Roaillan. Fabrice Le Stang publishes a book on the old remedies, syrups and elixirs of yesteryear

Fabrice Le Stang presents his seventh book, published in June 2022. (© Republican South Gironde)

The centennial tisane, the Carmelite lemon balm water or even the Abbé Soury’s Jouvence…! All these recipes of yesteryear, grandmothers or ecclesiasticsFabrice Le Stang, a resident of Roaillan (Gironde), has brought them together in a book published with Editions du Net and entitled Medicinal plants and ancient remedies.

This banker, passionate about nature, has already written seven books, including the first: Discovering the world of plants – was published in 2013 by Editions Sang de la Terre. In his latest book, published in June 2022, the Sud-Girondin explores the world of elixirs, syrups, liqueurs and other remedies since ancient times.

“A very documented work”

The 58-year-old author explains:

It is the result of my research on this forgotten knowledge of our ancestors: I have consulted information extracted from very old books on medicine, botany and old recipes from apothecaries or herbalists, which I compile.

This interest in the plant world was inherited from his maternal grandfather and his father. Health problems in his family pushed him to take an interest in herbal medicine.

“I acquired knowledge in 2001 from the Association for the Renewal of Herbalism. Then I founded a club in Brittany, where I come from, which was called Le Maillon Vert, but which is now inactive, and which had as its objective plant discovery “.

In his book, Fabrice Le Stang presents in detail the star medicinal plant of each recipe and also points out that certain plants can also have side effects, due to intolerances or allergies.

This medicinal or pharmaceutical information may seem incongruous today, but certain preparations are still up-to-date because they are the result of undeniable know-how.

Fabrice LeStangpassionate about medicinal plants

You will also find many anecdotes about these ancient remedies: “for my book I have only kept those made from medicinal plants, but let’s not forget that some apothecaries also commonly incorporated animals : at the 17me and 18me centuries, in the list of ingredients appeared, for example, dried viper! »

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original drinks

Not to mention the original drinks of which Fabrice Le Stang tells the crazy stories: there is the sapinette, the anti-scorbutic beer, the frênette and the “vegetable champagne”! The book is also illustrated with excerpts and newspaper advertisements of the 1900s, a period marked by the resurgence of this alternative, in the face of the rise of chemical medicines: “the remedies offered by abbots, priests or monks inspired confidence, to the chagrin of pharmacists, and above all they had the advantage of being cheap! »

A fashion that will vanish “in the 1940s, even coming a year later to the abolition of the certificate of aptitude for the exercise of the herbalist profession”. Today, with the renewed interest in natural medicine, this is an opportunity with Fabrice Le Stang’s book to review thefascinating history of these old remedies !

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