Homeopathy Papers

Tidbits 94: The Rise and Fall of Nux vomica

Written by Elaine Lewis

The remedy that wants to be #1 at all costs!



I was going through my notes.  I haven’t seen these notes in over 20 years!  All of a sudden, a bunch of pages on Nux vomica fell out!  I was happy to see them because this is a very important remedy!  What do we homeopaths think of when we think of Nux vomica?  Digestive complaints, drug addictions, hemorrhoids, urinary tract infections, stomach flus, ulcers, alcoholism, hang-overs, constipation, headaches, the common cold, domestic abuse, ailments from stress … my goodness!  I wonder if people need a refresher course in Nux vomica?

The name is Latin for “poison nut”, and yes, these people can become quite toxic after a time!


The Personality


Let’s get right into it!  Nux vomica is wiry, energetic, competitive, aggressive and ambitious.  They hate to lose!  They’re leaders.  In war, they’re Generals.  In business, they’re the boss.  In sports, they will tumble, lurch, dive, collide, do whatever is necessary to get to #1.

Think of Pete Rose!

Of course, half the world doesn’t know what I’m talking about, and the other half doesn’t know either; but, Pete Rose has the most major league hits in all of baseball with 4,256.  Here is the day he broke Ty Cobb’s record with 4,192:


I was so excited when, near the beginning of 1979, Pete Rose was traded to the Phillies from Cincinnati, and so, it is not surprising that a year later, we won the World Series!!!!

“On Dec. 5, 1978, the Philadelphia Phillies made Pete Rose baseball’s highest paid player when they signed him to a four-year contract worth $800,000 a season.”



If someone is perched at the top of the pile, chances are really good that someone is Nux vomica!

Pete Rose, was known for stretching a single into a double, diving head-first into a base so that he couldn’t be tagged out, and if he had to knock the catcher down to score at home-plate, well, that’s what he did!  Here’s game-4 of the 1980 World Series, Rose scores the winning run in over-time!

They’re rough and tumble, but focused; active, explosive and excitable but not hyperactive.  Nux vomica sees what he wants and goes after it!  But this can also mean a propensity to get into fights and arguments!

They learn quickly with a strong determination.  They might fall off their new bike and hurt themselves but, it doesn’t matter, they’ll get right back on!

Quick and intelligent, they want to prove themselves.  They do not suffer from poor confidence, depression or self-pity.  Nux people get things done!  But in so doing, they are perfectionists, they have an efficient way of doing things and it has to be done that way—the “right” way— and, in fact, you best stay out of their way and let them work or you will surely be attacked or blamed for something.




Now comes the downfall!  Inevitably, they become career-oriented, over-ambitious and workaholics; but, to keep achieving, to keep winning, they often are up late, can’t sleep from thinking about their work, depending more and more on assistance from “uppers”, “downers”, coffee, alcohol and eating on-the-go.  Their digestive system suffers, their nervous system becomes stressed beyond belief, their liver becomes toxic, they become insomniacs, they struggle with headaches, irritability…they ruin their health to be on top.

Explosions of anger, hypersensitivity to noise, light and odors lead to angry outbursts.  Their hypersensitive nervous system leads to hyper-awareness of everything that’s “wrong”, out of place; every minor criticism sends them into a rage.  You never know what’s going to set Nux vomica off!  It reminds me of how comic actor and super-star Jerry Lewis

developed such a bad temper that his wife would have to warn the kids to hide whenever he came home:

“Lewis’ sons were from his marriage to his first wife, Patti Palmer, whom he married in 1944.  They divorced in 1980.  Anthony Lewis was son No. 5 and born in 1959.  A sixth son died in 2009, reportedly from a drug overdose.  Anthony says that when he was growing up, you never knew which Jerry Lewis would be coming home at night.

‘When he would show up and park right in front of the big front door, my mom would get on the intercom and say, Your father is home!  We scattered.  We could never predict his behavior on a given day,’ he recalled.

Anthony says he was hit with a belt on two occasions but it’s the emotional abuse he says that stayed with him.

‘He was emotionally abusive every day,’ he claimed.

The Lewis family lived like royalty in Bel-Air, California.

‘It was the highest echelon of Hollywood — the absolute highest,’ he said. ‘My father was the top box office draw on planet Earth.'”



How do you reach heights like these?  Over-ambition.  Nux vomicas are never satisfied.  They lose friends from cursing, yelling and screaming.  Their drug and alcohol abuse often lead to child and spousal abuse.

Blunt, undiplomatic, forceful, demanding, malicious and cruel…divorce is practically assured.


Physical Confirmatories


Chilly, worse slightest draft.  Even just turning over in bed feels like a draft.  This is when they’re sick.  If they’re well, you might not see this dread of air so much.  If they’re sick they will be under a pile of covers and will appreciate your not opening the door because that lets a draft in, as well as light—and they’re not crazy about light either—so, it’s best to leave them alone!  Unless they ask for something and if they do, you better bring it fast because they have no tolerance for waiting!  Things easily get on their nerves!

They are worse cold dry weather, better for cloudy, rainy weather, like Causticum.  Better warm, closed rooms, the opposite of Pulsatilla.

Worse at 3 am.  They might not fall back asleep until it’s time to get up!

Constipation with ineffectual urging.

Stomach cramps, he might say that he feels like there’s a stone at the bottom of his stomach, or a knot, or that the food he ate feels like a lump in his stomach.


Toxic liver.

Hernias in infants.

Hernias from lifting.

Tenesmus.  That means “wants to, but can’t”.

Remedy for drug withdrawal.

Hang-overs.  They might be saying, “Do you have to talk so loud?”  There’s a great line from “Auntie Mame” when she’s awakened by her nephew Patrick, the morning after a party, by pulling open all the curtains: “Patrick, how can you see with all that light?!”

Gastric flu.


Muscle aches, toxic feeling, exhausted.

Lumbar back pain.

Loves fats and tolerates them well.  Loves spicy food too, likes to be stimulated, period.  Look out if he gets bored or the environment is too bland!  He’ll start noticing things that are “off”, “wrong”, out of place, missing or moved; this could really set him off!  Remember, he’s a perfectionist and notices everything!

Sun headaches.

Cough brings on bursting headache.

Colds: nose stuffed up at night and outdoors; nose runs freely indoors.  Violent sneezing.

Sensation as if head were enlarged.

Wakes in the morning feeling wretched.

Most symptoms are better heat but not headache.

Over-sensitive nervous system, so, worse noise, light, odors, and, they will let you know about it in no uncertain terms!


OK, I’m guessing you get the whole Nux vomica idea now, right?  Because it’s time for me to cook breakfast for Shana!

Mom!  Do I have to be in every article?

Well, if you insist….

OK, everybody, that’s it!  See you again next time!


Elaine Lewis, DHom, CHom

Elaine takes online cases. Write to her at [email protected]

Visit her website: https://ElaineLewis.hpathy.com 

About the author

Elaine Lewis

Elaine Lewis, D.Hom., C.Hom.
Elaine is a passionate homeopath, helping people offline as well as online. Contact her at [email protected]
Elaine is a graduate of Robin Murphy's Hahnemann Academy of North America and author of many articles on homeopathy including her monthly feature in the Hpathy ezine, "The Quiz". Visit her website at:
https://elainelewis.hpathy.com/ and TheSilhouettes.org


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