Strengthening the Mind, Body, and Spirit since 1993

Cistus Tea, or: How to become repulsive to ticks

[sorry currently out of stock and not taking orders]

One of the big hits at our retreat with Dr Klinghardt in the summer 0f 2010 was Cistus Tea, a pleasant tasting loose tea with a mild, berry-like flavor. In Germany, dogs who were given a daily dose got 1/100th the tick bites of dogs who weren’t. Since I live in one of the worst areas in the world for ticks and Lyme, and spend about an hour a day walking with my little pal Lucy in the woods, I was very eager to test it out on us both. What I find is that the ticks don’t seem to like us any more, and yay for that!

If using it consistently,  I no longer find ticks on either of us, and many of my clients have had the same experience.  And that’s a pretty dramatic statement. After all, we tromp in the woods four times a day, and Lucy has her nose and paws in all sorts of leaves and brush where ticks love to hang out.

Recent research suggests that stevia is also beneficial as a component to healing Lyme, so  that’s what I recommend you use to sweeten. It must be whole leaf stevia, and of course, look for one that has no or minimal additives or fillers. I recommend the one from BioPure therapeutically, but you can find “clean” stevia at your health food store or on Amazon.

I drink a couple of cups a day and thoroughly enjoy it. It works well as iced tea, so you can make a quantity and store in the fridge cold. Try mixing with fruity teas such as hibiscus. For Lucy, who is ten pounds, I mash about a tablespoon of my brewed cistus tea into her food each time I feed her.

While Cistus Tea is making its reputation in the area of Lyme Disease, that is not the only reason to drink it.  Did you know that Cistus Tea is also a very powerful anti-inflammatory, anti-oxidant and detoxifier? Recent studies show it helps eliminate toxic heavy metals from cigarette smoke, dental fillings, and environmental pollution.  It can also help eliminate candida and H. pylori. Pat a concentrated tea on your skin to improve dermatitis, or just improve your complexion.  It is also anti-viral, immune supportive and cardiovascular supportive.

Directions: Use 1 teaspoon of loose tea per cup of boiling water, let it steep about 10 minutes, and strain. Important: Re-use the same tea 3 times in order to extract all the different phytonutrients.

$42 for a sandwich bag, plus $8.00 USPS priority shipping. Buy 2 or 3 and save on both cost and shipping.

If you are local, you can pick up in my waiting room.  Just let me know ahead of time.

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51 Responses to “Cistus Tea, or: How to become repulsive to ticks”

  1. fransussman says:

    Hi Kristin,
    Thanks! I love sharing the knowledge I’ve gained and sparing others the mistakes I’ve made along the way.
    Michael Pollan is one of my heroes (we even have the same alma mater :) I have always said that what makes a difference to your health is not whether or not you are vegetarian, vegan, or omnivore, but eating appropriately for you as an individual, and the quality of the food you eat. Factory farmed meat, dairy, eggs, poultry and fish are nothing like what you get from local and appropriately raised animals; not nutritionally or otherwise. In fact, the fat from pasture raised beef or wild venison is healthier than that of farm raised fish.
    As for paleo, I would just hate to give up my beans and legumes! Grains, on the other hand, I can do without. The ones you mentioned are fine, but I believe it’s generally better to get your starchy carbs from root vegetables, beans and legumes, most of the time.
    Thanks so much for asking, and please let me know if you have other questions.

  2. Ed Iovino says:

    what is the species of cistus (cistus incanus?) used to make the tea to repel ticks. Thank you, Ed

  3. fransussman says:

    It is Cistus Incanus.

  4. Lori Miller says:

    Where can I purchase Cistus tea?

  5. fransussman says:

    I offer it in my office, and I’m happy to send it to you for the cost of shipping. The large bag, which will last several months, is $50, or a smaller bag is $25. You can pay by credit card, or send a check first.

  6. Andrea says:

    I would like to buy some cistus incanus tea, and am having difficulties finding it. I found lots in Europe, but they do not send to the states. Please give me a quote for the large size. Thank you.

  7. fransussman says:

    Hi Andrea,
    Thanks for asking. I have been deluged with requests from all over the country, which I have fulfilled as best I can, and have very little left myself at this point. I need to keep what I have for my clients and my own household. However, I will probably be getting a large shipment of excellent quality pure Cistus tea very soon. It will be more expensive, for sure, but it should be available. I will certainly post when it arrives, but I don’t want to count on it before it’s here.

  8. […] promised myself that my next post was going to be about something other than my own treatment, like cistus tea or alternative (read: non-western) treatments for tick-borne diseases. i’m no stranger to […]

  9. […] your whole household, as ticks may drop off in the house and re-infest someone else.  I have found Cistus tea to be effective at repelling ticks for both of us but, taking no chances, I also use a topical like […]

  10. […] your whole household, as ticks may drop off in the house and re-infest someone else.  I have found Cistus tea to be effective at repelling ticks for both of us but, taking no chances, I also use a topical like […]

  11. susan says:

    Fran Hello,
    Do you have more of the Rock Rose available now and, if so, is it organic?
    Thank you,

  12. fransussman says:

    Hi Susan,
    I just got a new shipment a few weeks ago, and it is wonderful. It is wildcrafted from an island in Greece, so not “certified organic”.

  13. […] my favorite summertime drink, especially after riding or yoga, and I often mix some with iced cistus tea and sip it through the day, as well.  I started drinking it out of the refrigerated case at the […]

  14. Heidi says:

    How many grams of tea are in the large and small bags you have for sale?
    Thank you, Heidi

  15. fransussman says:

    I am only selling the large bag, for $35 plus shipping. I do not know how many grams it is. I am not a commercial seller. I mostly buy this for myself and my clients, but am happy to make it available to others who are looking for excellent quality cistus tea.

  16. Tom S says:

    Is the tea made from the flower, leaves, or both?

  17. fransussman says:

    the tea is flowers leaves and stems. It has a very robust flavor. I am currently waiting for a new shipment; should be here next week.

  18. Jamil says:

    Hello, Fran iwas wondering if you might have some Cistus Incanus Tea available at the the moment? I thought i might ask and make sure first before i made an order because i made the mistake of ordering somewhere else later to find out that they wont have any in stock until oct. Thanks

  19. fransussman says:

    yes, I do! Just got a whole new shipment in, fragrant and lovely and very potent, too!

  20. […] to say hi, answer questions, and offer samples of my new Fran’s Vitality Bars, along with Cistus Tea, some wonderful essential oils, and other […]

  21. David Sarge says:

    Hello Fran, I’ve had Lyme since 1998, and was introduced to Cistus Incanus extract from BioPure. I came across your newsletter and was wondering if you might have available some of the Cistus Tea for me to purchase? Thank you and await your response. Enjoy this day.

  22. fransussman says:

    Yes I do, David, and you can purchase it by clicking on the link in this article. I find the tea much more effective than the tincture, in my practice.

  23. Kathy says:

    How big is the bag? Is that like a ziplock sandwich bag? Do you know about how many ounces that is?

  24. fransussman says:

    It’s a sandwich bag, and about 3 oz.

  25. Lori says:

    Fran, Do you by any chance sell the Cistus tea in smaller bags, maybe sample size? I would like to try it, but not sure I want to spend $35 on something I might not be able to drink? Thank you.

  26. fransussman says:

    Sorry, Lori, I don’t. I can honestly say that in testing and using it in my practice with thousands of clients over the years I believe there was only one who couldn’t tolerate it. I can’t imagine why you wouldn’t be able to drink it. It is mild in flavor and very well-tolerated, with numerous health benefits. And it is $40 picked up in the office, or $48 with USPS Priority Mail shipping.

  27. Thomas Butler says:

    Hi – I’m curious – the bag of tea I just received is supposed to last several months? How are you measuring a tea-spoon? Do you mortar/pestle it?

    How should it be stored?

    Coffee is my beverage of choice – I have very little experience with loose teas.


  28. fransussman says:

    did you read the directions? you use the same tea 3x and will extract different beneficial components each time. Of course how long it lasts depends on how much you drink! I recommend storing it in a glass jar. I don’t measure, personally, just put a bit in a cup or strainer, how much depending on how much water you’re using.

  29. […] Cistus Tea, or: How to become repulsive to ticks (Webseite als PDF) […]

  30. Rebecca says:

    Hi Fran!!! How are you doing your iced tea? Big batches? Trying to figure out how to maximize our usage. There are three of us wanting to drink it. Thank you!!!

  31. fransussman says:

    Yep, this time of year I make it in a quart jar or a big teapot, and keep it in the fridge after it’s strained. My current penchant is to mix in a bit of dried nettle or hibiscus as well, but you could mix it with any herbal tea.

  32. […] Cistus Tea, or: How to become repulsive to ticks (Webseite als PDF) […]

  33. Tafi Brown says:

    I listened to your session on the Chronic Lyme Summit, then went to your website and blog, where I find the information about Cistus tea….but it is from 2014.
    Does the tea really keep ticks away from one’s body???
    Do you still stock the tea? If so, in what quatities and what prices?
    (Liked your recipe for Vanilla Egg Creams, one of my favorite treats when I was a child on L.I.!)
    Thank you.

  34. fransussman says:

    Hi Tafi, and thanks for listening, and reading. Yes, Cistus Tea is still something I rely on both personally and professionally. No one would guarantee anything would keep ticks away 100%, and I still advise other cautionary measures, but it definitely helps significantly, in my experience, plus it has other health benefits, and tastes good!

    The prices are on there, I believe. The bags are approximately 3 oz or 80 grams.
    p.s. me too LI and egg creams!

  35. LAURA says:


  36. Rita says:

    Have lyme and just discovered your info on Cistus Tea
    One question Is it organic?


  37. fransussman says:

    The tea is wildcrafted from an island in the Mediterranean, and certainly has no exposure to pesticides, herbicides, etc.

  38. Kamini says:

    Hi Fran,
    Will the tea benefit kids on the Autism spectrum.
    Thank you

  39. fransussman says:

    It certainly can, but I can’t tell you whether it will benefit your kids, or any specific kids, without taking a full history and understanding the circumstances. You might want to look at Dr Klinghardt’s work with Autism to get a better sense.

  40. Cathy says:

    I am on a blood thinner. I read that cistus tea is antithrombotic. Therefore wondering if it is okay for me to use. Would I be at risk of bleeding?

  41. fransussman says:

    I’m sorry Cathy, but since you are not under my care, I can’t make a professional recommendation about a specific medical issue. Please discuss with your practitioner.

  42. Kathy U Mutch says:

    Could you tell me when your curcumin is available and how long the dry tea leaves can be kept and still be effective. thanks

  43. fransussman says:

    You can order curcumin from the Buy Supplements link at the top right of my page, any time. The dry tea is good long-term, as is any herb, as long as it is stored properly, away from light and moisture.

  44. david jones says:

    Does the Cistus incanus work as a sun infused tea? At what amount per quart or gallon please? I just got some and nearly immediately noticed my mouth feeling invigorated and teeth cleaner. Thank you very much…

  45. fransussman says:

    I wouldn’t use it that way, David. My understanding is that boiling is essential to extracting the beneficial phytonutrients.

  46. Rebecca says:

    Hi Fran! A friend has recently asked if this tea needs to be ingested on an empty stomach. Any input? Thank you!

  47. fransussman says:

    I don’t believe so, Rebecca, but I do recommend, in general, that fluids be consumed primarily between meals, not with them, so that you don’t dilute those precious digestive enzymes.

  48. Nikole says:

    I wonder if this would work for animals. Ticks are sooooo bad this year no chemical is keeping them off my goats or dogs.

  49. fransussman says:

    If you read what I wrote, you’ll see I’ve been using it for my dog for years. In fact, the original research was with dogs. I have had other people tell me they’ve used it for goats and horses.

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