The Cayce Herbal 
 A Comprehensive Guide to the  
Botanical Medicine of Edgar Cayce
Yellow Root

Botanical Name: Xanthorrhiza simplicissima

Common Names and Synonyms: Shrub Yellowroot

Background: This small perennial herb is native to North America and Asia and can be found growing in damp, sandy areas and swamps.  The name comes from the thread-like creeping rhizome which is a golden color. The clusters of evergreen leaflets have yellow tufts at their base and the solitary flowers are yellowish.  Yellow root was used by Native Americans for treating colds and as an aid in childbirth.  Yellow root was also used as a bitter tonic during the 19th century taken before meals to stimulate the appetite.

Yellow Root in the Cayce Readings

  • In one reading, Edgar Cayce described the specific action of yellow root as acting on the "the pneumogastric [vagus nerve] forces and gastric juices of the pyloric [lower] end of the stomach itself."
  • Yellow root was recommended in the following amounts:
      2 ounces 33 readings
      1 ounce 2 readings
      4 ounces 1 reading
  • Yellow root was always recommended with other substances in a compound, never by itself. Although a wide diversity of  formulas were given, the most common substances mentioned in the same readings with yellow root were as follows:
      Tolu 28 readings
      Yellow Dock 26 readings
      Burdock Root 20 readings
      Elder Flower 18 readings
      Wild Cherry 15 readings
      Buchu Leaves 13 readings
      Calisaya 10 readings
      Mandrake 10 readings
      Sarsaparilla 10 readings
      Black Snake Root 9 readings
Quotes on Yellow Root

    The Yellow Root is for the pneumogastric forces and gastric juices of the pyloric end of the stomach itself.

This humor or bacilli that is carried in the blood produces the disposition toward that, that would be malignant eventually.  This would be of assistance to relieve or help to relieve this body:  To two gallons of water, we would add, preferably this should be rain water or distilled water, two ounces of yellow burdock root, two ounces black snake root, two ounces of Elder flower, two ounces of yellow root, four ounces balsam tolu.  This would be simmered, not boiled, until reduced to two quarts, strain and add to this, this that has been reduced from a quart to a pint, two ounces prickly ash bark, with four drams of Peruvian bark - put the bark in the original - add one ounce of alcohol to this solution to keep.  The dose will be tablespoonful before each meal.  This will give an appetite and will relieve this humor in the blood.  This will not cure it.  This must be through the mind, too.

    To give the proper balance to this body, so as to overcome these conditions, to create within the peyerenial [perineurial?  Peyer's glands?] gland forces sufficient of the secretions to overcome the conditions through this portion of the body, and to give the correct incentives to the blood supplying forces, we would take this into the system:
    To one gallon of rain water, we would add:

    Sarsaparilla Root...............4 ounces,
    Yellow Dock Root................2 ounces,
    Burdock Root....................2 ounces,
    Black Snake Root................2 ounces,
    Yellow Root (or Gold Seal)......2 ounces.

    Reduce by simmering, not boiling, to one quart.  Strain. While warm, add:  6 ounces of grain alcohol, with 2 drams Balsam of Tolu.
    The dose would be teaspoonful three times each day - one-half hour before meals.


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