no way does this document replace advice from your doctor or tropical clinic. The priority of anamed is not so much to provide advice for visiting Europeans, but rather through Natural Medicine to offer advice on and training in the prevention and treatment of diseases in the Tropics.
If you do visit a tropical country on holiday, we encourage you to be an advocate for anamed! Talk to your hotel, the nearest church, a women’s group, a development initiative etc. and offer your help in their fight against malaria. Maybe you could take with you an artemisia starter kit, price 110 Euro, which contains 5000 artemisia seeds and all possible information about how to cultivate artemisia and how to use it to treat malaria. The kit weighs about 1½ kg.
Dr. pharm. Hans-Martin Hirt and the whole anamed team
The starterkit is explained in the small film "The anamed Starter Kit"