Frequently Asked Questions

Q: Why haven’t I heard of Yerba Santa before? Was it just recently discovered?

A: Yerba Santa was discovered hundreds of years ago by Native Americans who used its natural moisturizing power. More recently, Yerba Santa was found to mimic the glycoproteins and polysaccharides found in the mucous membranes and in healthy skin. Whereas Aloe Vera is a very well known moisturizer, Yerba Santa has just recently been re-discovered. It is our goal to increase awareness of this powerful plant because studies show it is a far better moisturizer than Aloe. 

Q: What is Yerba Santa?

A: Yerba Santa (aka bearsweed, holy herb or mountain balm) is a plant indigenous to the foothills of the Pacific Northwest, and has been used as an herbal remedy by many Native American tribes for centuries. It contains mucopolysaccharides which mimic the glycoproteins in normal mucosa and holds the aqueous component in contact with the tissue. Yerba Santa has been incorporated into all of Parnell Pharmaceuticals over the counter products and helps give them enhanced moisturizing and lubricating properties. Potential cancer chemopreventative agents have been isolated from Yerba Santa. Flavonoids in Yerba Santa have been shown to inhibit the metabolism of the carcinogen, benzopyrene, by hamster embryo cells in tissue cultures. Yerba Santa contains 12 flavonoids in high levels which act as anti-oxidants. There is a substantial body of basic research evidence which suggests that free radical damage (oxidation) to cellular components likely plays an important role in carcinogenesis, cardiovascular disease, and some eye diseases. Antioxidants, including Yerba Santa, can defend against this oxidative stress by scavenging free radicals and interrupting free radical induced chain reactions. Observational epidemiologic studies have provided further support by demonstrating that individuals with higher intake or blood levels of these agents to experience lower rates of cancer, cardiovascular disease, as well as cataract and macular degeneration. 

Q: Who is Parnell Pharmaceuticals?

A: Parnell Pharmaceuticals is a California based Lifestyle Health Care Company dedicated to successful aging. Founded by practicing medical specialists, we are committed to reducing the unwanted side effects of aging and chronic disease. is our online extension created to provide our services and products to you in the privacy of your "cosmetic cyberspace." 

Q: Who are the doctors who developed the Parnell products?

A: Dr. Francis Parnell has been practicing ENT for 30 years. He received his M.D. from Georgetown University; he did his internship and residency at University Hospitals in Madison, Wisconsin. His varied career includes service as a Lieutenant Colonel in the U.S. Army; an assistant clinical professor at the School of Medicine, University of California at San Francisco; delegate to the World Health Organization, has published and presented a number of scientific papers and has lectured on contemporary topics in otolaryngology and health care issues. Dr. Parnell is a Fellow, American Academy of Otolaryngology-Head and Neck Surgery and the American College of Surgeons. Dr. Diana Parnell has been a practicing dermatologist for 30 years, specializing in cosmetic dermatology. She received her M.D. from Georgetown University, and completed her internship and residency at University Hospitals in Madison, Wisconsin. Dr. Parnell has served as a clinical instructor in medicine at the School of Medicine, University of California at San Francisco and the University of Wisconsin School of Medicine. She has served as an industry medical consultant and has published and presented scientific papers in dermatology. 

Q: What is your refund policy?

A: Parnell Pharmaceuticals guarantees your satisfaction with all products purchased. If you are not completely satisfied with any of our products for any reason, we will refund your money in full, no questions asked. 

Q: How does Yerba Santa compare to Aloe Vera?

A: Comparison of moisturizing properties is difficult unless definitive comparisons are formulated. From a very conceptual approach, both materials should have moisturizing properties of about the same order of magnitude. Aloe and Yerba Santa moisturizing properties stem from the polysaccharide components. Aloe Vera has been studied for millennia-it is ubiquitous on all continents. It appears that the unique aloe properties are outside simple moisturization and may stimulate dermal fibroblast activity. This activity may account for its healthful activity. Yerba Santa, on the other hand, is a sleeper. It is only found in California. It has never been "hyped" like aloe vera. Yerba Santa composition includes polysaccharides that in addition to moisturizing have mucilaginous properties that lend themselves to having a pleasant lubricating feel. We have noted its long history as a vehicle for oral medication-particularly cough and cold preparation. This property may have deeper ramifications than superficially noted. Yerba Santa, in addition to mucilaginous polysaccharides, is composed of numerous flavones. Flavones as a class of compounds are noted as natural control agents for histamine release. Very interesting ramifications on the activity of Yerba Santa reveal its anti-oxidant properties. But back to a direct comparison of Yerba Santa and Aloe Vera, both moisturize by virtue of the hydrogen bonding of water by the polysaccharide components. It should be noted that aloe vera gel formulations include generous percentage concentrations (20% to 80%) to establish a notable difference. Yerba Santa fluid extract if effective at lesser concentrations (0.25% to 5%). In addition, Yerba Santa has been shown to enhance penetrations of active ingredients in a more uniform manner. These are definite advantages of Yerba Santa over Aloe Vera for skin care products and products for other tissues of the body. 

Q: Is bad breath/halitosis common?

A: Approximately 25% of the population has chronic bad breath according to the report "Oral Health of U.S. Adults" published by the National Institute of Dental Research at the National Institute of Health (NIH). The best treatments historically have been naturally occurring herbs such as parsley and Yerba Santa.

Q: What causes bad breath?

A: Bad breath (halitosis)is due to an odor caused by sulfur based gases generated by anaerobic bacteria and decaying cells in the mouth. 

Q: What causes "Morning Mouth"?

A: The bad breath of "Morning Mouth" is caused by a combination of mouth breathing, decreased saliva, proteinaceous debris, breakdown of food remnants, alkaline pH and increase in anaerobic bacteria. 

Q: Why don’t regular mouthwashes help bad breath?

A: Most mouthwashes contain a high percentage of alcohol (some have as much as 28%). Alcohol has an undesirable drying effect in the mouth and generally makes the underlying problem worse. You should avoid alcohol-based mouthwashes because the excess oral use of alcohol is known to be a cause of cancer along with tobacco use.

Q: What products and services does Parnell Pharmaceuticals provide?

A: Unlike any other company, Parnell Pharmaceuticals provides a specialty combination of Yerba Santa natural based products which include skin care medication, feminine care products, cosmeceuticals, and nutriceuticals, all of which often eliminate the need for additional treatment. When indicated we also offer medical information and specialized consultation at our Cosmetic and Laser Surgery Institute. These services include skin laser treatment for conditions such as severe wrinkles and acne scars, pigmentation and "spider" veins. Laser skin resurfacing, laser hair removal, botox/collagen injections, and liposuction have been performed on thousands of patients. If you wish further information about these procedures or would like to review "Before and After" photos, visit or call (415) 461-1036. 

Q: How do I use Parnell products?

A: Parnell Pharmaceuticals presents products and services which provide rapidly effective, visible results with minimal or no side effects. Our products are easy to use in convenient packaging. Our products and services have been developed to reduce the unwanted side effects of aging and clinical disease. Some examples include conditions such as aging skin, diabetes, acne, allergy, sinusitis, cancer, personal dryness and drug induced dryness of the skin and tissues of the body. 

Q: Why should I join the Parnell Pharmaceuticals community?

A: Parnell Pharmaceuticals features a program for your successful healthy aging and improved quality of life in Cosmetic Cyberspace. This unique combination of a specialized boutique of natural-based medical products along with specialized medical information and cosmetic and laser skin treatment by experienced specialists is now available at our Internet website - Parnell Pharmaceuticals. We guarantee your privacy and do not sell or distribute our customer lists or customer information other than for our own internal use to aid us in better serving your needs. Our experienced customer service specialists are available to respond to your e-mails and 800-line telephone calls. You always have a "live" voice at the other end in addition to our online services.

Q: What does Parnell Pharmaceuticals do to ensure the quality of its products?

A: All Parnell Pharmaceuticals products are manufactured, packaged, stored and handled in strict accordance with the provisions of the Federal Food, Drug and Cosmetic Act; the regulations of the California Pure Drugs Act; Health and Safety Codes; and the provisions of the California Pharmacy and Administration Rules. We scrupulously adhere to good manufacturing practice (GMP) standards. Certificates of assay are available for each product lot upon request. 

Q: Does Parnell Pharmaceuticals conduct any animal testing?

A: Absolutely not! All of Parnell Pharmaceuticals products have been designed, tested and produced without any animal testing whatsoever. 

Q: Where does bad breath originate?

A: Bad breath arises from the mouth (oral cavity) over 90% of the time with less than 5% of cases arising in the sinuses. Other sources such as the lungs and stomach are rare. The most common site of origin is in the filaments on the surface of the tongue. Other sites in the mouth and throat are periodontal disease, dental cavities (caries) and the tonsils. 

Q: What are the underlying causes of bad breath?

A: The most common underlying cause of bad breath is dry mouth which can be due to decreased saliva output, chronic mouth breathing, dentures, medications, and normal aging. Dry mouth can also arise from increased talking, stress, dehydration, hot dry climates. Offensive foods also are a major contribution. 

Q: How does MouthKote improve bad breath (halitosis)?

A: MouthKote works in a number of ways to relieve bad breath. MouthKote contains our patented Yerba Santa which was an ancient care of Native Americans for bad breath and other conditions of the digestive and respiratory systems. MouthKote with Yerba Santa helps restore the mucosal function and stimulates the production of saliva to reduce dry mouth. In addition, MouthKote restores the normal acidic environment in the mouth