Throughout history, medicinal herbs were the only thing available when someone was injured or sick.

The emergence of modern medicine made humanity forget about how powerful nature is.

For example, wild lettuce (Lactusa virosa) is a plant that grows in England and North America and has been used as a natural painkiller that works just as good as painkillers.


Wild lettuce is a biennial plant that can be found throughout England. It grows very tall (up to 7 feet), and has a pretty yellow flower and mature leaves. The plant has been used as a sedative and analgesic in the past, and possesses numerous health benefits. Here are some of them:


Wild lettuce is often used to fight insomnia and to relax anxiety or spasms. The herb can calm down the nervous system and relax your muscles, while also fighting stress-induced indigestion, coughs and respiratory problems, restlessness and insomnia.natural painkiller.


Here is the current recipe I use for making a strong Lactuca tincture. I began preparing it in this way in reaction to feeling that Lactuca tincture I tried did not have the sedative anodyne clout that I read about and hoped to see. So, this was an experiment. And I hope to learn other methods as people experiment and share their results. 

With preparing this form of Lactuca tincture, it is important to have all aspects and equipment prepared beforehand such as knowing where there is a stand of Lactuca growing, having your equipment ready, and knowing that you have enough time during the days it takes to make it, which aren’t much, less than 2 hours per day for about 5 days. Read on. 

Basically, I use this form of preparation to condense the latex in the plant which I assume contains most of its nervine qualities. Otherwise one ends up with a weak medicine due to all the ‘roughage’ that is a part of these stately plants. The goal is to maximize the concentration of latex. This is a bit of a challenge with Lactuca, as there is a lot of plant matter to work around to get the latex without the mainly inert cellulose and other plant matter. 


1.Pruners-to cut plants
2.Tincture press
4.Blender- a good sturdy one
6.Stainless steel pot


1.Find a stand of Lactuca plants. I have used a number of species and they all seem useful, though some more careful observations of species may help figure this out. I have not used any close relatives that also yield latex, such as Sonchus. 

2.The best time to make this tincture is when the plant is at its maximum latex yield, which seems to be around when it is just going to flower. It is easy to see the amount of latex, remove a leaf and the white milky latex should flow freely.

3.While all parts of Lactuca contain this latex, I just make the medicine from the aboveground parts, as it is just easier to not have to wash and cut up the roots, though I may be missing something here, as the roots do exude a fair bit of the latex. 

4.Cut a few Lactuca stalks.

5.Bring them right away to where you will be processing them into tincture.

6.Cut them up into blender-size pieces.

7.Put them in the blender, and cover with ethanol.


9.Add as much ethanol and material as you can to get a big wad of blenderized Lactuca stem, saturated in ethanol.

10.Let sit overnight (or longer).

11.Press tincture in tincture press.

12.Cut more Lactuca.

13.Cut into blender-size pieces.

14.Put in blender, add the menstruum that you recently pressed.

15.Add this into the blender, along with enough 95% ethanol to cover and blend.

16.Let sit overnight.

17.Follow this process for a few days, cut, add menstruum from previously pressed tincture, blend, and add enough
ethanol to get the juice out. And then press this for the next batch. 

18.After a few days of this you should have a fair bit of fluid (menstruum).

19.Put this in a stainless steel pot.

20.Bring to a high simmer.

21.Evaporte and reduce the fluid so it gets more black and ‘tar-like’.

22.This is your medicine.

23.Be aware, that as you simmer, ethanol evaporates at a lower temperature than water, so make sure there is enough ethanol in your final product to keep it stable.

24.Enjoy and let me know the results. 

Check the video below for more information about this miracle plant:Lactuca Virosa

7 Health Benefits of Lactuca

1.Lettuce holds anti-inflammatory properties.

Lactuca possesses anti-inflammatory properties that help control inflammation. Research has shown that lactuca extracts have proteins, like lipoxygenase and carrageenan to control inflammation.

2.Lactuca has antimicrobial properties.

The latex of lettuce has antimicrobial properties that completely deform yeasts using terpenes and cardenolides, as well as enzymes like glucanases.

3.Lactuca can help induce sleep.

Research from the Texas A&M University has suggested that lettuce extract can have significant sedative effects. Decreased heart rate and ventricular contractions were also discovered. This chemical works by blocking the excitatory signal processes of muscular and neural tissues.

4.Lactuca can help control your anxiety.

Not only does lettuce have sedative effects. Animal research has shown that lactuca can have anxiolytic (anti-anxiety) properties.

5.Lactuca  has anti-cancer properties.

Lactuca leaf extracts can control leukemia cells and breast cancer cells. Also, lactuca contains antioxidants, which have shown to seek and destroy free radicals that mutate healthy cells and turn them into cancer cells.

6.Lactuca can help your eyes and skin beautiful looking.

Lactuca is a rich source of vitamin A. This compound promotes better eye health and has the ability to prevent macular degeneration and cataract formation. One cup of lettuce contains 82 percent of the daily recommended value of vitamin A.

7.Lactuca may help improve your brain cognition.

Several components of spinach like potassium, folate, and various antioxidants are known to provide neurological benefits. Folate has been known to reduce the occurrence of Alzheimer’s disease and cognitive decline. Potassium has been linked to increase blood flow to the brain and heightened cognition, concentration, and neural activity.



  1. DORLIS GROTE 6 August, 2017 at 14:50 Reply

    Question: What does the ethanol do, what is it’s purpose? Where do I get it and is there something I can substitute?

  2. Ruth 13 August, 2017 at 05:16 Reply

    I made some wild lettuce tea by cutting up leaves big pieces in a crock pot on warm filled with filtered water just enough to cover. let it set 24 hrs on warm. then I squeezed the leaves as i removed them in handfuls. I tied them together to hang dry them. the water in the crock pot was a dark brown. I left the water in the crock pot to evaporate. well after finding out I wasn’t going to get my pain meds that ive been on for 15 yrs. I took some of the brown water & strained it through chz cloth into a mason jar. I poured me a 1/2 of coffee cup of it. took a little sip. YUCK, I mixed in some local organic honey & organic sugar drank it down in 2 gulps. in about 15 min. I was feeling no pain & was comatose. I laid in bed& had the best sleep in forever, lifelike dreams. it was amazing! I slept about 3 hrs. & had to pee. it took 45 more min. to get up to go pee. after I went pee, I went back to the kitchen made a whole coffee cup of wild lettuce tea with honey & sugar. it didn’t taste quite as bad, I gulped it went back to bed slept the rest of the afternoon & all night. got up @ 7 am. still very relaxed, not much pain, felt sexually ambitious but other than that I had no ambition, no appetite, happy. not something you can take for pain & go to work. I DONT even recommend DRIVING & ive worked & drove on opiates for 15 yrs. ready to go find more & make another batch before it gets too late in the yr. to find more. I also got mine right @ flowering. ive read that’s the best time to get the most white milky which has all the pain killing agent in it. Just be careful!!! WARNING too much can lead to such relaxed breathing that you STOP breathing.
    I also tried cutting up the stems & roots & put them in another slow cooker with filtered water on warm for 24hrs. it was a light brown. I filtered it & put it in a mason jar but I haven’t tried it yet.

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