ABC Daily Herbal Powder Complete Herb List

ABC Daily Herbal NutriPowder Plus - List of Herbs

 

HERBACTIVE HERBALIST'S

Complete List of Herbs as found in

ABC Daily Herbal NutriPowder Plus

including their nutritional compounds, actions, uses and other useful information

Now Containing: 79 herbs. Powdered and whole high-value, nutririch herbs for long-term use to positively act as preventatives to dis-ease, and to promote and protect your health

You are recommended to take half a teaspoon of the powder daily for general health support
For illness you are advised to take 1-3 tsp daily

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Alphabetical listing of all the herbs in ABC Daily Herbal NutriPowder Plus according to the botanical name

Over 77 Herbs are used in the ABC Daily Herbal NutriPowder Plus as follows:

Adamsonia digitata (Baobab tree fruit):
Aesculus hippocastanum (Horse Chestnut seed)
Allium sativum (Garlic, bulb):
Aloe vera (Aloe gel powder):
Althea officinalis (Marshmallow, root):
Andrographis paniculata (Andrographis whole powder):
Apium graveolens (Celery, Seed): whole seed:
Arctium lappa (Greater Burdock, root): (ref Essiac)
Arthrospira platensis (Spirulina whole, blue-green algae):
Asparagus racemosa (Asparagus, Shatavari root):
Azadirachta indica (Neem leaf):
Bacopa monnieri (Bacopa, Brahmi, aerial parts):
Bentonite (Bentonite clay)
Berberis vulgaris (Barberry bark)
Beta vulgaris (Beetroot root)
​Capsicum annua (Paprika fruit)
Centella asiatica (Gotu Cola aerial parts)
Ceratonia siliqua (Carob pods)
Chlorella regularis (Chlorella green algae)
Cinnamomum zeylanicum (Cinnamon inner bark)
Citrus limon (Lemon rind)
Cola vera (Kola nut):
Cordyseps sinensis (Cordyseps, Chong Cao):
Coriandrum sativum (Coriander seed):
Crataegus laevigata (Hawthorn berry)
Cuminum cyminum (Cumin seed)
Curcuma longa (Turmeric root, Jiang Huang):
Echinacea angustifolia (Purple Cone Flower root):
Elettaria cardamom (Cardamom seed)
Eleutherococcus senticosus (Siberian Ginseng root):
Emblica officinalis (Indian Gooseberry fruit, Amla):
Eugenia caryophyllata (Clove bud, Ding Xiang):
Ferula asafoetida (Hingu, Asafoetida resin):
Fucus vesiculosus (Bladderwrack, seaweed):
Ganaderma lucidium (Reishi mushroom)
Garcinia cambogia (Garcinia, Brindle fruit)
Ginkgo biloba (Ginkgo seed or leaf)
Glycyrrhiza glabra (Licorice root):
Hordeum vulgare (Barley grass leaf)
Hydrastis canadensis (Golden Seal root):
Ilex paraquaiensis (Mate leaf)
Illicium verum (Star Anise seed):
Inonotas Chaga
Lentinula edodes (Shitake mushroom):
Lepidium mayenii (Maca root):
Linum usitatissimum (Flax seed, whole):
Mucuna pruriens (Kapikachu, Velvet Bean):
Medicago sativa (Alfalfa herb):
Mentha piperita (Peppermint herb):
MSM (Methylsulfonylmethane from tree lignan)
Myristica fragrans (Nutmeg seed)
Nasturtium officinale (Watercress herb)
​Nigella sativum (Black Seed, Black Cumin Seed)
Oleo europa (Olive leaf):
Panax ginseng (Korean Ginseng root):
Paullinia cupana (Guarana seed):
Petrosenium sativum (Parsley leaf)
Pfaffia paniculata (Suma root):
Piper nigra (Black pepper seed):
Plantago psyllium (Psyllium seed, whole):
Propolis balsam (Propolis bee pollen):
Rheum palmatum (Rhubarb root, Da Huang): (ref Essiac)
Rosa canina (Rose hips)
Rumex acetosella (Sheep Sorrel herb): (ref Essiac)
Sambucus nigra (Elder berry)
Scutellaria baicalensis (Baikal root):
Sida acuta/cordifola (Common Wireweed root, Bala):
Spinacia oleacia (Spinach leaf)
Stevia rebaudiana (Stevia, Sweet Leaf, leaf):
Taraxacum officinale (Dandelion root):
Terminalia arjuna (Myrobalan, Buddha tree, leaf)
Theobroma cacao (Cocoa beanraw):
Triphala (Three Fruits - Amla, Bibhitaki & Haritaki)
Triticum aestivum (Wheatgrass leaf):
Ulmus fulva (Slippery Elm bark): (ref Essiac)
Uncaria tormentosa (Cat’s Claw, inner bark)
Urtica urens (Stinging Nettle, leaf and top)
Vaccinium myrtillus (Bilberry fruit):
Yucca schidigera and spp. (Yucca leaves):
Withania somnifera (Winter Cherry, Ashwagandha, root):
Zingiber officinalis (Dry Ginger, Gan Jiang, root):

It has been estimated that this nutrient-rich organic whole superfood powder contains a minimum of 100,000 essential nutrients that support and promote intra- and extra-cellular functions that promote natural protection of the organs and systems of the body and defend against invasive organisms such as bacteria, mycoplasma, viruses, funguses, parasites and toxins.

It has been considered that the daily taking of this multiherbal powder works as compound interest for health. Half to one 5g teaspoonful daily over the long-term is necessary to maximize the compound health benefit.

back to ABC Daily Powder page

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ADAMSONIA DIGITATA - BAOBAB TREE FRUIT

The Baobab tree Adansonia digitata is a member of the Bombacaceae family which consists of around 20 genera and around 180
species (Heywood, 1993) including closely related species such as Adansonia gregori and Adanosnia madagascariensis (Shukla
et al., 2001). Also known as the “upside down tree”, on pollination by fruit bats, it produces large green or brownish fruits which
are capsules and characteristically indehiscent. The capsules contain a soft whitish powdery pulp and kidney-shaped seeds
(Sidibe & Williams 2002).
The baobab is widely distributed through the savannas and drier regions of Africa but it is also common in America, India, Sri
Lanka, Malaysia, China, Jamaica and Holland.

The literature has reported the isolation of a number of compounds from Adansonia digitata. These compounds have been found
in a various parts of the plant including the seeds, roots, leaves, bark, and the fruits. In particular different important compounds,
like triterpenoids beta-sitosterol, beta-amyrin palmitate, alpha-amyrin palmitate and ursolic acids, have been found in the fruit by
Al-Qawari et al (2003). A report by Airan and Desai (1954) highlighted the presence of organic acids in the fruit pulp. These
included citric, tartaric, malic, succinic, and ascorbic acid. Nour et al (1980) confirmed the observations of Airan and Desai when
they determined that the pulp contained ascorbic acid, tartaric acid, mainly water soluble pectins, and the elements of iron and
calcium.
Amino acids and essential fatty acids
Minerals: Calcium, Phosphorus, Iron, Potassium, Sodium, Magnesium,
Zinc, Manganese
Vitamins: Vit. C, Vit A, Vit B1-B2-B6,Vit PPCarbohydrates: glucose, fructose, saccarose, maltose, soluble
polysaccharides, starch.
Dietary soluble and insoluble fibers

The closed Baobab fruits are directly collected under supervision of expert qualified professionals, collected with minimal environmental impact.
Consequently, the fruits and/or seeds are the main parts of the plant that are collected rather than the roots or the bark of a
particular species.
First the fruit is harvested, the hard outer shell of the fruit is cracked and the contents removed. The seeds are then separated from fibrous material and mesocarp. This is screened to remove further unwanted fibrous and flaky material, leaving a fine mesocarp powder.

The Baobab fruit has a hard shell (epicarp) with a velvety covering. Inside the shell is the seed (pericarp and seed) which are hard
and dark coloured, and is surrounded by dry, light/cream coloured fruit pulp (mesocarp) forming lumps. Dry, slightly darker fibrous
material is also contained within the fruit. The fruit pulp/mesocarp is what is consumed traditionally. The production process to
attain the proposed product specification is simple and exclusively mechanical.
The processing steps are:

• Harvesting of fruits
• Cracking the hard outer shell and removing the content
• Mechanical separation of the seed, fibrous material and mesocarp
• Mesh / screen separation of unwanted fibrous and flaky material from fine, clean mesocarp powder (the baobab fruit pulp
powder)
• Storage in clean food-grade packaging

100 g of Baobab fruit pulp contain 75.6 % of total carbohydrates, 2.3 % of proteins and a very low content of lipids (0.27% of total
lipids).7,i

Baobab fruit is known for its high content of ascorbic acid (Vitamin C); in particular, 100 grams of pulp contain up to 300 mg of vitamin C, approximately six times more than the ascorbic acid content of one orange.11
Ascorbic acid is extremely important as nutritional element and as supplement, it is the factor able to cure the variety of clinical symptoms known as scurvy, a syndrome occurring in humans whose diet is deficient in fresh fruit and vegetables. Vitamin C protects the organism against free radicals, because it is the most effective antioxidant in hydrophilic compartments; moreover, it participates to several metabolic processes, as collagen biosynthesis in connective tissue, as neurotransmitter and in the steroidal hormones synthesis. It also increases the calcium absorption and iron bioavailability,ii and it is related to the prevention of many degenerative diseases (cataract formation, cardiovascular risks, arteriosclerosis).iii,iv
Baobab’s ascorbic acid content is 300 mg per 100 grams of pulp, the oral intake of 25 and 30 grams respectively is able to
provide to the vitamin C daily allowance for humans.1,vi. The fruit contains also other essential vitamins, such are riboflavin
(vitamin B2), necessary for the organism growth and to maintain the integrity of nervous fibers, skin and eyes, and niacin (vitamin PP or B3), important for the regulation of several metabolic processes.vii
The fruit can contribute to the supply of others important dietary nutrients, as minerals and essential fatty acids. 100 grams of pulp contains 293 mg of calcium, 2.31 mg of potassium, 96-118 mg of phosphorus, and α-linolenic acid (27 µg of acid per gram of product expressed in dry weight).viii,ix
The characteristic acidulous taste is due to the presence of organic acids, as citric acid, tartaric acid, malic acid and succinic acid.11
Baobab fruit pulp provides soluble and insoluble fibers, with an amount of about 50 grams/100 grams of product.xi The insoluble fibers are not adsorbed by the intestine and are useful against constipation and to induce satiety, due to their ability to increase the fecal mass and to stimulate peristalsis. This latter aspect may be useful in case of hypo-caloric diet.xii
The Baobab fruit pulp can be used as powder, or it can be diluted in water in order to prepare drinks. In the traditional use, the Baobab drink is used by women in pregnancy and in some cases for the babies nourishment.6,xiii
The powder can be diluted directly with milk or fruit juices. In some African regions, this suspension is mixed to a type of beer, derived from fermented sorghum, called “mérissa”, to prepare a refreshing drinks.4
It is also employed as substitute of cream of tartar (potassium bitartrate) for the preparation of the bread dough, due to its high
content of tartaric acid and potassium bitartrate.4

NUTRICEUTICAL PROPERTIES
Analgesic, antipyretic and anti-inflammatory activity
Experiments lead on rats showed that dosages between 400 and 800 mg/kg determine a marked anti-inflammatory effect, and reduce a formalin-induced oedema in the animal.xiv These effects are comparable with those produced by 15 mg/kg of
phenylbutazone, a common anti-inflammatory drug used as internal standard. This activity may be due to the presence of sterols, saponins and triterpenes. The pulp also produced a marked analgesic and antipyretic activity in mice at the oral dose of 800 mg/kg. This effect is similar to that induced by 50 mg/kg of acetylsalicylic acid.24
These results may explain the large employ of Adansonia digitata as antipyretic and febrifuge in the folk medicine.4

Treatment of dysentery and diarrhea
The Baobab fruit pulp is used in the African countries as an effective anti-diarrhea product. A study conducted on 160 children, of the medium age of eight months, demonstrated that an aqueous solution of the Baobab fruit pulp, is significantly more effective than the traditional "WHO solution" for rehydration of children affected with diarrhea.7,xv The main constituents responsible of this activity is believed to be tannins (astringent effect), mucilage’s (absorbents), cellulose, citric acid and other typical constituent of the fruit pulp.xvi Decoctions or milk suspensions have been used for oral treatment of diarrhea and dysentery.2, xvii
The Baobab fruit pulp shows interesting properties, in the stimulation of the intestinal microflora growth. Studies carried out in qualified Research Centers evidence that the hydrosoluble fraction of the fruit pulp has stimulating effects on the proliferation of Bifidobacteria in in vitro assays. In fact, soluble dietary fibers, as those contained in the pulp (about 25%), are known to have prebiotics effects stimulating the growth and/or the metabolic activity of beneficial organisms.

Antioxidant activity
Recent studies have shown that Baobab fruit has a marked antioxidant capacity, both water-soluble and lipid-soluble, preventing and combating free radicals damages.xviii

Oxygen Radical Antioxidant Capacity method (ORAC).
The use of the oxygen radical absorbance capacity (ORAC) assay as a tool for antioxidant assessment is described and
proposed as a method for comparing botanical sources and for standardizing antioxidants supplements. The ORAC procedure uses 2,2'-azobis(2-amidinopropane) dihydrochloride as a peroxyl radical source, which is relevant to biological systems because the peroxyl radical is the most abundant free radical. A sensitive, highly fluorescent compound Fluorescein was used to measure the oxygen radical absorbing capacity of the tested compounds. One of the principal characteristics of this compound is that the fluorescence is rapidly lost when it is exposed to a source of free radicals. This method use Trolox as standard compound, and measure areas in terms of ORAC units, where 1 ORAC unit was defined was defined as the net protection area provided by 1µM
Trolox in final concentration.
When comparing ORAC data, care must be taken to ensure that the units and food being compared are similar. Some evaluations will compare ORAC units per grams dry weight, others will evaluate ORAC units wet weight and still others will look at ORAC units/serving. Under each evaluation, different foods can appear to have higher ORAC values.
The range of ORAC for common fruits is around 1.40 micromoles TE per gram (watermelon) to 95 (cranberry). Lowbush blueberry (wild blueberry) is also very high at 92.6 µmol/g. For vegetables or legumes, it from 1.15 (cucumber) to 149 small red (red kidney bean); for nuts, 7.19 (cashew) to 179.4 (pecan); and for dried fruits, 23.87 (medjool dates) to 85.78 (prune). By comparison, different species of apples has ORAC values of 22.10 to 42.75 micromoles TE per gram, white potato is under 11, peanut is 31.66 and tomato about 4.00 Spices (clove, cinnamon) shows very high ORAC values (>2500). Cocoa has a high ORAC value, giving baking chocolate a value of 1032 and milk chocolate an average of 71.30. (Nutrient Data Laboratory, Agriculture Research Service, US Department of Agriculture, Oxygen radical absorbance capacity (ORAC) of Selected Foods - 2007)
*Suggested daily antioxidant intake is 5000 TE (source: Department of Agricolture, USA, 2007)
Baobab fruit pulp high antioxidant capacity remains stable up to one year storage at 25°C.

Physical Characteristics
Specifications
Appearance Powder Hydro-Dispersible
Colour White / White peach
Odour Characteristic
pH (sol 10%) 2.7 - 3.7
Energetic value 150 - 175 Kcal/100 g of fruit pulp
700-750 Kj/100 g of fruit pulp
Proteins 2.3 - 2.9 g/100 g of fruit pulp
Fats 0.4 - 0.8 g/100 g of fruit pulp
Total Carbohydrates 36.0 - 39,0 g/100 g of fruit pulp
Dietary Fibers 42,9 - 45,9 g/100 g of fruit pulp
Sodium 0,20 - 0.6 mg/100 g of fruit pulp
Moisture 8,5 – 11 g/100 g of fruit pulp
Ash 4.4 - 6.0 g/100 g of fruit pulp

Microbiological characteristics

Total plate count <10.000 CFU/g
SAMPLE
ORAC
TE per gram
(µmol Trolox Equivalents/g)
ORAC
TE per serving
(5-15 gr)
BAOBAB FRUIT PULP 100% NATIVE DRIED 250 ±12 1250-3750*

Clostridium SR-spores <10 CFU/g
Bacillus cereus <100 CFU/g
Enterobacteriaceae Absent in 1 grams
Escherichia Coli Absent in 1 grams
Yeasts and moulds <1.000 CFU/g
Salmonella sp Absent in 10 grams
Staphylococcus aureus Absent in 1 grams

Ocratoxin A < 0,5 µg/Kg (ppb)
Proteins Average values of aminoacids per 100 g of protein.
Proline 2.35 g
Histidine 2.71 g
Leucine 8.41 mg
Lysine 14.62 g
Arginine 6.04 g
Isoleucine 10.73 g
Methionine 4.92 g
Cysteine 11.23 g
Glutamic acid 4.02 g
Valine 1.62 g
Tyrosine 4.21 g
Tryptophan 1.49 g
Threonine 2.96 g
Dietary Fibers Average values per 100g of fruit pulp.
Soluble dietary fibers 21.6-23 g / 100 g.
Insoluble dietary fibers 21-22.9 g / 100 g.

SUGARS Average values per 100g of fruit pulp.
Glucose 3.4-3.7 g/100 g.
Fructose 3.3-3.8 g/100 g.
Saccharose 20-25 g/100 g.
Maltose N.D.
Lactose N.D .

Minerals Average values minerals per 100g of fruit pulp.
Calcium 275-300 mg/100 g
Phosphorus (P) 30-60 mg/100g
Iron 6,5-7,02 mg/Kg
Potassium (K) 2,0-3.1 g/100g
Manganese 6.0-7,50 mg/Kg

Vitamins

Average values vitamins per 100g of fruit pulp.
Vit.C 260-295 mg / 100 g
Total carotenes (Vit.A) 180 - 200 mcg/100 g
Vit.B1 (thiamin) 0.6-0,8 mg/100 g
Vit.B2 (riboflavin) 0.03-0,0 mg/100 g
Vit.B6 (piridoxin) 0,33 – 0,50 mg/100 g
Vit.PP (niacin) 1,85 - 2.16 mg/100 g

i Odetokun SM. The nutritive value of Baobab fruit (Adansonia digitata). Riv Ital Sost Grasse, 73, 371-373, 1996 ii Arrigoni O, De Tullio MC. Ascorbic acid: much more than just an antioxidant. Biochim Biophys Acta,, 1569(1-3):1-9, 2002 iii Sauberlich HE. Pharmacology on Vitamin C. Ann Rev Nutr, 14:371-391, 1994 iv Weber P, Bendich A, Schalch W. Vitamin C and human health--a review of recent data relevant to human requirements. Int J Vitam Nutr Res, 66(1):19-30, 1996 v Jacob RA, Sotoudeh G. Vitamin C function and status in chronic disease. Nutr Clin Care, 5(2):66-74, 2002 vi Eromosele IC, Eromosele CO, Kuzhkuzha DM. Evaluation of mineral elements and ascorbic acid contents in fruits of some wild plants. Plant Foods Hum Nutr, 41(2):151-4, 1991 vii Powers HJ. Current knowledge concerning optimum nutritional status of riboflavin, niacin and pyridoxine. Proc Nutr Soc, 58(2):435-40, 1999 viii Glew RH, VanderJagt DJ, Lockett C, Grivetti LE, Smith GC, Pastuszyn A, Millson M. Amino acid, fatty acid, and mineral composition of 24 indigenous plants of Burkina Faso. J Food Comp Anal, 10(3):205-217, 1997 ix Sena LP, Vanderjagt DJ, Rivera C, Tsin ATC, Muhamadu I, Mahamadou O, Millson M, Pastuszyn A, Glew RH. Analysis of nutritional components of eight famine foods of the Republic of Niger. Plant Foods for Human Nutrition, 52: 17–30, 1998 x Okazaki H, Nishimune T, Matsuzaki H, Miura T, Morita S, Yanagimoto Y, Yamagishi H, Yamada K, Ikegami S. Increased incidence rate of colorectal tumors due to the intake of a soluble dietary fiber in rat chemical carcinogenesis can be suppressed by substituting partially an insoluble dietary fiber for the soluble one. Int J Cancer, 100(4):388-94, 2002 xi Murray SS, Schoeninger MJ, Bunn HT, Pickering TR, Marlett JA. Nutritional composition of some wild plant foods and honey used by Hadza foragers of Tanzania. J Food Comp Anal, 14, 3-13, 2001 xii Garcia Peris P, Camblor Alvarez M. Dietary fiber: concept, classification and current indications. Nutr Hosp, Suppl 2:22S-31S, 1999 xiii Prentice A, Laskey MA, Shaw J, Hudson GJ, Day KC, Jarjou L MA, Dibba B, Paul AA. The calcium and phosphorus intakes of rural Gambian women during pregnancy and lactation. British Journal of Nutrition, 69, 885-896, 1993 xiv Ramadan FM, Harraz SA, El-Mougy. Antiinflammatory, analgesic and antipyretic effects of the fruit pulp of Adansonia digitata. Fitoterapia, 65(5):418-422, 1994 xv Tal-Dia A, Toure K, Sarr O, Sarr M, Cisse MF, Garnier P, Wone I. A baobab solution for the prevention and treatment of acute dehydration in infantile diarrhea. Dakar Med, 42(1):68-73, 1997 xvi Galil NE. Evaluation of Baobab (Gonglase) solution for home management of diarrhoea in Sudanese children. PhD Thesis in Agriculture, 152 pp, Jun 1996 xvii El-Kamali HH, El-Khalifa KF. Folk medicinal plants of riverside forests of the Southern Blue Nile district, Sudan. Fitoterapia, 70, 493-497, 1999 xviii Besco, E., Braccioli, E., Vertuani, S., Ziosi, P., Bruni, R., Sacchetti, G., and Manfredini, S.v Assessment of Integral Antioxidant Capacity” (IAC)of Baobab (Adansonia digitata L.) Products. Food Chemistry 102, 1352–1356, 2007.

Emission Date: 2nd October, 2002 - Last Revision Date: 08-03- 2010 - 10R1 Information with thanks to B.F.C.S Baobab Fruit Company Senegal S.a.r.l. : Bp 826, Thiès, SENEGAL Ninea 23339702f2

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ALLIUM SATIVUM – GARLIC

Actions: Anti-microbial, diaphoretic, cholagogue, hypotensive, anti-spasmodic, antioxidant, alkalizer.

Indications: Garlic is among the few herbs that has a universal usage and recognition. Its daily usage aids and supports the body in ways that no other herb does. It is one of the most effective anti-microbial plants available, acting on bacteria, viruses and alimentary parasites. The volatile oil is an effective agent and as it is largely excreted via the lungs, it is used in infections of this system such as chronic bronchitis, respiratory catarrh, recurrent colds and influenza. It may be helpful in the treatment of whooping cough and as part of a broader approach to bronchitic asthma. In general it may be used as a preventative for most infectious conditions, digestive as well as respiratory. For the digestive tract it has been found that Garlic will support the development of the natural bacterial flora whilst killing pathogenic organisms. In addition to these amazing properties, Garlic has an international reputation for lowering both blood pressure and blood cholesterol levels and generally improving the health of the cardio-vascular system.
Garlic – with the increasing prevalence of multi-drug resistant bacteria and the failure of the conventional, drug-based model to develop effective solutions against them (nor accepting responsibility for creating them), spices have regained their once universal reign as broad spectrum infection-fighters with sometimes life-saving power. Garlic, in fact, has several hundred therapeutic properties, confirmed by a growing body of scientific research, which you can view directly on GreenMedInfo.com.[i] One quick example of garlic’s power, is in killing multi-drug resistant tuberculosis (MDR-TB), which the mainstream media has termed the “white plague,” roiling the masses with a fear of drug-resistant (but not plant-extract resistant) they are made to believe they are defenseless against. Last year an article was published in a peer-reviewed scientific journal showing that garlic was capable of inhibiting a wide range of multiple drug resistant tuberculosis strains.[ii] The authors concluded “The use of garlic against MDR-TB may be of great importance regarding public health.” Garlic’s anti-infective properties do not end with MDR-TB, as it has been demonstrated to inhibit the following pathogens as well:
•Amoeba Entamoeba histolytica (parasite)
•Cholera
•Clostridium
•Cytomegalovirus
•Dermatophytoses (a type of topical fungal infection)
•Haemophilus Influenzae
•Helicobacter Pylori
•Herpes Simplex Virus Type 1
•Herpes Simplex Virus Type 2
•Klebsiella
•Methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus A. (MRSA)
•Parainfluenza Virus
•Peridontal Infection
•Pneumococcal Infections
•Pseudomonas aeruginosa
•Streptococcus Mutans
•Streptococcus Infections: Group A
•Streptococcus Infections: Group B
•Streptococcus pyrogenes
•Thrush (oral fungal infection)

This amazing list underscores how important it is to keep a supply of garlic close by!

A recent study was conducted on two groups, one consisting of 20 healthy volunteers who were fed Garlic for 6 months and the other of 62 patients with coronary heart disease and raised serum cholesterol. Beneficially changes were found in all involved and reached a peak at the end of 8 months. The improvement in cholesterol levels persisted throughout the 2 months of clinical follow-up. The clinicians concluded that Garlic possessed a distinct hypolipidemic, or fat reducing, action in both healthy people and patients with coronary heart disease. Garlic should be thought of as a basic food that will augment the body's health and protect it in general. It has been used externally for the treatment of ringworm.

Constituents: Volatile oil, consisting of sulphur-containing compounds, including allicin (=S-allyl-2-propenthiosulphinate), allyl-methyltrisulphide, diallyldisulphide, diallyltrisulphide, diallyltetrasulphide, allylpropyldisulphide, ajoene, 2-vinyl-4H-l, 3 dithiin, and alliin, which breaks down enzymatically to allicin; with citral, geraniol linalool and a- and b-phellandrene

Miscellaneous; enzymes including allinase, B vitamins, minerals flavonoids.

adenosine

ajoene 411/

cis-ajoene

trans-ajoene 268

alanine 1, 320-3, 168

allicin 1, 500-27, 800

alliin 5, 000-10, 000

alliinase 411/

allisatin pl

allistatin-i

allistatin-ii

allixin

s-allo-mercapto-cysteine

s-allyl-cysteine

s-allyl-cysteine-suoxide

allyl-disuide

allyl-methyl-disuide

allyl-methyl-trisuide

allyl-propyl-disuide

aluminum

aniline

arachidonic-acid

arginine (this is a conditionally essential amino acid that becomes increasingly necessary under conditions of stess, injury, or disease; Arginine functions to enhance the immune system and inhibitcellular replication of tumors; the highest concentrations of Arginine ae found in the connective tissue.)

ascorbic-acid

aspartic-acid

biotin

boron

5-tyl-cysteine-suoxide

caffeic-acid

calcium

calcium-oxalate

carbohydrates

s-(2-carboxy-propyl)-glutathione beta-carotene

beta-carotene

beta-carotene

beta-carotene

chlorogenic-acid

choline

chromium

citral

cobalt

copper

p-coumaric-acid

cycloalliin

cystine

desgalactotigonin 400 rt

desoxyribonuclease

diallyl-disuide

diallyl-suide

diallyl-tetrasuide

3, 5-diethyl-1, 2, 4-trithiolane

digalactosyl-diglyceride

1, 2-dimercaptocyclopentane

dimethyl-disuide

dimethyl-difuran

dimethyl-suide

2, 5-dimethyl-tetrahydro

thiophene dimethyl-trisuide

1, 3-dithiane

eicosapentaenoic-acid

essential oil

1, 2-epithiopropane

s-ethyl-cysteine-suoxide

fat

ferulic-acid

fiber

foliacin

fructose

geraniol

germanium

gibberellin-a-3

gibberellin-a-7

gitonin

glucose

glutamic-acid 8, 050-19, 320

gamma-l-glutamyl-s-allyl-cysteine

gamma-l-glutamyl-s-beta-carboxy-beta-methyl-ethyl-cysteinyl-glycine

gamma-l-glutamyl-s-(2-carboxy-1-propyl)-cysteineglycine

gamma-l-glutamyl-s-allyl-mercapto-cysteine

gamma-l-glutamyl-isoleucine

gamma-l-glutamyl-l-leucine

gamma-l-glutamyl-methionine

gamma-l-glutamyl-s-methyl-l-cysteine-suoxide

gamma-l-glutamyl-l-phenylalanine

gamma-l-glutamyl-s-propyl-l-cysteine

gamma-l-glutamyl-l-valine

glutathione

glycerol-suoquinovoside

glycine

guanosine

hexa-1, 5-dienyl-trisuide

1-hexanol

hexokinase

histidine p-hydroxybenzoic-acid

iodine

iron isotyl-isothiocyanate

isoleucine

kaempferol

leucine

linalool

linolenic-acid

lysine (l-lysine is a natural amino acid that is a building block of collagen and elastin fibers with l-proline); prevents digestion of collagen by blocking sites where enzymes attach, making this nutrient critical in preventing the degradation of collective tissue; l-lysine is not produced by the human bodyso the health of the connective tissue depends on optimal daily intake of this amino acid as well as others.)

magnesium

manganese

methionine

methyl-allyl-disuide

methylallyl-suide

methylallyl-trisuide

2-methylbenzaldehyde t

3-methyl-2-cyclopentene-1-thione

s-methyl-cysteine

s-methyl-cysteine-suoxide

24-methylene-cycloartenol

s-methyl-l-cysteine-suoxide

1-methyl-2-(prop-2-enyl)-disuane

1-methyl-1, 2-(prop-2-enyl)-disuane

1-methyl-3-(prop-2-enyl)-trisuane

methyl-propyl-disuide

4-methyl-5-vinylthiazole

monogalactosyl-diglyceride

myrosinase

niacin

nickel

nicotinic-acid

oleanolic-acid

oleic-acid

ornithine

peroxidase

alpha-phellandrene

beta-phellandrene

phenylalanine

phloroglucinol pl

phosphatidyl-choline

phosphatidyl-ethanolamine

phosphatidyl-inositol

phosphatidyl-serine

phosphorus

phytic-acid

potassium

proline

2-propen-1-ol

propene

propenethiol

prop-2-enyl-disuane

1, 2-(prop-2-enyl)-disuane

trans-1-propenyl-methyl-disuide

s-propenyl-cysteine

s-propyl-cysteine-suoxide

trans-s-(propenyl-1-yl)-cysteine-disuide

prostaglandin-a-1

prostaglandin-a-2

prostaglandin-b-1

prostaglandin-b-2

prostaglandin-e-1

prostaglandin-e-2 alpha-prostaglandin-f-1

alpha-prostaglandin-f-2

protein

protodegalactotigonin

protoeruboside-b

pseudoscoridinine-a

pseudoscoridinine-b

quercetin

quercetin-3-o-beta-d-glucoside

raffinose

riboavin

riboavin

riboavin

riboavin

rutin

saponin

sativoside-b-1

sativoside-r-1

sativoside-r-2

scordine

scordinin-a

scorodinin-a-1

scorodinin-a-2

scorodinine-a-3

scorodinin-b

scorodose

selenium (selenium is an important component of the body's antioxidant defence system and has also been shown to protect cells exposed to toxins; as a concer-fighting compound, senenium suppresses tumour promotion and early stages of tumor grogression through the inhimbition of angiogenic enzymes.)

serine

silicon

siic-acid

beta-sitosterol

sodium

sodium

stigmasterol

succinic-acid

sucrose

taurine

thiamacornine

thiamamidine

thiamin

threonine

tin

alpha-tocopherol

beta-tocopherol

2, 3, 4-trithiapentane

tryptophan

tyrosine

tyrosinase

uranium

valine

2-vinyl-4h-1, 3-dithiin

3-vinyl-4h-1, 2-dithiin

vit-u

zinc

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ALOE VERA – ALOE GEL 

Aloe vera gel (Pure Aloe Gel) - burns, sunburn, wounds, insect bites, skin, eczema, scalp problems, psoriasis in scalp, wrinkles, skin irritations, minor cuts and scratches, an eyewash.

The healing powers f Aloe vera have been used for the immune system, to help prevent: cancer, tumours, cysts, growths, bacteria, viruses, fungi, parasites, all infections and inflammations. Aloe dehydrated powder is regarded to be superior to all other forms of Aloe.

Aloe vera uses and benefits are so wide ranging that even more applications for this incredible herb are regularly being discovered.

The potency of this freeze dried juice powder supports the immune system, the master system of the body, therefore enhancing other systems. The aloe polymannans in Aloe is high. The percentage changes from season to season, plant to plant, and leaf to leaf. The content is of aloe polymannans consists around 30% of the acemannan fraction and 60% of the next fraction (Mannapol) and the remaining two fractions around 10%. What is most important, without a doubt, is the acemannan fraction. Carrington Labs discovered it and their acemannan fraction consists between 800,000 to 1,000,000 daltons.

Aloe powder delivers concentrated nutrients. It is rich in the large complex carbohydrates (glyco-polymannans or aloe polymannans) which science has indicated are responsible for the activation of the macrophages and are also known to enhance our immune system. Researchers from Okinawa , Japan reported in the Japanese Journal of Cancer Research, that Aloe contained at least three anti-tumour agents, emodin, mannose, and lectin. The researchers concluded that Aloe controls pulmonary carcinogenesis and is effective in the treatment of leukaemia and sarcoma and that it would prevent the development of tumours.

Aloe vera has been demonstrated to enhance the immune system's response as preventative to cancer, and promote the growth of new and healthy cells, and reduce the overall viral load within the body thereby revitalizing the body in its fight to prevent any cancers. When radiation and chemotherapy are used, Aloe helps to minimize the damage done to the body by these treatments, which destroy healthy cells - particularly immune system cells - crucial to the body's recovery. This enables the body to better heal itself after treatment of cancer and the damage done to it by conventional treatment.

Aloe vera contains a number of chemicals that enhance the activities of all of the immune system functions:

23 polypeptides serve as immune system stimulators, helping to control a broad spectrum of immune system diseases and disorders.

20 polysaccharides increase the action of white blood cells thus increasing the production of "killer" T-cells and interferon. They also chemically enhance the action of the "killer" T-cells. One of these polysaccharides, acelated mannose, has been patented as acemannen and is approved in Europe to stimulate the immune system. The polypeptides, plus the anti-tumour agents aloe-emodin and aloe lectins, explains its ability to help in its preventive action to cancer.

Over 200 bio-active constituents (vitamins, minerals, enzymes, amino acids, fatty acids, polysaccharides, and polymannans).

Glucomannan, a special complex polysaccharide composed largely of the sugar mannose, interacts with special cell-surface receptors on those cells which repair damaged tissues, called fibroblasts, stimulating them, activating their faster growth and replication.

Mannose acts to the immune system as a modulator. The modulation process controls and regulates the immune system to activate and fight off foreign invaders. This powerful molecule is on all cell surfaces, helping all other nutrients work even better. It is one of the glyconutrients that strengthen the immune system. Mannose is a glyconutrient found in Aloe which inhibits certain pro-inflammatory molecules causing asthma, rheumatoid arthritis and even lupus. In cellular studies it has been shown that mannose inhibits tumour growth and blocks communication between tumour cells. Mannose is the main saccharide of the eight essential saccharides (glyconutrients). Mannose has to be freeze dried almost immediately that it is taken from the plant, as it will deteriorate very quickly and be of very little use. Mannose can accelerate cellular communication and recovery from illness.

Science has discovered a very powerful phytochemical found in Aloe Vera which is in a special category of mucopolysaccharides. These are super antioxidants that bind free radicals on the outside of cells and unlike other antioxidants they also work inside the cell. There is a critical deficiency of these factors in our diet. Galactomannans in Aloe are a class of long chain sugars derived from plants, which have been shown in laboratory and clinical studies to have a wide variety of immune stimulating and protective effects within the body.

Aloe helps to decrease leakiness of the intestinal wall (leaky gut syndrome, see my specialised herbal medicine for this condition) and less absorption of allergic stimulating foreign protein.

Acemannan has direct virucidal, bactericidal, and fungicidal properties which can help control candida overgrowth so that normal gastrointestinal bacterial flora can be restored. Acemannan also stimulates intestinal motility, helping to move allergenic proteins into the colon. All these processes help to normalize gastrointestinal wall structure and function and therefore stop the vicious macrophages, killer T-cells, and monocytes, as well as increasing the number of antibody forming B-cells in the spleen. Acemannan also protects the bone marrow from damage by toxic chemicals and drugs such as AZT.

These various effects while seemingly widespread and unrelated, are in fact due to one simple process at the cell membrane level. Acemannan, a mucopolysaccharide, is a long chain sugar which interjects itself into all cell membranes. This results in an increase in the fluidity and permeability of the membrane allowing toxins to flow out of the cell more easily and nutrients to enter the cell. This results in improved cellular metabolism throughout the body and an overall boost in energy production. Aloe's Acemannan has been shown to possess a unique combination of immumodulatory and antiviral properties. The vicious cycle of maldigestion and cellular starvation is finally broken as the acemannan normalizes absorption of nutrients and increases tolerance for allergenic foods. The immune system is now stronger, under control, and better prepared for any new threat.

Aloe - helps stop the bleeding, damage and leakage of the intestine wall [Leaky Gut Syndrome], thereby taking the stress off the immune system.

Aloe - helps to effectively balance and restore proper immune system function.

Aloe - acts as a potent anti-inflammatory agent to reduce inflammation.

Aloe - helps to rebuild the intestinal protective mucosa lining.

Aloe - promotes and accelerates the tissue healing process.

Aloe - helps stop the overproduction of stomach acids which lead to heartburn, acid reflux disease or "gastroesophageal reflux disease" (GERD)

Aloe - helps in the restoration of proper moisture levels within the colon eliminating both diarrhoea and constipation over time.

Aloe - helps fuel all bodily systems through the promotion of proper digestion, absorption and assimilation of foods and nutrients.

Aloe - helps in the normalization of an array of damaging processes in the digestive tract.

Aloe - helps in the elimination of maldigestion and thus a host of pathological reactions

Aloe - has direct anti-bacterial, anti-viral, anti-fungal, anti-yeast and anti-parasitic effects.

Aloe - increases phagocytosis to ingest foreign viral and bacterial agents.

Aloe - promotes the proliferation of healthy flora in the digestive tract.

Aloe - helps to control chronic yeast infections so that normal healthy flora may thrive.

Aloe - helps to increase the circulation throughout the body and aids in blood sugar balancing.

Aloe - is an extremely effective intracellular antioxidant and free radical scavenger.

Aloe - is not digested by the enzyme systems - it is taken up into the cell intact.

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ALTHEA OFFICINALIS – MARSHMALLOW ROOT

Constituents: mucilage, l8-35%; miscellaneous; about 35% pectin, l-2% asparagine, tannins. Mucilage; including a low molecular weight D-glucan. Flavanoids such a kaempferol, quercitin and diosmetin glucosides. Scopoletin, a coumarin. Polyphenolic acids (anti-aging), including syringic, caffeic, salicyclic, vanillic, p-coumaric etc.

Actions: Demulcent, emmolient, diuretic, anti-inflammatory, expectorant.

Indications: Its abundance of mucilage makes Marshmallow an excellent demulcent that is indicated for the digestive system and to a lesser extent for the urinary system and lungs. All inflammatory conditions of the digestive tract will benefit from its use, e.g. inflammations of the mouth, gastritis, peptic ulceration, colitis etc.. Also supportive help in cystitis, urethritis and urinary gravel as well as bronchitis, respiratory catarrh, irritating coughs.

 

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APIUM GRAVEOLENS - CELERY SEED 

Constituents: Volatile oil, containing d-limonene, with[[alpha]]-selinene, santalol, [[alpha]]- and [[beta]]-eudesmol, dihydrocarvone.

Phthalides; mainly 3-n-butylphthalide, ligustilide, sedanolide, and sedanenolide. Coumarins; bergapten, isoimperatorin, isopimpinellin, apiumoside &celeroside. Flavonoids; apiin and apigenin. Fixed oil, fatty acids. 

Action: rheumatism, sedative; arthritis, gout (with Taraxacum), urinary anti-septic; RA with mental depression (specific).

Indications: Celery Seeds find their main use in the treatment of rheumatism, arthritis and gout. They are especially useful in rheumatoid arthritis where there is an associated mental depression. Their diuretic action is obviously involved in rheumatic conditions, but they are also used as a urinary antiseptic, largely because of the volatile oil apiol.

Combinations: In rheumatic conditions they appear to work better in combination with Dandelion.

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ARCTIUM LAPPA - BURDOCK ROOT

Compositae

Names : Lappa, Beggar's Buttons.

Habitat : Grows in hedges and ditches in Europe, parts of Asia, N.America; cultivated in Japan .

Collection : The roots and rhizome should be unearthed in September or October.

Part Used : Roots and rhizome.

Constituents :

Lignans, including arctigenin, its glycoside arctiin, and matairesinol.

Polyacetylenes, in the root, mainly tridecadienetetraynes and tridecatrienetriynes, with the sulphur-containing arctic acid.

Amino acids, such as [[alpha]]-guanidino-n-butyric acid

Inulin in the roots

Miscellaneous organic acids, fatty acids and phenolic acids; includingacetic, butyric, isovaleric, lauric, myristic, caffeic and chlorogenicacids.

Action: alterative, bitter, diuretic, dry or scaly eczema, psoriasis, skin detoxification; anorexia nervosa. 

Indications : Burdock is a most valuable remedy for the treatment of skin conditions which result in dry and scaly skin. It may be most effective for psoriasis if used over a long period of time. It will be useful as part of a wider treatment for rheumatic complaints, especially where they are associated with psoriasis. Part of the action of this herb is through the bitter stimulation of the digestive juices and especially of bile secretion. Thus it will aid digestion and appetite. It has been used in anorexia nervosa and similar conditions, also to aid kidney function andto heal cystitis. In general, Burdock will move the body to a state of integration and health, removing such indicators of systemic imbalance as skin problems and dandruff. Externally, it may be used as a compress or poultice to speed up the healing of wounds and ulcers.Eczema and psoriasis may also be treated this way externally, but it must be remembered that such skin problems can only be healed from within and with the aid of internal remedies.

Priest & Priest tell us that it is a "general alterative: influences skin, kidneys, mucous and serous membranes, to remove accumulated waste products. It is specific for eruptions on the head, face and neck, and for acute irritable and inflammatory conditions." They give the following specific indications: Eczema, psoriasis, dermatitis. Boils, carbuncles, styes, sores. Rheumatism, gout and sciatica. Ellingwood recommends it for the following pathologies: aphthous ulcerations; irritable coughs; psoriasis and chronic cutaneous eruptions; chronic glandular enlargements, syphilitic, scrofulous and gouty conditions.

Combinations : For skin problems, combine with Yellow Dock, Red Clover or Cleavers.

Citations from the Medline database for the genus Arctium

Burdock

Dombradi CA Foldeak S

Screening report on the antitumor activity of purified Arctium Lappaextracts.

Tumori (1966 May-Jun) 52(3):173-5

Morita K Kada T Namiki M

A desmutagenic factor isolated from burdock (Arctium lappa Linne).

Mutat Res (1984 Oct) 129(1):25-31

With thanks to David Hoffman, medical herbalist for this entry.

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ARMORACIA RUSTICANA - HORSERADISH ROOT

Horseradish root contains approx. 0.6% of glucosinolates; the most abundant of these are sinigrin (0.2%) and gluconasturtiin (0.1%). As soon as intact cells are damaged, these isothiocyanates are enzymatically hydrolyzed to yield allyl isothiocyanate and 2-phenylethyl isothiocyanate, respectively. Further glucosinolates in horseradish are glucobrassicanapin and the indol-derived glucobrassicin (plus some closely related compounds like 4-methoxy glucobrassicin, 4-hydroxy glucobrassicin). On hydrolysis, glucobrassicanapin yields 4-pentenyl isothiocyanate; yet the glucobrassicines have no corresponding stable isothiocyanates. Instead, they hydrolyze to 3-hydroxyindole derivatives and free isothiocyanate ions.

Among the non-volatile constituents, one should mention flavone glycosides (quercetine, kaempferol) and particularly ascorbic acid, which is contained to 06% in horseradish root. 

Action: stimulant (strong), diuretic (strong), aperient, expectorant, rubefacient (Raynaud's), anti-septic; nervous stimulant, digestive organs stimulant, kidney stones, oedema, persistent cough (especially following influenza); whooping cough, hoarseness, worms.

Main constituents:

Origin: The plant is thought to be of Mediterranean or Eastern European origin, and is now widely cultivated in Central and Eastern Europe . It is commonly found “wild”, this is, escaped from cultivation.

Etymology: German has two different words for horseradish: Meerrettich is preferred in the North, while Southern Germans and Austrians usually call the spice Kren. Meerrettich literally means “more radish” or “greater radish”, indicating the greater size (or the stronger aroma) of horseradish compared to garden radish (Raphanus sativus).

Horseradish is a very popular spice in Central and Northern Europe, where the fresh root is grated and eaten together with cured ham or cooked or roasted meat (e.g., British roastbeef); at Easter time, cured ham with horseradish is a traditional meal in Austria . Since the aroma is so volatile and instable, the tearful process of grating must be repeated several times during the meal. Horseradish preservatives, usually grated and tinned root with a few stabilizing additions, are available, but true lovers of the root think them inferior, though much more convenient. 

The pungent allyl isothiocyanate is not heat resistant; therefore, horseradish is only seldom used for warm foods and then added immediately before serving. Even in cold water, allyl isothiocyanate is not stable for longer than a few minutes. However, in sour environment the hydrolysis of thiocyanates takes place much more slowly. 

In Austria , freshly grated horseradish (or tinned product) is frequently mixed with grated apples (sour varieties preferred, otherwise some lemon juice is needed) and then eaten as a spicy relish to fried or cooked meat. This mixture (Apfelkren) can be stored for about one day without substantial loss in pungency. To prevent darkening of the apples (enzymatic oxidation of phenolic compounds by oxygen), the apples may shortly steamed before mashing them; this won't much affect the flavour but gives a softer, smoother texture.

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ASPARAGUS RACEMOSUS

Shatavari is the most important herb in Ayurvedic medicine for regulating the hormones especially our sex hormones. The powdered root rhizome acts regulates our circulatory, digestive, respiratory and reproductive systems. The root is alterative, antispasmodic, aphrodisiac, demulcent, diuretic, galactogogue and refrigerant. It is used for improving hormonal right function (and for infertility in premenopause), loss of libido, hyperacidity, stomach ulcers and bronchial infections. Other uses of Asparagus Shatavari is to regulate the bowel, rheumatism, diabetes, threatened miscarriage, menopausal problems, and brain complaints.

ATHROSPIREA - SPIRULINA 

Spirulina is a rich source of protein. It also contains chlorophyll, carotenoids, minerals, gamma-linolenic acid (GLA) and some unique pigments. These pigments, called phycobilins, include phycocyanin and allophycocyanin. The pigments give spirulina their bluish tinge. Phycobilins are similar in structure to bile pigments such as bilirubin. In the spirulina cell, phycobilins are attached to proteins; the phycobilin-protein complex is called phycobiliprotein.

Spirulina has putative antiviral, hypocholesterolemic, antioxidant, hepatoprotective, antiallergic and immune-modulatory activities. 

Mechanism of action: A sulfated polysaccharide called calcium spirulan isolated from Spirulina platensis (Arthrospira platensis) was found to inhibit a number of membraned viruses. The viruses inhibited by the polysaccharide included herpes simplex virus 1 (HSV-1), cytomegalovirus, measles virus, mumps virus and HIV-1. Calcium spirulan appears to inhibit the penetration of these viruses into host cells. These studies were performed in vitro. Spirulina has been shown to have hypocholesterolemic activity in experimental animals. The mechanism of this activity is unknown. The spirulina pigment phycocyanin has demonstrated antioxidant activity. It scavenges peroxyl radicals. Phycocyanin has been found to protect against hepatotoxins in rats. The mechanism may be via its antioxidant activity. An extract of Spirulina maxima also protected against carbon tetrachloride hepatotoxicity in rats. The phycocyanin contained in the extract, as well as other antioxidants, probably account for the hepatoprotective effect. Mast-cell mediated immediate-type allergic reactions were found to be inhibited in rats by spirulina. It is speculated that there are substances in spirulina that may inhibit mast-cell degranulation, possibly by affecting the mast-cell membrane. Spirulina platensis extracts have been demonstrated to enhance macrophage function in cats and to enhance humoral and cell-mediated immune functions in chickens. The mechanism of these effects is unknown.

Pharmacokinetics: The pharmacokinetics of spirulina in humans have not been studied. However, the proteins, lipids and carbohydrates in spirulina should be digested, absorbed and metabolized by normal physiological processes.

Indications and usage: Spirulina has shown some indication of having antiviral effects in preliminary in vitro and animal studies. There is also evidence of a preliminary nature that it might favorably affect some immune functions and have some hepatoprotective capability. It has shown some promise of inhibiting some allergic reactions in recent experimental studies. Hypocholesterolemic effects have been reported in some animal studies. 

Research summary: An extract of spirulina inhibited in vitro replication of HSV-1 simplex virus type 1. It also significantly prolonged survival time of HSV-1-infected hamsters. It seemed to act, not through direct virucidal effects, but rather through inhibition of viral penetration into cells. Subsequently, further experiments demonstrated that spirulina extract significantly inhibited in vitro replication of several enveloped viruses, including human cytomegalovirus, measles virus, mumps virus, influenza A virus and HIV-1. Again, the mechanism of action was said to be selective inhibition of viral penetration into host cells. More recently still, other researchers have focused specifically on the ability of a spirulina extract to inhibit HIV-1 replication in human T-cell lines, peripheral blood mononuclear cells (PBMC) and Langerhans cells (LC). The researchers stated: "We conclude that aqueous A platensis extracts contain antiretroviral activity that may be of potential clinical interest." Spirulina and some of its constituents have shown an ability to favorably affect various immune functions. In one animal experiment, it boosted phagocytic activity and increased natural killer (NK)-cell activity two-fold, compared with controls. Spirulina has significantly inhibited chemically induced anaphylactic shock and serum histamine levels in rats, leading to the conclusion that spirulina may inhibit mast-cell degranulation. In another animal experiment, spirulina significantly inhibited local allergic reactions induced by anti-dinitrophenyl (DNP) IgE. It demonstrated, more specifically, a significant inhibitory effect on anti-DNP IgE-induced tumour necrosis factor-alpha production, leading the researchers to conclude that spirulina inhibits mast-cell mediated immediate-type allergic reactions both in vitro and in vivo. Finally, a constituent of spirulina, administered intraperitoneally, significantly reduced the hepatotoxicity of a carbon tetrachloride challenge. A more recent study confirmed this finding.

LITERATURE Ayehunie S, Belay A, Baba TW, Ruprecht RM. Inhibition of HIV-1 replication by an aqueous extract of Spirulina platensis (Arthrospira platensis). J Acquir Immune Defic Synd Hum Retrovirol. 1998; 18:7-12. Chamorro G, Salazar M, Favil L, Bourges H. [Pharmacology and toxicology of Spirulina alga.] [Article in Spanish.] Rev Invest Clin. 1996; 48:389-399. Devi MA, Venkataraman LV. Hypocholesterolemic effect of blue-green algae Spirulina platensis in albino rats. Ann Nutr Reports Int. 1983; 28:519-530. Hayashi T, Hayashi K. Calcium spirulan, an inhibitor of enveloped virus replication, from a blue-green alga Spirulina platensis. 1996; 59:83-87. Hayashi K, Hayashi T, Morita N, Kajima I. An extract from Spirulina platensis is a selective inhibitor of herpes simplex virus type 1 penetration into HeLa cells. hytotherapy Res. 1993; 7:76-80. Johnson PE, Shubert LE. Accumulation of mercury and other elements by spirulina (cyanophyceae). Nutr Rep Intl. 1986; 34:1063-1071. Kim HM, Lee EH, Cho HH, Moon YH. Inhibitory effect of mast cell-mediated immediate-type allergic reactions in rats by spirulina. Biochem Pharmacol. 1998; 55:1071-1076. Lissi EA, Pizarro M, Aspee A, Romay C. Kinetics of phycocyanine bilin groups destruction by peroxyl radicals. Free Rad Biol Med. 2000; 28:1051-1055. Miranda MS, Cintra RG, Barros SB, Mancini Filho J. Antioxidant activity of the microalga Spirulina maxima. Braz J Med Biol Res. 1998; 31:1075-1079. Quereshi MA, Ali RA. Spirulina platensis exposure enhances macrophage phagocytic function in cats. Immunopharmacol Immunotoxicol. 1996; 18:457-463. Quereshi MA, Garlich JD, Kidd MT. Dietary Spirulina platensis enhances humoral and cell-mediated functions in chickens. Immunopharmacol Immunotoxicol. 1996; 18:465-476. Romay C, Armesto J, Ramirez D, et al. Antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties of C-phycocyanin from blue-green algae. Inflamm Res. 1998; 47:36-41. Torres-Durán PV, Miranda-Zamora R, Paredes-Carbajal MC, et al. Studies on the preventive effect of Spirulina maxima on fatty liver development induced by carbon tetrachloride. J Ethnopharmacol. 1999; 64:141-147. Watanabe F, Katsura H, Takenaka S, et al. Pseudovitamin B12 is the predominant cobamide of an algal health food, spirulina tablets. J Agric Food Chem. 1999; 47:4736-4741. Yang H-N, Lee E-H, Kim H-M. Spirulina platensis inhibits anaphylactic reaction. Life Sciences. 1997; 61:1237-1244.

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AZADIRACHTA INDICA - NEEM LEAF

Azadirachta indica (Neem) is a tree in the mahogany family Meliaceae. It is one of two species in the genus Azadirachta, and is native to India, Burma, Bangladesh, Sri Lanka, Malaysia and Pakistan, growing in tropical and semi-tropical regions. Other vernacular names include Neem (Hindi, Urdu), Nim ((Bengali)), Nimm (Punjabi), Arya Veppu (Malayalam), Azad Dirakht (Persian), Nimba (Sanskrit, Oriya), Kadu-Limba (Marathi), DogonYaro (in some Nigerian languages), Margosa, Neeb (Arabic), Nimtree, Vepu, Vempu, Vepa (Telugu), Bevu (Kannada),Kodu nimb (Konkani), Kohomba (Sinhala), Vembu (Tamil), Tamar (Burmese), sầu đâu, xoan Ấn Độ (Vietnamese), Paraiso (Spanish), and Indian Lilac (English). In East Africa it is also known as Muarubaini (Swahili), which means the tree of the 40, as it is said to treat 40 different diseases.

Neem is a fast-growing tree that can reach a height of 15–20 m (about 50–65 feet), rarely to 35–40 m (115–131 feet). It is evergreen, but in severe drought it may shed most or nearly all of its leaves. The branches are wide spread. The fairly dense crown is roundish or oval and may reach the diameter of 15–20 m in old, free-standing specimens.
Constituents: The Indian scientists were the first scientist to bring the plant to the attention of phytopharmacologists.[citation needed] In 1942, while working at the Scientific and Industrial Research Laboratory at Delhi University, British India, he extracted three bitter compounds from neem oil, which he named nimbin, nimbinin, and nimbidin respectively.[1] The seeds contain a complex secondary metabolite azadirachtin.
Uses: In India, the tree is variously known as "Sacred Tree," "Heal All," "Nature's Drugstore," "Village Pharmacy" and "Panacea for all diseases." Products made from neem tree have been used in India for over two millennia for their medicinal properties: Neem products have been observed to be anthelmintic, antifungal, antidiabetic, antibacterial, antiviral, contraceptive and sedative.[1] Neem products are also used in selectively controlling pests in plants. It is considered a major component in Ayurvedic and Unani medicine and is particularly prescribed for skin disease.[2]

* All parts of the tree are said to have medicinal properties (seeds, leaves, flowers and bark) and are used for preparing many different medical preparations.
* Part of the Neem tree can be used as a spermicide[3]
* Neem oil is used for preparing cosmetics (soap, shampoo, balms and creams, for example Margo soap), and is useful for skin care such as acne treatment, and keeping skin elasticity. Neem oil has been found to be an effective mosquito repellent.
* Neem derivatives neutralise nearly 500 pests worldwide, including insects, mites, ticks, and nematodes, by affecting their behaviour and physiology. Neem does not normally kill pests right away, rather it repels them and affects their growth. As neem products are cheap and non-toxic to higher animals and most beneficial insects, they are well-suited for pest control in rural areas.
* Besides its use in traditional Indian medicine, the neem tree is of great importance for its anti-desertification properties and possibly as a good carbon dioxide sink.
* Practitioners of traditional Indian medicine recommend that patients suffering from chicken pox sleep on neem leaves.
* Neem gum is used as a bulking agent and for the preparation of special purpose food (for diabetics).
* Aqueous extracts of neem leaves have demonstrated significant antidiabetic potential.
* Traditionally, slender neem branches were chewed in order to clean one's teeth. Neem twigs are still collected and sold in markets for this use, and in India one often sees youngsters in the streets chewing on neem twigs.
* A decoction prepared from neem roots is ingested to relieve fever in traditional Indian medicine.
* Neem leaf paste is applied to the skin to treat acne, and in a similar vein is used for measles and chicken pox sufferers.
* Neem blossoms are used in Andhra Pradesh, Tamil Nadu and Karnataka to prepare Ugadi pachhadi. "Bevina hoovina gojju" (a type of curry prepared with neem blossoms) is common in Karnataka throughout the year. Dried blossoms are used when fresh blossoms are not available. In Tamilnadu, a rasam (veppam poo rasam) made with neem blossoms is a culinary speciality.

* A mixture of neem flowers and bella (jaggery or unrefined brown sugar) is prepared and offered to friends and relatives, symbolic of sweet and bitter events in the upcoming new year.

Extract of neem leaves is thought to be helpful as malaria prophylaxis despite the fact that no comprehensive clinical studies are yet available. In several cases, private initiatives in Senegal were successful in preventing malaria.[4] However, major NGOs such as USAID are not supposed to use neem tree extracts unless the medical benefit has been proved with clinical studies.
The Neem tree exemplifies Mahatma Gandhi’s concept of economy of permanence and has much to offer in solving global, agricultural, environmental and public health problems. No other tree can match Neem’s usefulness. Neem rightfully belongs to the millions of ordinary Indians who learnt to put it to use, as it is this knowledge, passed down through generations, that has helped scientists discover Neem’s amazing potential. The commercial and industrial prospects of neem are unlimited and exciting. There is no other tree that touches the life and living of such a majority of the country’s population.

1. Mix pure dried neem oil with Vaseline in the ratio of 1:5. This combination can be used for repelling insects including mosquitoes as well as for skin disorders, minor cuts, burns, wounds etc.
2. For complete skin protection make a strong tea with neem leaves and add to the bath along with a little rose water.
3. Boil 10 freshly cleaned neem leaves along with cotton with a liter of water for approx. 10 mins. Cool. Use as an eyewash in case of conjunctivitis, itching etc.
4. For athletes’ foot and other foot problems, make a strong tea and soak feet.
5. For dandruff and head lice: Massage neem oil mixed with coconut or olive oil into hair and leave for 1 hour. Shampoo. Repeat once weekly for 3 weeks or as long as problem persists.
6. To treat a sore throat without antibiotics, gargle with neem leaf water (add 2 – 3 neem leaves to 300 ml water and cool) to which honey has been added.
7. For acne, pimples, skin infections pure neem leaf powder mixed with water to the affected area.
8. In case of sinusitis, use pure neem oil as nasal drops. Two drops morning and evening.
9. Prevent breeding of mosquitoes by adding crushed neem seeds and neem oil to all breeding areas. Neem products ensure complete inhibition of egg laying for seven days.
10. Add 30 ml of neem oil to 1 ltr of water. Mix well. Add 1 ml of teepol (liquid detergent) and spray immediately for plant protection. Do not store the mixture; make fresh formulation for each spray.
11. Boil 40 – 50 neem leaves in 250 ml of water 20 mins. Cool, strain and refrigerate to use as a astringent.
12. Chewing 2 – 3 neem leaves regularly helps purify the blood and in cases of hyperacidity and diabetes.
13. To ward of mosquitoes, add 5 – 10% neem oil to any oil and light as a diya (lamp).
14. Add shake dried neem leaves for preservation of food grains like rice, wheat, lentils etc. The leaves should be replaced every 2 – 3 months.

Store neem oil in a cool dark place, away from sunlight. In case neem oil solidifies due to low temperatures, put the bottle in warm water (below 95 degree F) to liquefy. Putting the bottle in very hot water may reduce the effectiveness of oil.
Neem Tree Components

Since ancient times, neem has been associated with healing in the sub-continent of India. A large number of medicinals, cosmetics, toiletries and pharmaceuticals are now based on neem derivatives because of it's unique properties.

Bark : Neem bark is cool, bitter, astringent, acrid and refrigerant. It is useful in tiredness, cough, fever, loss of appetite, worm infestation. It heals the wounds and is also used in vomiting, skin diseases and excessive thirst.

Leaves: According to Ayurveda, Neem leaves help in the treatment of vatik disorders (neuro muscular pains). Neem leaves are also reported to remove toxins, purify blood and prevent damage caused by free radical in the body by neutralising them. Neem leaves are reported to be beneficial in eye disorders and insect bite poisons. It treats Vatik Disorders ( neuroand muscular pains )

Fruits: Neem fruits are bitter, purgative, antihemorrhodial and anthelmintic in nature.

Flowers: Neem flowers are used in vitiated conditions of pitta ( balancing of the body heat ) and kapha ( cough formation ). They are astringent, anthelmintic and non-toxic.

Seeds: Neem seeds are also described as anthelminitic, antileprotic, antipoisonous and bitter in taste.

Oil: Neem oil derived from crushing the seeds is antidermatonic, a powerful anthelmintic and is bitter in taste. It has a wide spectrum of action and is highly medicinal in nature.

Mixture: Five parts of Neem tree ie. Bark, Root, Fruit, Flower and Leaves together are used in diseases of blood. It is also used in vitiated conditions of excess heat, itching, wound, burning sensation in body and skin diseases.

Following is a informal compilation of sime of the investigations done in Neem in recent past.
THE LEAF

Neem leaves are now known to contain nimbin, nimbinene desacetylnimbinase, nimbandial, nimbolide and quercentin.

Neem leaves have shown potential in the following areas :

Studies indicate that tender leaves are effective in Parasitic infections.

A 10% aqueous extract of tender leaves has been found to posess anti-viral properties.

Studies on plasma clotting time using Russel's viper venom have proved that the leaf extract contains a clotting inhibitor. This justifies its use in the treatment of poisonous bites.

A total extract of Neem leaves has shown potential as a potent Hepatoprotective agent

Water extract of Neem leaves have shown significant antiulcer activity

Essential oil from fresh leaves has a mild fungicidal action

Neem leaf extract shows significant Anti-inflammatory effect

Neem leaf extract have shown reduction in the frequency and severity of stress-induced gastric mucosal lesions.

Intraperitoneal administration of Neem leaf, bark and seed extracts revealed immuno-stimulatory properties of Neem, which are responsible for their anti-HIV effect.

 

BACOPA MONNIERI - BRAHMI, WATER HYSSOP

Bacopa monnieri (waterhyssop, brahmi, thyme-leafed gratiola, water hyssop) is a perennial, creeping herb whose habitat includes wetlands and muddy shores. Brahmi is also the name given to Centella asiatica, particularly in North India, and Kerala where it is also identified in Malayalam as muttil (മുത്തിള്‍) or kodakan. This identification of brāhmī as C. asiatica has been in use for long in northern India, as Hēmādri's Commentary on Aṣṭāṅgahṛdayaṃ (Āyuṛvēdarasāyanaṃ) treats maṇḍūkapaṛṇī (C. asiatica) as a synonym of brahmi,[2][3] although that may be a case of mistaken identification that was introduced during the 16th century.[4]
The leaves of this plant are succulent and relatively thick. Leaves are oblanceolate and are arranged oppositely on the stem. The flowers are small and white, with four or five petals. Its ability to grow in water makes it a popular aquarium plant. It can even grow in slightly brackish conditions. Propagation is often achieved through cuttings.[5]
It commonly grows in marshy areas throughout India, Nepal, Sri Lanka, China, Taiwan, and Vietnam, and is also found in Florida, Hawaii and other southern states of the USA where it can be grown in damp conditions by the pond or bog garden.[6]
It has been used in traditional Ayurvedic treatment for epilepsy and asthma.[7] It is also used in Ayurveda for ulcers, tumors, ascities, enlarged spleen, indigestion, inflammations, leprosy, anemia, and biliousness.[5] Its modern use is for the brain and to enhance memory, see below.
Bacopa monnieri has many chemical constituents including alkaloids (brahmine and herpestine), saponins (d-mannitol and hersaponin, acid A, and monnierin), flavonoids (luteolin and apigenin). It also contains significant amounts of betulic acid, stigmasterol, beta-sitosterol, and bacopasaponins (bacosides A, bacosides B, bacopaside II, bacopaside I, bacopaside X, bacopasaponin C, bacopaside N2). The minor components include bacopasaponin F, bacopasaponin E, bacopaside N1, bacopaside III, bacopaside IV, and bacopaside V).[8]
In rats, bacosides A enhance antioxidant defenses, increasing superoxide dismutase (SOD), catalase (CAT) and glutathione peroxidase (GPX) activity.[8] Laboratory studies on rats indicate that extracts of the plant improve memory capacity.[9] Some studies in mice suggest that ingestion of Bacopa for a 12 week period can significantly improve cognitive ability by accelerating the rate of learning and enhanced memory.[10][11][12] The sulfhydryl and polyphenol components of Bacopa monnieri extract have also been shown to impact the oxidative stress cascade by scavenging reactive oxygen species, inhibiting lipoxygenase activity and reducing divalent metals.[13] This mechanism of action may explain the effect of Bacopa monniera extract in reducing beta amyloid deposits in a mouse model of Alzheimer's disease.[13] B. monnieri has a demonstrated ability to reverse diazepam-induced amnesia in the Morris water maze test. The mechanism of this action is unknown.[14] In some trials, bacopacide extract did not restore or enhance memory formation, but improved retention.[15][16] In others, including a randomized clinical trial of 98 healthy older people (over 55 years), Bacopa significantly improved memory acquisition and retention.[17] A 2012 systematic review found some evidence to suggest that Bacopa improves memory free recall, but there was a lack of evidence for enhancement of other cognitive abilities.[18]
Brahmi may regulate antibody production by augmenting both Th1 and Th2 cytokine production.[19] It may also cause a lower heart rate, and increase secretions in the stomach, intestines, and urinary tract.
In a 2006 study published in the Indian Journal of Psychiatry, researchers decided to test the efficacy of Bacopa extract on test subjects with age-associated memory impairment (AAMI) who were not suffering from any type of dementia or psychiatric disorder. The subjects had memory loss in everyday activities and/or difficulty in remembering names of individuals following introduction, misplacing objects and difficulty in remembering telephone numbers. The conclusion of the researchers was that Bacopa extract yielded significant improvement on mental control, logical memory and paired associated learning during the 12-week drug therapy and that it is efficacious in subjects with age-associated memory impairment.
In an article published in 2008 in the Journal of Alternative and Complementary Medicine, researchers reported their findings in a study similar to the aforementioned 2006 study that looked at not only memory, but also the effect of extracts of Bacopa monnieri on anxiety and depression in elderly test subjects. What the researchers found was that the Bacopa extract has multiple positive benefits in cognitive performance such as on memory and on anxiety and depression. The Bacopa test subjects improved in delayed recall memory while the placebo group remained unchanged. Furthermore, the Bacopa test subjects displayed decreased depression and anxiety, whereas the placebo control group increased in depression and anxiety.
The conclusion by the researchers was that Bacopa monnieri has potential for safely enhancing cognitive performance in the aging.
In a more recent study published in 2010 (Journal of Alternative and Complement Medicine), researchers report their findings on the effect of Bacopa monnieri extract on memory in healthy aging Australian test subjects. In a randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled study, the researchers found that an extract of Bacopa significantly improved memory acquisition and retention in healthy older Australians.
References: “Does Bacopa monnieri improve memory performance in older persons? Results of a randomized, placebo-controlled, double-blind trial” Journal of Alternative and Complement Medicine 2010 July 16(7):753-9; Morgan, A. and Stevens J.
“Effects of a Standardized Bacopa monnieri Extract on Cognitive Performance, Anxiety, and Depression in the Elderly: A Randomized, Double-Blind, Placebo-Controlled Trial” Journal of Alternative and Complement Medicine. 2008 July; 14(6): 707–713.; Carlo Calabrese, N.D., M.P.H., William L. Gregory, Ph.D., Michael Leo, Ph.D., Dale Kraemer, Ph.D., Kerry Bone, F.N.I.M.H., F.N.H.A.A. and Barry Oken, M.D.
“Randomized controlled trial of standardized Bacopa monniera extract in age-associated memory impairment” Indian Journal of Psychiatry 2006 Volume 48, Issue 4, pp. 238-242; Sangeeta Raghav, Harjeet Singh, PK Dalai, JS Srivastava and OP Asthana.

 

BENTONITE - MONTMORILLONITE

Bentonite is formed by volcanic ash following a volcanic eruption. A fine steamer mist blown out which usually contains a substance known as a colloid or volcanic ash. This sifts to earth and as it contains many minerals (25 to 33 in Bentonite) it serves to mineralize the soil. Frequently, however, it can be mined in veins of 2 to 3 feet wide and deep but many yards long. Natives on every continent have used volcanic ash for Ages both internally and externally. The value of Montmorillonite lies in its very fine molecule and its negative electrical attraction for positively charged atoms. The extra fine molecule gives it greater surface area and thus stronger adhesive or pulling power, its negative charge enables it to pick up positively charged toxic material from the alimentary canal to be expelled in the faeces. There is no evidence that it has any chemical action on the body. Its power is purely physical. There is no evidence that Bentonite's 25 to 33 minerals can be absorbed into the body because its own adhesive power seems to be stronger.

Technically, the clay first adsorbs toxins (heavy metals, free radicals, pesticides), attracting them to its extensive surface area where they adhere like flies to sticky paper; then it absorbs the toxins, taking them in the way a sponge mops up a kitchen counter mess.

There is an electrical aspect to Bentonite's ability to bind and absorb toxins. According to Yerba Prima, a company based in Ashland, Oregon, which markets Great Plains® Bentonite, the clay's minerals are negatively charged while toxins tend to be positively charged; hence the clay's attraction works like a magnet drawing metal shavings.

But it's even more remarkable than that. Once hydrated (combined with water), Bentonite has an enormous surface area. According to Yerba Prima, a single quart bottle can represent a total surface area of 960 square yards or 12 American football fields. Bentonite is made of a great number of tiny platelets, with negative electrical charges on their flat surfaces and positive charges on their edges.

When Bentonite absorbs water and swells, it is stretched open like a highly porous sponge; the toxins are drawn into these spaces by electrical attraction and bound fast. In fact, according to the Canadian Journal of Microbiology (31 [1985], 50-53), Bentonite can absorb pathogenic viruses, aflatoxin (a mould), and pesticides and herbicides. The clay is eventually eliminated from the body with the toxins bound to its multiple surfaces.

Bentonite clay's adsorptive and absorptive qualities may be the key to its multifaceted healing abilities. It can help eliminate painful ganglion cysts (tumours attached to joints and tendons; improve intestinal regularity; relieve chronic constipation, diarrhoea, indigestion, and ulcers; a surge in physical energy; clearer complexion; brighter, whiter eyes; enhanced alertness; emotional uplift; improved tissue and gum repair; and increased resistance to infections.

A medical study by Frederic Damrau, M.D., in 1961 (Medical Annals of the District of Columbia ) established clearly that Bentonite can end bouts of diarrhea. When 35 individuals (average age 51) suffering from diarrhea took two tablespoons of bentonite in distilled water daily, the diarrhea was relieved in 97% (34 of the 35 patients) in 3.8 days, regardless of the original cause of the problem (allergies, virus infection, spastic colitis, or food poisoning). According to Dr. Damrau, Bentonite is “safe and highly effective” in treating acute diarrhoea.

Knishinsky's research suggests that the regular intake of Bentonite can produce other benefits including parasite removal from the intestines, allergy and hay fever relief, and elimination of anaemia and acne. For example, clay helps anaemia because it contains both types of dietary iron (ferrous and ferric) in an easily assimilated form; it reduces discomfort from allergies by quickly neutralizing allergens that would otherwise produce allergic reactions; and it reduces heartburn and indigestion by absorbing excess stomach acids.

However, Bentonite clay's forte is probably its role as a general internal detoxification and cleansing agent. According to Keith Payne of White Rock Mineral Corporation in Springville , Utah , Bentonite cleans the lining of the colon. “As the colon becomes cleaner, its ability to absorb minerals and other nutrients increases, making the minerals even more bioavailable, thus giving more energy.”

Bentonite contains up to 71 trace and ultra-trace minerals, including many that are probably unknown to most consumers, such as ruthenium, tellurium, and thulium. Trace minerals enable the body to absorb nutrients—“they are the bonding agents in and between you and food,” explains Payne.

Bentonite is derived from an ancient seabed formation in Utah ; according to geologists, the clay formed when a layer of volcanic ash fell into what was, long ago, a shallow inland sea. “As the ash filtered through the seawater, it collected pure minerals, forming a layer of highly mineralized clay,” says Payne.

Bentonite clay can absorb forty times its own weight in toxins and so is a useful adjunct in any detox and cleansing programme.

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Cont / Details about the constituents and actions of the individual whole herbal powders contained in Herbactive Herbalist's ABC Daily Herbal NutriPowder Plus

 

BERBERIS VULGARIS – BARBERRY BARK 

Constituents: Alkaloids of the isoquinoline type, mainly berberine, berbamine and derivatives, berberrubine, bervulcine, columbamine, isotetrandrine, jatrorrhizine, magnoflorine, oxycanthine and vulvracine.

Miscellaneous, including chelidonic acid, resin, tannin etc.

Actions: Cholagogue, hepatic, anti-emetic, bitter, laxative

Indications: Barberry is one of the best herbal medicines for correcting liver dysfunction and promoting the flow of bile. It is indicated when there is inflammation of the gall-bladder or in the presence of gallstones. When jaundice occurs due to a congested state of the liver, Barberry is also indicated. As a bitter tonic with mild laxative effects, it is used with weak or debilitated people to strengthen and cleanse the system. It reduces an enlarged spleen. It protects and acts against malaria and is also effective in the treatment of protozoal infection due to Leishmania spp.

It is a stimulating tonic hepatic. It influences the mucosa generally, removes mucous accumulations and controls excess secretion. It improves appetite, digestion and assimilation. It is indicated for ‘gouty' constitutions. It is used for specific indications: biliary catarrh with constipation and jaundice; gastritis, biliousness, debility during convalescence, ulcerative stomatitis, eczema of the hands.

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BETA VULGARIS - BEETROOT

The beetroot is the taproot portion of the beet plant,[1]also known in North America as the table beet, garden beet, red or golden beet, or informally simply as the beet. It is several of the cultivated varieties of beet (Beta vulgaris) grown for their edible taproots and their greens. These varieties have been classified as B. vulgaris subsp. vulgaris Conditiva Group.[2]

Other than as a food, beets have use as a food coloring and as amedicinal plant. Many beet products are made from other Beta vulgaris varieties, particularly sugar beet.

Uses

The usually deep purple roots of beetroot are eaten either boiled, or roasted as a cooked vegetable, cold as a salad after cooking and adding oil and vinegar, or raw and shredded, either alone or combined with any salad vegetable. A large proportion of the commercial production is processed into boiled and sterilised beets or into pickles. In Eastern Europe, beet soup, such as borsch, is a popular dish. In Indian cuisine, chopped, cooked, spiced beet is a common side dish. Yellow-coloured beetroots are grown on a very small scale for home consumption.[3]

The green, leafy portion of the beet is also edible. It is most commonly served boiled or steamed, in which case it has a taste and texture similar to spinach. Those selected should be bulbs that are unmarked, avoiding those with overly limp leaves or wrinkled skins, both of which are signs of dehydration.

Beetroot can be boiled or steamed, peeled and then eaten warm with or without butter as a delicacy; cooked, pickled, and then eaten cold as a condiment; or peeled, shredded raw, and then eaten as a salad. Pickled beets are a traditional food in many countries.

A traditional Pennsylvania Dutch dish is pickled beet egg. Hard-boiled eggs are refrigerated in the liquid left over from pickling beets and allowed to marinate until the eggs turn a deep pink-red colour.

In Poland, beet is combined with horseradish to form popular ćwikła, which is traditionally used with cold cuts and sandwiches, but often also added to a meal consisting of meat and potatoes.

When beet juice is used, it is most stable in foods with a low water content, such as frozen novelties and fruit fillings.[4] Betanins, obtained from the roots, are used industrially as red food colourants, e.g. to intensify the colour of tomato paste, sauces, desserts, jams and jellies, ice cream, sweets, and breakfast cereals.[3]

Beetroot can also be used to make wine.[5]

Food shortages in Europe following World War I caused great hardships, including cases of mangelwurzel disease, as relief workers called it. It was a consequence of eating only beets.[6]

Beetroot as food

Borscht

Salad of grated beet and apple

Beetroot juice drink

Other uses

Betanin, obtained from the roots, is used industrially as red food colorant, to improve the color and flavor oftomato paste, sauces, desserts, jams and jellies, ice cream, sweets, breakfast cereals, etc.[3] Beetroot dye may also be used in ink.[citation needed]

Historical uses

From the Middle Ages, beetroot was used as a treatment for a variety of conditions, especially illnesses relating to digestion and the blood. Bartolomeo Platina recommended taking beetroot with garlic to nullify the effects of "garlic-breath".[7]

Preliminary research

In preliminary research, beetroot juice reduced blood pressure in hypertensive individuals[8] and so may have an effect on mechanisms of cardiovascular disease.[9][10]

Dietary nitrate, such as that from consuming beets, may be a source for the biological messenger nitric oxide which induces theendothelium of arteries to signal smooth muscle, triggeringvasodilation and increased blood flow.[11]

Nutrition

Quick facts: Nutritional value per 100 g (3.5 oz), Energy ...

Beetroot is an excellent source of folate and a good source of manganese,[12] and contains betaines which may function to reduce the concentration of homocysteine,[13] a homolog of the naturally occurring amino acid cysteine. High circulating levels of homocysteine may be harmful to blood vessels and thus contribute to the development of heart disease, stroke, orperipheral vascular disease.[14] This hypothesis is controversial as it has not yet been established whether homocysteine itself is harmful or is just an indicator of increased risk for heart disease.[14][15]

The red colour compound betanin is not broken down in the body, and in higher concentrations may temporarily cause urine and stool to assume a reddish colour; in the case of urine this is calledbeeturia.[16] This effect may cause distress and concern due to the visual similarity to hematuria (blood in the urine) or blood in the stool, but is completely harmless and will subside once the food is out of the system.

Safety

Nitrosamine formation in beet juice can reliably be prevented by ascorbic acid.[17]

Cultivars

Below is a list of several commonly available cultivars of beets. Generally, 55 to 65 days are needed from germination to harvest of the root. All cultivars can be harvested earlier for use as greens. Unless otherwise noted, the root colours are shades of red and dark red with different degrees of zoning noticeable in slices.

Variously coloured varieties

'Albino', heirloom (white root)'Bull's Blood', heirloom'Chioggia', heirloom (distinct red and white zoned root)'Crosby's Egyptian', heirloom'Cylindra' / 'Formanova', heirloom (elongated root)'Detroit Dark Red Medium Top', heirloom'Early Wonder', heirloom'Golden Beet' / 'Burpee's Golden', heirloom (yellow root)'Perfected Detroit', 1934 AASwinner[18]'Red Ace' Hybrid'Ruby Queen', 1957 AAS winner[18]'Touchstone Gold' (yellow root)

References: with thanks to Wikipedia

More information about Beetroot:
Modern Research

Current research shows that supplementation with beet juice has been shown to play a role in human exercise tolerance and recovery. One human study concluded that beet juice supplementation reduced the negative effects associated with muscle hypoxia after exercise.10 Muscle hypoxia occurs when adequate oxygen is not available for normal muscle activity. This impairs exercise tolerance and energy production from muscles. Another clinical trial reported that supplementation of beetroot juice for three days prior to strenuous exercise reduced the amount of oxygen spent and increased exercise endurance by reducing the time of muscle failure onset.11 This effect remained true during moderate exercise as well.

Beets can affect blood pressure and dyslipidemia (a high level of cholesterol, triglycerides, or both in the blood), due to their high nitrate concentration. Dietary nitrates are converted to nitrites, which are known vasodilators (compounds which cause blood vessels to expand), in the body upon ingestion. Consumption of beet juice thus increases the concentration of plasma nitrites in the blood, which decreases blood pressure in healthy adults. When studying this effect, scientists also concluded that beet juice is protective against endothelial (related to the inner lining of arteries) damage, finding a decrease in systolic blood pressure by 6 mmHg after supplementation with beetroot juice.12

The nitrates in beets also aid in smooth muscle relaxation, further adding to its value as an exercise supplement.2 Professional and amateur athletes are increasingly adding beetroot juice to their exercise regimen, claiming an increase in stamina and decision-making speed following a promising 2015 study.13 Researchers concluded that after a week of supplementation with beet juice, healthy male subjects showed increased reaction time and athletic performance during a sprinting exercise.14

Another study showed a significant decrease in blood pressure, with a change of 10.4 mmHg systolic and 8 mmHg diastolic measurements, due to the high nitrate concentration in beets. This study also suggested that beets can prevent endothelial dysfunction and inhibit platelet aggregation. These effects were attributed to the ingestion of nitrates that are converted to nitrites and then reduced to nitric oxide in the stomach.15 Supplementation of beetroot, combined with hawthorn (Crataegus spp, Rosaceae) berry, increased plasma nitrate and nitrite concentrations, and significantly reduced triglyceride levels in 72% of participants with elevated triglycerides.16

Health Considerations

Eating a moderate amount of red beetroots or products colored with red beet extract may cause some individuals to experience a temporary reddening of the urine.4 This is known as “beeturia” and is not harmful. However, it may also be an indication of abnormal iron levels in the body or of a problem with iron metabolism, as those with these pre-existing conditions are more likely to experience “beeturia.”

* Betalains were first named as a unique set of pigments in 1968 by Andre Dreiding and the late Professor Tom J. Mabry, PhD, of the Department of Botany at the University of Texas at Austin. A world-renowned phytochemist and scholar, Mabry passed away in November 2015. Among his many academic distinctions and memberships, he was a former member of the ABC Advisory Board.

Nutrient Profile3

Macronutrient Profile: (Per 100g [approx. 3/4 cup] raw beetroot)

43 calories
1.61 g protein
9.56 g carbohydrate
0.17 g fat

Secondary Metabolites: (Per 100g [approx. 3/4 cup] raw beetroot)

Excellent source of:
Folate: 109 mcg (27.25% DV)

Very good source of:
Manganese: 0.32 mg (16% DV)
Dietary Fiber: 2.8 g (11.2% DV)

Good source of:
Potassium: 325 mg (9.3% DV)
Vitamin C: 4.9 mg (8.17% DV)
Magnesium: 23 mg (5.75% DV)

Also provides:
Iron: 0.8 mg (4.44% DV)
Phosphorus: 40 mg (4% DV)
Vitamin B6: 0.07 mg (3.5% DV)
Riboflavin: 0.04 mg (2.35% DV)
Zinc: 0.35 mg (2.33% DV)
Thiamin: 0.03 mg (2% DV)
Niacin: 0.33 mg (1.65% DV)
Calcium: 16 mg (1.6% DV)

DV = Daily Value as established by the US Food and Drug Administration, based on a 2,000 calorie diet.

Alan Hopking
www.herbactive.co.uk

Cont / Details about the constituents and actions of the individual whole herbal powders contained in Herbactive Herbalist's ABC Daily Herbal NutriPowder Plus

CAPSICUM ANNUUM - PEPPER FRUIT

The fruits yield an oleorss in containing the characteristic odor and flavor of the spice. The major constituent of the oleoresir is capesaicin. The vacuum isolated bell pepper oil contains 2-methoxy-3-isobutylpyrazine. trans-b-ocimene, limonene, methyl salicylate, linalool, and hex-cis-3-enol as major constituents. Additional components detected in larger amounts in oil isolated at atmospheric pressure are non-1 - en-4-one. Non-trans-2-en-4-one. nona-trans, trans-2,5-dien-4-one, 2-entyl-furan and benzaladehyde. 2-isobutyll-3-methoxy pyraxine is an important flavor component of bell and Jalapeno peppers. Other important aroma components of bell-pepper are nona-trans. cis-2, 6-dienal and deca-trans. trans-2,4-dienal

CENTELLA ASIATICA – GOTU COLA 

Centella asiatica (also known as gotu kola, Indian Pennywort and Mandookaparni) has been used for centuries as a medicinal herb and was referred to in the French pharmacopoeia in 1884, as well as the ancient traditional Chinese Shennong Herbal some 2,000 years ago, as well in Indian Ayurvedic medicine some 3,000 years ago. 

Centella Asiatica has been used for: wound healing, better circulation, memory enhancement, preventive to cancer, vitality, general tonic, respiratory ailments, detoxifying the body, treatment of skin disorders (such as psoriasis and eczema), revitalizing connective tissue, burn and scar treatment, clearing up skin infections, slimming and edema, arthritis, rheumatism, treatment of liver and kidneys, periodontal disease, strengthening of veins (varicose veins), blood purifier, high blood pressure, sedative, anti-stress, anti-anxiety, an aphrodisiac, immune booster, anabolic and adaptogen etc. 

None of these above claims have been evaluated by the FDA, but research has been done by various institutes and universities, which concluded that more research is called for on this ancient herb.

Although somebody once said "if it sounds too good to be true, it usually is" - I am not sure that this applies to this herb, as the qualities exhibited by it, have been used for centuries and are still in use today - for that reason, I do believe that there must be truth in the anecdotal claims made on behalf of this herb. (This herb is in the same class as apple cider vinegar.) 

Gotu Cola contains a variety of ingredients, but the active ingredients are asiaticoside (a triterpene glycoside) (triterpenoid), brahmoside and brahminoside (both saponin glycosides), madecassoside (a glycoside with strong anti-inflammatory properties), madecassic acid, thiamine, riboflavin, pyridoxine, vitamin K, asparate, glutamate, serine, threonine, alanine, lysine . (l-lysine is a natural amino acid that is a building block of collagen and elastin fibers with l-proline); prevents digestion of collagen by blocking sites where enzymes attach, making this nutrient critical in preventing the degradation of collective tissue; l-lysine is not produced by the human bodyso the health of the connective tissue depends on optimal daily intake of this amino acid as well as others), histidine, magnesium, calcium and sodium.

It contains no caffeine yet it is used extensively to increase energy and vitality. The reason for this might be because it is said to assist with increasing the blood sugar level, which in turn would prevent hypoglycemia, mental fatigue, depression, confusion as well as schizophrenic tendencies - or it could be because of the high concentration of thiamine (vitamin B1), riboflavin (vitamin B2) and pyridoxine (vitamin B6) which assists to convert carbohydrates into glucose as well as normal nervous system functioning. 

In animal testing it was also shown that centella (together with capsicum and Siberian ginseng) can assist in overcoming the negative effects of fatigue and stress.

In traditional African health Gotu Cola has been used for the treatment of leprosy (the asiaticoside content dissolves the waxy coating of the leprosy bacteria - allowing the immune system to destroy the bacteria), bronchitis, asthma, syphilis and wound healing; in India it has for the last 3,000 years of Ayurvedic medicine been used for wound healing, a mild diuretic, increasing concentration, alertness, as well as anti-anxiety and anti-stress; in the Far East it is used for treatment of depression, longevity, (in China it is called the "Fountain of Youth") 

In our modern day pharmaceutical world (a fact acknowledged by a major multi-national pharmaceutical manufacturer, since they make a centella extract as well) it is often used as an active ingredient in tonics, oral slimming formulas, body-beautiful preparations, body firming products, wound healing, anti-aging skin care products (independent studies have shown the topical effectiveness between centella and treating stretch marks). 

Great stock is also put by using this herb for bedridden and post-operative patients for a couple of reasons - wound healing, preventing bedsores, epithelial ulcers, as well as helping prevent muscular atrophy. 

Gotu Cola's beneficial effects on the venous system is of great help to people suffering from diverse problems such as varicose veins, gastric ulcers, phlebitis, hemorrhoids, etc. In this action the centella helps in strengthening the capillaries and veins and in so doing assists with better blood circulation.

With its effect on connective tissue great value is achieved with the synthesis of collagen, thickening of the skin (a great anti-aging property - as we age our skins become thinner), increasing the tensile strength of the flesh, wound healing, repair of damaged tissue as well as promoting hair and nail growth.

In a French study done in 1966 it was found that Gotu Cola had a significant healing effect when used after episiotomy - a surgical cut of the vulva to prevent tearing during childbirth. The cut healed more rapidly than with standard treatment.

Other anti-aging properties that this herb is said to promote is an increase in hemoglobin, and a decrease of urea and acid phosphates levels in the blood.

Although Yogis have used Gotu Cola to increase their meditation abilities through better concentration, focus and alertness, this herb has also shown great promise in improving mental retardation and increasing IQ. 

It has been used for centuries in the treatment of liver and kidney problems, and has once again become popular as an alternative treatment for people suffering from hepatitis as well as alcoholic liver disease. 

When detoxifying the body it is also helpful to look for help from centella, as it assists with destroying toxic accumulation in the brain as well as the nerves, while it helps to clear the body from heavy metals as well as drugs - including recreational drugs.

In alternative health this herb is used to treat tumors and growths, without suppressing the auto immune system or creating toxic wastes within the body.

Dosage, toxicity and symptoms of high intake 

No RDA or dosage has been determined but fresh leaves can be used in salads, or dried leaves can also be used to make tea.

Gotu Cola is Tonic, Diuretic and Alterative. It is used in treatment of leporasy and known to ameliorate the symptoms of the disease and improves general health of the patient. It is a brain tonic and stimulates hair growth. 

Stem: The stems are slender, creeping stolons, green to reddish green in color, interconnecting one plant to another. It has long-stalked, green, reniform leaves with rounded apices which have smooth texture with palmately netted veins. The leaves are born on pericladial petioles, around 20 cm. The rootstock consists of rhizomes, growing vertically down. They are creamish in color and covered with root hairs.

Flowers: The flowers are pinkish to red in color, born in small, rounded bunches (umbels) near the surface of the soil. Each flower is partly enclosed in two green bracts. The hermaphrodite flowers are minute in size (less than 3 mm), with 5-6 corolla lobes per flower. Each flower bears five stamens and two styles. The fruit are densely reticulate, distinguishing it from species of Hydrocotyle which have smooth, ribbed or warty fruit. 

The crop matures in three months and the whole plant, including the roots, is harvested manually. When eaten raw as a salad leaf, pegaga is thought to help maintain youthfulness. A decoction of juice from the leaves is thought to relieve hypertension. This juice is also used as a general tonic for good health. A poultice of the leaves is also used to treat open sores. Interestingly, chewing on the plant for several hours induces entheogenic meditation, similar to the effects of salvia divinorum, although this practice is widely considered dangerous, as it can cause temporomandibular joint pains. 

Uses: Several scientific reports have documented Centella asiatica's ability to aid wound healing. Upon treatment with Centella asiatica, maturation of the scar is stimulated by the production of type I collagen. The treatment also results in a marked decrease in inflammatory reaction and myofibroblast production[1].

Herbalists claim it contains a longevity factor called 'youth Vitamin X' said to be 'a tonic for the brain and endocrine glands' and maintain that extracts of the plant help circulation and skin problems.

The isolated steroids from the plant have been used to treat leprosy. In addition, preliminary evidence suggests that it may have nootropic effects. Centella asiatica is used to re-vitalize the brain and nervous system, increase attention span and concentration, and combat ageing. Centella asiatica also has anti-oxidant properties.

Folklore: Gotu Kola is minorly featured in the longevity myth of the Tai Chi Chuan master Li Ching-Yun. He purportedly lived to be 256, due in part to his usage of traditional Chinese herbs including Gotu Kola. The supposed aphrodisiac properties of Gotu Kola have given it the ancient reputation of giving men erections with the strength and agility of a samurai's sword.

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Cont / Details about the constituents and actions of the individual whole herbal powders contained in Herbactive Herbalist's ABC Daily Herbal NutriPowder Plus

 

CERATONIA SILIQUA - CAROB POD

Also known as St John's Bread , the flesh of the carob pods tastes somewhat similar to sweetened cocoa , but contains no theobromine or other psychoactive substances and is often used as a hypoallergenic, drug-free substitute. (For this reason, it is considered non-toxic to dogs, and is used in dog treats such as Carob Chip Cookies). Mixed with saturated fats like butter fat or palm oil , it is often used to make a sweet confection, considered chocolate -like by some, that is usually referred to simply as "carob." Carob is claimed to soothe the digestive tract and help with diarrhea .

Carob is not a staple food in the Mediterranean, but provides good sustenance during times when other crops are scarce and is a traditional feed for livestock .

In Egypt , it is used as a snack or treat. It is said to have laxative qualities. Moreover, the crushed pods are used for a refreshing drink with a distinct taste.

In other places, it is most commonly put in cakes, icing, and sometimes cookies. The seeds themselves, also known as locust bean , are used as animal feed and to extract locust bean gum , a thickening agent .

Dried carob fruit is traditionally eaten on the Jewish holiday of Tu Bishvat .

Carob pods were the most important source of sugar before sugarcane and sugar beets became widely available. Nowadays, the seeds are processed for the use in cosmetics, curing tobacco , and making paper .

Other info: The scientific name of the carob tree derives from the Greek keras, "horn", and Latin siliqua, alluding to the hardness and shape of the pod.

The term "carat " or the units by which diamond weight is measured, is derived from the ancient practice of weighing diamonds against the seeds of the carob tree. The system was eventually standardized and one carat was fixed at 0.2 grams.

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Cont / Details about the constituents and actions of the individual whole herbal powders contained in Herbactive Herbalist's ABC Daily Herbal NutriPowder Plus

CHLORELLA - SINGLE CELL GREEN ALGAE

High in chlorophyll. high in protein and other essential nutrients. When dried it is about 45% protein with 10% minerals and vitamins. Claims that it helps weight control, cancer prevention and immune system support.

CINNAMOMUM ZEYLANICUM - CINNAMON BARK

Recent studies have determined that consuming as little as one-half teaspoon of Cinnamon each day may reduce blood sugar, cholesterol, and triglyceride levels by as much as 20% in Type II diabetes patients who are not taking insulin it is mildly carminative and used to treat nausea and flatulence. It is also used alone or in combination to treat diarrhea. Chinese herbalists tell of older people, in their 70s and 80s, developing a cough accompanied by frequent spitting of whitish phlegm. A helpful remedy, they suggest, is chewing and swallowing a very small pinch of powdered cinnamon. This remedy can also help people with cold feet and hands, especially at night. Germany 's Commission E approves Cinnamon for appetite loss and indigestion. The primary chemical constituents of this herb include cinnamaldehyde, gum, tannin, mannitol, coumarins, and essential oils (aldehydes, eugenol, pinene). Cinnamon is predominantly used as a carminative addition to herbal prescriptions. It is used in flatulent dyspepsia, dyspepsia with nausea, intestinal colic and digestive atony associated with cold & debilitated conditions. It relieves nausea and vomiting, and, because of its mild astringency, it is particularly useful in infantile diarrhea. The cinnamaldehyde component is hypotensive and spasmolytic, and increases peripheral blood flow. The essential oil of this herb is a potent antibacterial, anti-fungal, and uterine stimulant. The various terpenoids found in the volatile oil are believed to account for Cinnamon's medicinal effects. Test tube studies also show that Cinnamon can augment the action of insulin. However, use of Cinnamon to improve the action of insulin in people with diabetes has yet to be proven in clinical trials. 

Health Benefits: Cinnamon's unique healing abilities come from three basic types of components in the essential oils found in its bark. These oils contain active components called cinnamaldehyde, cinnamyl acetate, and cinnamyl alcohol, plus a wide range of other volatile substances.

Anti-Clotting Actions: Cinnamaldehyde (also called cinnamic aldehyde) has been well-researched for its effects on blood platelets. Platelets are constituents of blood that are meant to clump together under emergency circumstances (like physical injury) as a way to stop bleeding, but under normal circumstances, they can make blood flow inadequate if they clump together too much. The cinnaldehyde in cinnamon helps prevent unwanted clumping of blood platelets. (The way it accomplishes this health-protective act is by inhibiting the release of an inflammatory fatty acid called arachidonic acid from platelet membranes and reducing the formation of an inflammatory messaging molecule called thromboxane A2.) Cinnamon's ability to lower the release of arachidonic acid from cell membranes also puts it in the category of an "anti-inflammatory" food that can be helpful in lessening inflammation.

Anti-Microbial Activity: Cinnamon's essential oils also qualify it as an "anti-microbial" food, and cinnamon has been studied for its ability to help stop the growth of bacteria as well as fungi, including the commonly problematic yeast Candida. In laboratory tests, growth of yeasts that were resistant to the commonly used anti-fungal medication fluconazole was often (though not always) stopped by cinnamon extracts.

Cinnamon's antimicrobial properties are so effective that recent research demonstrates this spice can be used as an alternative to traditional food preservatives. In a study, published in the August 2003 issue of the International Journal of Food Microbiology, the addition of just a few drops of cinnamon essential oil to 100 ml (approximately 3 ounces) of carrot broth, which was then refrigerated, inhibited the growth of the foodborne pathogenic Bacillus cereus for at least 60 days. When the broth was refrigerated without the addition of cinnamon oil, the pathogenic B. cereus flourished despite the cold temperature. In addition, researchers noted that the addition of cinnamon not only acted as an effective preservative but improved the flavor of the broth.(October 1, 2003 

Blood Sugar Control: Cinnamon may significantly help people with type 2 diabetes improve their ability to respond to insulin, thus normalizing their blood sugar levels. Both test tube and animal studies have shown that compounds in cinnamon not only stimulate insulin receptors, but also inhibit an enzyme that inactivates them, thus significantly increasing cells' ability to use glucose. Studies to confirm cinnamon's beneficial actions in humans are currently underway with the most recent report coming from researchers from the US Agricultural Research Service, who have shown that less than half a teaspoon per day of cinnamon reduces blood sugar levels in persons with type 2 diabetes. Their study included 60 Pakistani volunteers with type 2 diabetes who were not taking insulin. Subjects were divided into six groups. For 40 days, groups 1, 2 and 3 were given 1, 3, or 6 grams per day of cinnamon while groups 4, 5 and 6 received placebo capsules. Even the lowest amount of cinnamon, 1 gram per day (approximately ¼ to ½ teaspoon), produced an approximately 20% drop in blood sugar; cholesterol and triglycerides were lowered as well. When daily cinnamon was stopped, blood sugar levels began to increase. (December 30, 2003) 

Test tube, animal and human studies have all recently investigated cinnamon's ability to improve insulin activity, and thus our cells' ability to absorb and use glucose from the blood. 

On going in vitro or test tube research conducted by Richard Anderson and his colleagues at the USDA Human Nutrition Research Center is providing new understanding of the mechanisms through which cinnamon enhances insulin activity. In their latest paper, published in the Journal of Agricultural and Food Chemistry, Anderson et al. characterize the insulin-enhancing complexes in cinnamon-a collection of catechin/epicatechin oligomers that increase the body's insulin-dependent ability to use glucose roughly 20-fold.. Some scientists had been concerned about potentially toxic effects of regularly consuming cinnamon. This new research shows that the potentially toxic compounds in cinnamon bark are found primarily in the lipid (fat) soluble fractions and are present only at very low levels in water soluble cinnamon extracts, which are the ones with the insulin-enhancing compounds.

A recent animal study demonstrating cinnamon's beneficial effects on insulin activity appeared in the December 2003 issue of Diabetes Research and Clinical Practice. In this study, when rats were given a daily dose of cinnamon (300 mg per kilogram of body weight) for a 3 week period, their skeletal muscle was able to absorb 17% more blood sugar per minute compared to that of control rats, which had not received cinnamon, an increase researchers attributed to cinnamon's enhancement of the muscle cells' insulin-signaling pathway. In humans with type 2 diabetes, consuming as little as 1 gram of cinnamon per day was found to reduce blood sugar, triglycerides, LDL (bad) cholesterol, and total cholesterol, in a study published in the December 2003 issue of Diabetes Care. The placebo-controlled study evaluated 60 people with type 2 diabetes (30 men and 30 women ranging in age from 44 to 58 years) who were divided into 6 groups. Groups 1, 2, and 3 were given 1, 3, or 6 grams of cinnamon daily, while groups 4, 5, and 6 received 1, 3 or 6 grams of placebo. After 40 days, all three levels of cinnamon reduced blood sugar levels by 18-29%, triglycerides 23-30%, LDL cholesterol 7-27%, and total cholesterol 12-26%, while no significant changes were seen in those groups receiving placebo. The researchers' conclusion: including cinnamon in the diet of people with type 2 diabetes will reduce risk factors associated with diabetes and cardiovascular diseases.(January 28, 2004) 

The latest research on cinnamon shows that by enhancing insulin signaling, cinnamon can prevent insulin resistance even in animals fed a high-fructose diet! A study published in the February 2004 issue of Hormone Metabolism Research showed that when rats fed a high-fructose diet were also given cinnamon extract, their ability to respond to and utilize glucose (blood sugar) was improved so much that it was the same as that of rats on a normal (control) diet. Cinnamon is so powerful an antioxidant that, when compared to six other antioxidant spices (anise, ginger, licorice, mint, nutmeg and vanilla) and the chemical food preservatives (BHA (butylated hydroxyanisole), BHT (butylated hydroxytoluene), and propyl gallate), cinnamon prevented oxidation more effectively than all the other spices (except mint) and the chemical antioxidants. (May 6, 2004) 

Cinnamon's Scent Boosts Brain Function: Not only does consuming cinnamon improve the body's ability to utilize blood sugar, but just smelling the wonderful odor of this sweet spice boosts brain activity!

Research led by Dr. P. Zoladz and presented April 24, 2004, at the annual meeting of the Association for Chemoreception Sciences, in Sarasota, FL, found that chewing cinnamon flavored gum or just smelling cinnamon enhanced study participants' cognitive processing. Specifically, cinnamon improved participants' scores on tasks related to attentional processes, virtual recognition memory, working memory, and visual-motor speed while working on a computer-based program. Participants were exposed to four odorant conditions: no odor, peppermint odor, jasmine, and cinnamon, with cinnamon emerging the clear winner in producing positive effects on brain function. Encouraged by the results of these studies, researchers will be evaluating cinnamon's potential for enhancing cognition in the elderly, individuals with test-anxiety, and possibly even patients with diseases that lead to cognitive decline. (May 9, 2004)

Calcium and Fiber Improve Colon Health and Protect Against Heart Disease

In addition to its unique essential oils, cinnamon is an excellent source of the trace mineral manganese and a very good source of dietary fiber, iron and calcium. The combination of calcium and fiber in cinnamon is important and can be helpful for the prevention of several different conditions. Both calcium and fiber can bind to bile salts and help remove them from the body. By removing bile, fiber helps to prevent the damage that certain bile salts can cause to colon cells, thereby protecting against the risk of colon cancer. In addition, when bile is removed by fiber, the body must break down cholesterol in order to make new bile. This process can help to lower high cholesterol levels, which can be helpful in preventing atherosclerosis and heart disease. For sufferers of irritable bowel syndrome, the fiber in cinnamon may also provide relief from constipation or diarrhea.

A Traditional Warming Remedy: In addition to the active components in its essential oils and its nutrient composition, cinnamon has also been valued in energy-based medical systems, such as Traditional Chinese Medicine, for its warming qualities. In these traditions, cinnamon has been used to provide relief when faced with the onset of a cold or flu, especially when mixed in a tea with some fresh ginger.

Description: Cinnamon is the brown bark of the cinnamon tree, which when dried, rolls into a tubular form known as a quill. Cinnamon is available in either its whole quill form (cinnamon sticks) or as ground powder.

While there are approximately one hundred varieties of Cinnamonum verum (the scientific name for cinnamon), Cinnamonum zeylanicum ( Ceylon cinnamon) and Cinnamomun aromaticum (Chinese cinnamon) are the leading varieties consumed. Ceylon cinnamon is also referred to as "true cinnamon", while the Chinese variety is known as "cassia". While both are relatively similar in characteristics and both feature a fragrant, sweet and warm taste, the flavor of the Ceylon variety is more refined and subtle. Ceylon cinnamon is more rare in North America than the cassia, the less expensive variety, which is the most popular in the United States .

History: Cinnamon is one of the oldest spices known. It was mentioned in the Bible and was used in ancient Egypt not only as a beverage flavoring and medicine, but also as an embalming agent. It was so highly treasured that it was considered more precious than gold. Around this time, cinnamon also received much attention in China , which is reflected in its mention in one of the earliest books on Chinese botanical medicine, dated around 2,700 B.C.

Cinnamon's popularity continued throughout history. It became one of the most relied upon spices in Medieval Europe . Due to its demand, cinnamon became one of the first commodities traded regularly between the Near East and Europe . Ceylon cinnamon is produced in Sri Lanka, India, Madagascar, Brazil and the Caribbean, while cassia is mainly produced in China, Vietnam and Indonesia .

Nutritional Profile

Cinnamon is an excellent source of manganese and a very good source of dietary fiber, calcium and iron. Polyphenols (anti-aging).

In-Depth Nutritional Profile

In addition to the nutrients highlighted in our ratings chart, an in-depth nutritional profile for Cinnamon, ground is also available. This profile includes information on a full array of nutrients, including carbohydrates, sugar, soluble and insoluble fiber, sodium, vitamins, minerals, fatty acids, amino acids and more.

Introduction to Food Rating System Chart

The following chart shows the nutrients for which this food is either an excellent, very good or good source. Next to the nutrient name you will find the following information: the amount of the nutrient that is included in the noted serving of this food; the %Daily Value (DV) that that amount represents; the nutrient density rating; and the food's World's Healthiest Foods Rating. Underneath the chart is a table that summarizes how the ratings were devised. Read detailed information on our Food and Recipe Rating System.

Cinnamon, ground

2.00 tsp

4.52 grams

11.84 calories

Nutrient Amount DV

(%) Nutrient

Density World's Healthiest

Foods Rating

manganese 0.76 mg 38.0 57.8 excellent

dietary fiber 2.48 g 9.9 15.1 very good

iron 1.72 mg 9.6 14.5 very good

calcium 55.68 mg 5.6 8.5 very good

World's Healthiest

Foods Rating Rule

excellent DV>=75% OR Density>=7.6 AND DV>=10%

very good DV>=50% OR Density>=3.4 AND DV>=5%

good DV>=25% OR Density>=1.5 AND DV>=2.5%

In Depth Nutritional Profile for Cinnamon, ground

 

References

* Anderson RA, Broadhurst CL, Polansky MM, Schmidt WF, Khan A, Flanagan VP, Schoene NW, Graves DJ. Isolation and characterization of polyphenol type-A polymers from cinnamon with insulin-like biological activity. Diabetes Res Clin Pract. 2003 Dec;62(3):139-48.

* Broadhurst CL, Polansky MM, Anderson RA. Insulin-like biological activity of culinary and medicinal plant aqueous extracts in vitro. J Agric Food Chem 2000 Mar;48(3):849-52 2000

* Calucci L, Pinzino C, Zandomeneghi M et al. Effects of gamma-irradiation on the free radical and antioxidant contents in nine aromatic herbs and spices. J Agric Food Chem 2003 Feb 12; 51(4):927-34 2003

* Ensminger AH, Esminger M. K. J. e. al. Food for Health: A Nutrition Encyclopedia. Clovis , California : Pegus Press; 1986, PMID: 15210

* Fortin, Francois, Editorial Director. The Visual Foods Encyclopedia. Macmillan , New York 1996

* Grieve M. A Modern Herbal. Dover Publications, New York 1971

* Impari-Radosevich J, Deas S, Polansky MM et al. Regulatino of PTP-1 and insulin receptor kinase by fractions from cinnamon:implications for cinnamon regulation of insulin signaling. Horm Res 1998 Sep;50(3):177-82 1998

* Khan A, Safdar M, Ali Khan MM, Khattak KN, Anderson RA. Cinnamon improves glucose and lipids of people with type 2 diabetes. Diabetes Care. 2003 Dec;26(12):3215-8.

* Murcia MA, Egea I, Romojaro F, Parras P, Jimenez AM, Martinez-Tome M. Antioxidant evaluation in dessert spices compared with common food additives. Influence of irradiation procedure. J Agric Food Chem. 2004 Apr 7;52(7):1872-81. , PMID: 15053523

* Otsuka H, Fujioka S, Komiya T, et al. [Studies on anti-inflammatory agents. VI. Anti-inflammatory constituents of Cinnamomum sieboldii Meissn (author's transl)]. Yakugaku Zasshi 1982 Jan;102(2):162-72, PMID: 12260

* Ouattara B, Simard RE, Holley RA, et al. Antibacterial activity of selected fatty acids and essential oils against six meat spoilage organisms. Int J Food Microbiol 1997 Jul 22;37(2-3):155-62, PMID: 12270

* Qin B, Nagasaki M, Ren M, Bajotto G, Oshida Y, Sato Y. Cinnamon extract prevents the insulin resistance induced by a high-fructose diet. Horm Metab Res. 2004 Feb;36(2):119-25., PMID: 15002064

* Qin B, Nagasaki M, Ren M, Bajotto G, Oshida Y, Sato Y. Cinnamon extract (traditional herb) potentiates in vivo insulin-regulated glucose utilization via enhancing insulin signaling in rats. Diabetes Res Clin Pract. 2003 Dec;62(3):139-48.

* Quale JM, Landman D, Zaman MM, et al. In vitro activity of Cinnamomum zeylanicum against azole resistant and sensitive Candida species and a pilot study of cinnamon for oral candidiasis. Am J Chin Med 1996;24(2):103-9, PMID: 12530

* Takenaga M, Hirai A, Terano T, et al. In vitro effect of cinnamic aldehyde, a main component of Cinnamomi Cortex, on human platelet aggregation and arachidonic acid metabolism. J Pharmacobiodyn 1987 May;10(5):201-8, PMID: 12520

* Valero M, Salmeron MC. Antibacterial activity of 11 essential oils against Bacillus cereus in tyndallized carrot broth. Int J Food Microbiol. Aug 15;85(1-2):73-81 2003

* VanderEnde DS, Morrow JD. Release of markedly increased quantities of prostaglandin D2 from the skin in vivo in humans after the application of cinnamic aldehyde. J Am Acad Dermatol 2001 Jul;45(1):62-7, PMID: 12510

* Wood, Rebecca. The Whole Foods Encyclopedia. New York , NY : Prentice-Hall Press; 1988, PMID: 15220

* Zoladz P, Raudenbush B, Lilley S. Cinnamon perks performance. Paper presented at the annual meeting of the Association for Chemoreception Sciences, held in Sarasota , FL , April 21-25, 2004.

More information: Cinnamon is a small evergreen tree 10-15 m tall, belonging to the family Lauraceae, native to Sri Lanka and Southern India . The bark is widely used as a spice.

The leaves are ovate-oblong in shape, 7-18 cm long. The flowers, which are arranged in panicles, have a greenish colour, and have a rather disagreeable odour. The fruit is a purple one-centimetre berry containing a single seed.

Its flavour is due to an aromatic essential oil which makes up 0.5 to 1% of its composition. This oil is prepared by roughly pounding the bark, macerating it in sea-water, and then quickly distilling the whole. It is of a golden-yellow colour, with the characteristic odour of cinnamon and a very hot aromatic taste. The pungent taste and scent come from cinnamic aldehyde or cinnamaldehyde and, by the absorption of oxygen as it ages, it darkens in colour and develops resinous compounds. Chemical components of the essential oil include ethyl cinnamate, eugenol, cinnamaldehyde, beta-caryophyllene, linalool and methyl chavicol.

The name cinnamon comes from Greek kinnámomon, from Phoenician and akin to Hebrew qinnâmôn, itself ultimately from a Malaysian language, cf. Malay and Indonesian kayu manis "sweet wood".

History

Cinnamon has been known from remote antiquity, and it was so highly prized among ancient nations that it was regarded as a gift fit for monarchs and other great potentates. It was imported to Egypt from China as early as 2000 BC, and is mentioned in the Bible in Exodus 30:23, where Moses is commanded to use both sweet cinnamon (Hebrew ????????? , qinnamôn) and cassia, and in Proverbs 7:17-18, where the love r's bed is perfumed with myrrh, aloe and cinnamon. It is also alluded to by Herodotus and other classical writers. It was commonly used on funeral pyres in Rome , and the Emperor Nero is said to have burned a year's supply of cinnamon at the funeral for his wife Poppaea Sabina, in 65 AD.

In the Middle Ages, the source of cinnamon was a mystery to the Western world. Arab traders brought the spice via overland trade routes to Alexandria in Egypt, where it was bought by Venetian traders from Italy who held a monopoly on the spice trade in Europe . The disruption of this trade by the rise of other Mediterranean powers such as the Mameluk Dynasties and the Ottoman Empire was one of many factors that led Europeans to search more widely for other routes to Asia .

Portuguese traders finally discovered Ceylon ( Sri Lanka ) at the end of the fifteenth century, and restructured the traditional production of cinnamon by the salagama caste. The Portuguese established a fort on the island in 1518, and protected their own monopoly for over a hundred years.

Dutch traders finally dislodged the Portuguese by allying with the inland Ceylon kingdom of Kandy . They established a trading post in 1638, took control of the factories by 1640, and expelled all remaining Portuguese by 1658. "The shores of the island are full of it", a Dutch captain reported, "and it is the best in all the Orient: when one is downwind of the island, one can still smell cinnamon eight leagues out to sea" (Braudel 1984, p. 215).

The Dutch East India Company continued to overhaul the methods of harvesting in the wild, and eventually began to cultivate its own trees.

The British took control of the island from the Dutch in 1796. However, the importance of the monopoly of Ceylon was already declining, as cultivation of the cinnamon tree spread to other areas, the more common cassia bark became more acceptable to consumers, and coffee, tea, sugar and chocolate began to outstrip the popularity of traditional spices.

Cultivation

Cinnamomum verum, from Koehler's Medicinal-Plants (1887)

Cinnamomum verum, from Koehler's Medicinal-Plants (1887) 

Cinnamon harvested by growing the tree for two years and then coppicing it. The next year a dozen or so shoots will form from the roots. These shoots are then stripped of their bark which is left to dry. Only the thin (0.5 mm) inner bark is used; the outer woody portion is removed, leaving metre long cinnamon strips that curl into rolls ("quills") on drying; each dried quill comprises strips from numerous shoots packed together. These quills are then cut to 5-10 cm long pieces for sale.

The best cinnamon comes from Sri Lanka ,[citation needed] but the tree is also grown commercially at Tellicherry in southern India , Java, Sumatra, the West Indies, Brazil , Vietnam , Madagascar , Zanzibar , and Egypt . Sri Lanka cinnamon of fine quality is a very thin smooth bark, with a light-yellowish brown colour, a highly fragrant odour, and a peculiarly sweet, warm and pleasing aromatic taste.

Cinnamon and cassia

The name cinnamon is correctly used to refer to Ceylon Cinnamon, also known as "true cinnamon" (from the botanical name C. verum). Cinnamon sticks (or quills) have many thin layers and can easily be made into powder using a coffee or spice grinder whereas cassia sticks are much harder, made up of one thick layer, capable of damaging a spice or coffee grinder. It is a bit harder to tell powdered cinnamon from powdered cassia. When powdered bark is treated with tincture of iodine (a test for starch), little effect is visible in the case of pure cinnamon of good quality, but when cassia is present a deep-blue tint is produced, the intensity of the coloration depending on the proportion of cassia.

Cinnamon is also sometimes confused with Malabathrum (Cinnamomum tamala) and Saigon Cinnamon (Cinnamomum loureiroi).

Uses

Quills of true cinnamon bark

Cinnamon bark is widely used as a spice. It is principally employed in cookery as a condiment and flavouring material, being largely used in the preparation of some kinds of desserts, chocolate, spicy candies, tea, hot cocoa and liqueurs. In the Middle East , it is often used in savoury dishes of chicken and lamb. In the United States , cinnamon and sugar are often used to flavour cereals, bread-based dishes, and fruits, especially apples; a cinnamon-sugar mixture is even sold separately for such purposes. Cinnamon can also be used in pickling. Cinnamon bark can also be consumed directly and is one of the few spices that can be consumed directly.

In medicine it acts like other volatile oils and once had a reputation as a cure for colds. It has also been used to treat diarrhea and other problems of the digestive system[1]. Cinnamon is high in antioxidant activity (PMID 16190627, PMID 10077878). The essential oil of cinnamon also has antimicrobial properties (PMID 16104824). This property may allow cinnamon to extend the shelf life of foods.[citation needed]

This article incorporates text from the Encyclopædia Britannica Eleventh Edition, a publication now in the public domain. 

1. ^ http://www.npr.org/templates/story/story.php?storyId=6672644 2. ^ Chillies Are the Spice of Life By ALICE HART-DAVIS * Braudel, Fernand (1984). The Perspective of the World, Vol III of Civilization and Capitalism. * Corn, Charles (1998). The Scents of Eden : A Narrative of the Spice Trade. New York : Kodansha International. * "Cinnamon Extracts Boost Insulin Sensitivity" (2000). Agricultural Research magazine, July 2000. * Alan W. Archer (1988). "Determination of cinnamaldehyde, coumarin and cinnamyl alcohol in cinnamon and cassia by high-performance liquid chromatography". Journal of Chromatography 447: 272-276. DOI:10.1016/0021-9673(88)90035-0.

The genus cinnamon (Cinnamomum spp.) comprises about 250 species worldwide. The bark of many species is used as a cooking spice, in perfumes and fragrances, as a food preservative, and in traditional and modern medicines. True cinnamon (C. verum syn. C. zeylanicum) and cassia cinnamon (C. aromaticum syn. C. cassia) are most used as a spice. Essential oils of both contain cinnamaldehyde and trans-cinnamaldehyde (together, CIN). Essential oil from pseudocinnamomum (C. osmophloeum) leaf also has high CIN content and is used as a spice. Resins in cinnamons include cinnamate, cinnamic acid, and other essential oils. Procyanidins, endocyclic double bond-containing compounds (α-thujene, α-terpineol, α-cubebene), unconjugated exocyclic double bond-containing compounds (eugenol, β-caryophyllene, terpinolene), hydroxyl-substituted aliphatic compounds (E-nerolidol, L-borneol), and other compounds, including catechins and epicatechins, are also found.
Cinnamon is used in chewing gums and dental care products to combat toothache and bad breath. It can improve colon health. Cinnamon is a coagulant; it increases blood flow to the uterus and boosts tissue regeneration. It is used against nematodes, termites, mosquito larvae, and other insects; ants dislike cinnamon. Some cinnamon constituents are antifungal, antimycotic, and antimicrobial. From studies published from 1982 to 2013, some results include the following:
Antioxidant effects: Ether, aqueous, methanol, ethanol, alcohol, and n-hexane extracts and bark powder from cinnamon species had significant antioxidant effects in vitro and/or in vivo. Of 26 spices, cinnamon was the most antioxidative. Cassia bark's 41 volatile compounds vary significantly in percentage composition by growth stage and tree segment. Best ages for extraction of cassia bark oil differ for branch and stem bark. (E)-cinnamaldehyde from cassia's essential oil, an antityrosinase, suppresses skin hyperpigmentation and browning of mushrooms, fruit, and vegetables by air and light.
Anti-inflammatory actions: In one study, 2'-hydroxycinnamaldehyde from cassia bark inhibited production of nitric oxide (NO) by inhibiting activation of nuclear factor kappa B (NF-κB) cells. An ethanol extract of cassia reduced activation of Src/spleen-tyrosine-kinase (Src/Syk)-mediated NF-κB. In another study, compounds in cassia (referred to as C. ramulus by those researchers) suppressed NO, inducible NO synthesis (iNOS), and cyclooxygenase-2 (COX-2) in the central nervous system. This could be useful in treating or preventing inflammation-mediated neurodegenerative conditions.
Antidiabetic effects: An aqueous cinnamon extract was 20 times stronger than any other spice in a study of the insulin-potentiating activity of many spices. Polyphenol type-A cinnamon polymers (rutin, catechin, quercetin, kaempferol, and isorhamnetin) are insulin-like. In vitro, an aqueous extract of cinnamon greatly reduced absorption of alanine, a key compound in gluconeogenesis. Found in hydroxycinnamic acid, naphthalenemethyl ester lowers blood glucose. In a recent study, linalool chemotype cinnamon at 5, 10, or 20 mg/kg body weight improved insulin secretion and glycemic control in diabetic rats.
Cancer preventative activity: The aqueous extract and procyanidin fraction of cinnamon inhibits vascular endothelial growth factor subtype 2 (VEGFR2). CB403, synthesized from 2'-hydroxycinnamaldehyde, inhibits tumor growth. Cinnamic aldehyde inhibited NF-κB activity and tumor necrosis factor-alpha (TNF-α) and induced interleukin-8 (IL-8) in cancer cells. A preliminary study of cinnamon and cardamom (Elettaria cardamomum) in colon cancer in mice found that it increased detoxifying and antioxidant activities of glutathione-s-transferase (GST) and lowered lipid peroxidation compared to control.
Cholesterol- and lipid-lowering effects: In vivo, cinnamon, cassia, and cinnamon oils increased high-density lipoprotein (HDL) cholesterol, lowered triglycerides, and/or lowered total cholesterol. In humans, cinnamon at 1, 3, or 6 g/d reduced serum glucose, triglycerides, total cholesterol, and low-density lipoprotein (LDL) cholesterol.
In neurological disorders: Cinnamophilin, a novel thromboxane A2 receptor antagonist from wild Palawan cinnamon (C. philippinense), protected rat brains from ischemic damage when given up to six hours after insult. Effects on abridged brain infarction were considerable, enhancing neurobehavioral outcomes. Procyanidin type-A trimer (trimer 1) from a water-soluble cinnamon extract may reduce swelling in brain injuries, controlling movement of intracellular calcium (Ca). Sodium benzoate, a cinnamon metabolite, protects against Parkinson's disease. A cinnamon extract compound, CEppt, significantly reduced toxic β-amyloid polypeptide (Aβ) oligomers in a model of Alzheimer's disease, reducing plaques and improving cognitive performance in vivo, while an aqueous extract of cinnamon reduced tau aggregation and filament formation.
In cardiovascular diseases: Cinnamophilin may be helpful in cardiovascular diseases like platelet aggregation and cancers and have the potential to prevent vascular disease and atherosclerosis. A cassia compound, 2-methoxycinnamaldehyde (2-MCA), reduces expression of vascular cell adhesion molecule-1 (VCAM-1). Cinnamic aldehyde and cinnamic acid may be useful in myocardial ischemia. Cinnamaldehyde's hypotensive effects may be due to peripheral vasodilation, impeding Ca2+ influx and Ca2+ release.
In inhibiting formation of advanced glycation end products (AGEs): Cinnamon's catechin, epicatechin, and procyanidin B2 may inhibit AGE formation, offering a therapeutic approach to diabetes and its complications.
—Mariann Garner-Wizard

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COLA VERA – KOLA NUT

Constituents: Caffeine (1.25%), with traces of theobromine; Tannins and phenolics; d-catechin, l-epicatechin, kolatin, kolatein, kolanin and in the fresh nut, catechol and (-) epicatechol; Miscellaneous; phlobaphene, an anthocyanin pigment known as "kola red", betaine, protein, starch

Action: stimulant to higher centres of CNS, thymoleptic, anti-depressive, diuretic, cardioactive, anti-diarrhoeal; depression, general muscular weakness (e.g. ME and fibromyalgia), exhaustion, dysentery, atonic diarrhoea, anorexia, migraine, nervine, anti-depressive, debility.

Indications: Kola has a marked stimulating effect on the human consciousness. It can be used wherever there is a need for direct stimulation, which is less often than is usually thought. Through regaining proper health and therefore right functioning, the nervous system does not need such help. In the short term it may be used in nervous debility, in states of atony and weakness. It can act as a specific in nervous diarrhoea. It will aid instates of depression and may in some people give rise to euphoric states. In some varieties of migraine it can help greatly. Through the stimulation it will be a valuable part of the treatment for anorexia. It can be viewed as specific in cases of depression associated with weakness and debility; neurasthenia and hysteria, characterized by great mental despondency, foreboding, brooding, more of a quiet or silent character. It is especially indicated if the heart is feeble and irregular in its action, with general muscular feebleness. Also used for chronic diarrhoea and sea sickness.

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CORDYSEPS SINENSIS

Cordyceps is a genus of ascomycete fungi (sac fungi) that includes about 400 identified species and many yet to be described. All Cordyceps species are endoparasitoids, mainly on insects and other arthropods (they are thus entomopathogenic fungi); a few are parasitic on other fungi. Until recently, the best known species of the genus was Cordyceps sinensis,[1] first recorded as yartsa gunbu in Tibet in the 15th century[2] and known as yarsha gumba in Nepalese and "caterpillar fungus" in English. In 2007, nuclear DNA sampling revealed this species to be unrelated to most of the rest of the genus' members; as a result it was renamed Ophiocordyceps sinensis and placed in a new family, the Ophiocordycipitaceae.
The generic name Cordyceps is derived from the Latin words cord, meaning "club", and ceps, meaning "head". Several species of Cordyceps are considered to be medicinal mushrooms in classical Asian pharmacologies, such as that of traditional Chinese[3][unreliable source?] and Tibetan medicines.
When a Cordyceps fungus attacks a host, the mycelium invades and eventually replaces the host tissue, while the elongated fruiting body (ascocarp) may be cylindrical, branched, or of complex shape. The ascocarp bears many small, flask-shaped perithecia containing asci. These, in turn, contain thread-like ascospores, which usually break into fragments and are presumably infective.
Some current and former Cordyceps species are able to affect the behaviour of their insect host: Ophiocordyceps unilateralis (formerly Cordyceps unilateralis) causes ants to climb a plant and attach there before they die. This ensures the parasite's environment is at an optimal temperature and humidity, and that maximal distribution of the spores from the fruiting body that sprouts out of the dead insect is achieved.[4] Marks have been found on fossilised leaves that suggest this ability to modify the host's behaviour evolved more than 48 million years ago.[5]
The genus has a worldwide distribution and most of the approximately 400 species[6] have been described from Asia (notably Nepal, China, Japan, Bhutan, Korea, Vietnam and Thailand). Cordyceps species are particularly abundant and diverse in humid temperate and tropical forests.
The Cordyceps mushrooms have a long history as medicinal fungi. The earliest clear record is a Tibetan medical text authored by Zurkhar Nyamnyi Dorje in the 15th Century outlining the tonic propensities of Yartsa gunbu (Cordyceps sinensis renamed now to Ophiocordyceps sinensis), especially as an aphrodisiac.[2] Although there are often-repeated claims of thousands of years of use in traditional Chinese medicine, so far no clear textual source has surfaced.
Although in vitro and animal models provide preliminary support for some of the traditional medicinal uses, there are no clinical studies demonstrating health benefits in humans.[9] Some polysaccharide components and cordycepin, which have some cancer preventive activity in preliminary in vitro and animal studies,[10] have been isolated from C. sinensis and C. militaris. Some work has been published in which Cordyceps sinensis has been used to protect the bone marrow and digestive systems of mice from whole body irradiation.[11] An experiment noted a chemical compound isolated from Cordyceps sinensis may protect the liver from damage.[12] An experiment with mice noted that Cordyceps sinensis may have an anti-depressant effect.[13] Researchers have noted that a polysaccharide isolated from Cordyceps sinensis has a hypoglycemic effect and may be beneficial for people with insulin resistance.[14][15][16][17][18] [with thanks o Wickipedia]
Cordyceps Sinensis is a traditional and prized dried medicinal fungus. It was highly recommended by ancient medical practitioners as the most effective cure for all illness. The herbs highly effective and potent in curing various diseases. Cordyceps is well known as a nourishing tonic.
When China's national women's track and field team broke several records in 1993, and again one year later, it caused a sensation and raised questions about possible use of performance-enhancing drugs. While no drug residues were detected, the coach did reveal that the team was drinking a tonic made from "Cordyceps", a well-known, natural Chinese supplement.
Cordyceps - as an innate aphrodisiac and is highly sought after as a sexual tonic and strengthen sexual prowess. It is known for its yin and yang capacity and as a strong yang tonic it reinforces the kidney channel.
Cordyceps reputation amongst herbalists is due to its beneficial effects on invigoration and qi/energy enhancement. The pharmacologically active components of Cordyceps is being researched, and remains a bit of a mystery, but two chemical constituents, cordycepin (deoxyadenosine) and cordycepic acid (mannitol), have been identified and suggested as being active compounds.

Benefits of Cordyceps
Strengthening Immune System
Improving sexual function
Increasing Libido
Building Muscle
Improving Physical performance
Reducing Fatigue
Benefiting Circulation
Protecting Liver and Kidneys
Blood sugar control

It is an immunomodulator and immunoadaptogen, mitochondrial adaptogen (increases oxygen utilisation in the mitochondria, stimulaes ATP production by the mitochondria, protective of the mitochondria), antiinflammatory, antioxidant, neuroprotective, anti-tumour, antimetastic, hepatoprotective, cardiotonic, nerve sedative, sleep regulator, bronchial regulator, antipyretic, adrenogenic, steroidogenic, hypoglycemic, antibacerial, antimicrobial, insecticidal.
It is active against mycobacerium tuberculosis,, Plasmodium spp, Clostridium spp, herpes simplex virus 1, HIV-1 roease, hepatitis B and preventative to various cancers (breast, thyroid, kidney, bladder, prostate, lung, leydig tumor cells, melanoma).
Specific for fatigue and weakness, especially afer long illness or in chronic infections, poor mitochondrial function, chronic wasting, unproductive cough from no known cause, general inflammation in brain or joints, mental fog and confusion, low libido, lung infections, idney infections, thick mucus in the lungs that will not move, immune dysregulation, dizziness, tinnitus, nocturia, cancer-preventive. It is especially effective for mycoplasma infections.
Codyseps stops the exact cytokine cascade the bacteria initiate and restore immune function, while also protecting a number of organs and their functioning.
The major three constituents of Cordyseps are cordycepin, cordycepic acid (D-mannitol), and codyceps polysaccharide.
Other constituents: D-mannose, D-galactose, high in nucleotides, the molecular components of the nucleic acids RNA and DNA - guanosine, adenosine, and uridine. Sterols - ergosterol is the primary sterol, a precursor of vitamin D2. Cordyseps is very high in 18 amino acids; highest are glutamate, arginine, and aspartic acid. Very high in fatty acids especially linoleic acid, oleic acid, palmitic acid, and other actadeca acids. Substantial quanitities of 13 different minerals and traces of seven others - potassium, phosphorus, magnesium calcium sodium, iron, aluminum, zinc, manganese, silicon, oron, copper, selenium. Vitamins E, K, B1, B2, B12. Aminophenos, cyclic dipepides, dihydroisocoumarins, cordypyridones A and B, diphenyl ethers, myriocin, polyamines, etc.

CORIANDRUM SATIVUM - CORIANDER SEED

Carminative, anti-spasmodic, appetiser, stomachic, aromatic; flatulence (wind), colic, diarrhoea (esp. children), appetite, aphrodisiac.

Fruits and leaves posses totally different flavour and can therefore not substitute each other. Drying destroys most of the leaves' fragrance, yet dried coriander leaves are mentioned in some versions of Georgian khmeli-suneli (see marjoram) and of the Irani ghorme herb mix (see fenugreek).

The plants develop leaves of two different shapes: The base leaves are broad, similar to Italian parsley, and are reputed for the better flavour. Leaves attached to the stems have a pinnate shape, and their flavour is said to be less fresh.

Plant family: Apiaceae (parsley family).

Sensory quality: Almost everybody would agree that the fruits' aroma is pleasant. It is usually described warm, nutty and spicy; some even find orange-like quality in it.

There is, however, much disagreement about the flavour of coriander leaves, roots and unripe fruits: Many people of European heritage find it displeasing, soapy, like “burnt rubber” or even like crushed bedbugs or the evil-smelling insects living on rose bushes. There are, however, many Europeans who enjoy coriander leaves, and in Asia, Latin America and Africa , almost everybody loves them. These people would describe coriander leaves as fresh, green, tangy and even citrusy.

Main constituents: in the ripe fruits, the content of essential oil is comparably low (typically, less than 1%); the oil consists mainly of linalool (50 to 60%) and about 20% terpenes (pinenes, ?-terpinene, myrcene, camphene, phellandrenes, a-terpinene, limonene, cymene).

The taste of the fresh herb is due to an essential oil (0.1%) that is almost entirely made up of aliphatic aldehydes with 10 to 16 carbon atoms. One finds both saturated (decanal) and a,ß unsaturated (trans-2-tridecenal) aldehydes; the same aldehydes appear in the unripe fruits. Similar compounds occur in a few other spices and herbs, all of which share coriander's flavour: Examples include long coriander, Vietnamese coriander and the Japanese chemotype of chameleon plant.

Origin

Etymology: The names of coriander in all Western European languages can be traced back to Latin coriandrum and Greek koriannon. The Greek name exists in several variant forms, e.g., korion in Dioskurides and koriadna in Mycenaean Greek. It is usually put in to relation with koris “bug”, because of the aroma of the leaves, but it is more probably a loan from a ancient Mediterranean tongue and might be distantly related to Greek karon “cumin” and Hebrew gad “coriander”.

The German names Wanzendill (“bug's dill”) and Wanzenkümmel (“bug's caraway”) may be loan translations of the Greek name, but I think they perhaps arose independently. The names are clearly derogatory and reflect the critical attitude towards coriander leaves common among Central or North Europeans.

In Latin America and also in the USA , coriander leaves are commonly known by the name cilantro. This word has the same origin as coriander, and it is difficult to explain the differing vowel. Maybe cilantro is directly derived from a Latin variant with light vowel, e.g., Medieval Latin celiandrum. Another explanation claims that the Spanish name was first culantro, later changed to cilantro for some reason; in any case, culantro exists in today's Mesoamerican Spanish, but usually denotes not coriander but a similar smelling herb, long coriander. Confusingly, on some Caribbean islands, long coriander is known as cilantro and coriander as cilantrillo.

Because of similar shape and usage, coriander leaves are named after parsley, often with a geographic epithet: “Indian parsley” and “Chinese parsley” are most often heard. The Hungarian name cigánypetrezselyem “gypsies' parsley” should also be named in this context, although I am not sure of the motivation behind.

Description: The seed of the well-known cilantro or Chinese parsley plant (Coriandrum sativum) is known as coriander, and it is a spice with one of the longest histories of use. The name coriander is derived from the Greek word koris, meaning bedbug, since the unripe seeds and leaves when crushed have a smell suggestive of a crushed bedbug. The plant is indigenous to Greece , but the seed is now as well known in Asiatic and South American as it is in Mediterranean cooking. Cilantro is regarded as an herb, and is used with Mexican salsas, in Greek dishes and, along with the seeds of coriander, in Indian curries and in Thai food. Coriander is used in condiments, desserts, liqueurs, perfumes and in candies. Sugar covered coriander was known as comfits; these were used ceremoniously as a predecessor of paper confetti.

Useful Parts: The seed is used both whole and ground. The fresh leaves are also popular garnishes in a variety of Mexican and East Asian cuisines.

Medicinal Properties Coriander and cilantro have been advocated for health purposes in folk therapies, and the list of such uses is similar to those for other spices. However, no medical value has been adequately evaluated, and thus this popular herb/spice remains a cook's ingredient, and is utilized as a manufacturer's flavor, rather than being recognized as an herbalist's medication. Food authorities regard coriander as one of the most versatile spices, and, perhaps not surprisingly, individual authors give very different descriptions of its flavor.

CHEMICALS IN SPICES

Most spices and savory herbs have been used as gastrointestinal therapies, aphrodisiacs and non-specific tonics. The more pungent ones are counter-irritants, and have been used for relieving pain and for an anti-inflammatory effect. Many have antibacterial or antifungal properties. Some are claimed to be able to prevent cancers, perhaps because they appear to have strong antioxidant effects. Most of the more potent medical benefits have not been proved, and the responsible chemical(s) are difficult to identify.

Group

 

Description

 

Example

 

Effect

 

Alkaloids

 

bitter amines

 

chile: capsaicin

 

counter-irritant for pain

 

Bioflavonoids

 

phenolic pigments

 

rosemary: luteolin

 

antioxidant

 

Essential oils

 

Mixtures of volatiles

 

clove: various

 

aphrodisiacs, perfume

 

Glycosides

 

carbohydrate derivatives

 

garlic: alliin

 

expectorant, etc.

 

Phenylpropanoids

 

cinnamic acid derivatives

 

cinnamon: eugenol

 

topical anesthetic

 

Resins

 

terpene oxidants

 

myrrh: resin acids

 

antibacterial

 

Saponins

 

soapy hemolysants

 

licorice: glycyrrhizin

 

anti-inflammatory

 

Sterols

 

steroid precursors

 

sesame: linoleic acid

 

anti-oxidant

 

Tannins

 

polyphenolics (anti-aging)

 

tea: catechin

 

anti-oxidant

 

Terpenes

 

isoprene derivatives

 

ginger: zingiberene

 

anti-nauseant

 

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CRATAEGUS OXYACANTHA – HAWTHORN FRUIT 

Actions: Cardio-tonic, diuretic, astringent, hypotensive.

Hawthorn is the best known of the cardiac tonics, and possibly the most valuable tonic remedy for the cardiovascular system found in the plant kingdom. The American Herbalist, Ellingwood said of Hawthorn that "... it is superior to any of the well known and tried remedies at present in use for the treatment of heart disease, because it seems to cure while other remedies are only palliative at best."

It can be considered in most cardio-vascular disease. However, the therapeutic benefts are only gained when a whole plant preparation is used. When the isolated constituents were tested seperately in the laboratory, their individual effects were insignificant, whilst the whole plant has unique and valuable properties. Herbal synergy!

Following a four year study commissioned by the German Federal Ministry of Health, Hawthorn has gained full recognition as a heart remedy. The monograph concludes that the , it gently increases the strength and normalizes the rhythm of the heart beat, as well as increasing coronary and myocardial circulation, through a dilation of the coronary arteries.

Its main clinical applications are in the long-term treatment of 'loss of cardiac function', any situation where there is a subjective feelings of congestion and 'oppression' in the heart region, mild arrythmia's and especially for conditions of the ageing heart that do not warrant the use of Foxglove.

Cardio-vascular degenerative disease, angina pectoris, coronary artery disease and associated conditions.

For essential hypertension, used in conjunction with other hypotensives, Hawthorn will maintain the heart in a healthy condition, preventing the development of coronary disease. No toxicity, accumulation or habituation accurs, thus it may be used long term, achieving result entirely safely, especially in the elderly. Most significantly is the finding that no contra-indications or side effects were noted at all.

Hawthorn also has antibacterial, antifungal, antiviral and antioxidant activities. It is an analgesic and an anti-inflammatory agent, with antihepatotoxic, antiulcerogenic and clastogenic activities also. It inhibits platelet aggregation in vitro and gonadotropin release, and affects both DNA binding and prostaglandin induction. It inhibits chemically induced carcinogenic action. It inhibits the growth of Bacillus subtilis.

Constituents: Hawthorn's constituents highlight the importance of flavones and flavonoids in many remedies that have a healing impact upon the cardio-vascular system. There are two main groups: flavonoids - flavonoglycosyls, hyperoside, rutin; oligomeric procyanadins, 1-epicatechol.

This invaluable heart herb does not contain cardiac glycosides. Also contains the following:

Acantolic-Acid

Acetyl-Choline

Acetyl-Vitexin-4'-Rhamnoside

Adenine

Adenosine

Aesculin

Aluminum

Aminopurine

Amygdalin

Ascorbic-Acid

Caffeic-Acid

Calcium

Carbohydrates

Beta-Carotene

Catechin

Catechin-Tannins

Chlorogenic-Acid

Choline

Chromium

Citric-Acid

Cobalt

Crataegolic-Acid

Trans-Crataegolic-Acid

Dimethylamine

Epicatechin

L-Epicatechol

Ethanolamine

Ethylamine

Fat

Fiber

Glucose

Guanine

2, , 3, 3', 4, 4', 5, 7-Hepta-Hydroxyavanbioside

Hyperoside

Iron

Isoamylamine

Isobutylamine

Lauric-Acid

Leucoanthocyanidin

Linoleic-Acid

Linolenic-Acid

Lipase

Magnesium

Manganese

O-Methoxy-Beta-Phenethylamine

Neoategolic-Acid

Niacin

Nonacosan-10-Ol Octacosane

Oxalic-Acid

Palmitic-Acid

Pectin

Beta-Phenethylamine

Phlobaphene

Phosphorus

Potassium

Procyanidin

Protein

Quercetin-3-Rhamnogalactoside

Quercitrin

Rhamnose

Riboavin

Rutin

Selenium (selenium is an important component of the body's antioxidant defence system and has also been shown to protect cells exposed to toxins; as a concer-fighting compound, senenium suppresses tumour promotion and early stages of tumor grogression through the inhimbition of angiogenic enzymes.)

Silicon

Beta-Sitosterol

Beta-Sitosterol

Sodium

Sorbitol

Starch

Sugar

Tartaric-Acid

Thiamin

Tin

Trimethylamine

Tyramine

Uric-Acid

Ursolic-Acid

Vitexin

Vitexin-4'-Rhamnoside

Vitexin-4', L-Rhamno-D-Glucoside

Vitexin-4', 7-Di-D-Glucoside

Zinc

 

Hawthorn also helps in the following: Aesculin; Esculin; Aesculin; Crataegin; the 6-glucoside of esculetin (also found in the bark of horse chestnut - Aesculus hippocastanum). (+)-Catechin; Catechinic acid; Catechol; Catechuic acid; (+)-Cyanidanol; (+)-Cyanidan-3-ol. Biologically highly active. It is used as a haemostatic drug, and in the treatment of various liver diseases, especially acute hepatitis. It shows strong liver protective and potent antiperoxidative activities, so that it may act as a "radical scavenger" by neutralizing free radicals produced by hepatotoxic substances. However, prolonged treatment with (+) catechin can induce several adverse reactions, most of them immunomediated, such as haemolysis, acute renal failure and skin rashes.

Kaempferol; 3, 5, 7, 4'-Tetrahydroxyflavone - very widespread occurrence, both free and bound as glycosides. 3-arabinofuranoside, juglanin, and 3-rhamnofuranoside. Radical scavenger. It shows anti-inflammatory, antibacterial and mutagenic activities. It inhibits the proliferation of rat Iymphocytes at a concentration of 10 J M. Also, it inhibits iodothyronine deiodinase, :5-lipoxygenase, and ionophore-induced arachidonlc acid release and metabolism.

Luteolin; 5, 7, 3', 4'-Tetrahydroxyflavone - anti-inflammatory and antibacterial activities.

Procyanidin; Proanthocyanidin A2; Epicatechin

Quercetin; 3, 5, 7, 3', 4'-Pentahydroxyflavone

The commonest flavonoid in higher plants, usually present in glycosidic form, but also isolated free from the families Compositae, Passiflorae, Rhamnaceae and Solanaceae – it is a radical scavenger. Quercetin also inhibits smooth muscle contraction, and proliferation of rat lymphocytes. It is antigonadotropic, antiinflammatory, antibacterial, antiviral and antihepatotoxic, and shows some mutagenic activity and allergenic properties.

Rhamnetin; Quercetin 7-methyl ether - rhamnetin and its 3-glucoside show antibacterial activity against Pseudomonas maltophilia and Enterobacter cloacae. It also shows a moderate contact sensitizing (allergenic) capacity.

Rutin; Quercetin 3-rutinoside; Rutoside - radical scavenger. Medicinally, it is used against capillary fragility and varicosis. A more soluble derivative, hydroxyethylrutoside, is also used clinically. It shows antiviral and antibacterial activities, and it inhibits lens aldose reductase and _5-lipoxygenase.

 

To follow-up this comprehensive medical research go to the Medline database for the genus Crataegus: Hawthorn.

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CUMINUM CYMINUM - CUMIN SEED

Nutritional value per 100 g (3.5 oz)
Energy 1,567 kJ (375 kcal)
Carbohydrates 44.24 g
Sugars 2.25 g
Dietary fiber 10.5 g
Fat 22.27 g
saturated 1.535 g
Protein 17.81 g
Water 8.06 g
Vitamin A equiv. 64 μg (7%)
Riboflavin (Vit. B2) 0.327 mg (22%)
Niacin (Vit. B3) 4.579 mg (31%)
Vitamin B6 0.435 mg (33%)
Folate (Vit. B9) 10 μg (3%)
Vitamin B12 0 μg (0.001%)
Vitamin C 7.7 mg (13%)
Vitamin E 3.33 mg (22%)
Vitamin K 5.4 μg (5%)
Calcium 931 mg (93%)
Iron 66.36 mg (531%)
Magnesium 366 mg (99%)
Phosphorus 499 mg (71%)
Potassium 1788 mg (38%)
Sodium 168 mg (7%)
Zinc 4.8 mg (48%)

CURCUMA LONGA – TURMERIC ROOT

Curcuma longa (Tumeric root, Jiang Huang) - Anti-inflammatory for RA, eczema, psoriasis, CVS disease (lowers cholesterol), dissolves clots, thrombosis; lowers cancer risk (smokers, farmers), increased gastric and hepatic function; haemostatic, amenorrhoea, dysmenorrhoea, pain in chest and abdomen, traumatic injury, bleeding in lungs, bladder and nose; RA pain. Ext.: RA, inflamed skin, psoriasis, infections of skin; semi-conscious states, hysteria; jaundice; pungent, bitter, cold. HE, LU, LIV.

Recent studies comparing the activities of turmeric's active curcuminoids with some steroidal and non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs indicate similar action and results (reduced swelling and pain) with no risks or side-effects. Powerful antioxidant, liver protective and bile secreting effects. 

Actions: Anti-inflammatory, Antioxidant, Anti-mutagenic, Cancer-preventive, Cholagogueue, Depurative, Diuretic, Fumitory, Hemostatic, Hepatoprotective, Lactagogue, Stomachic, Tonic, Vulnerary. 

Constituents: Phytochemicals: 1,8-cineole, 2-bornanol, 2-hydroxy-methyl-anthraquinone, 4-hydroxy-cinnamoyl-(Feruloyl)-methane, Alpha-atlantone, Alpha-pinene, Alpha-terpineol, Ar-turmerone, Arabinose, Ascorbic-acid, Ash, Azulene, Beta-carotene, Beta-pinene, Beta-sesquiphellandrene, Bis-(Para-hydroxy-cinnamoyl)-methane, Bis-desmethoxycurcumin, Bisabolene, Borneol, Boron, Caffeic-acid, Calcium, Caprylic-acid, Caryophyllene, Chromium, Cineole, Cinnamic-acid, Cobalt, Copper, Cuminyl-alcohol, Curcumene, Curcumenol, Curcumin, Curdione, Curlone, Curzerenone, Curzerenone-c, Cyclo-isoprenemyrcene, D-alpha-phellandrene, D-camphene, D-camphor, D-sabinene, Dehydroturmerone, Desmethoxycurcumin, Di-p-coumaroyl-methane, Dicinnamoylmethane, Didesmethoxycurcumin, Diferuloyl-methane, Dihydrocurcumin, EO, Eugenol, Feruloyl-p-coumaroyl-methane, Gamma-atlantone, Guaiacol, Isoborneol, L-alpha-curcumene, L-beta-curcumene, Limonene, Manganese, Monodesmethoxycurcumin, Niacin, Nickel, O-coumaric-acid, P-coumaric-acid, P-cymene, P-methoxycinnamic-acid, P-tolymethylcarbinol, Phosphorus, Protocatechuic-acid, Resin, Riboflavin, Syringic-acid, Terpinene, Terpineol, Thiamin, Turmerone, Ukonan-a, Ukonan-b, Ukonan-c, Ukonan-d, Vanillic-acid, Zingiberene

Characterization of a neutral polysaccharide having activity on the reticuloendothelial system from the rhizome of Curcuma longa.

In: Chem Pharm Bull ( Tokyo ) (1992 Jan) 40(1):185-8

A neutral polysaccharide, named ukonan D, was isolated from the rhizome of Curcuma longa L. It produced a single band on electrophoresis and a single peak on gel chromatography, and its molecular mass was estimated to be 28, 000. It showed remarkable reticuloendothelial system-potentiating activity in a carbon clearance test. Ukonan D is composed of L-arabinose: D-galactose: D- glucose: D-mannose in the molar ratio of 1:1:12:0.2, in addition to small amounts of peptide moiety. Methylation analysis, carbon-13 nuclear magnetic resonance and enzymic degradation studies indicated that its structural features include mainly both alpha-1, 5-linked L- arabino-beta-3, 6-branched D-galactan type and alpha-4, 6-branched D- glucan type structural units. The influence of degradation with alpha- amylase followed by the elimination of glucan side chains on its immunological activity was discussed.

Gonda R Tomoda M Ohara N Takada K

Arabinogalactan core structure and immunological activities of ukonan C, an acidic polysaccharide from the rhizome of Curcuma longa.

In: Biol Pharm Bull (1993 Mar) 16(3):235-8

Controlled Smith degradation of ukonan C, a phagocytosis-activating polysaccharide isolated from the rhizome of Curcuma longa L., was performed. The reticuloendothelial system-potentiating, anti- complementary and alkaline phosphatase-inducing activities of ukonan C and its degradation products were investigated. Methylation analyses of the primary and secondary Smith degradation products and of a de-arabinosylated product indicated that structural features of the arabinogalactan core of ukonan C include a backbone chain composed of beta-1, 3-linked D-galactose and beta-1, 4-linked D-xylose. All of the galactose units in the backbone carry side chains composed of beta-1, 6-linked D-galactosyl residues with or without terminal alpha-L-arabinose units at position 3. Ukonan C showed remarkable effects on both reticuloendothelial system-potentiating and alkaline phosphatase-inducing activities. Periodate oxidation caused a decrease in or disappearance of the immunological activities, but the controlled Smith degradation product having the arabinogalactan core structure of polysaccharide showed a pronounced effect on anti- complementary activity.

Gonda R Tomoda M Takada K Ohara N Shimizu N

The core structure of ukonan A, a phagocytosis-activating polysaccharide from the rhizome of Curcuma longa, and immunological activities of degradation products.

In: Chem Pharm Bull ( Tokyo ) (1992 Apr) 40(4):990-3

The controlled Smith degradation of ukonan A, a phagocytosis- activating polysaccharide isolated from the rhizome of Curcuma longa L., was performed. The reticuloendothelial system-potentiating, anti- complementary and alkaline phosphatase-inducing activities of ukonan A and its degradation products were investigated. Methylation analyses of both the primary and the secondary Smith degradation products indicated that the core structural features of ukonan A include a backbone chain mainly composed of beta-1, 3-linked D- galactose, beta-1, 4-linked D-xylose and alpha-1, 2-linked L-rhamnose residues. All of the galactose units in the backbone carry side chains composed of alpha-L-arabino-beta-D-galactosyl or beta-D- galactosyl residues at position 6. Ukonan A has a remarkable effect on each of the three kinds of immunological activities. Periodate oxidation caused pronounced decrease or disappearance of the activities, but the controlled Smith degradation product having the core structure of polysaccharide showed considerable restoration of these activities.

Turmeric – quite possibly the world’s most important herb. Named “Kanchani,” or literally “Golden Goddess,” in the ancient Indian healing tradition, its healing properties have been deeply appreciated, if not revered for countless centuries. Turmeric has been scientifically documented to have over 500 applications in disease prevention and treatment. It also has been shown to modulate over 150 distinct biological and genetic/epigenetic pathways of value in health, demonstrating a complexity as well as gentleness that no drug on the planet has ever been shown to possess.
As there are too many health conditions that turmeric may benefit to list, we are listing the top 10 as determined by the GreenMedInfo algorithm which calculates both the evidence quantity (number of articles) and evidence quality (human study valued higher than animal, and so on). Also, the number in parentheses denotes the number of studies on the database demonstrating the beneficial relationship.
•Oxidative Stress (160)
•Inflammation (51)
•DNA Damage (48)
•Lipid Peroxidation (34)
•Colorectal Cancer (24)
•Breast Cancer (60)
•Colon Cancer (52)
•Chemically-Induced Liver Damage (34)
•Alzheimer’s Disease (34)
•Tumors (23)

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DRACAENA DRACO - DRAGON TREE RESIN

The Dragon Tree is a palm (family Palmae) and the part used is the red resinous secretion from the fruit and stem often called Dragon's Blood. It has been used in traditional Chinese herbal medicine for millennia, known as Xue Jie.

Taste and property: sweet, salty and neutral.

Meridian action: Heart; Liver.

Action: To stop bleeding (hemostatic) and eliminate blood stasis; promotes wound healing (internal cell trauma); analgesic. Anti-fungal. Aphrodisiac (impotence). Bowel irregularity. Colitis. Ulcers and ulcerative colitis. Piles.

Mild diaphoretic detoxifier. It has strong antiseptic and bactericidal properties. Due to its anesthetic qualities it is calming.

This resin is a deep red, powerfully spicy resin that somewhat resembles benzoin and cinnamon mixed together. It is used in India during ceremonies designed to remove negative energies or spirits. While in many Catholic Churches it is used in their Frankincense mixture to intensify the smoke as well as for its disinfectant properties.

Other information: Dracaena draco is a giant tree of the East Indies and Canary Islands , and shares with the baobab tree the distinction of being the oldest living representative of the vegetable kingdom, being much reverenced by the Guanches of the Canaries, who use its product for embalming in the fashion of the Egyptians. The trunk cracks and emits a red resin used as 'tear' Dragon's Blood.

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ECHINACEA SPP – PURPLE CONE FLOWER ROOT

Action: anti-septic, anti-microbial, alterative; vasodilator (peripheral), bacterial and viral infections, boils, septicaemia, laryngitis, pyorrhoea, tonsillitis, tonsillitis, catarrh, mouthwash.

Constituents: Echinacoside, the primary anti-microbial constituents in Echinacea. Polysaccharides, for example, possess the best immune stimulating properties and are also antiviral. Unsaturated isobutyl amides, echinacin and others, in E. angustifolia and E. pallida. Polysaccharides; a heteroxylan and an arabinorhamnogalactan. Polyacetylenes, at least 13 of which have been isolated. It has been postulated that these are artefacts formed during storage, since they are found in dried but not fresh roots of E. pallida. Essential oil, containing humulene, caryophyllene and its epoxide, germacrene D and methyl-p-hydroxycinnamate. Miscellaneous; vanillin linolenic acid derivatives, a labdane derivative, alkanes and flavonoids and the alkaloids tussilagine and isotussilagine.

It is used in the treatment of pyorrhoea and gingivitis. It may be used as an external lotion to help septic sores and cuts. Much research is focussing upon this plant, providing important insights into its activity and potential uses. Glycosides from the roots have mild activity against Streptococci and Staphylococcus aureus. Echinacoside was the most active with about 6 mg being equivalent to one unit of penicillin. It is able to reduce both the rate of growth and the rate of reproduction of Trichomonas vaginalis, and was found to be effective in halting the recurrence of Candida albicans infection. It seems to prevent infection and repair tissue damaged by infection, partially through inhibiting the activity of the enzyme hyaluronidase. The hyaluronidase system is a primary defense mechanism, involving connective "ground" substance, or hyaluronic acid, acting as a barrier against pathogenic organisms. Some pathogens activate an enzyme, hyaluronidase, which once activated destroys the integrity of the ground substance. This causes the barrier to become leaky, allowing pathogens to invade, attach themselves to exposed cells, penetrate the membrane and kill the cell. The result as an inflammatory infection. Echinacea inhibits the action of hyaluronidase by bonding with it in some way, resulting in a temporary increase in the integrity of the barrier. Fewer pathogens are able to stimulate the destruction of the ground substance. A range of constituents mediate this process, especially a complex polysaccharide called echinacin B. This anti-hyaluronidase action is involved in regeneration of connective tissue destroyed during infection and in the elimination of pathogenic organisms creating the infection. Purified polysaccharides prepared from Echinacea possess a strong activating force on the body's macrophage-mediated defense system. These macrophages initiate the destruction of pathogens and cancer cells. Echinacea activates macrophages by itself, independent of any effect with T-cells. A tumour-inhibiting principle has been found, an oncolytic lipid-soluble hydrocarbon from the essential oil. The echinacosides glycosides appear to be the primary ‘antibiotics', but there are many other active substances present which probably function synergistically. The polysaccharides possess the best immune stimulating properties and are also antiviral. Other constituents have been shown to possess good anti-tumour, bacteriostatic, and anaesthetic activity.

This all points to the conclusion that its actions relate to immune system functioning on some level, helping deal with infections and stimulating the immune response. It activates the macrophages that destroy both cancerous cells and pathogens, increases the level of phagocytosis by raising levels of white blood cells such as the neutrophils, monocytes, eosinophils, and B lymphocytes. It also has an effect on properidin levels, indication an activation of the complement system.

 

For more information: Citations from the Medline database for the genus Echinacea.

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ELETTARIA CARDAMOMUM – CARDAMON SEED

Elettaria cardamomum or Amomom villosum (Cardamon seeds, Grains of Paradise, Yi Zhi Ren) - carminative; flatulent dyspepsia, increases appetite and saliva, anorexia, incontinence. Tonic to kidney yang: nutrient to bones and sinew; inhibits excess urination; anti-diarrhoeic; astringent, stomachic; kidney yang deficiency: impotence, premature ejaculation, frequent and profuse urination, urinary incontinence; diarrhoea, profuse salivation, cold and pain in abdomen; pungent, warm; SP, KI.

Description: Several varieties of seed plants are known as cardamon, but the best known is an export from India , where it is obtained from a ginger-like plant, Elettaria cardamomum. It is related to black cardamom, and to melegueta (also known as grains of paradise), a peppery cardamon-like seed which grows mainly in West Africa ; this was a popular European import in the Middle Ages and the Renaissance. Cardamom is particularly popular in Arab countries for flavoring coffee, and perhaps half the world's production is thus used. Cardamom and related spices were used by the Romans, and it remains popular in baked products in Scandinavian and Baltic countries. The seeds are widely used in cooking and in chewing products (similar to chewing gum) in India and Pakistan , and in Persian cuisine, but it is not widely appreciated in North America as a cooking spice or as a flavor in candies or beverages. Its exotic qualities have suggested it could be used as a stimulant and aphrodisiac, and long ago it was used as a perfume and breath freshener.

Useful Parts: The aromatic extract contains many essential oil chemicals, some of which have a smell like that of camphor. Thus, its main use is as an adjunctive spice in curries, coffees and other Asian or Middle Eastern foods. It used to be second in expense to saffron, and is known in India as Queen of Spices. However, declining markets and increased production in Guatemala have led to a fall in its value.

Medicinal Properties: Medically, it is used mainly as a flavor and an aid to digestion. It is used more prosaically to treat colds, bronchitis, fevers, inflammatory conditions of the oropharynx, and liver complaints.

Historical View “The effects of cardamoms are those of a very agreeable aromatic; they are used partly on account of their flavour, and partly for their carminative and stimulant properties. They are, however, rarely prescribed alone, but commonly either as adjuvants or correctives of cordial, tonic and purgative medicines.”

Main constituents

The content of essential oil in the seeds is strongly dependent on storage conditions, but may be as high as 8%. In the oil were found a-terpineol 45%, myrcene 27%, limonene 8%, menthone 6%, ß-phellandrene 3%, 1,8-cineol 2%, sabinene 2% and heptane 2%. (Phytochemistry, 26, 207, 1987)

Other sources report 1,8-cineol (20 to 50%), a-terpenylacetate (30%), sabinene, limonene (2 to 14%) and borneol.

In the seeds of round cardamom from Jawa (A. kepulaga), the content of essential oil is lower (2 to 4%), and the oil contains mainly 1,8 cineol (up to 70%) plus ß-pinene (16%); furthermore, a-pinene, a-terpineol and humulene were found.

Origin

Southern India and Sri Lanka . Indian cardamom is slightly smaller, but more aromatic. Although India is the largest producer of cardamom, only a small share of the Indian production is exported because of the large domestic demand. The main exporting country is Guatemala , where cardamom cultivation has been introduced to less than a century ago and where all cardamom is grown for export. There several related plants in genera Amomum, Aframomum and Alpinia, many of which have aromatic seeds; these may appear as cardamom substitute or adulteration, although the flavours of most of them differ markedly from true cardamom. Some of these have a eucalypt-like flavour worth dealing with in their own right (see black cardamom) while others are more pungent and almost peppery (see grains of paradise); yet many of them are quite disagreeable. These “wild cardamoms” can hardly be used as a substitute for the real thing.

Cardamom was known in Ancient Greece as an expensive item of commerce and known as kardamomon [?a?d ? µ?µ??] (kardomeia on the Linear B tablets). The name has not satisfying explanation, y et there is a similarity to the second element in the Greek name of cinnamon (kinnamomon [???? ? µ?µ??]); and there is also the name amomon [ ? µ?µ??] for a aromatic spice similar to cardamom. To make things worse, an apparently unrelated name kardamon [? ? ?daµ ??] denotes a pungent herb from Persia (probably a type of cress). Modern Greek has inherited that confusion: Both cardamom and cress may be called kardamo [???daµ?]. 

Also Roman sources tell of two similar spices: amomum and cardamomum, both of which were of Eastern origin. Some suspect the two to be identical (or different grades of the same product), but it appears more probable that they were distinct varieties of cardamom. The more expensive kind, cardamomum, is generally assumed to have been identical to what we call cardamom today; amomum, on the other side, may have been a type similar to black cardamom. Again, no etymology is known for these two names.

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ELEUTHEROCOCCUS SENTICOSUS - SIBERIAN GINSENG

Siberian ginseng (Eleutherococcus senticosus) is not a true ginseng, but a different plant that was renamed as "Siberian ginseng" as a marketing ploy; instead of a fleshy root, it has a woody root, and instead of ginsenosides, eleutherosides are the active compound. Eleutherosides are classified as another adaptogen.
The herb grows in mixed and coniferous mountain forests, forming low undergrowth or is found in groups in thickets and edges. E. senticosus is sometimes found in oak groves at the foot of cliffs, very rarely in high forest riparian woodland. Its native habitat is East Asia, China, Japan, and Russia. E. senticosus is broadly tolerant of soils, growing in sandy, loamy, and heavy clay soils with acid, neutral, or alkaline chemistry and including soils of low nutritional value. It can tolerate sun or dappled shade and some degree of pollution. E. senticosus is a deciduous shrub growing to 2m at a slow rate. It is hardy to zone 3. It flowers in July in most habitats. The flowers are hermaphroditic and are pollinated by insects.
E. senticosus is an adaptogen that has a wide range of health benefits attributed to its use.[citation needed] Currently, most of the research to support the medicinal use of E. senticosus is in Russian or Korean.[citation needed] E. senticosus contains eleutherosides, triterpenoid saponins that are lipophilic and that can fit into hormone receptors.[citation needed] Supporters[who?] of E. senticosus as medicine claim that it possesses a variety of medicinal properties, such as:

* increased endurance
* memory improvement
* anti-inflammatory
* immunogenic
* chemoprotective
* radiological protection

Eleutherococcus senticosis is more tonifying than the true Ginsengs (Panax sp.). Taken regularly, it enhances immune function, decreases cortisol levels and inflammatory response[contradiction], and it promotes improved cognitive and physical performance[citation needed]. In human studies, Eleuthero has been successfully used to treat bone marrow suppression caused by chemotherapy or radiation, angina, hypercholesterolemia, and neurasthenia with headache, insomnia, and poor appetite.[5][6][7]

The major constituents of E. senticosus are Ciwujianoside A-E, Eleutheroside B (Syringin), Eleutherosides A-M, Friedelin, and Isofraxidin. The chemical compound of Siberian Ginseng is complex. Among the many active substances which have been isolated, the most important seem to be 6 glycosides called eleutherosides(1), but vitamins, aminoacids and other principles are also found. It is difficult to dissociate the different components in the overall action of the plant.

Eleutherococcus senticosus has been shown to have significant antidepressant effects.

Action: adaptogen, circulatory stimulant, vasodilator; stress, depletion, (mental and physical), depression, immune stimulant.

It has a non-specific stimulant action on physical and intellectual capacities. It differs from that of the traditional stimulants (caffeine or amphetamine type) which produce a "lift" followed by a depression. Siberian Ginseng is the "anti-fatigue" and "anti-stress" drug par excellence. It was for this type of action that Brekhman(1) created the ideas of an 'adaptogen', whereas Fulder(2) preferred the name "biological optimiser". Dansberg(3) has confirmed this stimulating action experimentally on rats. It is a known fact that the Russian athletes use this herb during international sport meetings in order to benefit from its stimulating properties. For that reason, it was interesting to prove scientifically the effects of the powder of Siberian Ginseng on athletic performances. In 1984, the research staff of Arkopharma Laboratories(8) studied a group of sprinters and long distance runners. Half of them took Siberian Ginseng every day, the remainder took nothing and served as a control group. Both groups were equally fit. After one month, the conclusion was as follows: out of the two identically matched groups subjected to the same practice during one month, only the group treated with Siberian Ginseng powder improved its "maximum" strength in a significant way.

Information: Siberian Ginseng belongs to the same family as ginseng from Korea and China . It is a common plant in Siberia, and during the past few years it has been studied extensively in the Soviet Union . The results of this investigation by the Russians have been extraordinary, showing that Siberian Ginseng causes an increase in both physical and intellectual capacities. It has become the anti-fatigue supplement par excellence in Russia , and is given to cosmonauts, Olympic athletes and workers doing heavy physical work. The terms most often associated with Ginseng are fatigue and stress. Exactly who benefits from an agent that counters these conditions? - anyone who has been burning the candle from both ends - the athlete seeking improved performance - the harried business executive - the student cramming for exams - the person who is always sick, always getting over a cold - anyone who feels tired all the time.

The medical term used to describe ginseng is that it is an adaptogen. An adaptogen is an agent that produces a state of increased resistance of the body to stress, preventing or overcoming disease by impoving our general vitality and strengthening our normal body functions.

Even the critics have to admit that "...favourable modification by ginseng of the stress effects of temperature changes, diet, restraint, exercise, and the like have been recorded. Moreover, useful pharmacologic effects in such conditions as anaemia, atherosclerosis, depression, diabetes, oedema, hypertension, and ulcers have also been documented." ( Tyler )

One example of the beneficial effects of Siberian Ginseng was reported in the medical literature by German researchers (Bohn) in October 1987. They demonstrated its beneficial effect on the immune system by conducting a double-blind, placebo controlled, study on 36 healthy volunteers. Their results showed "a drastic increase in the absolute number of immunocompetent cells" in the blood of those taking the ginseng. In another study, from Russia , it was shown that children with dysentery recovered more quickly when they were given Siberian Ginseng. (Veresch) Siberian Ginseng, therefore, can be considered useful in conditions of stress, infection, fatigue, healing, improved performance.

The stimulating action is reinforced by a protective action against various outside stresses: hard work(2), chemical stress - toxic and adrenal glands(6). It has an anabolic action(6) and Lazareff has even found an anti-tumour(7). Thus Siberian Ginseng can be beneficially used in all cases of: Overwork Convalescence Preparation for Examinations or Physical effort (in sport(8) or intensive work).

Bibliography: Brekhman I.I. et Dardymovi. V An. Rev. Pharmacol. 1969, 9, 419. Fulder S. New Scientific 1987, 1215, 576. Sandberg F. Planta Medica, 1973, 24, 4, 392. Yamomoto M., Kumagaya A., Yamamura Y. Arzneim Forsch. 1977, 27, 1404. Bekhman I.I. Izdatelstvo "Nauka", 1968, Leningrad 186. Meerson F. Izdatelstvo "Nauka", 1967, Moscou 317. Lazarev N.V. Vopr. Onkol. 1965, 1, 12, 48. Stephan H., Jousseline E., Questel R., et Lecomte A. Cinesiologie, 1984, 92-93, p. 97.

 

EMBLICA OFFICINALIS – INDIAN GOOSEBERRY 

Common Name: Amla, Indian Gooseberry

Botanical Name: Emblica officinalis, Family: Euphorbiaceae

Other Names: Emblic myrobalan, Amalaki

Amla is one of the most celebrated herbs in Indian Ayurvedic herbal medicine.

Traditional uses: detoxifier, eye wash, appetite stimulant, restorative tonic, and to treat anorexia, indigestion, bowel regulator, anemia, and jaundice.

Amla has unusually high levels of Vitamin C, which is resistant to storage and heat damage due to cooking.

Origin: It is a native species of India .

Chemical composition / key active constituents: Amla is highly nutritious and is an important dietary source of Vitamin C, minerals and amino acids. The edible fruit tissue contains protein concentration 3-fold and ascorbic acid concentration 160-fold compared to that of the apple. The fruit also contains considerably higher concentration of most minerals and amino acids than apples. Glutamic acid 29.6%, praline14.6%, aspartic acid 8.1%, alanine 5.4%, and lysine 5.3% . (l-lysine is a natural amino acid that is a building block of collagen and elastin fibers with l-proline); prevents digestion of collagen by blocking sites where enzymes attach, making this nutrient critical in preventing the degradation of collective tissue; l-lysine is not produced by the human bodyso the health of the connective tissue depends on optimal daily intake of this amino acid as well as others.) of the total amino acids. The pulpy portion of fruit, dried and freed from the nuts contains: gallic acid 1.32%, tannin, sugar 36.10%; gum 13.75%; albumin 13.08%; crude cellulose 17.08%; mineral matter 4.12% and moisture 3.83%. Amla contains chromium, 2.5 ppm; zinc 4 ppm; and copper 3 ppm.

Key Active Constituents: Emblicanin A&B, Puniglucanin, Pedunculagin, 2-keto-gluconolactone (Vitamin-C equivalents). Ellagic acid, Hexahydroxy-diphenic acid and conjugates.

Pharmacology: Emblica officinalis is effective in the treatment of peptic ulcer and in dyspepsia. The fruits exhibit hypolipiadaemic and antiatherosclerotic effects in rabbits & rats. The fruit extract has antimutagenic activity on certain directly acting mutagens in some strains of Salmonella typhimurium. The extract of amla also has antimicrobial properties. Amla is an antioxidant with free radical scavenging properties which may be due to the presence of high levels of super oxide dismutase.

Actions and uses: Indian Gooseberry or Amla is used to treat obstinate urinary conditions, anemia, biliousness, bleeding, colitis, constipation, convalescence from fever, cough, diabetes, gastritis, gout, hepatitis, hemorrhoids, liver weakness, to relieve stress, osteoporosis, palpitation, spleen weakness, tissue deficiency, vertigo, rebuilds blood, bones, cells, and tissues. It increases red blood cell count and regulates blood sugar; heart tonic, cleanses mouth, stops gum bleeding, stops stomach and colon inflammation; cleanses intestines, strengthens teeth, aids eyesight, expels worms and parasites, alkalizes the body, eye and lung inflammations, ulcerations, G.I. disorders, painful urination, and internal bleeding.

 

References:

CAS, IP, Ayurveda book etc.

1 Chem Abstr, 1992 [116- 19982, 127273]; 1993 [119-103470]; 1989[110-73906];

Vohora, Indian Drugs, [1989-26(10), 526]; Janjua, Hamdard, 1991 [34(2)-104];

Yaqeenudin et. al., Pakist J Sci Ind Res, 1990 [33-268].

2 Roy, A.K. et. al., Int. J.of Pharmacog., 1991, v. 29(2), 117-126.

3 Mand, J.K. et. al., J. Res. Edu. in Ind.Med., 1991, v., 10(2), 1-7.

4 Ghosh, A. et. al., Int. J. of Pharmacog., 1993, v. 31(2), 116-120.

5 Mathur, R. et. al., J. of Ethnopharmacol., 1996, v., 50(2), 61-68.

6 Singh, B.N. and Sharma, P.V., J.Res. Ind. Med., 1971, 5, 223.

7 Ramaswamy, Minor Forest Products, Mysore , 1945,55; Damodaran & Nair,Biochem.J. 1936,30,1014;Giri,Indian J. med. Res., 1939, 27, 429; Mitra & Ghosh,Ann. biochem.1941, 1, 307; Srinivasan, loc. cit.

8 Chawla et. al., 1982, Indian J. Med. Res. 76 (Suppl.), 95-98.

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EUGENIA CARYOPHYLLATA - CLOVE BUD

Myrtaceae

Other Names: Clove, clovos, caryophyllus

Parts Used: Flower buds

Active Compounds: Clove oil is 60 to 90 percent eugenol, which is the source of its anesthetic and antiseptic properties.

Action: to warm the spleen and stomach, and descend the flow of qi energy; to warm the kidney and improve the kidney function; stimulant, carminative; nausea, vomiting, hiccup, impotence, kidney yang deficiency; pungent, warm; Meridian: Spleen; Stomach; Kidney.

Pharmacology: stomachic - flatulence, increase digestive function; carminative; anti-emetic; anti-bacterial; anti-parasitic; analgesic/relaxant; improves organ tone.

Biological Name: Caryophyllus aromaticus, Syzygium aromaticum, Eugenia caryophyllata

History: During the Han dynasty (207 B. C. to 220 A. D.) those who addressed the Chinese emperor were required to hold cloves in their mouths to mask bad breath. Traditional Chinese physicians have long used the herb to treat indigestion, diarrhea, hernia, and ringworm, as well as athlete's foot and other fungal infections.

India 's traditional Ayurvedic healers have used clove since ancient times to treat respiratory and digestive ailments.

Clove first arrived in Europe around the 4th century A.D. as a highly coveted luxury. The medieval German herbalists used cloves as part of anti-gout mixture.

Once clove became easily available in Europe , it was prized as a treatment for indigestion, flatulence, nausea, vomiting, and diarrhea. It was also used to treat cough, infertility, warts, worms, wounds, and toothache.

Early American Eclectic physicians used clove to treat digestive complaints and added it to bitter herb- medicine preparations to make them more palatable. They were also the first to extract clove oil from the herbal buds. They used it on the gums to relieve toothache.

Contemporary herbalists recommend clove for digestive complaints and its oil for toothache.

Remedies For: Anodyne, antiemetic, antiseptic. Toothache, oral hygiene:

Dentists used clove oil as an oral anesthetic. They also used it to disinfect root canals.

Antiseptic Uses:

Clove is the active ingredient in several mouthwash and a number of over-the-counter toothache pain-relief preparations.

Infection fighter:

Clove kills intestinal parasites and exhibits broad antimicrobial properties against fungi and bacteria supporting its traditional use as a treatment for diarrhea, intestinal worms, and other digestive ailments.

Digestive aid:

Like many culinary spices, clove may help relax the smooth muscle lining of the digestive tract.

Clove oil will stop the pain of a toothache when dropped into a cavity. A few drops of the oil in water will stop vomiting, and clove tea will relieve nausea. Eating cloves is said to be aphrodisiac.

Description: The clove is an evergreen tree, 15 to 30 feet tall, native to the Spice Islands and the Philippines but also grown in India , Sumatra , Jamaica , the West Indies, Brazil , and other tropical areas. It has opposite, ovate leaves more than 5 inches long; and its flowers, when allowed to develop, are red and white, bell-shaped, and grow in terminal clusters. The familiar clove used in the kitchen is the dried flower bud. The fruit is a one- or two-seeded berry.

Effects on the mind: Clove Bud has a warming effect easing away stress, anxiety and tension. This is a wonderful oil to fragrance your home during the holidays.

Effects on the body

* Used therapeutically to regulate thyroid and as preventive of some types of cancer

*Anti-infectious, antifungal, and general stimulant

Effects on the spirit: Calming to the solar plexus

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Cont / Details about the constituents and actions of the individual whole herbal powders contained in Herbactive Herbalist's ABC Daily Herbal NutriPowder Plus

 

FERULA ASAFOETIDA - ASAFOETIDA, DEVIL'S DUNG, FOOD OF THE GODS

Ferula asafoetida (Asafoetida, Devil's Dung, Food of the Gods) - carminative, spasmolytic, expectorant; digestive - flatulent colic, IBS, indigestion, anthelmintic - worms, parasites; chronic bronchitis, laryngitis, hysteria - nervous disorders (mood swings, depression); detoxification, tumours, high cholesterol, insect repellent (ext); pungent, bitter, warm. LIV SP ST . 

Botanical Source.—This plant has a perennial fusiform root, several inches in diameter, with a coarse, hairy summit, either simple like a parsnip, or with one or more forks; its bark is wrinkled, blackish; its internal structure fleshy and white, containing a large amount of a thick, milky, fetid, alliaceous juice. The leaves are radical, springing up in the autumn, growing vigorously during the winter, withering at the close of spring. They are several in number, 1 1/2 feet long, shining, coriaceous like those of lovage, glaucous-green, pinnated, with pinnatifid segments whose lobes are oblong and obtuse; the petioles terete, and channeled only at the base. The stem is herbaceous, 8 or 10 feet high, and about 6 inches in circumference at the base; it is solid, smooth, and clothed with membraneous sheaths The general umbels have from 10 to 20 rays; the partial ones 5 or 6 flowers. The flowers are pale-yellow, succeeded by a flat, thin, reddish-brown fruit, like that of parsnip, only rather larger and darker, and slightly hairy or rough. The plant varies somewhat owing to its location and the character of the ground (L.—Falconer-Royle).

History.— Asafoetida is indigenous to Persia and Thibet. It was personally examined and imperfectly delineated by Kaempfer, in 1687. According to Polak it is principally gathered in the country from Ispahan to Mahior, and that part which separates Abedeh and Murgab , and is much used as a culinary article, and to remove spasm. In several provinces it is planted in gardens to keep away destructive insects. The gum-resin is obtained by incisions into the upper part of the root, or by slicing it successively in small pieces; plants under four years are not made use of, as they yield but little, if any, of the juice. When the leaves begin to decay, the root-leaves and stem are twisted off close to the root, and the soil is removed from its crown. About 40 days afterward a thin slice is cut off transversely from its top, and a milky juice of a fetid, alliaceous odor gradually exudes. In about two days, or when this exudation has become hardened, it is scraped off, and another thin slice removed as before, from which juice again flows, and this process is repeated until no more juice can be obtained; while this collection is going on the root is constantly protected from the solar rays. The concrete juice from several plants are then put together, further hardened, and disposed of for home use or foreign exportation. Host of the gum used in medicine comes from Afghanistan and Persia . The purest gum is known by the vernacular, hing. According to Dymock the brown asafoetida is produced by the Ferula alliacea, Boissier. The product principally found in our markets is that shipped from Bombay and known as hingra, a product largely admixed with stones and dirt. Dymock states that sliced potatoes have been used to adulterate asafoetida.

Description.— Asafoetida gum-resin is brought to America in packages of various weights, but seldom less than 50 or 60 pounds each. The U. S. P. describes it as occurring "in irregular masses composed of whitish tears, which are imbedded in a yellowish-gray or brownish-gray, sticky mass. The tears, when hard, break with a conchoidal fracture, showing a milk-white color, which changes gradually, on exposure, to pink, and finally to brown. It has a persistent, alliaceous odor, and a bitter, alliaceous, acrid taste. When triturated with water it yields a milk-white emulsion, which becomes yellow on the addition of ammonia water. It is partly soluble in ether, and at least 60 per cent of it should dissolve in alcohol"—(U. S. P.). Those masses should be selected which are clear, of a pale, reddish color, and variegated with a great number of white tears, and on burning they should not have an odor of pitch. Berzelius and Thomson give as its specific gravity, 1.327. Age hardens it and impairs its properties; it becomes pulverable at a diminished temperature, as in frosty weather; in warm weather it becomes soft and adheres to the pestle. Moderate heat softens it so far that it may be squeezed through a coarse cloth, and freed from impurities of a mechanical nature; a stronger heat causes it to froth, and at a red heat it burns with a white flame.

Rubbed with cold or warm water, Asafoetida gum is dissolved, forming a smooth white, or reddish, persistent emulsion, in which the resin and volatile oil are suspended. With rectified alcohol, which is its best menstruum, it forms a clear, yellowish-red tincture. Spirit dissolves the resin and oil, but is too feeble a solvent. Sulphuric ether dissolves the volatile oil and a portion of resin; solution of caustic potash dissolves it almost entirely, forming an emulsion when the alkali is neutralized; and solution of ammonia dissolves the gum and oil, with part of the resin. It readily unites with other resins, gum-resins, and wax; and is best preserved in bladders kept in tin boxes.

Chemical Composition.—Asafoetida contains volatile oil, resin soluble in ether, a tasteless resin insoluble in ether, various gums, sulphate of calcium, carbonate of calcium, oxide of iron, and alumina, malate of calcium, etc. The volatile oil may be obtained by distillation with water or alcohol; at first it is pale-green, but becomes yellowish-brown by age, is lighter than water, of a powerfully offensive odor, and a taste peculiar to the gum-resin; it contains sulphur (Zeise). In odor it closely resembles that of the persulphide of allyl, procured from oil of mustard. According to Schimmel & Co. (Semi-Annual Report, October, 1893) the gum-resin yields from 3.3 to 3.7 per cent of oil, having a specific gravity of 0.985, at 15° C. (59° F.), and an optical rotation of —9° 15'; and according to Semmler's investigations (1891) it contains a terpene, probably pinene; also the sulphurous combinations, C10H14S2 and C11H20S2, and, beside other compounds, a body having the formula (C10H16O)n. Fractionally distilled the volatile oil yields, at 300° C. (572° F.), a beautiful blue oil (Pharmacographia). The oil and the bitter resin are the active principles. The resin is but partially soluble in ether and is soluble in alcohol. It contains ferulaic acid (C10H10O4), a substance crystallizing in iridescent, acicular crystals, having neither taste nor odor. The resin fused with alkali yields resorcin (C6H6O2). A body named umbelliferon (C9H6O3), as well as oils of various colors, may be obtained by dry distillation of the resin. Acetic, formic, malic, and valerianic acids have also been found in asafoetida. Sulphate of calcium has been found as an adulteration of this gum-resin, occurring in commercial samples sometimes to the extent of 50 per cent. The U. S. P. requirement (60 per cent soluble in alcohol) is not reached by asafoetida of commerce. Were the standard made 40 per cent, the drug would better conform to requirements (J. U. Lloyd in Pharm. Review, 1896).

Action, Medical Uses, and Dosage.—The odour of asafoetida is imparted to the breath, secretions, flatus, and gastric eructations. Its properties are stimulant, antispasmodic, expectorant, emmenagogue, and vermifuge (Ed.). Improper in inflammatory conditions of the system, but of marked value in purely functional nervous disorders, with excitability, and as a gastric stimulant in gastro-intestinal atony, with flatulence. It allays gastric irritation. Used in croup, pertussis, hysteria, infantile convulsions, flatulent colic, chronic catarrh, chlorosis, spasmodic nervous diseases of females, and, in combination with morphine and quinine, in sick or nervous headache. With resin of podophyllum and resin of cimicifuga, it is beneficial in chorea. Likewise efficient in amenorrhoea and dysmenorrhoea, and as an injection in tympanitic abdomen, lumbricus, and ascarides. In hysteria its effects are especially good, sometimes preventing the attack if given early, or if the disorder be already developed it tends to modify its force. In the tympanitic states of the bowels during fevers, or when only constipation exists, it is a prompt remedy. As an antispasmodic it holds a secondary place, probably acting best in those disorders arising from a disordered stomach. Minute doses are asserted to increase the mammary secretion. As a remedy for bronchial cough, dry, deep-seated and stubborn, a 2-grain pill every 8 hours will give quite positive results. Asafoetida is best adapted to cases exhibiting nervous depression, with more or less feebleness, and particularly if associated with gastric derangements with constipation, flatulence, and tardy or imperfect menstruation. Dose, in powder or pill, from 5 to 10 or 20 grains; of the tincture, from 30 drops to 2 fluid drachms. Asafoetida is also employed alone, or in combination, in the form of a suppository, or an enema.

Specific Indications and Uses: Nervous irritation, with mental depression, headache, and dizziness; hysteroidal conditions; convulsive disorders from purely functional wrongs of the stomach, gastro-intestinal irritation, with flatulence and palpitation of the heart; dry, deep, choking, bronchial cough.

Used plant part: The milk juice (obtained from the root), which becomes a brown, resin-like mass after drying. The trading form is either the pure resin or so-called “compounded asafetida” which is a fine powder consisting to more than 50% of rice flour and gum arabic to prevent lumping. The advantage of the compounded form is that is is easier to dose.

Plant family: Apiaceae (parsley family).

Sensory quality: Very strong smell, rather repugnant, remotely similar to (not altogether fresh) garlic.

Main constituents: Dried asafetida consists mostly of a resin (25 to 60% of the total mass, 60% of which are esters of ferula acid) and a complex carbohydrate part (25 to 30%). The essential oil (10%) contains a wealth of sulfur compounds, mainly (R)-2-butyl-1-propenyl disulphide (50%), 1-(1-methylthiopropyl) 1-propenyl disulphide and 2-butyl-3-methylthioallyl disulphide. Furthermore, di-2-butyl trisulphide, 2-butyl methyl trisulphide, di-2-butyl disulphide and even di-2-butyl tetrasulphide have been found. (Phytochemistry, 23, 899, 1984)

The essential oil contains also some terpenes (a-pinene, phellandrenes) and hendecylsulphonyl acetic acid. Ethers of sesquiterpenes with coumarins have also been identified (farnesiferoles).

Origin: Various species of genus Ferula grow wild from the Eastern Mediterranean to Central Asia .

Galbanum is the dried latex from a related species (Ferula galbaniflua) also native to Central Asia ( Iran ). Galbanum has an aromatic, pleasant odour and is mainly used for incenses. See mahaleb cherry for an explanation of the name galbanum.

Etymology: The Latin name ferula means “carrier” or “vehicle”; a related species (F. vulgaris), native to the Mediterranean , is mentioned in the Greek mythology as the plant that helped Prometheus to carry the stolen fire from the Sun to the Earth. It has been suggested that stone-age nomad tribes might have indeed used the hollow stems to transport fire between their camps. The same Latin root appears in the botanical name of mango.

The species name assa-foetida is made up of elements from two languages: Assa is a latinized form of Farsi aza [ ??? ] “resin, mastic”, and Latin foetidus means “smelling, fetid”.

The modern Farsi name angozad [ ????? ] or anguze [ ?????? ] derives from ang [ ??? ] “gum; sap” and zad [ ?? ] “resin”. The first element ang is also foun d in the names of asafetida in many Indic languages, e.g., Hindi hing or Dhivehi hungu.

Some very picturesque names (German Teufelsdreck, French merde du diable, Czech certovo lejno, Swedish dyvelsträck and Turkish seytan tersi), all meaning more or less politely “dung of devil”, exemplify the small enthusiasm this unusual spice meets outside the regions of its traditional usage. Latvian driveldrikis is an obsolete pharmaceutical term probably derived from a Northern Germanic language; there is also a Latvian calque velna suds “devil's shit”. A similar motive is represented by Hungarian ördöggyökér “satan's root” and Finnish pirunpihka “devil's gum”.

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Cont / Details about the constituents and actions of the individual whole herbal powders contained in Herbactive Herbalist's ABC Daily Herbal NutriPowder Plus

 

FUCUS VESICULOSUS – BLADDERWRACK; KELP

Fucaceae; Names: Kelp, Seawrack, Kelpware, Black-tang, Bladder Fucus, Cutweed.

Habitat: A seaweed common in colder waters.

Part Used: The whole plant.

Constituents: Phenolic compounds, phloroglucinol, its dehydropolymerization products the , the fucophorethols, phlorotannin derivatives

Mucopolysaccharides, algin.

Sulphuryl-, sulphonyl- and phosphonyl-glycosyl ester diglycerides

Polar lipids

Trace metals, particularly iodine.

Actions : Anti-hypothyroid, anti-rheumatic.

Indications : Bladderwrack has proved most useful in the treatment of under active thyroid glands and goitre. Through the regulation of thyroid function there is an improvement in all the associated symptoms. Where obesity is associated with thyroid trouble, this herb may be very helpful in reducing the excess weight. It has a reputation in helping the relief of rheumatism and rheumatoid arthritis, both used internally and as an external application upon inflamed joints.

Ellingwood describes the uses of Fucus thus: "This agent is used for the specific purpose of reducing unhealthy fat in excessive adiposity. If given in doses of from 1/2 to 2 drams, 3 or 4 times daily, it has reduced excessively fat patients in a satisfactory manner without interfering in anyway with the normal health functions.

"It is in the obesity of individuals of the lymphatic temperament that the beneficial effects of this drug are the most marked. It has little or no influence in the reduction of the fleshiness of persons of active habits or of those of the sanguine temperament. In these cases strict regulation of the diet affords the only prospects of relief, but owing to the keenness of the appetite usually present, this regulation is rarely enforced. Fucus shows its most decided influence upon women in whom there exist menstrual derangement's, as menorrhagia and leucorrhoea, owing to a general a tonic and flabby condition of the uterine tissues. In such cases an improvement in the local derangement's usually precedes the general reduction of fat and the improved tonicity of the general system. Fucus is advised as a specific remedy in the treatment of both exophthalmic and simple goitre. It is especially successful in patients not above 30 years of age. It is also suggested in the treatment of fatty degeneration of the heart. It is of service in desquamative nephritis and in irritation and inflammation of the bladder. When general muscular relaxation is present, it is of service in the treatment of menstrual derangement's."

Preparations & Dosage : It may usefully be taken in tablet form as a dietary supplement or as an infusion by pouring a cup of boiling water onto 2-3 teaspoonfuls of the dried herb and leaving it to steep for 10 minutes. This should be drunk three times a day.

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Cont / Details about the constituents and actions of the individual whole herbal powders contained in Herbactive Herbalist's ABC Daily Herbal NutriPowder Plus

 

GANODERMA LUCIDUM – REISHI; GANODERMA

Ganoderma lucidum (Ganoderma mushroom, whole; Ling Zhi) - sweet, slightly warm; LU, HE, SP, LIV, KI.

Action: sedative and tranquillizer; tonifies blood and vital energy; antitussive and anti-asthmatic. Uses: insomnia, palpitation, dizziness, forgetfulness due to neurasthenia and hypertension; asthma, chronic bronchitis; general body weakness or debility. Used in slices, syrup, tincture. Ref. Yeung.

The Latin word lucidum means ``shiny'' or ``brilliant'' and refers to the varnished surface of reishi's cap, which is reddish orange to black. The stalk usually is attached to the cap at the side. In Japan , 99 percent of reishi growing in the wild are found on old plum trees, although wild reishi are rare.

Medical uses: For 4,000 years, the Chinese and Japanese have called upon reishi to treat liver disorders, hypertension, arthritis, and other ailments.

Recent test-tube and human studies have demonstrated antiallergic, anti-inflammatory, antibacterial, and antioxidant effects. When more than 2,000 Chinese patients with chronic bronchitis were given reishi syrup in tablet form during the 1970s, 60 to 90 percent showed a marked improvement in health, including increased appetite, within two weeks.

GARCINIA. Scientific classificationKingdom: Plantae (unranked): Angiosperms (unranked): Eudicots (unranked): Rosids Order: Malpighiales Family: ClusiaceaeGenus: Garcinia Species: G. gummi-gutta Binomial name Garcinia gummi-gutta (L.) Roxb. Synonyms Cambogia binucao Blanco Cambogia gemmi-gutta L. Cambogia solitaria Stokes Garcinia affinis Wight & Arn. Garcinia cambogia (Gaertn.) Desr. Garcinia sulcata Stokes Garcinia gummi-gutta is a tropical species of Garcinia native to Indonesia. Common names include Garcinia cambogia (a former scientific name), as well as brindleberry, Malabar tamarind, and kudam puli (pot tamarind).This fruit looks like a small pumpkin and is green to pale yellow in color. Although it has received considerable media attention purporting its effects on weight loss, little clinical evidence supports this claim. Garcinia Cambogia is the latest buzz in the "battle of the bulge". With millions of people praising this so called "miracle pill" that you take as a supplement to lose weight, it has been getting a lot of attention since it was recently featured on The Dr. Oz Show. Surprisingly, many people who struggle daily with their weight have yet to hear about this powerful option. Those that have heard of the Garcinia Cambogia bean diet are confused about what it is, how to use it and how to avoid falling for ineffective formulas and downright scams. According to Dr Lindsey (The guest host on the popular Dr Oz show) Garcinia Cambogia works in more than one way, "The first way is it goes in and causes the body to burn glucose, or sugar, and burn fat, mainly in the liver. The second way, the most important way, is it slows the release of sugar into the blood stream. So when you don't have sugar building up in the blood stream, you don't have fat building up because sugar turns to fat. When the two are combined together, you get this synergistic effect that basically burns, blocks and stops fat. It's also clinically tested to be natural, safe and effective." Your weight loss solution is here. Taking Pure Garcinia Cambogia helps prevent fat from being made and moves towards glycogen, which is an energy source that helps burn more fat. As the fat gets blocked from being made, you start seeing the results! Garcinol is a polyisoprenylated phenolic obtained from the ring of the kokum fruit G. indica. Traditionally used for inflammatory ailments, rheumatic pain and bowel complaints. Garcinol is known to induce apoptosis in leukemia HL-60 cells by triggering the release of cytochrome-c... also acting as a preventive to developing breast cancer cells, prostate, and pancreatic cancer cells. Garcinol has poor bioavailability and rapid metabolic clearance from the body so it's complete biological benefits are not utilised. (Best to hold it in the mouth as long as possible - anh). Garcinia is also used for obesity and associated symptoms. from Journal of Herbal Medicine 4 2014 175-187. Move Over Weight Watchers, a new dietary supplement called Garcinia Cambogia has doctors raving and is the latest buzz in the “battle of the bulge”. Since recently being studied on a popular doctor television show, millions of people are praising this so called “Holy Grail weight loss supplement”. Surprisingly, many people who struggle daily with their weight have yet to hear about this powerful supplement. Normally “weight-loss” supplements, especially weight-loss supplements that claim “easy” weight loss or “fast” weight loss are not recommended. Most nutritionist strongly believe that the key to weight loss is a healthy diet and exercise, but there are some incredible super foods that can deliver an added boost. One super food in particular, the Garcinia Cambogia, is creating major media buzz – But not without controversy. Critics say the compound hydroxycitric acid, or HCA (the extract from the Garcinia Cambogia fruit) cause such dramatic weight loss that they are ripe for abuse by people who only want to lose weight for cosmetic reasons. Proponents of the nutrients claim that they have been proven by scientific studies to be effective and safe, and that banning the natural compounds would be akin to banning vitamins. But it’s not just celebrity TV talk show hosts and critics claiming the fat loss effects of Garcinia Cambogia, there is real clinical data to back up these claims. Participants Lost 15 Pounds in clinical Study (15% Body Fat). Due to the high antioxidant value in Garcinia fruit and for reasons of other scientific studies (see above) Garcinia is also in specific Herbactive Tonics: PancreasMore, InflammationLess, PainLess, WBC-Less, BreastShield, ProstateLess, HerbShield, and herbactive bowel medicines.
Other names of garcinia: Acide Hydroxycitrique, AHC, Brindal Berry, Brindle Berry, Cambogia gummi-guta, Garcinia Cambogi, Garcinia cambogia, Garcinia gummi-guta, Garcinia quaesita, Gorikapuli, Hydroxycitrate, Hydroxycitric Acid, HCA, Kankusta, Malabar Tamarind, Mangosta. Garcinia is a plant. The fruit rind is used to make medicine. Don’t confuse garcinia with Garcinia hanburyi (gamboge resin).
How does it work? Developing research suggests that garcinia might prevent fat storage and control appetite. It is purple and highly antioxidant. Garcinia Cambogia is a plant often used in Asian recipes. The skin of the fruit contains a substance called Hydroxycitric Acid (HCA), which is the active ingredient. It is used in Asian cooking. Also used in cooking in Australia. You can buy Garcinia from Herbactive Health.

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GINKGO BILOBA - GINKGO LEAF

Ginkgo biloba (Ginkgo seed or leaf, Bai Guo) - persistent cough, asthma, frequent micturition, tinnitis, circulation (peripheral vascular disease), intermittent claudication, cerebral insufficiency, ageing, senility, Alzheimer's, vitaligo (pigmentation) [German study 2004]; LU KI. Improves memory, alertness and general mental function. Antioxidant and anti-allergic. Active constituents: ginkgo flavone glycosides, terpene lactones.

An abundance of research has been undertaken on this ancient plant, revealing a wide range of profound and important therapeutic effects. They can be grouped into cardiovascular, neurological and metabolic effects. Here we shall focus on the cardiovascular indications. Please refer to the sections on the nervous system and immune support for a review of the rest of Ginkgo's uses.

Laboratory research on Ginkgo's cardiovascular effects.

In one test, microscopic particles were injected into the carotid artery of rats, mimicing arterial blockage. Ginkgo protected the unfortunate animals from the destructive effects.

Increased levels of glucose and ATP were found, thus helping to maintain energy levels within individual cells.

It reduced the tendency for thrombus formation in veins and arteries, suggesting a use in the prevention of coronary thrombosis and in recovery from strokes and heart attacks.

Clinical research

Patients with organic and neurological angiopathy were observed for physiological changes resulting from exercise, after using Ginkgo. Results indicate it would be useful in central and peripheral vascular disease, including diabetic angiopathy.

It lowered blood pressure and dilated peripheral blood vessels, in patients recovering from thrombosis.

Microcirculation in the conjunctiva of patients with disturbances in cerebral blood supply consistently increased. Capillary and venous blood flow to the head increased because of decreased resistance to flow occurred. A toning action occurs as it eases venular spasms that often occur in elderly and arteriosclerotic patients. The herb can combat both vascular spasm and restore tone and circulation in areas subject to vasomotor paralysis.

It increases peripheral blood flow with no lessening of cerebral circulation. Chemical vaso-dilators accumulate in the expanded vessels rather than circulate to the veins that feed the central nervous system. Ginkgo, however, increasing blood flow to both the periphery and the brain.

In patients with peripheral arterial insufficiency improvement in all experimental measures, including the ability to walk without pain and blood flow to the legs.

In Parkinson's disease secondary to cerebral arteriosclerosis, the herb increased blood supply to the brain.

65% successful treatment of focal or diffuse cerebral vascular disease.

80% successful treatment of cerebral circulatory insufficiency, measured as improvement in mental functioning, EEG parameters, and cerebral angiogram. 80% success rate in patients with chronic cerebral insufficiency measured by symptoms such as vertigo, headache.

92% success rate in patients with cerebrovascular insufficiency and all pathological findings disappeared after 18 days of treatment.

80% success in treating headache and lesser per cent success in case of migraine.

40% success in elderly patients with arterial insufficiency of lower limbs.

72% success in the treatment of chronic vasculopathies.

successful treatment of chronic arterial obliteration.

Therapeutic Uses

Ginkgo has wide application for treating various forms of vascular and neurological disease. It has been recommended for:

vertigo, headache, tinnitus, inner ear disturbances including partial deafness; impairment of memory and ability to concentrate; diminished intellectual capacity and alertness as a result of insufficient circulation; anxiety, depression, neurological disorders : complications of stroke and skull injuries; diminished sight and hearing ability due to vascular insufficiency; intermittent claudication as a result of arterial obstruction; a sensitivity to cold and pallor in the toes due to peripheral circulatory insufficiency; Raynaud's disease: cerebral vascular and nutritional insufficiency; hormonal and neural based disorders as well as angiopathic trophic disorders; arterial circulatory disturbances due to aging, diabetes and nicotine abuse; sclerosis of cerebral arteries with and without mental manifestations; arteriosclerotic angiopathy of lower limbs; diabetic tissue damage with danger of gangrene : chronic arterial obliteration; circulatory disorders of the skin, as well as ulcerations caused by ischaemia.

Constituents

acacetin

acenapthene

acetic-acid

afzelin

alanine

amentoflavone

g-aminobutyric-acid

anacardic-acid

apigenin

arabinose

arginine (this is a conditionally essential amino acid that becomes increasingly necessary under conditions of stess, injury, or disease; Arginine functions to enhance the immune system and inhibitcellular replication of tumors; the highest concentrations of Arginine ae found in the connective tissue.)

ascorbic-acid

ash

asparagine

aspartic-acid

betulaprenols

bilobalide

bilobanone

bilobetin

bilobol

butyric-acid

calcium

calcium-oxalate

caproic-acid

caprylic-acid

carbohydrates

cardanol

cardol

beta-carotene

d-catechin

ceryl-alcohol tw

citric-acid

copper

p-coumaric-acid

p-cymene

cysteine

cystine

-(e)-dihydroatlantone jsg

-(z)-dihydroatlantone jsg

-dimethyl--diiso-propylbenzene

dna - fl(male) docosanol

elemol

l-epicatechin

l-epigallocatechin (this constituent is an important polyphenolic compound also found in green tea that exert anti-mutagenic anti-proliferative, and anti-neoplastic poperties, and anti-aging (see ageless tonic); it neutralizes free radicals and prevents cell damage; it stimulates detoxification through selective induction and modification of phase I and phase II metabolic enzymes (see BiochimBiophys Acta 1478(1):51-60 – Demeule,M., Brossard,M., et al 2000 )

alpha-ethyllathosterol

beta-eudesmol

gamma-eudesmol

fat

fiber

formic-acid

uctose

gadoleic-acid

galactose

d-gallocatechin

ginkgetin

ginkgol

ginkgolic-acid

ginkgolide-a

ginkgolide-acid

ginkgolide-b

ginkgolide-c

ginkgolide-m

ginnol

ginnon

d-glucaric-acid

glucomannan

glucose

glutamic-acid

glycine

-heptacosanol

hexacosanol

alpha-hexenal

histidine

homoserine

hydroginkgolic-acid

-hydroxyanacardic-acid

-hydroxyginkgolic-acid

-hydroxykynurenic-acid

alpha-ionone

beta-ionone

ipuranol

iron

isoginkgetin

isoleucine

-isopropylphenol

isorhamnetin

kaempferol

kaempferol--o-alpha('''-p-coumaroyl-glucosyl-beta--rhamnoside)

kaempferol--rhamno-glucoside

kaempferol--rutinoside

leucine

trans-linalool-oxide

linoleic-acid

alpha-linolenic-acid

luteolin

lysine (l-lysine is a natural amino acid that is a building block of collagen and elastin fibers with l-proline); prevents digestion of collagen by blocking sites where enzymes attach, making this nutrient critical in preventing the degradation of collective tissue; l-lysine is not produced by the human bodyso the health of the connective tissue depends on optimal daily intake of this amino acid as well as others.)

magnesium

manganese

mannan

mannose

methionine

'-methoxybilobetin '-methoxypyridoxine

'-o-methylmyricetin--rutinoside

myristic-acid

niacin

nonacosane

-nonacosanol

-nonacosanol

octacosanol

oleic-acid

-(e)--oxo-dihydroatlantone

palmitic-acid

palmitoleic-acid

pantothenic-acid

-(pentadec--enyl)--di-hydroxybenzoic-acid

zz'-(-pentadien--diyl)diphenol

pentosans

pentosans

phenylalanine

phosphorus

pinitol

pulnin

tassium

procyanidin

prodelphinidin

proline

propionic-acid

protein

quercetin

quercetin--o-alpha('''-p-coumaroyl-glucosyl-beta--rhamnoside)

quercetin--rhamnoglucoside

quercetin--rutinoside

quinic-acid

raffinose

raffinose

riboflavin

sciadopitysin

sequoyitol

serine

alpha-sesamin

shikimic-acid

sitosterol

sodium

spinasterol

starch

stearic-acid

stigmasterol

succinic-acid

sucrose

sucrose

tannin

thiamin

threonine

thymol

p-tolyl-propylene

tricetin

-trimethyl-dihydronaphthalene

tryptophan

tyrosine

uroshiols

valerianic-acid

valine

wax xylose

zinc

 

Citations from the Medline database for the genus Ginkgo

Agnoli A.

Clinical and psychometric aspects of the therapeutic effects of GBE.

In: Effects of GBE and Organic Cerebral Impairment, Paris , London , John Lilley, 1985.

Allain H Raoul P Lieury A LeCoz F Gandon JM d'Arbigny P

Effect of two doses of ginkgo biloba extract (EGb 761) on the dual- coding test in elderly subjects.

In: Clin Ther (1993 May-Jun) 15(3):549-58

The subjects of this double-blind study were 18 elderly men and women (mean age, 69.3 years) with slight age-related memory impairment. In a crossover-study design, each subject received placebo or an extract of Ginkgo biloba (EGb 761) (320 mg or 600 mg) 1 hour before performing a dual-coding test that measures the speed of information processing; the test consists of several coding series of drawings and words presented at decreasing times of 1920, 960, 480, 240, and 120 ms. The dual-coding phenomenon (a break point between coding verbal material and images) was demonstrated in all the tests. After placebo, the break point was observed at 960 ms and dual coding beginning at 1920 ms. After each dose of the ginkgo extract, the break point (at 480 ms) and dual coding (at 960 ms) were significantly shifted toward a shorter presentation time, indicating an improvement in the speed of information processing.

Allard M

Treatment of the disorders of aging with Ginkgo biloba extract. From pharmacology to clinical medicine

In: PRESSE MED 1986 Sep 25; 15(31):1540-5 (Published in FRENCH)

Ginkgo biloba extract is prescribed in psychic and behavioural disorders of the elderly, in peripheral vascular deficiency and in functional disorders of ischaemic origin in the E.N.T. and eye areas. Numerous controlled clinical trials justify these prescriptions and are in agreement with the pharmacological data currently available. Experimentally, Ginkgo biloba extract has proved active on the circulatory and rheological functions, on neuronal metabolism threatened by ischaemia or hypoxia, on neurotransmission and on membrane lesions caused by free oxygenated radicals. Concerning Alzheimer's disease and dementia, no firm conclusion can be drawn for the time being due to the lack of animal model. However, experimental data suggest that the product may act on a number of major elements of these diseases. From what is already known about Ginkgo biloba extract, it appears that it fulfills the conditions laid down by the W.H.O. concerning the development of drugs effective against cerebral ageing.

Apaydin C Oguz Y Agar A Yargicoglu P Demir N Aksu G

Visual evoked potentials and optic nerve histopathology in normal and diabetic rats and effect of ginkgo biloba extract.

In: Acta Ophthalmol (Copenh) (1993 Oct) 71(5):623-8

The purpose of this study was to test the possible therapeutic role of ginkgo biloba extract on the impairment of visual function and pathological histology of the optic nerve caused by early diabetes. Ginkgo biloba extract entraps oxygenated free radicals and is also a strong inhibitor of the platelet activation factor (PAF). For this purpose, VEP recordings and optic nerve histopathology were studied on alloxan diabetic and normal Swiss albino rats in four experimental groups. The VEP recordings showed no statistical significance between diabetic and normal rats. However, the amplitudes were significantly increased in diabetic animals with ginkgo biloba extract compared with the diabetics, supposing an impression of axonal protection. But the amplitude values were decreased in normal rats treated with the same extract compared with normal animals, assuming a toxic activity. Optic nerve ultrastructural findings also confirmed these VEP changes. It was concluded that this extract could be encouraging for human clinical trials of diabetes.

Atzori C Bruno A Chichino G Bombardelli E Scaglia M Ghione M

Activity of bilobalide, a sesquiterpene from Ginkgo biloba, on Pneumocystis carinii.

In: Antimicrob Agents Chemother (1993 Jul) 37(7):1492-6

The sesquiterpene bilobalide, extracted from Ginkgo biloba leaves, was tested in vitro and in vivo for the ability to inhibit Pneumocystis carinii growth. Bilobalide was inhibitory to trophozoites cultured on human embryonic lung fibroblasts (HEL 299) at approximately the same concentration as trimethoprim plus sulfamethoxazole (lowest effective concentration, 50 micrograms of bilobalide per ml versus 9/45 microgram of trimethoprim- sulfamethoxazole per ml), inducing microscopically detectable morphological changes in the cytoplasm of the parasite. In pharmacologically immunosuppressed Sprague-Dawley rats transtracheally infected with a suspension of about 5 x 10(6) P. carinii trophozoites per ml, the daily intraperitoneal administration of bilobalide (10 mg/kg of body weight for 8 days) lowered the number of organisms by approximately 2 logs (that is, about 99%). There was no apparent toxicity either in uninfected HEL 299 feeder cells or in infected and uninfected animals. These studies suggest that the sesquiterpene bilobalide might be useful for therapy of and prophylaxis against P. carinii infections in humans.

Bauer U. ,

Six months double-blind randomised clinical trial of Ginkgo biloba extract versus placebo in two parallel groups in patients suffering from peripheral arterial insufficiency.

In: Arzneimittel - ForsehlDru: Res, 1984, 34, 716-720.

Boismare F.:

Etude de l'action hemodynamique de l'extrait concentre de Ginkgo biloba comparee a celle du gaz carbonique chez le sujet jeune et chez le sujet senile.

In: Ouesl Medical, 1976, 29, 747-749.

Bono Y., Mouren P.:

L'insuffisance circulatoire cerebrale et son traitement par l'extrait de Ginkgo biloba.

In: Med. Med., 1975, 3, 59-62.

Boudouresques G., Vigouroux R., Boudouresques J.:

Interet et place de l'extrait de Ginkgo biloba en pathologie vasculaire cerebrale.

In: Medecine Pralicienne, 1975, 59:, 75-78.

Bourgain RH Maes L Andries R Braquet P

Thrombus induction by endogenic paf-acether and its inhibition by Ginkgo Biloba extracts in the guinea pig.

In: PROSTAGLANDINS (1986 Jul) 32(1):142-4

The anti-thrombotic effects of specific paf-acether antagonist BN 52021 were compared to the effects of Ginkgo Biloba extracts A, B, (A+ B), and C. Local superfusion of BN 52021 over an experimentally injured arterial segment embolizes an existent paf-acether induced platelet thrombus. When applied before paf-acether, BN 52021 prevents local thromboformation in this model. Applied intravenously, BN 52021 reduces local thromboformation in a significant way. As compared to this BN 52021 standard, only Ginkgo Biloba B and the (A + B)-mixture present major thromboreductive activity.

Braquet P

Cedemin, a Ginkgo biloba extract, should not be considered as a PAF antagonist [letter; comment]

In: Am J Gastroenterol (1993 Dec) 88(12):2138

Chabrier PE Roubert P

[Effect of Ginkgo biloba extract on the hemato-encephalic barrier]

Effet de l'extrait de Ginkgo biloba sur la barriere hemo-encephalique.

In: Presse Med (1986 Sep 25) 15(31):1498-501

The different methods used to explore the blood-brain barrier (made up of cerebral capillary vessels), and notably, at molecular level, isolated microvessel preparations, have greatly improved our knowledge in this particular field. Some of these methods could be used to evaluate the protective effects of therapeutic substances, such as Ginkgo biloba extract, on the blood-brain barrier.

Chaterjee G.:

Effects of Ginkgo biloba extract on cerebral metabolic processes.

In: Effects of GBE and Organic Cerebral Impairment, Paris , London , John Lilley, 1985.

Clostre F

[From the body to the cell membrane: the different levels of pharmacological action of Ginkgo biloba extract]

In: PRESSE MED 1986 Sep 25; 15(31):1529-38 (Published in FRENCH)

The pharmacological study of Ginkgo biloba extract has required numerous experiments over several years: diffe rent pathological models of cerebral ischaemia to evaluate its effects, and experiments at both cellular and molecular levels to determine its mechanisms of action. In experimental models of ischaemia, oedema and hypoxia, Ginkgo biloba extract reduced vascular, tissular and metabolic disturbances as well as their neurological and behavioural consequences. The pharmacological effects of Ginkgo biloba extract concern vascular, rheological and metabolic processes. Several membrane mechanisms seem to be involved: protection of the membrane ultrastructure against free radicals, modulation of some enzymatic systems and ionic pumps. The originality of the pharmacological properties of Ginkgo biloba extract lies in preferential focusing of its effects on ischaemic areas.

Creutzig A

[Is Ginkgo biloba extract EGb 761 clinically effective in intermittent claudication? (letter)]

In: Vasa (1993) 22(2):189-90 (Published in German)

Diwok M Kuklinski B Ernst B

[Superoxide dismutase activity of Ginkgo biloba extract]

In: Z Gesamte Inn Med (1992 Jul) 47(7):308-11 (Published in German)

The Ginkgo biloba extract is obtained from green leaves of the Ginkgo biloba tree. Preparations with this active substance are among others used for the treatment of disturbances of the cerebral function and arteriosclerotic diseases. In in-vitro and in-vivo studies antagonistic effects of radical scavenger and PAF (platelet activating factor) were described. In this study a concentration- depending superoxide dismutase activity of the Ginkgo biloba extract rokan liquid could be made evident.

Droy-Lefaix-M-T; Szabo-M-E; Doly-M

Ischaemia and reperfusion-induced injury in rat retina obtained from normotensive and spontaneously hypertensive rats: Effects of free radical scavengers.

In: International Journal of Tissue Reactions (1993)15(2): 85-91

The authors have studied the effects of free radical scavengers, superoxide dismutase (SOD) and extract of Ginkgo biloba (EGb 761, flavone-rich extract) on ion shifts (Na, K and Ca) induced by ischaemia and reperfusion in rat retina obtained from normotensive and spontaneously hypertensive rats. Eyes were subjected to 90 min of ischaemia by occlusion of the retinal artery, followed by 4 and 24 hours of reperfusion. SOD (15, 000 U/kg, i.v.) or EGb 761 (50 mg/kg, per os) was administered in a daily dose for 10 days. In the drug-free control groups, 90 min of ischaemia significantly increased tissue Na gains from their pre-ischaemic control values of 63 +- 7 mu-M/g dry weight (in retina obtained from normotensive rats) and 76 mu-M/g dry weight (in retina obtained from hypertensive rats) to 89 +- 9 mu-M/g dry weight and 101 +- 7 mu-M/g dry weight, respectively. During reperfusion, a further elevation was found in retinal Na in both the normotensive and hypertensive groups. Probably, because of the ischaemia-induced inhibition of Na-K-ATPase, retinal K loss was detected after ischaemia and reperfusion, respectively. An accumulation of retinal Ca was measured after ischaemia and reperfusion in the normotensive and spontaneously hypertensive groups. Both free radical scavengers significantly reduced the maldistribution of ions induced by ischaemia and reperfusion, but the effectiveness of drugs was more evident in normotensive than hypertensive groups. The present results indicate that the elimination of free radicals by free radical scavengers may reduce, probably via an indirect mode, the reperfusion-induced ionic imbalance and improve the ionic homeostasis in injured retinal cells obtained from normotensive and spontaneously hypertensive rats.

Dumont E Petit E Tarrade T Nouvelot A

UV-C irradiation-induced peroxidative degradation of microsomal fatty acids and proteins: protection by an extract of Ginkgo biloba (EGb761).

In: Free Radic Biol Med (1992 Sep) 13(3):197-203

After exposure of rat liver microsomes to UV-C irradiation, analysis of membrane fatty acids by gas chromatography confirmed that EGb 761, a drug containing a dosed and standardized extract of Ginkgo biloba, provides effective protection against free radical attack in vitro. This analysis, coupled with thiobarbituric acid (TBA) reaction, permitted qualitative and overall quantitative evaluation of radical- induced damage to polyunsaturated fatty acids (PUFA), as well as evidence of the antioxidant properties of the Ginkgo biloba extract. Assay of thiobarbituric acid reactive substances (TBARS) showed a correlation between TBARS concentration and the state of degradation of the polyunsaturated fatty acids. Mannitol (5.5 mM) did not prevent degradation of microsomal PUFA or malondialdehyde (MDA) production, nor did it prevent polymerization of membrane proteins. Low doses of EGb 761 were found to provide efficient protection of membrane PUFA regardless of individual susceptibility to peroxidation. This protection was accompanied by a decrease in the production of TBARS. EGb 761 also protected membrane proteins from the irreversible polymerization induced by these degradation products, but did not appear to prevent thiols oxidation into disulfide bonds.

Eckmann F., Schlag H.:

Etude controlee, a double insu, de l'activite de l'Extrait de Ginkgo biloba chez des malades atteints d'insuffisance cerebrale chronique.

In: Fortschritte der Medizin, 1982, 31132, 1474-1478.

Etienne A Hecquet F Clostre F

[Mechanism of action of Ginkgo biloba extract in experimental cerebral edema]

Mecanismes d'action de l'extrait de Ginkgo biloba sur l'oedeme cerebral experimental.

In: Presse Med (1986 Sep 25) 15(31):1506-10

Oedema is one of the major complication of cerebral ischaemia being at the same time a consequence and an aggravating factor. Its first phase is intracellular and cytotoxic, with breakdown of ionic pumps through loss of energy, resulting in a whole sequence of ionic perturbations characterized by loss of intracellular K+ and accumulation of water and Na+, Cl-, and Ca2+ ions in the cells of the ischaemic zone. The second phase, termed vasogenic, applies to the accumulation of lactates, inorganic phosphates and free polyunsaturated fatty acids and in particular, arachidonic acid. This last compound is responsible for the production of membrane "aggressors", amongst which free radicals play an important role. Ginkgo biloba extract limits the formation of cerebral oedema and suppresses its neurological consequences, whether the oedema is of cytotoxic (triethyltin) or vasogenic (unilateral traumatic oedema) origin. Several membrane mechanisms could be implicated in the protective action manifested by Ginkgo biloba extract against cerebral oedema.

Gautherie M Bourjat P Grosshans E Quenneville Y

[Vasodilator effect of Gingko biloba extract determined by skin thermometry and thermography]

In: THERAPIE (Sep-Oct 72) 27(5):881-92

Gessner B Voelp A Klasser M

Study of the long-term action of a Ginkgo biloba extract on vigilance and mental performance as determined by means of quantitative pharmaco-EEG and psychometric measurements.

In: Arzneimittelforschung (1985) 35(9):1459-65

Gonda R Takeda K Shimizu N Tomoda M

Characterization of a neutral polysaccharide having activity on the reticuloendothelial system from the rhizome of Curcuma longa.

In: Chem Pharm Bull ( Tokyo ) (1992 Jan) 40(1):185-8

A neutral polysaccharide, named ukonan D, was isolated from the rhizome of Curcuma longa L. It produced a single band on electrophoresis and a single peak on gel chromatography, and its molecular mass was estimated to be 28, 000. It showed remarkable reticuloendothelial system-potentiating activity in a carbon clearance test. Ukonan D is composed of L-arabinose: D-galactose: D- glucose: D-mannose in the molar ratio of 1:1:12:0.2, in addition to small amounts of peptide moiety. Methylation analysis, carbon-13 nuclear magnetic resonance and enzymic degradation studies indicated that its structural features include mainly both alpha-1, 5-linked L- arabino-beta-3, 6-branched D-galactan type and alpha-4, 6-branched D- glucan type structural units. The influence of degradation with alpha- amylase followed by the elimination of glucan side chains on its immunological activity was discussed.

Gonda R Tomoda M Ohara N Takada K

Arabinogalactan core structure and immunological activities of ukonan C, an acidic polysaccharide from the rhizome of Curcuma longa.

In: Biol Pharm Bull (1993 Mar) 16(3):235-8

Controlled Smith degradation of ukonan C, a phagocytosis-activating polysaccharide isolated from the rhizome of Curcuma longa L., was performed. The reticuloendothelial system-potentiating, anti- complementary and alkaline phosphatase-inducing activities of ukonan C and its degradation products were investigated. Methylation analyses of the primary and secondary Smith degradation products and of a de-arabinosylated product indicated that structural features of the arabinogalactan core of ukonan C include a backbone chain composed of beta-1, 3-linked D-galactose and beta-1, 4-linked D-xylose. All of the galactose units in the backbone carry side chains composed of beta-1, 6-linked D-galactosyl residues with or without terminal alpha-L-arabinose units at position 3. Ukonan C showed remarkable effects on both reticuloendothelial system-potentiating and alkaline phosphatase-inducing activities. Periodate oxidation caused a decrease in or disappearance of the immunological activities, but the controlled Smith degradation product having the arabinogalactan core structure of polysaccharide showed a pronounced effect on anti- complementary activity.

Gonda R Tomoda M Takada K Ohara N Shimizu N

The core structure of ukonan A, a phagocytosis-activating polysaccharide from the rhizome of Curcuma longa, and immunological activities of degradation products.

In: Chem Pharm Bull ( Tokyo ) (1992 Apr) 40(4):990-3

The controlled Smith degradation of ukonan A, a phagocytosis- activating polysaccharide isolated from the rhizome of Curcuma longa L., was performed. The reticuloendothelial system-potentiating, anti- complementary and alkaline phosphatase-inducing activities of ukonan A and its degradation products were investigated. Methylation analyses of both the primary and the secondary Smith degradation products indicated that the core structural features of ukonan A include a backbone chain mainly composed of beta-1, 3-linked D- galactose, beta-1, 4-linked D-xylose and alpha-1, 2-linked L-rhamnose residues. All of the galactose units in the backbone carry side chains composed of alpha-L-arabino-beta-D-galactosyl or beta-D- galactosyl residues at position 6. Ukonan A has a remarkable effect on each of the three kinds of immunological activities. Periodate oxidation caused pronounced decrease or disappearance of the activities, but the controlled Smith degradation product having the core structure of polysaccharide showed considerable restoration of these activities.

Grassel E

[Effect of Ginkgo-biloba extract on mental performance. Double-blind study using computerized measurement conditions in patients with cerebral insufficiency]

In: Fortschr Med (1992 Feb 20) 110(5):73-6 (Published in German)

Problem: The effect of ginkgo biloba extract EGb 761 on basic parameters of mental performance. Patients: Seventy-two outpatients with cerebral insufficiency at three test centers. Study design: Double-blind, randomized placebo-controlled study of 24 weeks duration. Test parameters: Psychometric computer-aided examination of the short-term memory and basic learning rate. Results: Statistically significant improvement in the shortterm memory after 6 weeks and of the learning rate after 24 weeks in the test substance group, but not in the placebo group (longitudinal analysis). The difference between the test substance and placebo groups (horizontal analysis) reached statistical significance in the 24th week. Conclusions: Treatment with ginkgo biloba extract EGb 761 improves mental/mnestic performance.

Hitzenberger G

[The effect of ginkgo biloba special extract (EGb 761, Tebofortan)]

In: Wien Med Wochenschr (1992) 142(17):371-9 (Published in German)

Ginkgo biloba special extract exerts positive effects on hemorheology and platelet aggregation, is a free radical scavenger and possesses PAD antagonistic properties, protects against hypoxia and ischemia, hampers an experimentally induced cerebral edema, has favourable properties on neurotransmitters and enhances cerebral bloodflow. Clinically EGb has proven favourable effects on intellectual deficiency, equilibrium disturbances and peripheral artery occlusions thus being a drug with a clear cut indication for these diseases.

Hofferberth, B.:

The influence of Ginkgo Biloba Extract (GBE) on the Neuro physiological and Psychometrical Test results in patients suffering from organic cerebral Psychosyndrome: A Double-Blind Study Versus Placebo.

In: Conference at The Third Congress of the International Psychogeriatric Association, Chicago , August 1987

Hoffmann F Beck C Schutz A Offermann P

[Ginkgo extract EGb 761 (tenobin)/HAES versus naftidrofuryl

(Dusodril)/HAES. A randomized study of therapy of sudden deafness]

In: Laryngorhinootologie (1994 Mar) 73(3):149-52 (Published in German)

80 patients with idiopathic sudden hearing loss existing no longer than 10 days were included in a randomised reference-controlled study. The therapeutic value of Ginkgo EGb 761 (Tebonin) + HAES was compared to that of Naftidrofuryl (Dusodril)+HAES. The main mechanisms of action of EGb 761 are a vasoregulating activity (increased blood flow), the platelet activating factor antagonism and a prevention of membrane damage caused by free radicals. Naftidrofuryl has antiserotonergic and therefore vasodilatory properties. The statistical analysis of the audiometric data was performed in measuring the relative hearing gain as described by Eibach 1979. After one week of observation, 40% of the patients in each group showed a complete remission of hearing loss. This was also observed by other authors who had compared other drugs. Therefore, in these cases, it is most likely that spontaneous recovery is the most important factor. After two and three weeks of observation, measuring the relative hearing gain, there was a significant borderline benefit of EGb 761 (p = 0.06) without any side effects. Some patients of the reference group developed side effects such as orthostatic dysregulation or headache or sleep disturbances. Minimising side effects should be one of the most important goals in therapy of sudden hearing loss until the efficiency of infusion therapy is proved.

Holgers KM Axelsson A Pringle I

Ginkgo biloba extract for the treatment of tinnitus.

In: Audiology (1994 Mar-Apr) 33(2):85-92

Previous studies have shown contradictory results of Ginkgo biloba extract (GBE) treatment of tinnitus. The present study was divided into two parts: first an open part, without placebo control (n = 80), followed by a double-blind placebo-controlled study (n = 20). The patients included in the open study were patients who had been referred to the Department of Audiology, Sahlgren's Hospital, Goteborg , Sweden , due to persistent severe tinnitus. Patients reporting a positive effect on tinnitus in the open study were included in the double-blind placebo-controlled study (20 out of 21 patients participated). 7 patients preferred GBE to placebo, 7 placebo to GBE and 6 patients had no preference. Statistical group analysis gives no support to the hypothesis that GBE has any effect on tinnitus, although it is possible that GBE has an effect on some patients due to several reasons, e.g. the diverse etiology of tinnitus. Since there is no objective method to measure the symptom, the search for an effective drug can only be made on an individual basis.

Huguet F Tarrade T

Alpha 2-adrenoceptor changes during cerebral ageing. The effect of Ginkgo biloba extract.

In: J Pharm Pharmacol (1992 Jan) 44(1):24-7

[3H]Rauwolscine binding to alpha 2-adrenoceptors in cerebral cortex and hippocampus membranes of young (4 months) and aged (24 months) Wistar rats has been investigated. In aged rats, Bmax values of [3H]rauwolscine binding were significantly reduced (25-32%) in the cerebral cortex and hippocampus, as compared with the number of alpha 2-adrenoceptors found in young rats. Chronic treatment with Ginkgo biloba extract did not alter [3H]rauwolscine binding in the hippocampus of young rats, but significantly increased (28%) the [3H]rauwolscine binding density in aged rats. These data confirm the previously described age-related noradrenergic alteration and suggest that noradrenergic activity in aged rats is more susceptible to Ginkgo biloba extract treatment.

Kenzelmann R Kade F

Limitation of the deterioration of lipid parameters by a standardized garlic-ginkgo combination product. A multicenter placebo-controlled double-blind study.

In: Arzneimittelforschung (1993 Sep) 43(9):978-81

The efficacy of a garlic-ginkgo combination product (Allium plus) was analyzed in a randomized placebo-controlled double-blind study under extreme dietary conditions. The Christmas/New Year's season was chosen for this 2 months lasting investigation analyzing whether the known cholesterol lowering effect of garlic was even effective during the period of the year with the most cholesterol-rich meals. 43 patients with elevated total cholesterol levels ranging between 230- 390 mg/dl completed the study. There were no significant changes of the total cholesterol values in both treatment groups. Nevertheless the analysis of improvement or deterioration of total cholesterol values revealed a clear difference between verum and placebo. 20% of the patients in the placebo group showed an improvement of their total cholesterol level, while there was a significant greater improvement rate of 35% in the verum group (p < 0.05). The responders of the verum group showed a reduction in the total cholesterol values from 298.5 +/- 53.8 to 293.0 +/- 56.4 mg/dl after 1 month and a total reduction of 10.4% after 2 months to 267.6 +/- 44.4 mg/dl. The difference after 2 months of treatment was significantly different from the starting value (p < 0.05). After the 2 months treatment phase there was a 2 weeks wash-out period. During this period the total cholesterol value returned to 293.5 +/- 90.1 mg/dl showing the effectiveness of garlic treatment, but indicating the need for a continuous long-term therapy.

Kimbel KH

Ginkgo biloba [letter; comment]

In: Lancet (1992 Dec 12) 340(8833):1474

Kleijnen J Knipschild P

Ginkgo biloba [see comments]

In: Lancet (1992 Nov 7) 340(8828):1136-9

Kleijnen J Knipschild P

Ginkgo biloba for cerebral insufficiency.

In: Br J Clin Pharmacol (1992 Oct) 34(4):352-8

1. By means of a critical review we tried to establish whether there is evidence from controlled trials in humans on the efficacy of Ginkgo biloba extracts in cerebral insufficiency. 2. The methodological quality of 40 trials on Ginkgo and cerebral insufficiency was assessed using a list of predefined criteria of good methodology, and the outcome of the trials was interpreted in relation to their quality. A comparison of the quality was made with trials of co-dergocrine, which is registered for the same indication. 3. There were eight well performed trials out of a total of 40. Shortcomings were limited numbers of patients included, and incomplete description of randomization procedures, patient characteristics, effect measurement and data presentation. In no trial was double-blindness checked. Virtually all trials reported positive results, in most trials the dosage was 120 mg Ginkgo extract a day, given for at least 4-6 weeks. For the best trials, there were no marked differences in the quality of the evidence of the efficacy of Ginkgo in cerebral insufficiency compared with co-dergocrine. The results of the review may be complicated by a combination of publication bias and other biases, because there were no negative results reported in many trials of low methodological quality. 4. Positive results have been reported for Ginkgo biloba extracts in the treatment of cerebral insufficiency. The clinical evidence is similar to that of a registered product which is prescribed for the same indication. However, further studies should be conducted for a more detailed assessment of the efficacy.

Kleijnen J Knipschild P

The comprehensiveness of Medline and Embase computer searches. Searches for controlled trials of homoeopathy, ascorbic acid for common cold and ginkgo biloba for cerebral insufficiency and intermittent claudication.

In: Pharm Weekbl Sci (1992 Oct 16) 14(5):316-20

OBJECTIVE: To assess the comprehensiveness of Medline and Embase computer searches for controlled trials. DESIGN: Comparison of articles found after an exhaustive search of the literature with the yield of a Medline or Embase search. This was performed for controlled clinical trials on the efficacy of three interventions: homoeopathy, ascorbic acid for common cold, and ginkgo biloba for intermittent claudication and cerebral insufficiency. The number of controlled trials found by exhaustive search of the literature was 107, 61 and 45, respectively. RESULTS: For homoeopathy, ascorbic acid and ginkgo the proportion of all trials found by Medline was 17%, 36% and 31% respectively and for Embase 13%, 25% and 58% respectively. After checking of the references in the Medline articles 44%, 79% and 76% of all trials were identified. After checking of the references in the Embase articles 42%, 72% and 93% of all trials were identified. About 20% of the articles was not correctly indexed. Of the best trials 68%, 91% and 83% could be found with Medline and 55%, 82% and 92% of the best trials were identified through Embase. CONCLUSIONS: For the topics mentioned, Medline and Embase searches are sufficient to get an impression of the evidence from controlled trials, but only if references in the articles are followed for further evidence. If one wants to get a more complete picture, additional search strategies make sense. Of course, this picture may be different for other topics.

Kobayashi N Suzuki R Koide C Suzuki T Matsuda H Kubo M

[Effect of leaves of Ginkgo biloba on hair regrowth in C3H strain mice]

In: Yakugaku Zasshi (1993 Oct) 113(10):718-24 (Published in Japanese)

Effects of 70% ethanolic extract from leaves of Ginkgo biloba (GBE) on the hair regrowth in normal and high butter diet-pretreated C3H strain mice which posterior hair we shaved were investigated. GBE showed a promoting effect on the hair regrowth. GBE had the inhibitory effects on blood platelet aggregation, thrombin activity and fibrinolysis. GBE inhibited the increase of serum the triglyceride level in high cholesterol diet-treated rats. These results suggested that GBE promotes the hair regrowth and could be used as a hair tonic.

Koltringer P Langsteger W Klima G Reisecker F Eber O

[Hemorheologic effects of ginkgo biloba extract EGb 761. Dose- dependent effect of EGb 761 on microcirculation and viscoelasticity of blood]

In: Fortschr Med (1993 Apr 10) 111(10):170-2 (Published in German)

Method: In a randomized open clinical trial involving 42 patients with pathological visco-elasticity values, the effect of a single intravenous injection of 50, 100, 150 or 200 mg of the Ginkgo biloba extract EGb 761, commercially available as Tebonin p.i. on the microcirculation of the skin (Doppler flowmetry) and the visco- elasticity of whole blood was investigated. Results: A dose-dependent significant increase in the microcirculation was found. In the case of visco-elasticity, this dose-dependence was less marked. The present study thus confirms the positive effect of EGb 761 on the microcirculation and whole-blood visco-elasticity in patients with pathological visco-elasticity values, already found in earlier studies, and shows it to be dependent on the dose employed.

Krauskopf R., Guinot Ph., Peetz H.G.:

Long term on line EEG analysei de monstrating the pharmaco-dynamic effect of a defined Ginkgo biloba extract.

In: Beaufour -Schwabe Internat. Report, 1983.

Kunkel H

EEG profile of three different extractions of Ginkgo biloba.

In: Neuropsychobiology (1993) 27(1):40-5

Two experiment were conducted to assess the electroencephalographic effects of (1) three different dosages of a total extract of Ginkgo biloba (EGb 761, Tebonin) and (2) three different extractions of G. biloba (Tebonin and two fractions from it). The medicament was tested against placebo using a double-blind cross-over design in 12 normal healthy males for each experiment. Medication was administered for 3 days preceding the recording sessions. 25 parameters were computed from the EEG spectra. Medication-related effects were obtained for most of the power measures, whereas dominant frequencies of the respective frequency band remained largely unchanged. The differences between the EEG effects of the two studies are critically discussed.

Lee K Ku JR Koh SD Kim KS

Effects of methanol extract of ginkgo biloba (EGb), its ethylacetate fraction (EAF) and butanol fraction (BF) on the isolated aorta.

In: Jpn J Pharmacol (1992) 58 Suppl 2:377P

Long R Yin R Zhen Y

[Partial purification and analysis of allergenicity, immunogenicity of Ginkgo biloba L. pollen]

In: Hua Hsi I Ko Ta Hsueh Hsueh Pao (1992 Sep) 23(4):429-32 (Published in Chinese)

Pollens of Ginkgo biloba L. (G.b.l.p) have been found to be a kind of important allergen which causes pollinosis in Chengdu . The goal of this study is to purify G.b.l.p and to determine the allergenicity and immunogenicity of various fractions. Crude extract was purified by gel filtration with Sephadex G25, then G75. Two elution peaks were observed. On SDS-PAGE, the molecular weights of protein of the 1st peak and the valley were 30-42 kd and 13-18kd, respectively, and that of the 2nd peak was less than 13 kd. 40 patients with allergic rhinitis and/or asthma underwent the skin test with crude extract and various fractions of gel filtration; it revealed that the strongest allergenic activity existed in the 1st peak and there was mild allergenic activity in the 2nd peak. The in vitro allergenic activity and immunogenic activity of various fractions were examined by ELISA inhibition test. It was further confirmed that the allergenic activity and immunogenic activity of the 1st peak were the strongest, and those of the 2nd peak were the lowest. It is suggested that diagnosing reagents can be made satisfactorily by partial purification, i.e. discarding the inactive fractions, since allergenicity exists in various fragments. But fractions of allergen with high IgG immunogenicity should be selected to produce immunotherapy agents so as to enhance the production of blocking antibody and thus improve the therapeutic effect.

Marcocci L Maguire JJ Droy- Lefaix MT Packer L

The nitric oxide-scavenging properties of Ginkgo biloba extract EGb 761.

In: Biochem Biophys Res Commun (1994 Jun 15) 201(2):748-55

Ginkgo biloba extract EGb 761 was found to be a scavenger of nitric oxide in in vitro acellular systems, under physiological conditions. EGb 761 competed with oxyhemoglobin for reaction with nitric oxide generated during the interaction of hydroxylamine with Complex I of catalase. An EGb 761 dose-dependent decrease in the amount of nitrite formed in the reaction of oxygen with nitric oxide produced from solution of 5 mM sodium nitroprusside was also observed. These data implicate it as a potential therapeutic agent in conditions of altered production of nitric oxide.

Olivier-J; Plath-P

Combined low power laser therapy and extracts of Ginkgo biloba in a blind trial of treatment for tinnitus.

In: Laser Therapy (1993) 5(3): 137-139

Tinnitus is an annoying and often debilitating condition of neurootologic origin but of uncertain aetiology. Many treatment methods have been tried, but to date none has been consistently successful. The present preliminary study presents a blind trial of laser therapy (c/w HeNe 632.8 nm and pulsed GaAs 904 nm) combined with doses of an extract of Ginkgo biloba (50 mg) in two groups of 20 patients, one experimental and one control. All 40 patients received the biloba extract injection, but only the 20 experimental patients received real laser irradiation, 8 days, 8 min per day. The control group received sham irradiation in a blind arrangement. Fifty percent of the experimental group was assessed to have a reduction in tinnitus of more than 10 dB, compared with 5% in the control group in both self-assessment and audiometric findings. Although only a preliminary report, the results are very encouraging, and the authors suggest that this combined photochemotherapy is a promising treatment for tinnitus.

Otani M Chatterjee SS Gabard B Kreutzberg GW

Effect of an extract of Ginkgo biloba on triethyltin-induced cerebral edema.

In: ACTA NEUROPATHOL (BERL) (1986) 69(1-2):54-65

The effect of an extract of Ginkgo biloba was studied on cerebral edema in rats intoxicated with triethyltin chloride (TET). Brains of TET-treated rats showed elevated water and sodium levels and a significant increase in the sodium/potassium ratio. Animals treated with TET plus the extract did not show water and electrolyte changes. The course of intoxication and treatment was studied light- and electron-microscopically. A severe edema with extensive vacuolization was seen in the cerebral and cerebellar white matter. Morphometric measurements revealed a significant decrease in these manifestations of the cytotoxic edema when the animals were treated with an extract of Ginkgo biloba. Thus, we conclude that this extract has a protective effect on the development of a cytotoxic edema in the white matter of the brain.

Oyama Y Fuchs PA Katayama N Noda K

Myricetin and quercetin, the flavonoid constituents of Ginkgo biloba extract, greatly reduce oxidative metabolism in both resting and Ca(2+)-loaded brain neurons.

In: Brain Res (1994 Jan 28) 635(1-2):125-9

The antioxidant action of myricetin and quercetin, the flavonoid constituents of the extract of Ginkgo biloba (EGb), on oxidative metabolism of brain neurons dissociated from the rats was examined using 2', 7'-dichlorofluorescin (DCFH) which is retained within the neuron and then is oxidized by cellular hydrogen peroxide to be highly fluorescent. Incubation with myricetin or quercetin reduced the oxidation of DCFH in resting brain neurons, more profoundly than EGb. Myricetin decreased the oxidative metabolism at concentrations of 3 nM or more. It was 10 nM or more for the case of quercetin. Incubation with each flavonoid constituent also reduced the Ca(2+)- induced increase in the oxidative metabolism without affecting the cellular content of DCFH or the intracellular concentrations of Ca2+. Such an antioxidant action of myricetin or quercetin may be responsible for a part of the beneficial effects of EGb on brain neurons subject to ischemia.

Oyama Y Hayashi A Ueha T

Ca(2+)-induced increase in oxidative metabolism of dissociated mammalian brain neurons: effect of extract of ginkgo biloba leaves.

In: Jpn J Pharmacol (1993 Apr) 61(4):367-70

Effect of an extract of Ginkgo biloba leaves (EGb) on oxidative metabolism was studied using rat brain neurons and 2', 7'- dichlorofluorescin fluorescence. Ionomycin (100 nM to 1 microM), a Ca(2+)-ionophore, dose-dependently augmented the 2', 7'- dichlorofluorescin fluorescence in the presence of external Ca2+, but not under the external Ca(2+)-free condition. Preincubation of neurons with EGb (3 micrograms/ml) greatly reduced the ionomycin- induced increase in 2', 7'-dichlorofluorescin fluorescence. Results suggest that EGb may reduce the Ca(2+)-induced increase in the oxidative metabolism of brain neurons.

Oyama Y Ueha T Hayashi A Chikahisa L Noda K

Flow cytometric estimation of the effect of Ginkgo biloba extract on the content of hydrogen peroxide in dissociated mammalian brain neurons.

In: Jpn J Pharmacol (1992 Dec) 60(4):385-8

The effect of Ginkgo biloba extract (GBE) on the content of hydrogen peroxide was estimated in cerebellar neurons dissociated from rats, by means of a flow-cytometer and 2', 7'-dichlorofluorescein (DCF) diacetate, a fluorescent dye for intracellular hydrogen peroxide. The GBE started to reduce the DCF fluorescence of the neuron at 0.1 microgram/ml to 0.3 microgram/ml. Further increases in the GBE concentration (up to 3 micrograms/ml) produced a dose-dependent decrease in the DCF fluorescence, suggesting that GBE reduces the content of hydrogen peroxide or suppresses the reactive oxygen species (ROS) formation of cerebellar neurons. The present technique may be useful for preliminary evaluations of agents affecting the ROS formation in mammalian brain neurons.

Petkov VD Kehayov R Belcheva S Konstantinova E Petkov VV Getova D Markovska V

Memory effects of standardized extracts of Panax ginseng (G115), Ginkgo biloba (GK 501) and their combination Gincosan (PHL-00701).

In: Planta Med (1993 Apr) 59(2):106-14

In experiments on young (aged 3 months) and old (aged 26 months) rats, using some conditioned-reflex methods with punishment or positive reinforcement for active and passive avoidance (shuttle-box, step-down, step-through, and water maze), we studied the effects of the standardized extracts of Panax ginseng (G115), Ginkgo biloba (GK501) and their combination Gincosan (PHL-00701). The extracts were administered orally for 7 days before training at three increasing doses: 17, 50, and 150 mg/kg for G115; 10, 30, and 90 mg/kg for GK501; and 27, 80, and 240 mg/kg for PHL-00701. The two extracts and their combination improved the retention of learned behavior. This effect varied considerably with the extracts, with the dose and with the behavioral method used. The results suggest that the Panax ginseng G115 and the Ginkgo biloba GK501 extracts possess properties similar in every respect to those of nootropic drugs. The favorable effects on learning and memory of the combination of G115 plus GK501 and the other pharmacological activities inherent in the extracts characterize this combination, offered as Gincosan as a particularly promising drug in geriatric practice.

Pidoux B

[Effects of Ginkgo biloba extract on functional brain activity. An assessment of clinical and experimental studies]

Effets sur l'activite fonctionnelle cerebrale de l'extrait de Ginkgo biloba. Bilan d'etudes cliniques et experimentales.

In: Presse Med (1986 Sep 25) 15(31):1588-91

Electroencephalography is the only convenient method for functional exploration of the brain and recent developments allows for pharmacological studies of electoencephalograms. Using such techniques has confirmed those of clinical trials, and notably the activity of Ginkgo on alertness.

Pidoux B., Bastien C., Niddam S.:

Clinical and quantitative EEG double-blind study of GBE.

In: J. Cerebral Blood Flow Metabolism, 1983, 3, 5556-5557.

Pidoux B., Bastien C., Niddam S.:

Normalization of electroencephalographic activity in ageing brain by an extract of Ginkgo biloba;

In: Bes. A. Braquet P., Paoletti R., Siesjo B.K. Eds., Cerebral Ischemia, Amsterdam, Excerpta Medica, 1984, 385-388.

Pietta P Mauri P Rava A

Rapid liquid chromatography of terpenes in Ginkgo biloba L. extracts and products.

In: J Pharm Biomed Anal (1992 Oct-Dec) 10(10-12):1077-9

Pritz-Hohmeier S Chao TI Krenzlin J Reichenbach A

Effect of in vivo application of the ginkgo biloba extract EGb 761 (Rokan) on the susceptibility of mammalian retinal cells to proteolytic enzymes.

In: Ophthalmic Res (1994) 26(2):80-6

Lesions, inflammations, or degenerative insults of the human retina are accompanied by the release of proteolytic enzymes. Their deleterious effect may be enhanced by the release of free radicals. Ginkgo biloba extracts are known to exert protective influences against the action of free radicals, and this prompted us to ask whether the application of such extracts might protect retinal tissue against proteolytic damage. Eighteen adult rabbits were fed for 3 weeks (+/- 3 days) with 40 mg/kg of G. biloba extract (EGb 761) or a terpene-free fraction of this extract, dissolved in their drinking water. Twelve control rabbits received no G. biloba extract. The animals were then euthanatized and their retinae isolated. After appropriate enzymatic treatment, the tissue was dissociated and the number of isolated Muller cells counted as an indication of the strength of the proteolytic effects. There was a significant protective action of EGb 761: in an average control rabbit 5, 200 cells per milligram retinal tissue were isolated; application of EGb 761 markedly reduced this number to 2, 500 (terpene-free fraction; CP 205) or 3, 050 (terpene-containing fraction). It is concluded that G. biloba extracts may have a significant therapeutic value in cases of retinal damage.

Racagni G Brunello N Paoletti R

[Neuromediator changes during cerebral aging. The effect of Ginkgo biloba extract]

Variations des neuromediateurs lors du vieillissement cerebral. Effet de l'extrait de Ginkgo biloba.

In: Presse Med (1986 Sep 25) 15(31):1488-90

Ginkgo biloba extract exerts a specific effect on the noradrenergic system and on beta-receptors. No variation was found in alpha 2- receptors and serotonin uptake. These findings provide the first evidence of central effects of a drug acting on cerebral ageing, connected specifically to reactivation of the noradrenergic system in the cerebral cortex.

Ramassamy C Christen Y Clostre F Costentin J

The Ginkgo biloba extract, EGb761, increases synaptosomal uptake of 5- hydroxytryptamine: in-vitro and ex-vivo studies.

In: J Pharm Pharmacol (1992 Nov) 44(11):943-5

The Ginkgo biloba extract (EGb 761) added to a synaptosomal fraction prepared from mice cerebral cortex modified [3H]5-hydroxytryptamine ([3H]5-HT) uptake in a biphasic manner. Between 4 and 16 micrograms mL-1 EGb 761 increased significantly the [3H]5-HT uptake (maximum + 23%). A similar increase was also obtained when synaptosomes were prepared from the cortex of mice treated orally with EGb 761, either acutely (100 mg kg-1, 14 h and 2 h before death) or semi-chronically (2 x 100 mg-1 kg daily for 4 consecutive days). The in-vitro increase in [3H]5-HT uptake induced by EGb 761 was not observed in the presence of 10(-6) M clomipramine, a 5-HT-uptake inhibitor. EGb 761 did not increase [3H]dopamine uptake by synaptosomes prepared from striatum of mice. We investigated different fractions of EGb 761 in order to determine the compounds inducing the increase in [3H]5-HT uptake. The BN 52063 extract (corresponding to the EGb 761 devoid of flavonoid substances) did not increase [3H]5-HT uptake. The Cp 202 extract (corresponding to the EGb 761 devoid of terpenic substances and containing mostly flavonoid substances) increased [3H]5-HT uptake. Among the flavonoids, quercetin has been tested and had no effect on the [3H]5-HT uptake. Since at the usual therapeutic doses of EGb 761, the effective concentrations of the components responsible for this increase are likely to be reached in the brain, one may suggest that this effect could contribute to the therapeutic effect of EGb 761.

Ramassamy C Girbe F Christen Y Costentin J

Ginkgo biloba extract EGb 761 or trolox C prevent the ascorbi acid/Fe2+ induced decrease in synaptosomal membrane fluidity.

In: Free Radic Res Commun (1993) 19(5):341-50

The ability of synaptosomes, prepared from striata, to take up 3H- dopamine declined rapidly during incubation at 37 degrees C, in an oxygenated Krebs-Ringer medium with 0.1 mM ascorbic acid. Ascorbic acid was responsible for this decrease. Its effectiveness after a 60 min incubation was concentration dependent from 1 microM and virtually complete for 0.1 mM. Furthermore, a decrease of synaptosomal membrane fluidity was revealed by measurements of fluorescence polarization using 1, 6-diphenyl-1, 3, 5-hexatriene. This decrease was potentiated by Fe2+ ions (1 microM). In contrast, it was prevented by the Fe2+ ion chelator, desferrioxamine (0.1 mM), by the Ginkgo biloba extract EGb 761 [2-16 micrograms/ml], as well as by the flavonoid quercetin (0.1 microM). This preventive effect was shared by trolox C (from 0.1 mM). It is concluded that peroxidation of neuronal membrane lipids induced by ascorbic acid/Fe2+ is associated with a decrease in membrane fluidity which, in turn, reduces the ability of the dopamine transporter to take up dopamine.

Ramassamy C Naudin B Christen Y Clostre F Costentin J

Prevention by Ginkgo biloba extract (EGb 761) and trolox C of the decrease in synaptosomal dopamine or serotonin uptake following incubation.

In: Biochem Pharmacol (1992 Dec 15) 44(12):2395-401

Prolonged incubation of synaptosomes in Krebs-Ringer oxygenated medium in the presence of ascorbic acid (10(-4) M) led, after 20 min, to a decrease in [3H]dopamine (DA) (synaptosomes prepared from the striatum) and [3H]serotonin (5HT) (synaptosomes prepared from the cortex) uptake. The decrease was progressive and uptake was virtually abolished after a 60 min incubation period. A concentration-dependent (from 5 x 10(-6) M) role of ascorbic acid in the decrease of [3H]DA or [3H]5HT uptake was demonstrated. This decrease was potentiated by Fe2+ ions and prevented by the ferrous chelating agent desferrioxamine. Thus, the progressive decrease in synaptosomal uptake of either [3H]DA or [3H]5HT could depend on the generation of free radicals by the association of ascorbic acid with Fe2+ ions. The decrease in synaptosomal uptake was prevented, in a concentration- dependent manner, by the Ginkgo biloba extract EGb 761 (4-16 micrograms/mL) and the vitamin E analog trolox C (10(-4) M). The terpenic fraction of EGb 761, Bn 52063 (up to 0.5 microgram/mL), did not prevent the reduction of [3H]amine uptake. In contrast, the flavonoidic fraction, Cp 202, was effective (from 1 microgram/mL) and its efficacy was shared by the flavonoid quercetin (from 0.1 microgram/mL). The prolongation of the ability of synaptosomes to take up [3H]amine elicited by EGb 761, in particular its flavonoidic fraction, as well as by trolox C could be due to their free radical scavenger properties.

Rodriguez de Turco EB Droy-Lefaix MT Bazan NG

Decreased electroconvulsive shock-induced diacylglycerols and free fatty acid accumulation in the rat brain by Ginkgo biloba extract (EGb 761): selective effect in hippocampus as compared with cerebral cortex.

In: J Neurochem (1993 Oct) 61(4):1438-44

The effect of Ginkgo biloba extract (EGb 761) treatment (100 mg/kg/day, per os, for 14 days) on electroconvulsive shock (ECS)- induced accumulation of free fatty acids (FFA) and diacylglycerols (DAG) was analyzed in rat cerebral cortex and hippocampus. EGb 761 reduced the FFA pool size by 33% and increased the DAG pool by 36% in the hippocampus. These endogenous lipids were unaffected in cerebral cortex. During the tonic seizure (10 s after ECS) the fast accumulation of FFA, mainly 20:4, was similar in sham- and EGb 761- treated rats, in both the cerebral cortex and hippocampus. However, further accumulation of free 18:0 and 20:4, observed in the hippocampus of sham-treated rats during clonic seizures (30 s to 2 min after ECS), did not occur in EGb 761-treated animals. The rise in DAG content triggered in the cortex and hippocampus by ECS was delayed by EGb 761 treatment from 10 s to 1 min, when values similar to those in sham animals were attained. Moreover, in the hippocampus the size of the total DAG pool was decreased by 19% during the tonic seizure. At later times, DAG content showed a faster decrease in EGb 761-treated rats. By 2 min levels of all DAG acyl groups decreased to values significantly lower than in sham animals in both cortex and hippocampus. This study shows that EGb 761 treatment affects, with high selectivity, lipid metabolism and lipid-derived second messenger release and removal in the hippocampus, while affecting to a lesser extent the cerebral cortex.

Schneider B

[Ginkgo biloba extract in peripheral arterial diseases. Meta-analysis of controlled clinical studies]

In: Arzneimittelforschung (1992 Apr) 42(4):428-36 (Published in German)

In the first part the statistical methods of meta-analysis are discussed. Meta-analysis is considered as a statistical tool for quantitatively summarizing the results of clinical trials with comparable aims (treatments) and designs. Meta-analysis can be based on the significance probabilities or effect values. The last procedure is preferable as it gives an estimate (and confidence interval) for the global effect of the treatment of interest, if homogeneity of the effects between the trials can be assumed. Such a homogeneity can be often achieved by a suitable standardization of the effect variables within the trials. In the second part the methods of meta-analysis are applied to controlled clinical trials with Ginkgo biloba extract EGb 761 in patients with peripheral arterial disease. Included were 5 placebo-controlled clinical trials with similar design and inclusion criteria. In all studies treatment effect was quantified by the increase of walking distance (measured in standardized treadmill exercise). The effect value of EGb 761 treatment was expressed by the standardized mean difference in walking distance increase between EGb 761 and placebo, standardized by the standard deviation. It could be shown that this effect value is homogeneous in all trials. The global effect size was estimated as 0.75. This means that the mean increase in walking distance achieved by EGb 761 is 0.75 times of the standard deviation higher than that achieved by placebo. This value is highly significant different from zero. So the meta-analysis revealed a highly significant therapeutic effect of EGb 761 for the treatment of peripheral arterial disease.

Stange G Benning CD Degenhardt M Ottinger E

[Adaptational behaviour of peripheral and central acoustic responses in guinea pigs under the influence of various fractions of an extract from Gingko biloba (author's transl)]

In: ARZNEIM FORSCH (1976) 26(3):367-74

Experimental studies on guinea pigs clearly demonstrated the influence of an extract from Ginkgo biloba on the acoustic system. With the Ginkgo biloba extract it is probably possible to diminish sound damages caused by white noise.

Steinke B Muller B Wagner H

[Biological standardization of Ginkgo extracts]

In: Planta Med (1993 Apr) 59(2):155-60 (Published in German)

The determination of the inhibition of PAF (platelet-activating factor)-induced platelet aggregation has been proposed as a biological standardization method for commercially available Ginkgo biloba extracts by measuring the characteristic pharmacological effect of ginkgolides in vitro. The determination is specific for ginkgolides A, B, C, and J and is not influenced by other constituents present in Ginkgo biloba extracts. IC50 values of ginkgolide B can be used to standardize various Ginkgo extracts produced by special extraction methods with respect to equi-effective ginkgolide B contents. In order to compare values obtained by a chemical-analytical procedure with those obtained by the biological assay, the equi-effective total ginkgolide content of each Ginkgo extract had to be calculated. Accordingly, the concentrations of the individual ginkgolides in the various Ginkgo extracts were determined chromatographically by assaying ginkgolides as trime-thylsilyl derivatives. Their individual contributions towards the measured in vitro effects were derived from their respective IC50 values. The calculated equi-effective total ginkgolide contents of the Ginkgo extracts were in good agreement with those obtained by gas chromatography. The results demonstrate that, in addition to a chemical standardization, the biological standardization of Ginkgo extract preparations is also feasible.

Sticher O

Quality of Ginkgo preparations.

In: Planta Med (1993 Feb) 59(1):2-11

A survey of known and of recently isolated constituents from Ginkgo leaves is given. The structures of flavonoids and terpene lactones which are considered to be the active compounds as well as their qualitative and quantitative determination in Ginkgo leaves and phytomedicines are presented. In the case of flavonoid analysis three selective methods worked out in our laboratories are described. The quality control of terpene lactones is discussed on the basis of a recently published paper. Finally, the standardization methods used for the quality control of Ginkgo preparations as well as the question as to whether or not phytomedicine generics--so called "phytogenerics"--exist, is discussed.

Sticher-O

Ginkgo biloba: A modern phytomedicine.

In: Vierteljahrsschrift der Naturforschenden Gesellschaft in Zuerich (1993)138(3): 125-168

Phytomedicines based on extracts from the leaves of Ginkgo biloba are used in the Federal Republic of Germany and in France a rather long time for the treatment of peripheral vascular insufficiency and cerebrovascular insufficiency, and disturbances of cerebral function. In Europe , commercially available preparations based on the special extract EGb 761 have a turnover of about 500 million US dollars. Meanwhile also in Switzerland various Ginkgo preparations are on the market. In this review taxonomy, botany, chemistry, pharmacology and clinical applications as well as quality control of Ginkgo biloba and phytomedicines based on leaf extracts of this plant are described. Research work of the own laboratory dealing with quality control is discussed in detail.

Subhan Z., Hindmarch 1.:

The psychopharmacological effects of Ginkgo biloba extract in normal healthy volunteers.

In: Internat. J. Clin. Pharmacol. Res., 1984, 4, 89-93.

Tamborini A Taurelle R

[Value of standardized Ginkgo biloba extract (EGb 761) in the management of congestive symptoms of premenstrual syndrome]

In: Rev Fr Gynecol Obstet (1993 Jul-Sep) 88(7-9):447-57 (Published in French)

The efficacy of standardized Ginkgo biloba extract (EGb 761) in treating congestive symptoms of premenstrual syndrome (PMS) was evaluated in a controlled multicentric double blind study versus placebo. The population studied was a group of 165 women aged between 18 to 45, in genital activity period, suffering since 3 cycles from congestive premenstrual troubles during at least 7 days per cycle. The characteristics of patients and PMS were the same in both groups (EGb 761 and placebo). The observation of one menstrual cycle confirmed the diagnosis of PMS. Then, during the 2 following cycles, each patient received either EGb 761 or placebo from the 16th day of the first cycle till the 5th day of the next cycle. A double evaluation of the symptoms was realized by the patient using a daily rating scale (auto-evaluation), by the practitioner during visits at the premenstrual phase before and after the two cycles treatment. From 165 patients included, 143 observations were available. With a good acceptability, EGb 761 was effective against the congestive symptoms of PMS, particularly breast symptoms with a statistical significance between EGb 761 and placebo. Neuropsychological symptoms were also improved. EGb 761 is an alternative of interest to therapeutics already used in treating PMS or can be associated without any inconvenience.

Taylor J.E.:

The effects of chronic, oral Ginkgo biloba extract administration on neurotransmitter receptor binding in young and aged Fisher 344 rats.

In: Effects of Ginkgo biloba extract on organic cerebral impairment, Paris , London , John Lilley, 1985.

Tea S., Celsis P., Clanet M., Marc-Vergnes J.P.:

Effets cliniques, hemodyna miques et metaboliques de l'extrait de Ginkgo biloba en pathologie vasculaire cerebrale.

In: Gazette Medicale de France, 1979, 86, 4149-4152.

Vasseur M Jean T DeFeudis FV Drieu K

Effects of repeated treatments with an extract of Ginkgo biloba (EGb 761), bilobalide and ginkgolide B on the electrical activity of pancreatic beta cells of normal or alloxan-diabetic mice: an ex vivo study with intracellular microelectrodes.

In: Gen Pharmacol (1994 Jan) 25(1):31-46

1. The effects of repeated (5-day) treatments with an extract of Ginkgo biloba leaves (EGb 761), bilobalide, and ginkgolide B on the in vitro electrical activity of insulin-secreting pancreatic beta cells of mice have been examined using intracellular microelectrodes. 2. EGb 761 (200 mg/kg/day, p.o.) protected beta cells against the toxic effects of alloxan (50 mg/kg, i.v.), an effect characterized by a restoration of membrane potential (Vr) and an increase in spike frequency (Fs/30), an indicator of insulin secretion. 3. Treatment of non-diabetic mice with EGb 761 (200 mg/kg/day, p.o.) increased Fs/30 of their beta cells, as tested by in vitro exposure of the cells to 11.1 mM glucose, an effect that also occurred with bilobalide (8 mg/kg/day, i.p.) but not with ginkgolide B (4 mg/kg/day, i.p.). 4. Since bilobalide and ginkgolide B caused opposite effects on the sensitivity of beta cells to glucose, the stimulatory effect of EGb 761 on Fs/30 may be attributed to its content of bilobalide. 5. In contrast to its ex vivo effect, the direct in vitro effect of EGb 761 (10 and 25 micrograms/ml) on beta cells favors a decrease in electrical activity, indicating that its in vivo action might be indirect (e.g. via the formation of an active metabolite).

Volkner JH

Inhalations of extracts from Gingko biloba in vasomotor rhinitis and in the bronchitic syndrome

In: DTSCH MED J (5 Sep 67) 18(17):527-33

Wada K Sasaki K Miura K Yagi M Kubota Y Matsumoto T Haga M

Isolation of bilobalide and ginkgolide A from Ginkgo biloba L. shorten the sleeping time induced in mice by anesthetics.

In: Biol Pharm Bull (1993 Feb) 16(2):210-2

The leaves of Ginkgo biloba L. and aqueous extract from them shortened the sleeping time induced in mice by anesthetics (hexobarbital, alpha-chloralose and urethane, i.p.). Two characteristic terpenoids in G. biloba, bilobalide and ginkgolide A, significantly shortened the sleeping time induced by anesthetics. A toxic substance, 4-O-methylpyridoxine (MPN), responsible for "gin-nan food poisoning" isolated from the seed of G. biloba, was not detected from the extract of the leaves of G. biloba. Therefore, the Ginkgo biloba extract has no toxicities for MPN.

Warburton DM

Ginkgo biloba extract and cognitive decline [letter]

In: Br J Clin Pharmacol (1993 Aug) 36(2):137

Warburton DM :

Clinical psychopharmacology of Ginkgo biloba extract

In: PRESSE MED 1986 Sep 25; 15(31):1595-604 (Published in FRENCH)

From this general review of the pharmacological, psychopharmacological and clinical studies performed with Ginkgo biloba extract, the following conclusions can be drawn: the drug seems to be effective in patients with vascular disorders, in all types of dementia and even in patients suffering from cognitive disorders secondary to depression, because of its beneficial effects on mood. Of special concern are people who are just beginning to experience deterioration in their cognitive function. Ginkgo biloba extract might delay deterioration and enable these subject to maintain a normal life and escape institutionalization. In addition, Ginkgo biloba extract appears to be a safe drug, being well tolerated, even in doses many times higher than those usually recommended.

Witte S Anadere I Walitza E

[Improvement of hemorheology with ginkgo biloba extract. Decreasing a cardiovascular risk factor]

In: Fortschr Med (1992 May 10) 110(13):247-50 (Published in German)

STUDY DESIGN: Open prospective study. Patients: 20 outpatients with a long history of elevated fibrinogen levels and plasma viscosity, and a variety of underlying diseases. INTERVENTION: Treatment with the special ginkgo biloba extract (EGb 761), 240 mg tablets a day for a period of 12 weeks. RESULTS: The clinical diagnoses included coronary heart disease, hypertension, hypercholesterolemia and diabetes mellitus. A significant improvement in the fibrinogen levels and hemorrheological properties was seen. The medication can thus positively influence these cardiovascular risk factors over the long term.

Yabe T Chat M Malherbe E Vidal PP

Effects of Ginkgo biloba extract (EGb 761) on the guinea pig vestibular system.

In: Pharmacol Biochem Behav (1992 Aug) 42(4):595-604

Previous studies have demonstrated that the administration of Ginkgo biloba extract (EGb 761) improves the compensation of the vestibular syndrome induced by transection of the VIIIth nerve. To investigate the mechanisms at play, the vestibular nuclei of alert guinea pigs were perfused with EGb 761. This perfusion always induced a stereotyped reversible postural syndrome that was the mirror image of the syndrome provoked by the unilateral lesion of the otolithical receptors. This result supports the hypothesis that EGb 761 has a direct excitatory effect on the lateral vestibular nuclei (LVN) neurons. In a second step, we quantified the horizontal vestibuloocular reflex (HVOR) of the normal guinea pig following IP injection of EGb 761. In normal guinea pig, IP administration of EGb 761 led to a reversible, dose-dependent decrease of the HVOR gain without affecting the phase of the reflex. These data help to explain the therapeutic effects of EGb 761 during vestibular syndromes and strongly suggest an impact at the neuronal level.

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Cont / Details about the constituents and actions of the individual whole herbal powders contained in Herbactive Herbalist's ABC Daily Herbal NutriPowder Plus

 

GLYCYRRHIZA GLABRA - LICORICE ROOT

Glycyrrhiza glabra, G. uralensis (Licorice root, Gan Cao) - tonic, anti-pyretic, adrenal agent, expectorant, anti-inflammatory, demulcent, anti-spasmodic, mild laxative, fertility, colic, bronchial catarrh, bronchitis, gastritis - chronic, peptic ulcer, adrenocortical insufficiency, Addison's disease; weakness (Qi Xu), sore throat, boils, asthma, blood and energy deficiency; peptic ulcer, empty spleen and stomach, colic acute abdominal pains; sweet, neutral; enters all 12 meridians and organs. The triterpenes of Glycyrrhiza are metabolized in the body to molecules that have a similar structure to the adrenal cortex hormones (vitaligo). This is possibly the basis of the herb's anti-inflammatory action.

Liquorice Glycyrrhiza glabra Leguminosae

Habitat: Native to the Mediterranean region and parts of Asia , cultivated worldwide.

Collection: The roots are unearthed in the late autumn. Clean thoroughly and dry.

Part Used: Dried root.

Constituents: Triterpenes of the oleanane type, mainly glycyrrhizin (=glycyrrhizic or glycyrrhizinic acid), and its agylcone glycyrrhetinic acid (=glycyrrhitic acid), liquiritic acid, glycyrrhetol, glabrolide, isoglabrolide, licoric acid, & phytosterols.

Flavonoids and isoflavonoids; liquiritigenin, liquiritin, rhamnoliquiritin, neoliquiritin, licoflavonol, licoisoflavones A and B, licoisoflavanone, formononetin, glabrol, glabrone, glyzarin, kumatakenin and others.

Coumarins; liqcoumarin, umbelliferone, herniarin glycyrin.

Chalcones; liquiritigenin, isoliquiritigenin, neosoliquiritin, rhamnoisoliquiritin, licuraside, licochalcones A and B, echinatin and others.

Polysaccharides, mainly glucans.

Volatile oil, containing fenchone, linalool, furfuryl alcohol, benzaldehyde.

Miscellaneous; starch, sugars, amino acid etc.

Actions: Expectorant, demulcent, anti-inflammatory, anti-hepatotoxic, anti-spasmodic, mild laxative.

Indications: Liquorice is a traditional herbal remedy with an ancient history and world wide usage. Modern research has shown it to have effects upon, amongst other organs, the endocrine system and liver. The triterpenes ofGlycyrrhiza are metabolized in the body to molecules that have a similar structure to the adrenal cortex hormones. This is possibly the basis of the herbs anti-inflammatory action. As an anti-hepatotoxic it can be effective in the treatment of chronic hepatitis and cirrhosis, for which it is been widely used in Japan . Much of the liver orientated research has focused upon the triterpene glycyrrhizin. This inhibits hepatocyte injury caused by carbon tetrachloride, benzene hexachloride and PCB. Antibody production is enhanced by glycyrrhizin, possibly through the production of interleukin. Glycyrrhizin inhibits the growth of several DNA and RNA viruses, inactivating Herpessimplex virus particles irreversibly. It has a wide range of ises in bronchial problems such as catarrh, bronchitis and coughs in general. Liquorice is used in allopathic medicine as a treatment for peptic ulceration, a similar use to its herbal use in gastritis and ulcers. It can be used in the relief of abdominal colic.

Kings Dispensatory describes it thus: "Liquorice root is emollient, demulcent and nutritive. It acts upon mucous surfaces, lessening irritation and is consequently useful in coughs, catarrhs, irritation of the urinary organs and pain of the intestines in diarrhea. It is commonly administered in decoction, sometimes alone, at other times with the addition of other agents and which is the preferable mode of using it. As a general rule, the acrid bark should be removed previous to forming a decoction. When boiled for some time the water becomes impregnated with its acrid resin; hence, in preparing a decoction for the purpose of sweetening diet drinks or covering the taste of nauseous drugs, it should not be boiled over 5 minutes. The efficiency of the root in old bronchial affections may be due to this acrid resin. The powdered root is also employed to give the proper solidity to pills and to prevent their adhesion; the extract for imparting the proper viscidity to them. The extract, in the form of lozenge, held in the mouth until it has dissolved, is a very popular and efficient remedy in coughs and pectoral affections. An excellent troche or lozenge, very useful in ordinary cough, may be made by combining together 6 parts of refined Liquorice, 2 parts of benzoic acid, 4 parts of pulverized alum, and 1/2 a part of pulverized opium. Dissolve the Liquorice in water and evaporate to the proper consistence, then add the powders with a few drops of oil of Anise and divide it into 3 or 6-grain lozenges. The bitterness of quinine, quassia, aloes and the acrid taste of senega, guaiacum, mezereon and ammonium chloride are masked by Liquorice."

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HORDEUM VULGARE - BARLEYGRASS

On a per weight basis barley juice is seven times richer in Vitamin C than oranges, five times richer in iron than spinach, ten times richer in calcium than milk, is a significant source of Vitamin B-12. Properly processed barley grass powder allows for effective assimilation of nutrients

Barley grass also contains live enzymes. The anti-aging enzyme superoxide dismutase (SOD) is one of these. SOD aids in digestion and metabolism by helping to disperse vitamins and minerals into the blood stream to be absorbed by the body. SOD acts as a cellular anti-oxidant, protecting against radiation and chemical free-radicals from pollution, as well as acting as an anti-inflammatory agent and preventing cellular damage following heart attacks. Dr. Richard Cutler, a biophysicist at the National Institute of Aging has shown that the life span of many mammalian species is found to be directly proportional to the amount or SOD contained in the cells. The animals with the longest life spans and man were found to have the highest levels of SOD.

Barley Grass has a high alkalizing effect, which helps keep the ratio between acidity and alkalinity in our body fluids balanced. Our cells cannot adequately function if the pH (which measures acidity and alkalinity) is not in a narrow range. Many processed foods are acidic, and when we consume too many of them, the acidity-alkalinity balance can become upset.

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HYDRASTIS CANADENSIS - GOLDEN SEAL ROOT

Hydrastis canadensis (Golden Seal root) - tonic, stimulant to involuntary muscle, stomachic, oxytocic, anti-haemorrhagic, laxative; astringent, anti-catarrhal; colitis, gastritis, catarrh., peptic ulcer, colitis, anorexia, upper respiratory, menorrhagia, post-partum haemorrhage, dysmenorrhoea. Ext.: eczema, ringworm.

Golden Seal

Hydrastis canadensis

Ranunculaceae

Names : Orange Root, Yellow Root.

Habitat : Native to North America , it was used extensively by Native Americans as an herbal medication and clothing dye. Its medicinal use centered around its ability to soothe the mucous membranes of the respiratory, digestive, and genitourinary tracts in inflammatory conditions induced by allergy or infection. It is mostly cultivated.

Collection : Unearth root and rhizome from three-year-old plants in the autumn, after the ripening of the seeds. Clean carefully and dry slowly in theair.

Part Used : Root and rhizome.

Constituents :

Isoquinoline alkaloids, mainly hydrastine, berberine, berberastine, canadine, candaline, and hydrastinine.

Miscellaneous; fatty acids, resin, polyphenolic acids (anti-aging), meconin, chlorogenic acid, phytosterins and a small amount of volatile oil.

Actions : Bitter, hepatic, alterative, anti-catarrhal, anti-microbial, anti-inflammatory, astringent, laxative, expectorant, emmenagogue, oxytocic.

Indications : One of our most useful remedies owing much of its value to the tonic effects it has on the mucous membranes of the body. This is why itis of such help in all digestive problems, from peptic ulcers to colitis. Its bitter stimulation helps in loss of appetite, and the alkaloids it contains stimulate bile production and secretion. All catarrhal conditions improve with Golden Seal, especially sinus ones. The anti-microbial properties appear to due to alkaloids present. As an example of research that has been done on plant constituents we shall consider berberine. Berberine, found in a number of other herbs as well, has antibiotic, immuno-stimulatory, antispasmodic, sedative, hypotensive, uterotonic, cholerectic, & carminative activity. Its demonstrable pharmacological activities strongly contribute to the therapeutic use of Hydrastis. Berberine has marked antimicrobial activity, and whilst not in the same league as antibiotics, ithas a broad spectrum of antimicrobial activity. In vitro antimicrobial effects have been demonstrated against bacteria, protozoa, and fungi, including:

Staphyloccus spp.

Streptoccus spp.

Chlamydia spp.

Corynebacterium diphtheria

Escherichia coli

Salmonella typhi

Vibrio cholerae

Diplococcus pneumonia

Pseudomonas spp.

Shigella dysenteriae

Entamoeba histolytica

Trichomonas vaginalis

Neisseria gonorrhoeae

Neisseria meningitidis

Treponema pallidum

Giardia lamblia

Leishmania donovani

Candida albicans.

Berberine's action against some of these pathogens is actually stronger than that of antibiotics commonly used, however, please remember that we are dealing with whole plants and not extracted constituents. Berberine'saction in inhibiting Candida, as well as other pathogenic bacteria, prevents the overgrowth of yeast that is a common side effect of antibiotic use. This fascinating alkaloid increases blood supply to the spleen. This improved blood supply may promote optimal activity of the spleen by increasing the release of compounds that potentiate immune response. It has also been shown to activate macrophages in a number of ways. Coupled with its ability to inhibit tumour formation in the laboratory, suggests that berberine possesses some antineoplastic activity.

Berberine has been shown in several clinical studies to stimulate the secretion of bile (i.e. it is a cholerectic) and bilirubin. One clinical trial that examined the effect of berberine on 225 patients with chronic cholecystitis. Oral doses of 5 to 20 mg three times a day before meals caused, over a period of 24-48 hours, disappearance of clinical symptoms, decrease inbilirubin level, and an increase in the bile volume of the gallbladder. Berberine corrects the elevated levels of tyramine found in patients with liver cirrhosis. It prevents the elevation of serum tyramine following oral tyrosineload, by inhibiting the enzyme tyrosine decarboxylase found in bacteria in the large intestine.

Traditionally Hydrastis canadensis has been used during labour to help contractions, but it is for just this reason that it should be avoided during pregnancy. Applied externally it can be helpful in eczema, ringworm, itching, earache and conjunctivitis.

Priest & Priest tell us that it is a "mild, positive, permanently stimulating vaso-tonic with especial influence upon the portal system, entirevenous system and right heart. Tropho-restorative to mucous membranes when irritated, inflamed or ulcerated" They give the following specific indications: catarrhal conditions of mucous membranes, especially gastric. Orifice soreness or discharge, conjunctivitis, keratitis, tonsillitis, pharyngitis, vaginitis, cervicitis. Ellingwood recommends it for the following patholgies : functional disorders of the stomach, catarrhal gastritis, atonic dydpepsia, chronic constipation, hepatic congestion, chronic alcoholism, hepatic congestion, general debility, protracted fevers, cerebral engorgements, prostrating nightsweats, menorrhagia or metrorrhagia due to uterine subinvolution, post-partum haemorrhage, tumours, catarrhal conditions, aphtous ulcers, indolent ulcers, nasalcatarrh, diphtheria, tonsilitis, inflammation of the eyes, leucorrhoea, anal fissure, eczema, gallstones, cholecyctitis, congestive jaundice, goitre, non-malignant mammary tumours.

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ILEX PARAQUARIENSIS - MATE, YERBA MATE

Mate (Spanish: [ˈmate], Portuguese: [ˈmatʃi]; sometimes erroneously spelled maté in English, but never in Spanish or Portuguese), also known as yerba mate, chimarrão(Portuguese: [ʃimɐˈʁɐ̃w̃]) or cimarrón (Spanish: [simaˈron]), is a traditional South American caffeine-rich infused drink, particularly in Argentina (where it is defined by law as the "national infusion"),[2] Uruguay, Paraguay, the Bolivian Chaco and Southern Brazil, and in southern Chile. It is also consumed by the Druze in Syria, the largest importer in the world, and in Lebanon.[3][4]

It is prepared by steeping dried leaves of yerba mate (Ilex paraguariensis, known in Portuguese as erva-mate) in hot water and is served with a metal straw from a shared hollow calabash gourd. The straw is called a bombilla in Spanish, a bomba in Portuguese, and a bombija or, more generally, a masassa (type of straw) in Arabic. The straw is traditionally made of silver. Modern, commercially available straws are typically made of nickel silver, called alpaca; stainless steel, or hollow-stemmed cane. The gourd is known as a mate or a guampa; while in Brazil, it has the specific name of cuia, or also cabaça (the name for Indigenous-influenced calabash gourds in other regions of Brazil, still used for general food and drink in remote regions). Even if the water is supplied from a modern thermos, the infusion is traditionally drunk frommates or cuias.

Yerba mate leaves are dried, chopped, and ground into a powdery mixture called yerba. The bombilla acts as both a straw and a sieve. The submerged end is flared, with small holes or slots that allow the brewed liquid in, but block the chunky matter that makes up much of the mixture. A modern bombilla design uses a straight tube with holes, or a spring sleeve to act as a sieve.[5]

"Tea-bag" type infusions of mate (Spanish: mate cocido, Portuguese: chá mate) have been on the market in Argentina, Paraguay and Uruguay for many years under such trade names as "Taragüi Vitality" in Argentina, "Pajarito" and "Kurupí" in Paraguay, and Matte Leão in Brazil.

Both the spellings "mate" and "maté" are used in English.[6][7][8] An acute accent in Spanish indicates the stressed syllable in a word; an accent on the "e" sometimes seen in English is ahypercorrection used to indicate that the word and its pronunciation are distinct from the English word "mate". As the Yerba Mate Association of the Americas points out, with the accent the word "maté" in Spanish means "I killed".[9]

In Brazil, traditionally prepared mate is known as chimarrão, although the word mate and the expression "mate amargo" (bitter mate) are also used in Argentina and Uruguay. The Spanishcimarrón means "rough", "brute", or "barbarian", but is most widely understood to mean "feral", and is used in almost all of Latin America for domesticated animals that have become wild. The word was then used by the people who colonized the region of the Río de la Plata to describe the natives' rough and sour drink, drunk with no other ingredient to soften the taste.

Preparation

The preparation of mate is a very simple process which consists of filling the gourd with yerba, pouring hot but not boiling water over the leaves, and drinking with a straw, the bombilla, which acts as a filter so as to draw only the liquid and not the yerba leaves. The method of preparing the mate infusion varies considerably from region to region, and which method yields the finest outcome is debated. However, nearly all methods have some common elements. The beverage is traditionally prepared in a gourd recipient, also called mate or guampa in Spanish and cuiain Portuguese, from which it is drunk. The gourd is nearly filled with yerba, and hot water[10] (typically at 70 to 85 °C (158 to 185 °F), never boiling[11]) is added.

A traditional calabash gourd with a kettle and a modern mate with an electric kettle

The most common preparation involves a careful arrangement of the yerba within the gourd before adding hot water. In this method, the gourd is first filled one-half to three-quarters of the way withyerba. Too much yerba will result in a "short" mate; conversely, too little yerba results in a "long" mate, both being considered undesirable. After that, any additional herbs (yuyo, in Portuguesejujo) may be added for either health or flavor benefits, a practice most common in Paraguay, where people acquire herbs from a local yuyera (herbalist) and use the mate as a base for their herbal infusions. When the gourd is adequately filled, the preparer typically grasps it with the full hand, covering and roughly sealing the opening with the palm. Then the mate is turned upside-down, and shaken vigorously, but briefly and with gradually decreasing force, in this inverted position. This causes the finest, most powdery particles of the yerba to settle toward the preparer's palm and the top of the mate.

Once the yerba mate has settled, the mate is carefully brought to a near-sideways angle, with the opening tilted just slightly upward of the base. The mate is then shaken very gently with a side-to-side motion. This further settles the yerba mate inside the gourd so that the finest particles move toward the opening and the yerba is layered along one side. The largest stems and other bits create a partition between the empty space on one side of the gourd and the lopsided pile of yerba on the other.

After arranging the yerba along one side of the gourd, the mate is carefully tilted back onto its base, minimizing further disturbances of the yerba as it is re-oriented to allow consumption. Someavalanche-like settling is normal, but is not desirable. The angled mound of yerba should remain, with its powdery peak still flat and mostly level with the top of the gourd. A layer of stems along its slope will slide downward and accumulate in the space opposite the yerba (though at least a portion should remain in place).

All of this careful settling of the yerba ensures that each sip contains as little particulate matter as possible, creating a smooth-running mate. The finest particles will then be as distant as possible from the filtering end of the straw. With each draw, the smaller particles would inevitably move toward the straw, but the larger particles and stems filter much of this out. A sloped arrangement provides consistent concentration and flavor with each filling of the mate.

Now the mate is ready to receive the straw. Many people choose to pour warm water into the mate before adding the straw, while others insist that the straw is best inserted into dryyerba.[citation needed] Wetting the yerba by gently pouring cool water into the empty space within the gourd until the water nearly reaches the top, and then allowing it to be absorbed into the yerbabefore adding the straw, allows the preparer to carefully shape and "pack" the yerba's slope with the straw's filtering end, which makes the overall form of the yerba within the gourd more resilient and solid. Dry yerba, though, allows a cleaner and easier insertion of the straw, but care must be taken so as not to overly disturb the arrangement of the yerba. Such a decision is entirely a personal or cultural preference. The straw is inserted with one's thumb on the upper end of the gourd, at an angle roughly perpendicular to the slope of the yerba, so that its filtering end travels into the deepest part of the yerba and comes to rest near or against the opposite wall of the gourd. It is important for the thumb to form a seal over the end of the straw when it is being inserted, or the negative pressure produced will draw in undesirable particulates.

Brewing

After the above process, the yerba may be brewed. If the straw is inserted into dry yerba, the mate must first be filled once with cool water as above, then be allowed to absorb it completely (which generally takes no more than two or three minutes). Treating theyerba with cool water before the addition of hot water is essential, as it protects the yerba mate from being scalded and from the chemical breakdown of some of its desirable nutrients. Hot water may then be added by carefully pouring it, as with the cool water before, into the cavity opposite the yerba, until it reaches almost to the top of the gourd when the yerba is fully saturated. Care should be taken to maintain the dryness of the swollen top of the yerbabeside the edge of the gourd's opening.

Once the hot water has been added, the mate is ready for drinking, and it may be refilled many times before becoming lavado (washed out) and losing its flavor. When this occurs, the mound of yerbacan be pushed from one side of the gourd to the other, allowing water to be added along its opposite side; this revives the mate for additional refillings and is called "reformar o/el mate" (reforming the mate).

Etiquette

Mate is traditionally drunk in a particular social setting, such as family gatherings or with friends. The same gourd (cuia) and straw (bomba/bombilla) are used by everyone drinking. One person (known in Portuguese as the preparador,[12] cevador, or patrão, and in Spanish as the cebador) assumes the task of server. Typically, the cebador fills the gourd and drinks the mate completely to ensure that it is free of particulate matter and of good quality. In some places, passing the first brew of mate to another drinker is considered bad manners, as it may be too cold or too strong; for this reason, the first brew is often called mate del zonzo (mate of the fool). The cebador subsequently refills the gourd and passes it to the drinker to his or her right, who likewise drinks it all (there is not much; the mate is full of yerba, with room for little water), without thanking the server; a final gracias (thank you) implies that the drinker has had enough.[13] The cebador possibly drinks the second filling, as well, if he or she deems it too cold or bitter. When no more tea remains, the straw makes a loud sucking noise, which is not considered rude. The ritual proceeds around the circle in this fashion until the mate becomes lavado (washed out), typically after the gourd has been filled about 10 times or more depending on theyerba used (well-aged yerba mate is typically more potent, so provides a greater number of refills) and the ability of the cebador. When one has had one's fill of mate, he or she politely thanks thecebador, passing the mate back at the same time. When someone takes too long, others in the roda (Spanish: ronda; English: "round") will likely politely warn him or her by saying "bring the talking gourd" (cuia de conversar); an Argentine equivalent, especially among young people, being no es un micrófono ("it's not a microphone"), an allusion to the drinkers holding the mate for too long, as if they were using it as a microphone to deliver a lecture.

Some drinkers like to add sugar or honey, creating mate dulce ormate doce (sweet mate), instead of sugarless mate amargo (bitter mate), a practice said to be more common in Brazil outside its southernmost state. Traditionally, natural gourds are used, though wood vessels, bamboo tubes, and gourd-shaped mates, made of ceramic or metal (stainless steel or even silver) are also common. The gourd is traditionally made out of the porongo or cabaça fruit shell. Gourds are commonly decorated with silver, sporting decorative or heraldic designs with floral motifs.

History

History of yerba mate

Mate was first consumed by the indigenous Guaraní and also spread by the Tupí people who lived in that part of southern Brazil which was Paraguayan territory before the Paraguayan War. Therefore, the scientific name of the yerba mate is Ilex paraguariensis. The consumption of yerba mate became widespread with the European colonization in the Spanish colony of Paraguay in the late 16th century, among both Spanish settlers and indigenous Guaraní, who consumed it before the Spanish arrival. Mate consumption spread in the 17th century to the Río de la Plata and from there to Chile. This widespread consumption turned it into Paraguay's main commodity above other wares such as tobacco, cotton and beef. Aboriginal labour was used to harvest wild stands. In the mid-17th century, Jesuits managed to domesticate the plant and establish plantations in their Indian reductions in the Paraguayan department of Misiones, sparking severe competition with the Paraguayan harvesters of wild strands. After their expulsion in the 1770s, the Jesuit missions – along with the yerba mate plantations – fell into ruins. The industry continued to be of prime importance for the Paraguayan economy after independence, but development in benefit of the Paraguayan state halted after the Paraguayan War (1864–1870) that devastated the country both economically and demographically.

Brazil then became the largest producer of mate. In Brazilian and Argentine projects in late 19th and early 20th centuries, the plant was domesticated once again, opening the way for plantation systems. When Brazilian entrepreneurs turned their attention to coffee in the 1930s, Argentina, which had long been the prime consumer, took over as the largest producer, resurrecting the economy of Misiones Province, where the Jesuits had once had most of their plantations. For years, the status of largest producer shifted between Brazil and Argentina.[14]

Today, Brazil is the largest producer with 53%, followed by Argentina, 37%, and Paraguay, 10%.[15]

Culture

Mate has a strong cultural significance as both national identity and social gatherer, at the extent of being the national drink of Argentina,[16] Paraguay, where it is also consumed with either hot or ice cold water (see tereré).[17] Drinking mate is a common social practice in parts of Brazil, Chile, Argentina, Paraguay, Uruguay and eastern Bolivia. Throughout the Southern Cone, it is considered to be a tradition taken from the gauchos or vaqueros, terms commonly used to describe the old residents of the South American pampas, chacos, or Patagonian grasslands, found principally in parts of Argentina, Paraguay, Uruguay, southeastern Bolivia, southern Chile and southern Brazil.

Parque Histórico do Mate, funded by the state of Paraná (Brazil), is a park aimed to educate people on the sustainable harvesting methods needed to maintain the integrity and vitality of the oldest wild forests of mate in the world.[18][19]

Mate is also consumed as an ice tea in various regions of Brazil, originating both from an industrialized form, produced by Matte Leão, and from artisanal producers. It is part of the beach culture in Rio de Janeiro, where it is widely sold by beach vendors,[20]being the hot infused variation uncommon in the area.

 

Health effects

Like coffee and tea, mate is generally recognized as safe by the United States Food and Drug Administration. Drinking hot mate, however, is "probably carcinogenic to humans" according to theIARC Group 2A carcinogens list. A number of studies suggest mate may reduce certain cardiovascular risks.

Mate contains several vitamins and minerals important to human health, including vitamins A (as beta-carotene), B1, B2, C, and E, as well as phosphorus, iron and calcium.[10][21]

Researchers from NCI (National Cancer Institutes) and Brazil found both cold- and hot-water extractions of popular commercial yerba mate products contained high levels (8.03 to 53.3 ng/g dry leaves) of carcinogenic polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs) (i.e. benzo[a]pyrene).[24] However, these potential carcinogenic compounds originated from the commercial drying process of the mate leaves, which involves smoke from the burning of wood, much like polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons found in wood-smoked meat.[25] "Unsmoked" or steamed varieties of yerba mate tea are available,[26] which may reduce this risk, though research comparing relative cancer risks of smoked versus steamed yerba mate is not available. One study found the antioxidant properties of mate remain the same between both smoked and unsmoked varieties.[27]

Antioxidants and anticarcinogens

In vivo and in vitro studies suggest yerba mate may have significant cancer-fighting activity.[28] In 2011, research at the University of Illinois found yerba mate to inhibit the proliferation of colon cancer cells,[29][30] adding to previous research at the University of Illinois in 2005 that found a similar effect for oral cancer cells.[31]

[Preventative] Anticancer activity is plausible, if unproven, in part because yerba mate tea contains significant levels of polyphenol antioxidants, and has a slightly higher antioxidant capacity than green tea. On average, mate tea contains 92 mg of the antioxidant chlorogenic acid per gram of dry leaves, and no catechins,[21] giving it a significantly different antioxidant profile to other teas.[32]

Antimicrobial and anti-fungal properties

The aqueous solution of yerba mate has been shown to have antimicrobial activities against E. coli bacteria. 40 mg of mate extract created a 4.5-log reduction in E. coli in apple juice and tryptic soy broth purposefully inoculated with the bacteria.[33] Mate tea extract was demonstrated to have inhibitory activity against a common skin fungus, M. furfur, known to be a cause of dandruff. The anti-fungal activity of mate extract was found to be equivalent to 2.7 ml of ketoconazole in treating dandruff, with none of the side effects of the drug.[34]

Possible cardioprotective effects

A 2007 study from the University of Illinois conducted byElvira de Mejia Ph.D, (Plant Biotechnology) found that consuming 0.5 litres of yerba mate tea increases activity levels of the enzyme that produces high-density lipoprotein (HDL) cholesterol, and lowers levels of low-density lipoprotein (LDL) ("bad") cholesterol. Study participants drinking mate tea had a 10% increase in the level of cardioprotective enzyme PON1, a precursor to HDL, compared to others drinking milk or coffee.[35]

Mice fed high-fat diets for 12 weeks were found to have significant improvements in blood serum levels of cholesterol, triglycerides, LDL cholesterol and glucose after being orally administered a solution of purified water and instant yerba mate tea powder in anin vivo study.[36]

A study by the Federal University of Santa Catarina conducted in 2006 found that New Zealand White rabbits which were fed a high-cholesterol diet and yerba mate extract had significantly smalleratherosclerotic lesions than hypercholesterolemic rabbits not given mate extract. The conclusion of this study found that yerba mate extract can inhibit the development of atherosclerosis in rabbits on a high-cholesterol diet.[37]

Legendary origins

The Guaraní people started drinking mate in a region that currently includes Paraguay, southern Brazil, southeastern Bolivia, northeastern Argentina and Uruguay. The Guaraní have a legend that says the Goddesses of the Moon and the Cloud came to the Earth one day to visit it, but they instead found a yaguareté (jaguar) that was going to attack them. An old man saved them, and, in compensation, the goddesses gave the old man a new kind of plant, from which he could prepare a "drink of friendship".

Variants

Another drink can be prepared with specially cut dry leaves, very cold water, and, optionally, lemon or another fruit juice, calledtereré. It is very common in Paraguay, northeastern Argentina and in the state of Mato Grosso do Sul, Brazil. After pouring the water, it is considered proper to "wait while the saint has a sip" before the first person takes a drink. In southern Brazil, tererê is sometimes used as a derogatory term for a not hot enough chimarrão.

In Uruguay and Brazil, the traditional gourd is usually big with a corresponding large hole. In Argentina (especially in the capitalBuenos Aires), the gourd is small and has a small hole and people sometimes add sugar for flavor.

In Uruguay, people commonly walk around the streets toting a mate and a thermos with hot water. In some parts of Argentina, gas stations sponsored by yerba mate producers provide free hot water to travelers, specifically for the purpose of drinking during the journey. Disposable mate sets with a plastic mate and straw and sets with a thermos flask and stacking containers for the yerba and sugar inside a fitted case are available.

Iced mate cocido

In Argentina, mate cocido (boiled mate) is made with a teabag or leaves and drunk from a cup or mug, with or without sugar and milk. Companies such as Mar del Plata and Establecimiento Las Marías produce teabags for export to Europe.[38]

Travel narratives, such as Maria Graham's Journal of a Residence in Chile, show a long history of mate drinking in central Chile. Many rural Chileans drink mate, in particular in the southern regions, particularly Chiloé and Magallanes.

Mate is consumed as an ice tea in various regions of Brazil, in both artisanal and industrial forms. This is a bottle of industrialized mate ice tea, bought from a local supermarket in Rio de Janeiro.

In some parts of Syria, Lebanon and other middle eastern nations, drinking mate is common. The custom came from Arabs who moved to South America during the early 20th century, adopted the tradition, and kept it after returning to West Asia. Syria is the biggest importer of yerba mate in the world, importing 15,000 tons a year. Mostly, the Druze communities in Syria and Lebanon maintain the culture and practice of mate.[3][4]

According to a major retailer of mate in San Luis Obispo,California, by 2004, mate had grown to about 5% of the overall natural tea market in North America.[39][40] Loose mate is commercially available in much of North America. Bottled mate is increasingly available in the United States. Canadian bottlers have introduced a cane sugar-sweetened, carbonated variety, similar to soda pop. One brand, Sol Mate, produces 10-ounce glass bottles available at Canadian and U.S. retailers, making use of the pun for the sake of marketing.[41]
with thanks to Wikipedia (edited)

Cont / Details about the constituents and actions of the individual whole herbal powders contained in Herbactive Herbalist's ABC Daily Herbal NutriPowder Plus

ILLICIUM VERUM - STAR ANISE

Star anise, star aniseed or Chinese star anise, (Chinese: pinyin: baji a o, lit. "eight-horn") is a spice that closely resembles anise in flavor, obtained from the star-shaped pericarp of Illicium verum, a small native evergreen tree of southwest China . The star shaped fruits are harvested just before ripening. It is widely used in Chinese cuisine, in Indian cuisine where it is a major component of garam masala, and in Indonesian cuisine. It is widely grown for commercial use in China , India , and most other countries in Asia . Star anise is an ingredient of the traditional five-spice powder of Chinese cooking. It is also one of the ingredients used to make the broth for the Vietnamese noodle soup called ph?. It is used as a spice in preperation of Biryani in Andhrapradesh ,a south Indian State .

Star anise contains anethole, the same ingredient which gives the unrelated anise its flavor. Recently, star anise has come into use in the West as a less expensive substitute for anise in baking as well as in liquor production, most distinctively in the production of the liquor Galliano.

Star anise has been used in a tea as a remedy for colic and rheumatism, and the seeds are sometimes chewed after meals to aid digestion.

Although it is produced in most autotrophic organisms, star anise is the industrial source of shikimic acid, a primary ingredient used to create the anti-flu drug Tamiflu. Tamiflu is regarded as the most promising drug to mitigate the severity of bird flu (H5N1); however, reports indicate that some forms of the virus have already adapted to Tamiflu.

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LENTINULA EDODES - SHITAKE MUSHROOM

Shitake Mushroom contains 18 amino acids ( 7-8 of which are essential) and over 30 enzymes. Eritadenine is a unique amino acid believed to lower cholesterol. Shitake Mushroom is high in B vitamins, especially B1, B2 and niacin; and in its sun-dried form, it provides vitamin D (found in very few foods). Oriental herbalists have used wild Shitake Mushroom medicinally for many years; Oriental folklore recommends its use for tumours, flu, heart disease, high blood pressure, obesity, sexual dysfunction, and aging. The past two decades have provided well documented clinical studies showing that Shitake Mushroom helps to decrease cholesterol; 3 ounces of shiitake per day can decrease cholesterol by as much as 12% per week. Shitake Mushroom is an enhancer of the immune system, and it may stimulate production of interferon. According to Kisaka Mori, Ph.D., Shitake Mushroom is high in enzymes and vitamins not usually found in plant foods. In studies, extract form has helped to prevent transplanted tumours from taking hold. Possible indications for use of Shitake Mushroom include: heart disease, cancer-preventative, AIDS, high cholesterol, gallstones, stomach disorders, ulcers, diabetes, vitamin deficiency, anemia, common cold, allergies, insomnia, and neuromuscular disorders.

Lentinula edodes (Shitake mushroom) - anti-tumour properties in laboratory mice. These studies, the earliest dating back to 1969, have also identified the polysaccharide lentinan, a (1-3) ?-D-glucan, as the active compound responsible for the anti-tumour effects. Extracts from shiitake mushrooms have also been researched for many other immunological benefits, ranging from anti-viral properties to possible treatments for severe allergies. Lenthionine, a key flavor compound of shiitake, also inhibits platelet aggregation, so it is a promising treatment for thrombosis.

Shiitake, Lentinula edodes - In the wild, this light amber fungus is found on fallen hardwood trees. The caps have nearly ragged gills and an inrolled margin when young, and they are covered with a delicate white flocking. The stem may be central or off center. Indigenous to temperate Asia, they are not found in the wild in the United States but are widely cultivated. A similar species occurs wild in Costa Rica .

Medical uses: A vast amount of research into shiitake's medicinal properties has been completed and shows that it has the ability to fight tumours and viruses and enhance the immune system. For more details, refer to the accompanying story.

LEM has shown no evidence of acute toxicity in more than seventeen years of use in Japan, even in massive doses (more than 50 mg a day for one week), though mild side effects such as diarrhea and skin rashes have been reported. Likewise, lentinan has no known serious side effects. People with allergies may experience adverse reactions due to its histamine-sensitizing properties.

 

Taking shiitake: The traditional dose is 1 or 2 fresh shiitake mushrooms daily for preventive care or 6 to 16 g of dried shiitake in tea, soup, or other dishes. Commercial preparations (extracts in capsule form) of shiitake are available in the United States in health-food stores but may be expensive. Dried shiitake mushrooms are available in Asian food stores in the United States , usually at more affordable prices. To avert possible digestive upset from eating large quantities of fresh shiitake, LEM, which is concentrated and easily absorbed, is preferred as medicine.

 

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LEPIDIUM MEYENII - MACA ROOT

Maca comes under the herbal classification of being adaptogenic. Adaptogens, are herbs such as ginseng that are traditionally thought to help the body to adapt to increased or ambiguous stressors. Traditional texts claim that these types of herb have a generalised regulatory action upon homeostatic mechanisms throughout the body (Lopez-Fandon et al, 2004:471).

Maca is a very densely nutritious food that contains high amounts of vitamins, minerals, enzymes and all the essential amino acids (so often hard to obtain from a single non-flesh food). The amino acid content of this plant gives it an average bioavailable protein content of around 14% of the entire weight of the plant. Maca certainly has an impressive array of minerals, with notably high levels of bioavailable calcium. The vast majority of people today eat food that is lower in minerals than our wild foods of yesteryear. Maca's high-mineral content can help top up your mineral stores in a tasty enjoyable way. On top of that, maca also contains trace amounts of the hard-to-find vitamin B12 (though not enough to rely on by itself).

There is also a massive array of active phytochemicals (plant chemicals) present within maca, including the legendary macamides and macaenes, who’s supposed activity have been the topic of much research, especially amongst traditional diets of indigenous peoples of Peru.

from wikipedia:
Lepidium meyenii, known commonly as maca, is an herbaceous biennial plant or annual plant (some sources say a perennial plant) native to the high Andes of Peru and Bolivia. It's also cultivated in some parts of Brazil. It is grown for its fleshy hypocotyl (actually a fused hypocotyl and taproot), which is used as a root vegetable and a medicinal herb. Its Spanish and Quechua names include maca-maca, maino, ayak chichira, and ayak willku.
Although this species has been used by the Andean people for two thousand years, their knowledge was first brought under Linnaeus' system of classification by Gerhard Walpers in 1843 as Lepidium meyenii. In studying different specimens since the late 1960s, most botanists now consider the widely cultivated natural maca of today to be a newer domesticated species, L. peruvianum.[1] This more recent designation was made by Dr. Gloria Chacon. The Latin name recognized by the USDA continues to be Lepidium meyenii,[2] however most contemporary botanists employ the name "peruvianum" and consider it most accurate to describe the species".[3] The growth habit, size, and proportions of maca are roughly similar to those of the radish and the turnip, to which it is related. The green, fragrant tops are short and lie along the ground. The thin frilly leaves are born in a rosette at the soil surface, and are continuously renewed from the center as the outer leaves die. The off-white, self-fertile flowers are borne on a central raceme, and are followed by 4–5 mm siliculate fruits, each containing two small (2-2.5 mm) reddish-gray ovoid seeds. The seeds, which are the plant's only means of reproduction, germinate within five days given good conditions. The seeds have no dormancy, as maca's native habitat remains harsh year-round.[clarification needed]
Maca root powder

Maca is the only member of its genus with a fleshy hypocotyl, which is fused with the taproot to form a rough inverted-pear-shaped body. Maca does vary greatly in the size and shape of the root, which can be triangular, flattened circular, spherical or rectangular, the latter of which forms the largest roots. Maca hypocotyls can be gold or cream, red, purple, blue, black or green. Each is considered a genetically unique variety, as seeds of the parent plants grow to have roots of the same color. Recently, specific phenotypes (in maca, 'phenotype' pertains mainly to root color) have been exclusively propagated to ascertain their different nutritional and therapeutic properties. Cream colored roots are the most widely grown and are favored in Peru for their enhanced sweetness and size. Black maca is considered the strongest in energy and stamina-promoting properties, being both sweet and slightly bitter in taste.[4] Red maca is becoming popular with many people, and has been clinically shown to reduce prostate size in rats.[5] These three phenotypes are the primary ones being grown and exported.
Maca root

Maca is traditionally grown at altitudes of approximately 8,000-14,500 ft (2,400-4,400 metres) elevation.[6] It grows well only in cold climates with relatively poor agricultural soils, habitats where few other crops can be grown. Like many cruciferous root vegetables, maca can exhaust soils that are not well tended. Nearly all maca cultivation in Peru is carried out organically, as there are few pests naturally occurring at such high altitudes, and maca itself is seldom attacked. Maca is sometimes interplanted with potatoes, as it is known to maca farmers that the plant itself naturally repels most root crop pests.
Alpaca manure is used to fertilize maca croplands

Maca croplands are fertilized mainly with sheep and alpaca manure, and are often rested for a period of years to rebuild nutrients in the soils. 8 to 10 months elapse between sowing and maturity for harvest. The yield for a cultivated hectare is approximately 5 tons.[citation needed] Maca is typically dried for further processing, which yields about 1.5 tons total. Although maca has been cultivated outside the Andes, it is not yet clear whether it develops the same active constituents or potency. Hypocotyls grown from Peruvian seeds form with difficulty at low elevations, in greenhouses or in warm climates.

For approximately 2,000 years, maca has been an important traditional food and medicinal plant in its limited growing region, where it is well-known and celebrated.[7] It is regarded as a highly nutritious, energy-imbuing food, and as a medicine that enhances strength, endurance and also acts as an aphrodisiac.[7] During Spanish colonization maca was used as currency.[8][9]
Constituents
(1R, 3S)-1-methyltetrahydro-carboline-3-carboxylic acid

In addition to sugars and proteins, maca contains uridine, malic acid and its benzoyl derivative, and the glucosinolates, glucotropaeolin and m-methoxyglucotropaeolin. The methanol extract of maca tuber also contained (1R, 3S)-1-methyltetrahydro-carboline-3-carboxylic acid, a molecule which is reported to exert many activities on the central nervous system.[10] Many different alkamides were found in maca.[11]

The nutritional value of dried maca root is high, similar to cereal grains such as rice and wheat. The average composition is 60-75% carbohydrates, 10-14% protein, 8.5% dietary fiber, and 2.2% fats. Maca is rich in the dietary minerals calcium and potassium (with low content of sodium), and contains the essential trace elements iron, iodine, copper, manganese, and zinc as well as fatty acids including linolenic acid, palmitic acid, and oleic acids, and 19 amino acids.[6]

Further, Maca contains selenium and magnesium, and includes polysaccharides.[12] Maca's reported beneficial effects for sexual function could be due to its high concentration of proteins and vital nutrients;[9] maca contains a chemical called p-methoxybenzyl isothiocyanate, which reputedly has aphrodisiac properties.[1]
Uses and preparation
Maca root powder

Maca has been harvested and used by humans in the Andean Mountains for centuries. Contrary to frequent claims that maca's cultivation was common in what is today Peru, it has been shown that until the late 1980s, maca has only been cultivated in a limited area around Lake Junin, in Central Peru.[13] Historically, maca was often traded for lowland tropical food staples, such as corn, rice, manioc (tapioca roots), quinoa and papaya. It was also used as a form of payment of Spanish imperial taxes. It is often cited that maca was eaten by Inca imperial warriors before battles. Their legendary strength was allegedly imparted by the preparatory consumption of copious amounts of maca, fueling formidable warriors. After a city was conquered, the women had to be protected from the Inca warriors, as they became ambitiously virile from eating such quantities of maca. This is of course an appealing endorsement for the masculine angle of maca's recent marketing campaign. Whether or not this oft repeated historical use is actually true has yet to be determined. Those who have studied maca's history have not been able to locate formal mention of this particular use.[citation needed][14]

In Peru, maca is prepared and consumed in several ways, although traditionally it is always cooked. The freshly harvested hypocotyl can be roasted in a pit (called huatia), and this is considered a delicacy. Fresh roots are usually available only in the vicinity of the growers. The root can also be mashed and boiled to produce a sweet, thick liquid, dried and mixed with milk to form a porridge or with other vegetables or grains to produce a flour that can be used in baking. If fermented, a weak beer called chicha de maca can be produced. In 2010 a US based brewery called Andean Brewing Company, became the first company to produce and commercialize beer made from Maca under the brand KUKA Beer. The leaves can also be prepared raw in salads or cooked much like Lepidium sativum and Lepidium campestre, to which it is genetically closely related.[15]

The growing demand of the supplement industry has been one of the primary reasons for maca's expanding cultivation in Peru and Bolivia.[16] The prominent product for export is maca flour, which is a baking flour ground from the hard, dried roots, "harina de maca." Maca flour (powder) is a relatively inexpensive bulk commodity, much like wheat flour or potato flour. In Peru, maca flour is used in baking as a flour base and a flavoring. There are many companies who sell raw maca flour as a bulk supplement, however maca is not eaten raw in its native territory, and can cause gastric problems unless it is cooked. The supplement industry uses both the dry roots and maca flour for different types of processing and concentrated extracts. An internet query will show dozens of different extracts available, each touting a particular efficaciousness for a traditional use or health claim. Another common form is maca which has undergone gelatinization. This is an extrusion process which separates and removes the tough fiber from the roots using gentle heat and pressure, it is sometimes used on other vegetables with a tough fiber matrix. Raw maca is difficult to digest due to its thick fibers and goitrogen content. Gelatinization was developed for maca specifically to mimic the activity of cooking, and to allow gentler digestion. Gelatinized maca is employed mainly for therapeutic and supplement purposes, but can also be used like maca flour as a flavor in cooking. Available also is a freeze-dried maca juice, which is a juice squeezed from the macerated fresh root, and subsequently freeze-dried high in the Andes.[4]
Health effects

Maca is consumed as food for humans and livestock, suggesting any risk from consumption is rather minimal. It is considered as safe to eat as any other vegetable food. However, maca does contain glucosinolates, which can cause goiters when high consumption is combined with a diet low in iodine. This being said, darker colored maca roots (red, purple, black) contain significant amounts of natural iodine, a 10-gram serving of dried maca generally containing 52 µg of iodine.[1] Though this is common in other foods with high levels of glucosinolate, it is uncertain if maca consumption can cause or worsen a goiter.[17] Maca has been shown to reduce enlarged prostate glands in rats.[5][18][19]

Small-scale clinical trials performed in men have shown that maca extracts can heighten libido and improve semen quality.[20][21] A small double-blind, randomized, parallel group dose-finding pilot study has shown that Maca root may alleviate SSRI-induced sexual dysfunction.[22] A 12-week randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled study in 56 subjects found that Maca has no effect on sex hormone levels in men, including LH, FSH, prolactin, 17-OH progesterone, testosterone or estradiol.[23] In addition, maca has been shown to increase mating behavior in male mice and rats.[24] A recent review states "Randomized clinical trials have shown that maca has favorable effects on energy and mood, may decrease anxiety and improve sexual desire. Maca has also been shown to improve sperm production, sperm motility, and semen volume."[19]
Reference Notes

^ a b c Taylor LG (2005). The healing power of rainforest herbs: a guide to understanding and using herbal medicinals. Garden City Park, NY: Square One Publishers. ISBN 0-7570-0144-0.
^ USDA PLANTS database. Accessed 2008/11/23: http://plants.usda.gov/java/profile?symbol=LEME19
^ Black, Jerome; 2000 "Nomenclature of Maca: Lepidium peruvianum or Lepidium meyenii?"
^ a b Skyfield Tropical: Free Online Botanical Encyclopedia "http://www.skyfieldtropical.com/encyclopedia/maca/" Maca (lepidium peruvianum): Botanical Characteristics
^ a b Gonzales GF, Miranda S, Nieto J, et al. (2005). "Red maca (Lepidium meyenii) reduced prostate size in rats". Reprod Biol Endocrinol. 3 (1): 5. doi:10.1186/1477-7827-3-5. PMC 548136. PMID 15661081.
^ a b "Database entry for Maca Lepidium meyenii Maca - Lepidium peruvianum, Chacon - Maca - Lepidium meyenii Maca - Lepidium meyenii Maca". Rain-tree.com. Retrieved 2012-10-26.
^ a b Kilham, Christopher (2000). Tales from the Medicine Trail: Tracking Down the Health Secrets of Shamans, Herbalists, Mystics, Yogis, and Other Healers. [Emmaus PA]: Rodale Press. ISBN 1-57954-185-2.
^ Valentova, K.; Ulrichova J. (2003). "Smallanthus sonchifolius and Lepidium meyenii - prospective Andean crops for the prevention of chronic diseases". Biomedical papers of the Medical Faculty of the University Palacký, Olomouc, Czechoslovakia 147 (2): 119–30. PMID 15037892.
^ a b Chacón de Popovici, G (1997). La importancia de Lepidium peruvianum ("Maca") en la alimentacion y salud del ser humano y animal 2,000 anos antes y desputes del Cristo y en el siglo XXI.. Lima: Servicios Gráficos "ROMERO".
^ Piacente, Sonia; Carbone, V., Plaza, A., Zampelli, A. & Pizza, C. (2002). "Investigation of the Tuber Constituents of Maca (Lepidium meyenii Walp.)". Journal of Agricultural and Food Chemistry 50 (20): 5621–5625. doi:10.1021/jf020280x. PMID 12236688.
^ Zhao J, Muhammad I, Dunbar DC, Mustafa J, Khan IA (February 2005). "New alkamides from maca (Lepidium meyenii)". J. Agric. Food Chem. 53 (3): 690–3. doi:10.1021/jf048529t. PMID 15686421.
^ Muhammad, I; Zhao J., Dunbar D.C. & Khan I.A. (2002). "Constituents of Lepidium meyenii 'maca'". Phytochemistry 59 (1): 105–110. doi:10.1016/S0031-9422(01)00395-8. PMID 11754952.
^ Hermann, M, Bernet T. "The transition of maca from neglect to market prominence: Lessons for improving use strategies and market chains of minor crops." Agricultural Biodiversity and Livelihoods Discussion Papers 1. Bioversity International, Rome, Italy, 101 p., 2009.
^ Cam, Sergio."http://web.archive.org/web/20090130151135/http://chakarunas.com/chke-his..." Maca in Early Peruvian Records
^ "Maca Root". Retrieved 2007-05-24.
^ Downie, Andrew. "On a Remote Path to Cures" New York Times. January 1, 2008.
^ "Maca". Retrieved 2007-05-24.
^ Gasco, M.; Villegas L., Yucra S., Rubio J. & Gonzales GF. (2007). "Dose-response effect of Red Maca (Lepidium meyenii) on benign prostatic hyperplasia induced by testosterone enanthate". Phytomedicine 14 (7-8): 460. doi:10.1016/j.phymed.2006.12.003. PMID 17289361.
^ a b Gonzales GF, Gonzales C, Gonzales-Castañeda C (December 2009). "Lepidium meyenii (Maca): a plant from the highlands of Peru--from tradition to science". Forsch Komplementmed 16 (6): 373–80. doi:10.1159/000264618. PMID 20090350.
^ Gonzales, GF.; Cordova A., Vega K., Chung A., Villena A., Gonez C. & Castillo S. (2002). "Effect of Lepidium meyenii (maca) on sexual desire and its absent relationship with serum testosterone levels in adult healthy men". Andrologia 34 (6): 367–72. doi:10.1046/j.1439-0272.2002.00519.x. PMID 12472620.
^ Gonzales, GF; Cordova A., Gonzales C., Chung A., Vega K. & Villena A. (2001). "Lepidium meyenii (maca) improved semen parameters in adult men". Asian Journal of Andrology 3 (4): 301–3. PMID 11753476.
^ Dording CM, Fisher L, Papakostas G, et al. (2008). "A double-blind, randomized, pilot dose-finding study of maca root (L. meyenii) for the management of SSRI-induced sexual dysfunction". CNS Neurosci Ther 14 (3): 182–91. doi:10.1111/j.1755-5949.2008.00052.x. PMID 18801111.
^ Gonzales GF, Córdova A, Vega K, Chung A, Villena A, Góñez C (Jan 2003). "Effect of Lepidium meyenii (Maca), a root with aphrodisiac and fertility-enhancing properties, on serum reproductive hormone levels in adult healthy men". J Endocrinol. 176 (1): 163–8. doi:10.1677/joe.0.1760163. PMID 12525260. For this reason, maca is a common ingredient in sexual herbal supplements like Semenax™.
^ Zheng, BL.; He, K., Kim, CH., Rogers, L., Shao, Y., Huang, ZY., Lu, Y., Yan, SJ., Qien, LC. & Zheng, QY. (2000). "Effect of a lipidic extract from Lepidium meyenii on sexual behavior in mice and rats". Urology 55 (4): 598–602. doi:10.1016/S0090-4295(99)00549-X. PMID 10736519.
from wikpedia - http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lepidium_meyenii

LINUM USITATISSIMUM - FLAX SEED

Flax (also known as common flax or linseed) (binomial name: Linum usitatissimum) is a member of the genus Linum in the family Linaceae. It is native to the region extending from the eastern Mediterranean to India and was probably first domesticated in the Fertile Crescent. It is known as आलस (Aalas)in Nepali, Agasi/Akshi in Kannada, जवस (Jawas/Javas) or अळशी (Alashi) in Marathi and तीसी (Tisi) in Hindi and Bengali, in Telugu it is called అవిశలు (ousahalu). Flax was extensively cultivated in ancient Ethiopia and ancient Egypt.[2] In a prehistoric cave in the Republic of Georgia, dyed flax fibers have been found that date to 30,000 BC.
Flax is an erect annual plant growing to 1.2 m (3 ft 11 in) tall, with slender stems. The leaves are glaucous green, slender lanceolate, 20–40 mm long and 3 mm broad. The flowers are pure pale blue, 15–25 mm diameter, with five petals; they can also be bright red. The fruit is a round, dry capsule 5–9 mm diameter, containing several glossy brown seeds shaped like an apple pip, 4–7 mm long.

In addition to referring to the plant itself, the word "flax" may refer to the unspun fibers of the flax plant.
Flax is grown both for its seeds and for its fibers. Various parts of the plant have been used to make fabric, dye, paper, medicines, fishing nets, hair gels, and soap. Flax seed is the source of linseed oil, which has uses as an edible oil, as a nutritional supplement and as an ingredient in many wood finishing products. It is also grown as an ornamental plant in gardens. The inca also used this to create bowstring.
Flax seeds come in two basic varieties: (1) brown; and (2) yellow or golden. Most types have similar nutritional characteristics and equal amounts of short-chain omega-3 fatty acids. The exception is a type of yellow flax called solin (trade name Linola), which has a completely different oil profile and is very low in omega-3 FAs. Although brown flax can be consumed as readily as yellow, and has been for thousands of years, it is better known as an ingredient in paints, fiber and cattle feed. Flax seeds produce a vegetable oil known as flaxseed or linseed oil, which is one of the oldest commercial oils, and solvent-processed flax seed oil has been used for centuries as a drying oil in painting and varnishing.[citation needed]

One hundred grams of ground flax seed supplies about 450 kilocalories, 41 grams of fat, 28 grams of fiber, and 20 grams of protein.[5]

Flax seed sprouts are edible, with a slightly spicy flavor. Excessive consumption of flax seeds with inadequate water can cause bowel obstruction.[6] Flaxseed is called 'Tisi' in northern India, particularly in the Bihar region.[citation needed] Roasted 'Tisi' is powdered and eaten with boiled rice, a little water, and a little salt since ancient times in the villages.[citation needed]

Flax seeds are chemically stable while whole, and milled flax seed can be stored at least 4 months at room temperature with minimal or no changes in taste, smell, or chemical markers of rancidity, which can start with its seed coat becoming bitter. Ground flaxseed can go rancid at room temperature in as little as one week.[7] Even after storage under conditions similar to those found in commercial bakeries, trained sensory panelists could not detect differences between bread made with freshly ground flax and bread made with ground flax stored for 4 months at room temperature.[8] Ground flax is remarkably stable to oxidation when stored for 9 months at room temperature[9] and for 20 months at ambient temperatures under warehouse conditions.[8] Refrigeration and storage in sealed containers will keep ground flax from becoming rancid for a longer period.[citation needed]
Nutrients and clinical research
Flax seeds contain high levels of dietary fiber including lignans, an abundance of micronutrients and omega-3 fatty acids (table). Flax seeds may lower cholesterol levels, especially in women.[10] Initial studies suggest that flax seeds taken in the diet may benefit individuals with certain types of breast[11][12] and prostate cancers.[13] A study done at Duke suggests that flaxseed may stunt the growth of prostate tumors,[13] although a meta-analysis found the evidence on this point to be inconclusive.[14] Flax may also lessen the severity of diabetes by stabilizing blood-sugar levels.[15] There is some support for the use of flax seed as a laxative due to its dietary fiber content[6] though excessive consumption without liquid can result in intestinal blockage.[16] Consuming large amounts of flax seed may impair the effectiveness of certain oral medications, due to its fiber content,[16] and may have adverse effects due to its content of neurotoxic cyanogen glycosides and immunosuppressive cyclic nonapeptides.

 

 

 

MEDICAGO SATIVA - ALFALFA

Highly nutritious. Reduces cholesterol Onions and garlic counteract increased platelet aggregation. Garlic lowers total serum cholesterol and triglycerides significantly, while increasing HDL levels.

Alafalfa decreases cholesterol levels and has a shrinkage effect on atherosclerotic plaque.

Serving Size: 1 Cup (33 grams)

Grams Calories % Daily Value

Calories 8 0%

Fat - - -

Saturated - - -

Trans -

Carbohydrates 1 4 0%

Dietary Fiber 1

Sugars -

Protein 1 4 1%

Nutrition Facts

Serving Size: 1 Cup (33 grams)

Amount Per Serving

Calories 8 Calories from Fat

% Daily Value*

Total Fat 0g

Saturated Fat 0g

Trans Fat 0g

Cholesterol 0mg 0%

Sodium 2mg 0%

Total Carbohydrates 1g 0%

Dietary Fiber 1g 4%

Sugars 0g 0%

Protein 1g 1%

Vitamin A 1% Vitamin C 4%

Calcium 1% Iron 2%

*Daily Values are based upon a 2000 calorie diet. Login to see these reflect your personalized calorie intake values.

 

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MENTHA PIPERITA - PEPPERMINT HERB

Mentha piperita (Peppermint herb) - carminative, anti-spasmodic, aromatic, diaphoretic, anti-emetic, nervine, anti-septic, analgesic; intestinal colic, flatulent dyspepsia, nausea, morning sickness, travel sickness, ulcerative colitis, Crohn's disease, fever, colds, flu, nasal catarrh, migraine headache, nervine, dysmenorrhoea.

Mentha piperita

Part Used: Aerial parts.

Constituents: The whole complex of primary plant constituents and acharacteristic array of secondary plant constituents are present.Pharmacologically important constituents include an essential oil containingmenthol, menthone and menthyl acetate as the major components, flavonoids.

Actions: Carminative, anti-inflammatory, anti-spasmodic, aromatic,diaphoretic, anti-emetic, nervine, anti-microbial, analgesic.

Indications: Peppermint is an excellent carminative, having a relaxingeffect on the muscles of the digestive system, combats flatulence andstimulates bile and digestive juice flow. It is used to relieve intestinalcolic, flatulent dyspepsia and associated conditions. The volatileoil acts as a mild anaesthetic to the stomach wall, which allays feelings ofnausea and the desire to vomit. It helps to relieve thenausea & vomiting of pregnancy and travel sickness.Peppermint can play a role in the treatment of ulcerative conditions of thebowels. It is a traditional treatment of fevers, colds andinfluenza. As an inhalant it is used as temporary relief for nasalcatarrh. Where headaches are associated with digestion, Peppermint may help. As a nervine it eases anxiety and tension. In painfulperiods, it relieves the pain and eases associated tension.

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MUCUNA PRURIENS - KAPIKACHU

The plant is an annual, climbing shrub with long vines that can reach over 15 m in length. When the plant is young, it is almost completely covered with fuzzy hairs, but when older, it is almost completely free of hairs. The leaves are tripinnate, ovate, reverse ovate, rhombus shaped or widely ovate. The sides of the leaves are often heavily grooved and the tips are pointy. In young Mucuna pruriens plants, both sides of the leaves have hairs. The stems of the leaflets are two to three millimeters long. Additional adjacent leaves are present and are about 5 mm long.

The flower heads take the form of axially arrayed panicles. They are 15 to 32 cm long and have two to three, or many flowers. The accompanying leaves are about 12.5 mm long, the flower stand axes are from 2.5 to 5 mm. The bell is 7.5 to 9 mm long and silky. The sepals are longer or of the same length as the shuttles. The crown is purplish or white. The flag is 1.5 mm long. The wings are 2.5 to 3.8 cm long.

In the fruit ripening stage, a 4 to 13 cm long, 1 to 2 cm wide, unwinged leguminous fruit develops. There is a ridge along the length of the fruit. The husk is very hairy and carries up to seven seeds. The seeds are flattened uniform ellipsoid, 1 to 1.9 cm long, 0.8 to 1.3 cm wide and 4 to 6.5 cm thick. The hilum, the base of the funiculus (connection between placenta and plant seeds) is a surrounded by a significant arillus (fleshy seeds shell).

Mucuna pruriens bears white, lavender, or purple flowers. Its seed pods are about 10 cm long[1] and are covered in loose orange hairs that cause a severe itch if they come in contact with skin. The chemical compounds responsible for the itch are a protein, mucunain,[1] and serotonin. The seeds are shiny black or brown drift seeds. It is found in tropical Africa, India and the Caribbean.

The dry weight of the seeds is 55 to 85 g/100 seeds.

The number of chromosomes in the plant cells is 2n = 20, 22 or 24.

USES: In many parts of the world Mucuna pruriens is used as an important forage, fallow and green manure crop.[3] Since the plant is in the legume family (peas and beans), it, with the help of nitrogen fixing bacteria, takes nitrogen gas from the air and combines it with other chemical compounds producing fertilizer and improving the soil.

Mucuna pruriens is a widespread fodder plant in the tropics. To that end, the whole plant is fed to animals as silage, dried hay or dried seeds. Mucuna pruriens silage contains 11-23% crude protein, 35-40% crude fiber, and the dried beans 20-35% crude protein.

Mucuna pruriens is sometimes used as a coffee substitute called "Nescafe" (not to be confused with the commercial brand Nescafé). Cooked fresh shoots or beans can also be eaten. This requires that they be soaked from at least 30 minutes to 48 hours in advance of cooking, or the water changed up to several times during cooking, since otherwise the plant can be toxic to humans. The above described process leaches out chemical compounds such as levodopa, making the product suitable for consumption. If consumed in large quantities as food, unprocessed Mucuna pruriens is toxic to nonruminant mammals including humans.

In history, M. pruriens has been used as an effective aphrodisiac.

It is still used to increase libido in both men and women due to its dopamine inducing properties. Dopamine has a profound influence on sexual function.

Mucuna pruriens seeds have also been found to have antidepressant properties in cases of depressive neurosis when consumed.

Dried leaves of Mucuna pruriens are sometimes smoked.

Mucuna pruriens has also recently become popular among lucid dreaming enthusiasts: when combined with other supplements that stimulate the cholinergic system, the dopamine presumably produced from the consumption of Mucuna pruriens confers upon the lucid dreamer greater motivation and confidence.

The hairs lining the seed pods contain 5-hydroxytryptamine (serotonin) which causes severe itching (pruritus). The hairs on the outside of the pods of Mucuna pruriens are a common ingredient in itching powder.[11] Use of Mucuna pruriens is documented in Siddha medicine for a number of uses, including improving sexual function. Mucuna pruriens is used in the countries of Benin and Vietnam as a biological control for problematic Imperata cylindrica grass.[3] Mucuna pruriens is said to not be invasive outside its cultivated area.
Mucuna pruriens seeds contain high concentrations of levodopa, a direct precursor of the neurotransmitter dopamine. It has long been used in traditional Ayurvedic Indian medicine for diseases including Parkinson's Disease.] In large amounts (e.g. 30 g dose) it has been shown to be as effective as pure levodopa/carbidopa in the treatment of Parkinson's Disease, but no data on long-term efficacy and tolerability is available.

In addition to levodopa, Mucuna also contains serotonin (5-HT), 5-HTP, nicotine, N,N-DMT (DMT), bufotenine, and 5-MeO-DMT. As such, it could potentially have psychedelic effects, and it has purportedly been used in ayahuasca preparations.

The mature seeds of the plant contain about 3.1-6.1% L-DOPA,[9] with trace amounts of 5-hydroxytryptamine (serotonin), nicotine, DMT-n-oxide, bufotenine, 5-MeO-DMT-n-oxide, and beta-carboline.[18] One study using 36 samples of the seeds found no tryptamines present in them.

The leaves contain about 0.5% L-DOPA, 0.006% dimethyltryptamine (DMT), 0.0025% 5-MeO-DMT and 0.003% DMT n-oxide.

The Mucuna pruriens is also known as velvet bean, cowhage, cowitch, yerepa. It originates in trapical forest. It has been found to be a very effective nervine-tonic and aphrodisiac, especially men. Mucuna is also used as a dietary supplement and it will help the deposition of protein to strengthen muscles and prevent muscle wasting. It is known to restore mental alertness and to improve coordination. In summary: Mucuna can improve libido; it helps the nervous system reach optimum performance; it regulates the sex hormones; it protects muscle mass and strength; it enhances mental functioning

MYRICA FRAGRANS - NUTMEG

NASTURTIUM OFFICINALE - WATERCRESS HERB

This is a brassica and related to garden cress, mustard and radish. Noted for its tangy peppery flavour. A perennial grown in shallow streams and cultivated in spring water.

Nutritional value per 100 g (3.5 oz)
Energy 46 kJ (11 kcal)
Carbohydrates 1.29 g
- Sugars 0.2 g
- Dietary fiber 0.5 g
Fat 0.1 g
Protein 2.3 g
Vitamin A equiv. 160 μg (20%)
- beta-carotene 1914 μg (18%)
- lutein and zeaxanthin 5767 μg
Thiamine (vit. B1) 0.09 mg (8%)
Riboflavin (vit. B2) 0.12 mg (10%)
Pantothenic acid (B5) 0.31 mg (6%)
Vitamin B6 0.129 mg (10%)
Folate (vit. B9) 9 μg (2%)
Vitamin C 43 mg (52%)
Vitamin E 1 mg (7%)
Vitamin K 250 μg (238%)
Calcium 120 mg (12%)
Iron 0.2 mg (2%)
Magnesium 21 mg (6%)
Manganese 0.244 mg (12%)
Phosphorus 60 mg (9%)
Potassium 330 mg (7%)
Sodium 41 mg (3%)

Watercress contains significant amounts of iron, calcium, iodine, and folic acid, in addition to vitamins A and C.[5] Because it is relatively rich in Vitamin C, watercress was suggested (among other plants) by English military surgeon John Woodall (1570–1643) as a remedy for scurvy.
Many benefits from eating watercress are claimed, such as that it acts as a stimulant, a source of phytochemicals and antioxidants, a diuretic, an expectorant, and a digestive aid.[6] It also appears to have antiangiogenic cancer-suppressing properties; it is widely believed to help prevent or defend against lung cancer.[7][8][9][10] A 2010 study conducted by the University of Southampton found that consumption of watercress may also prevent or inhibit the growth of breast cancer.[11] The content of phenethyl isothiocyanate (PEITC) in watercress inhibits HIF, which can inhibit angiogenesis.
Watercress is mentioned in the Talmud as being able to stop bleeding, when mixed with vinegar.[12] source Wikipedia.

NIGELLA SATIVUM - BLACK SEED, BLACK CUMIN SEED

info coming soon! watch this space!

OLEA EUROPAEA - OLIVE LEAF

Olive leaf is the leaf of the olive tree (Olea europaea). While olive oil is well known for its flavor and health benefits, the leaf has been used medicinally in various times and places.[citation needed] Olive leaf and olive leaf extracts (OLE), are now marketed as anti-aging, immunostimulator, and antibiotic agents. Though there is some laboratory evidence for these effects in biological standardization experiments (i.e., bioassays), clinical evidence in humans is inconclusive.
Clinical evidence has been conflicting regarding any blood pressure lowering effect of carefully extracted olive leaf extracts.[1][2][3][4] Bioassays support its antibacterial, antifungal, and anti-inflammatory effects at a laboratory level. A liquid extract made directly from fresh olive leaves gained international attention when it was shown to have an antioxidant capacity almost double green tea extract and 400% higher than vitamin C.[5]

Researchers have found that olive leaf dilates isolated rat aorta.[4] However, no statistically significant blood pressure lowering effects in humans have been observed.[1]
Recent research in rodents has shown that olive leaf extracts may reduce infarct volume, brain edema, as well as improve blood–brain barrier permeability and neurological deficit scores after transient middle cerebral artery occlusion (stroke).[6]
Olive leaf harbours antioxidant properties that help protect the body from the continuous activity of free radicals.[2][5][7][8][9][10][11] Free radicals are highly reactive chemical substances that can cause cellular damage if left unchecked. Some recent research on the olive leaf has shown its antioxidants to be effective in preventing some tumors and cancers such as liver, prostate, colon, skin and breast cancer, clinical studies lacking; Olive leaf is especially potent when used in combination with other antioxidants.[12][13][14]
A randomized controlled double-blind crossover trial in New Zealand found that olive leaf extract capsules significantly improved insulin sensitivity and pancreatic β-cell responsiveness in middle-aged overweight men.[15]
Olive leaf can be taken as a liquid concentrate, dried leaf tea, powder, or capsule. The leaf extracts can be taken in powder, liquid concentrate, or capsule form though the fresh-picked leaf liquid extracts are quickly gaining popularity due to the broader range of healing compounds they are thought to contain. Source Wikipedia.

PANAX GINSENG – KOREAN GINSENG ROOT

The main active components of Panax ginseng are ginsenosides, which have been shown to have a variety of beneficial effects, including anti-inflammatory, antioxidant, and cancer-preventive effects. Results of clinical research studies demonstrate that Panax ginseng may improve psychologic function, immune function, and conditions associated with diabetes. Overall, Panax ginseng appears to be well tolerated, although caution is advised about concomitant use with some pharmaceuticals, such as warfarin, oral hypoglycemic agents, insulin, and phenelzine. Panax ginseng does not appear to enhance physical performance. Products with a standardized ginsenoside concentration are available. (Am Fam Physician 2003;68:1539-42. Copyright© 2003 American Academy of Family Physicians .)

Herbal remedies known as "ginseng" are based on the roots of several distinct species of plants, mainly Korean or Asian ginseng (Panax ginseng), Siberian ginseng (Eleutherococcus senticosus), and American ginseng (Panax quinquefolius). All of these species are in the Araliaceae plant family, but each has its own specific effects on the body.

See page 1461 for definitions of strength-of-evidence levels.

Ginseng products are popularly referred to as "tonics," a term that has been replaced by "adaptogens" in much of the alternative medicine literature. The term "adaptogen" connotes an agent that purportedly "increases resistance to physical, chemical, and biological stress and builds up general vitality, including the physical and mental capacity for work." 1(p236) Over-the-counter Panax ginseng products include Celestial Seasonings Ginseng, Centrum Herbals Ginseng, Korean Ginseng Extract from Nature's Way, Nature Made's Chinese Red Panax Ginseng, Pharmaton's Ginsana, and PhytoPharmica's Ginseng Phytosome.

Panax ginseng is one of the most commonly used and highly researched species of ginseng. This species, which is native to China, Korea, and Russia, has been an important herbal remedy in traditional Chinese medicine for thousands of years, where it has been used primarily as a treatment for weakness and fatigue. 2

Pharmacology

The main active agents in Panax ginseng are ginsenosides, which are triterpene saponins. The majority of published research on the medicinal activity of Panax ginseng has focused on ginsenosides. 3 These are the compounds to which some ginseng products are now standardized.

Research reviews 2,4 postulate that extracts of Panax ginseng affect the hypothalamus-pituitary-adrenal axis and the immune system, which could account for many of the documented effects. Animal models and in vitro studies mentioned in these reviews 2,4 indicate that Panax ginseng enhances phagocytosis, natural killer cell activity, and the production of interferon; improves physical and mental performance in mice and rats; causes vasodilation; increases resistance to exogenous stress factors; and affects hypoglycemic activity.

Efficacy

Panax ginseng is used primarily to improve psychologic function, exercise performance, immune function, and conditions associated with diabetes (Table 1) . Traditional Chinese medicine and many current research studies 5-8 often use products that combine ginseng with other herbal medicines or vitamins. Because of the use of combination products and the limitations of some studies on ginseng (e.g., poor methodologic quality, research focusing on healthy volunteers, small sample size, unstandardized ginseng preparations, varying doses), it is difficult to draw conclusions about some of the clinical effects of ginseng. Many research trials have been performed on the standardized Panax ginseng extract Ginsana (G115).

Key Points About Panax ginseng

Efficacy

Psychologic functioning: effective; conflicting evidence

Physical performance: ineffective

Immune system: effective

Diabetes: modest effect; evidence limited

Adverse effects

Nausea, diarrhea, euphoria, insomnia, headaches, hypertension, hypotension, mastalgia, vaginal bleeding, blood pressure abnormalities

Dry root (tea form or chewed): 0.5 to 2 g per day

A safe, well-tolerated herbal medicine that may be used for a variety of medical conditions

EFFECTS ON PSYCHOLOGIC FUNCTION

Trials investigating the effects of Panax ginseng on various psychologic parameters have shown positive effects, no effects, or both. In one study 9 of 112 healthy volunteers older than 40 years, the administration of 400 mg per day of the standardized ginseng product Gerimax for eight weeks resulted in better and faster simple reactions and abstract thinking, but no change in concentration, memory, or subjective experience.

The results of two small studies, 10,11 each including about 30 young, healthy volunteers who received 200 mg of G115 daily for eight weeks, showed improvement in certain psychomotor functions (i.e., better attention, processing, and auditory reaction time), social functioning, and mental health. However, some of the effects present at the fourth week disappeared by the eighth week. 11

A study of 384 postmenopausal women who were randomized to receive placebo or ginseng for 16 weeks showed improvements in three subsets of a Psychological General Well-Being index. 12 [Evidence level A, randomized controlled trial (RCT)] In addition, a small study 7 of 20 healthy young volunteers who received a single 400-mg dose of ginseng found improvement in cognitive performance, secondary memory performance, speed of performing memory tasks, and accuracy of attentional tasks. However, another study 13 showed no effect on positive affect, negative affect, or total mood disturbance in 83 young healthy volunteers who took 200 to 400 mg per day of G115 for eight weeks.

EFFECTS ON PHYSICAL PERFORMANCE

Most of the clinical studies investigating the value of Panax ginseng in enhancing physical performance have shown no clinical effect. 14 One study 15 on the use of 200 mg per day of G115 in 19 healthy adult women showed no change in physical work performance, energy metabolic responses, or oxygen uptake.

Similarly, a study of 31 healthy men who took 200 or 400 mg of G115 daily for eight weeks found no change in physiologic or psychologic responses to submaximal or maximal exercise. 16 [Evidence level B, lower quality RCT] In another study, 17 a different product standardized to 7 percent ginsenosides and administered at 200 mg per day was given to 28 healthy young adults for 21 days. No ergogenic effects were demonstrated, including no change in maximal oxygen consumption, exercise time, workload, plasma lactate level, hematocrit, or heart rate.

EFFECTS ON IMMUNE SYSTEM

A study 18 of 227 healthy volunteers demonstrated that daily administration of 100 mg of G115 for 12 weeks enhanced the efficacy of polyvalent influenza vaccine. The patients who received ginseng had a lower incidence of influenza and colds, higher antibody titers, and higher natural killer cell activity levels. Another study 19 in 60 healthy volunteers showed enhanced chemotaxis, phagocytosis, increased total lymphocyte count, and increased numbers of T helper cells in those who received G115 in a dosage of 100 mg twice daily for eight weeks. In a study of
75 patients with acute exacerbation of chronic bronchitis who were treated with antibiotics or antibiotics plus ginseng, those in the ginseng group showed faster bacterial clearance. 20

EFFECTS ON DIABETES

The effects of Panax ginseng, given in a dosage of 100 or 200 mg per day for eight weeks, were studied in 36 patients with newly diagnosed non-insulin-dependent diabetes. 21 The study showed improved fasting blood glucose levels, elevated mood, and improved psychophysical performance on a numbered diagram test. The 200-mg dose also resulted in improved hemoglobin A 1C values.

ADDITIONAL USES

In 45 patients with erectile dysfunction, use of ginseng improved erectile function, sexual desire, and intercourse satisfaction. 22

Panax ginseng also appears to have cancer-preventive effects. In a prospective cohort study 23 of 4,364 persons older than 40 years, the risk of cancer was shown to be lower in those who used ginseng (relative risk: 0.40).

With thanks to DAVID KIEFER, M.D., and TRACI PANTUSO, B.S.

University of Arizona College of Medicine , Tucson , Arizona

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PAULINIA CUPANA – GUARANA

Guarana. Botanical: Paullinia Cupana, Kunth. (H. B. and K.)

Family: N.O. Sapindaceae

Synonyms: Paullinia. Guarana Bread. Brazilian Cocoa . Uabano. Uaranzeiro. Paullinia Sorbilis.

Part Used: Prepared seeds, crushed.

Habitat: Brazil , Uruguay . - NOTE: Dr Earle Sweet, Sayfer Botanicals, points out that this is incorrect, Guarana does NOT grow in Uruguay . - 12/16/96 

Description---This climbing shrub took the name of its genus from C. F. Paullini, a German medical botanist who died 1712. It has divided compound leaves, flowers yellow panicles, fruit pear shaped, three sided, three-celled capsules, with thin partitions, in each a seed like a small horse-chestnut half enclosed in an aril, flesh coloured and easily separated when dried. The seeds of Paullinia Sorbilis are often used or mixed with those of P. Cupana. Guarana is only made by the Guaranis, a tribe of South American Indians.

(Note: Marcos Garcia, Embrapa-CPAA, Manaus Amazonas , Brazil , also points out "The origin habitat of Guarana is the Amazon Region. But actually it is cultivated in others locations at Southest of Brazil ."

After the seeds are shelled and washed they are roasted for six hours, then put into sacks and shaken till their outside shell comes off, they are then pounded into a fine powder and made into a dough with water, and rolled into cylindrical pieces 8 inches long; these are then dried in the sun or over a slow fire, till they became very hard and are then a rough and reddish-brown colour, marbled with the seeds and testa in the mass. They break with an irregular fracture, have little smell, taste astringent, and bitter like chocolate without its oiliness, and in colour like chocolate powder; it swells up and partially dissolves in water.

Constituents - A crystallizable principle, called guaranine, similar to caffeine, which exists in the seeds, united with tannic acid, catechutannic acid starch, and a greenish fixed oil.

Medicinal Action and Uses - Nervine, tonic, stimulant, aphrodisiac, febrifuge. A beverage is made from the guaran sticks, by grating half a tablespoonful into sugar and water and drinking it like tea. The Brazilian miners drink this constantly and believe it to be a preventive of many diseases, as well as a most refreshing beverage. Their habit in travelling is to carry the stick or a lump of it in their pockets, with a palate bone or scale of a large fish with which to grate it. P. cupana is also a favourite national diet drink, the seeds are mixed with Cassava and water, and left to ferment until almost putrid, and in this state it is the favourite drink of the Orinoco Indians. From the tannin it contains it is useful for mild forms of leucorrhoea, diarrhoea, etc., but its chief use in Europe and America is for headache, especially if of a rheumatic nature. It is a gentle excitant and serviceable where the brain is irritated or depressed by mental exertion, or where there is fatigue or exhaustion from hot weather. Its benefit is for nervous headache or the distress that accompanies menstruation, or exhaustion following dissipation. It is used by the Indians for bowel complaints.

Guarana is used and well known for its stimulant and thermogenic action. In America today, Guarana is reputed to increase mental alertness and fight fatigue (4) and also to increase stamina and physical endurance.(5) Presently guarana is taken daily as a health tonic by millions of Brazilians who believe it helps overcome heat fatigue, combats premature aging, detoxifies the blood and useful for flatulence, obesity, dyspepsia, fatigue and for arteriosclerosis.(6) In body care products, Guarana has been used for its tonifying and astringent properties. It has been used in the treatment of cellulite due to its lipolytic and vasodilation action. Guarana has been used as an ingredient in shampoos for oily hair and as a coadjutant in hair loss treatments.

In addition to other chemicals, the guaraná plant contains ‘caffeine' (called "guaranine"), theophylline, and theobromine. Water extracts of the guarana plant are central nervous system stimulants due to the guaranine content. Energy drink manufacturers typically add synthetic caffeine or caffeine derived from coffee decaffeination, and not the gentler guaranine.

Brazil produces several brands of soft drink from guaraná extract that contain no added caffeine. Each differs greatly in flavour; some with very little natural guarana fruit taste. In Brazil , sales of guarana drinks are even greater than that of cola drinks. They are typically fizzy and sweet, with a very fruity aftertaste. Most guaraná drinks are produced in Brazil and consumed there or in nearby countries, such as Paraguay . Major brands include Guaraná Antarctica, Guaraná Schin from Schincariol and Guaraná Brahma from AmBev, Kuat, and Guaraná Jesus, a local Brazilian brand named for the druggist that formulated it.[1] Many local producers also create drinks not for export.

It is used in weight loss and as a general health supplement. Studies involving guaraná show benefits to cognitive function. [2] They have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) or similar government agencies. In the United States , guaraná holds a GRAS-status, i.e. generally regarded as safe and must be labeled as not intended to diagnose, treat, cure or prevent any disease.

The Journal of Human Nutrition and Dietetics published a study in June 2001 showing an average 11.2 pound weight loss in a group taking a mixture of yerba mate, guaraná and damiana, compared to an average 1 pound loss in a placebo group after 45 days.[3]

A university study in Brazil of guaraná extract showed a platelet aggregation decrease of up to 37% of control values and a decrease of platelet thromboxane formation from arachidonic acid of up to 78% of control values. [4] This study may be significant to stroke and heart attack risk reduction because when excess thromboxane formation occurs, an arterial blood clot can develop, resulting in a heart attack or ischemic stroke.[5]

A separate 1997 study of guaraná's effects on the physical activity of rats showed increased memory retention and physical endurance when compared with a placebo.[6]

Other studies have shown antioxidant, antibacterial, and fat cell reduction (when combined with conjugated linoleic acid) properties in guaraná [7]

Although side-effects of guaraná are rare, drugs.com recommends, "When considering the use of herbal supplements, consultation with a primary health care professional is advisable. Additionally, consultation with a practitioner trained in the uses of herbal/health supplements may be beneficial, and coordination of treatment among all health care providers involved may be advantageous". Drugs.com also advises not to mix guaraná with ephedrine.[8]

Composition: Guaraná seeds consist of mostly reddish vegetable fiber and resin with a small amount of oil and water.

Chemicals in: Paullinia cupana (alphabetical order, concentration given*)

Adenine seed: Duke1992a

Ash seed 14,200 ppm; Duke1992a

Caffeine seed 25,000 - 76,000 ppm Duke1992a

Catechutannic-acid seed: Duke1992a

Choline seed: Duke1992a

D-catechin seed: Duke1992a

Fat seed 30,000 ppm; Duke1992a

Guanine seed: Duke1992a

Guaranine seed: Duke1992a

Hypoxanthine seed: Duke1992a

Mucilage seed: Duke1992a

Protein seed 98,600 ppm; Duke1992a

Resin seed 70,000 ppm; Duke1992a

Saponin seed: Duke1992a

Starch seed 50,000 - 60,000 ppm Duke1992a

Tannin seed 85,000 - 120,000 ppm Duke1992a

Theobromine seed 330 ppm; Duke1992a

Theophylline seed 570 ppm; Duke1992a

Timbonine seed: Duke1992a

Xanthine seed: Duke1992a

Duke1992a: Duke, James A. 1992. Handbook of phytochemical constituents of GRAS herbs and other economic plants. Boca Raton , FL. CRC Press.

 

(*) ppm = parts per million

tr = trace

Guarana contains different amounts, i.e., either less or more of the stimulants theobromine and theophylline and other alkaloids, than other caffeine sources.

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PFAFFIA PANICULATA – SUMA ROOT

Pfaffia paniculata (Suma root) - nerve and glandular restorative, anti-tumour, anti-melanoma. Adaptogen - to achieve more perfect endocrine balance. Used to strengthen the immune system against the progress of malignancy. Restorative after illness (convalescence). Infertility. Menopausal and menstrual symptoms. To minimise the side-effects of the Pill. Do not use in pregnancy. To restore acid-alkali balance, thus facilitating blood-flow to cells and neutralising toxins. Osteomyelitis, high blood uric acid (arthritis, gout), PMT, high blood cholesterol. Rich source of vitamins and mineral nutrients. Contains Germanium. Keynote: hormonal balance. (Bartram)

Family: Amaranthaceae

Genus: Pfaffia

Species: paniculata

Common Names: Suma, Brazilian Ginseng, Pfaffia,

Para Toda, Corango-acu

Part Used: Root

DESCRIPTION

Properties/Actions: Anabolic, Analgesic, Anti-inflammatory, Antimutagenic, Aphrodisiac, Estrogenic, Hypocholesterolemic, Immunostimulant, Nutritive, Sedative, Steroidal, Tonic

Phytochemicals: Beta-ecdysone, Nortriterpenoid Pfaffic Acids, Sitosterol, Stigmasterol, Iron, Magnesium, Cobalt, Silica, Zinc, Vitamins A, B-1, B-2, E, K, Pantothenic Acid, Germanium, Saponins

Suma is a large, scrambling, shrubby ground vine which has an intricate and deep root system. It is indigenous to the Amazon basin area and other tropical parts of Brazil, Ecuador, Panama, Paraguay Peru and Venezuela.(1, 2) Since it first botanical recording in 1826, it has been referred to by several botanical names including Pfaffia paniculata, Hebanthe paniculata and Gomphrena paniculata.(3) The genus Pfaffia is well known in Central and South America with over 50 species of Pfaffia growing in the warmer tropical regions of the area.(4)

In South America, Suma is known as Para Toda which means "for all things" (panacea) and as Brazilian Ginseng since it is widely used as an adaptogen for many things, much like regular ginseng. The indigenous peoples of the Amazon region who named it Para Toda, have used the root of Suma for generations for a wide variety of things including a general tonic, energy and rejuvenating tonic as well as a general cure-all for many types of illnesses.(5) Suma has been used as a tonic, an aphrodisiac, a calming agent and to treat ulcers for at least 300 years, and is an important herbal remedy in the folk medicine of several indigenous Indian tribes today.(6, 7)

In herbal medicine throughout the world today Suma is considered an adaptogen. The word adaptogen was coined in 1947 by a Russian scientist named N.V. Lazarev. His definition of the word was a medicinal substance fulfilling three criteria: a.) It must cause only minimal disorders in the body's physiological functions; b.) It must increase the body's resistance to adverse influences not by specific action but by a wide range of physical, chemical, and biochemical factors; and c.) It must have an overall normalizing effect, improving all kinds of conditions and aggravating none. Suma, with its wide range of documented uses, certainly meets these criteria. In herbal medicine in Ecuador today, Suma is considered a tonic for the cardiovascular system, the central nervous system, the reproductive system, and the digestive system and is used to treat hormonal disorders, sexual dysfunction and sterility, arteriosclerosis, diabetes, circulatory and digestive disorders, rheumatism, and bronchitis.(8) In European herbal medicine Suma is used as to restore nerve and glandular functions, to balance the endocrine system, to strengthen the immune system, for infertility, menopausal and menstrual symptoms, to minimize the side-effect of birth control medications, for high cholesterol, to neutralize toxins and as a general restorative tonic after illness.(9) In North and South American herbal medicine Suma root is used as an adaptogenic and regenerative tonic regulating many systems of the body, as an immunostimulant, and is used to treat exhaustion resulting from Epstein-Barr disease and Chronic Fatigue Syndrome, hypoglycemia, impotency, arthritis, anemia, diabetes, cancer-preventive, tumours, mononucleosis, high blood pressure, PMS, menopause and hormonal disorders and many types of stress.(10 - 15) Suma has also been called "The Russian Secret" because it is taken by Russian Olympic athletes to increase muscle-building and endurance without the side effects associated with steroids.(15) This action is attributed to the anabolic agent, beta-ecdysterone as well as three novel ecdysteroid glycosides which are found in high amounts in Suma.(16, 17) Suma is such a rich source of beta-ecdysterone, that it is the subject of a Japanese patent for the extraction methods employed to obtain it from this root.(18) Two other plant hormones found in Suma, sitosterol and stigmasterol, encourage estrogen production and accounts for it's use for menopausal symptoms.(15)

Nutritionally, Suma root contains 19 different amino acids, a large number of electrolytes and trace minerals including iron, magnesium, cobalt, silica, zinc and the vitamins A, B-1, B-2, E, K, and pantothenic acid.(17) The high content of germanium accounts for its properties as an oxygenator at the cellular level. The root of Suma is composed of up to 11% saponins.(19) These saponins include a group of novel chemicals called Pfaffosides as well as Pfaffic acids, glycosides and nortriperpenes. These saponins have clinically demonstrated the ability to inhibit cultured tumour cell melanomas and help to regulate blood sugar levels.(20 - 23) The pfaffosides and pfaffic acid derivatives in Suma have been patented as antitumour compounds in two Japanese patents.(24, 25)

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PLANTAGO PSYLLIUM - PSYLLIUM SEED

It action on the body: demulcent, gentle laxative. Specific: IBS and mucus colitis, chronic diarrhoea, detoxifier.

Psyllium is a bulk-forming laxative and is high in both fiber and mucilage. Psyllium seeds contain 10–30% mucilage. The laxative properties of psyllium are due to the swelling of the husk when it comes in contact with water; the seeds swell with toxins in the bowel. This forms a gelatinous mass that keeps feces hydrated and soft, provided it is taken with sufficient water. The resulting bulk stimulates a reflex contraction of the walls of the bowel, followed by emptying.

Psyllium is a common ingredient in over-the-counter bulk laxative products. One preliminary trial found that psyllium seeds relieved constipation when it was due to lifestyle factors (e.g., inadequate fiber, sedentary lifestyle), but not when an actual disease was the cause.2 Numerous double-blind trials have found that supplementation with psyllium can lower total cholesterol and LDL (“bad”) cholesterol.3 However, levels of HDL (“good”) cholesterol are not affected by psyllium supplementation.4 The cholesterol-lowering effect of psyllium has been reported in children,5 as well as in adults.6 Psyllium supplementation has also improved blood sugar levels in some people with diabetes.7 8 9 The soluble fiber component of psyllium is believed to account for this effect.

In a double-blind trial, people with ulcerative colitis had a reduction in symptoms such as bleeding and remained in remission longer when they took 20 grams of ground psyllium seeds twice daily with water compared to the use of the medication mesalamine alone.10 Also, the combination of the two was slightly more effective than either alone.

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PROPOLIS - PROPOLIS RESIN

Antibiotic, anti-inflammatory, anti-fungal, antioxidant and antiviral.

180 microelements.

Principal compounds in Propolis:

Resins 45-55%

Waxes and fatty acids 25-35%

Essential oils 10%

Pollen 5%

Other organics and minerals 5%

The resins contain the majority of the flavonoids – as many as 40 – found in Propolis along with a number of phenols and acids. Propolis contains particularly high quantities of a large range of flavonoids and that have attracted most attention from researchers seeking the so-called ‘actives' in Propolis.

Galangin and pinocembrin are thought to be the most important flavonoids. Flavonoid content in Propolis can range from 10-20% and from the largest single biochemical group within Propolis.

There is a major difference between the flavonoids found in plants and those found in Propolis. Those found in Propolis are not glycosides, that is. They do not have sugars attached their biochemical structure as those found in plants do. The difference may well be due to the way the bee process these flavoinoids through the secretion of enzymes. The fact is, they are changed, and this may well explain some of the unique therapeutic qualities of Propolis.

16 amino acids present in Propolis at more than 1%. Of the total amino acids present, arginine and proline together made of 45.8%. A further 8 amino acids were present in traces.

Propolis stimulates tissue regeneration is due to the presence of arginine because of its role in stimulating the production of nucleic acid.

Around 14 mineral trace elements are found in Propolis, of which iron and zinc are the most common. Other minerals found include gold, silver, caesium, mercury, and lead.

Propolis clears lead from the body by attracting it to itself.

Organic compounds include ketones, lactones, quinones, steroids, benzoic acid and esters, vitamins and sugars.

With thanks to James Fearnley, 2001.

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RAPHANUS SATIVUS-NIGER - BLACK RADISH ROOT

Scientifically known as Raphanus sativus L. var. niger, Spanish black radish is a member of the Cruciferae family, along with Brussel sprouts, spinach, kale and cabbage. It can be enjoyed raw or cooked, but its strong, peppery flavor can be neutralized by cooking or peeling for those with more sensitive palates. Eat Spanish black radish for its wealth of nutrients and some more specific health benefits

Helps Treat Gallstones and Elevated Cholesterol

A study published in a 2012 issue of “Journal of Biomedicine and Biotechnology” investigated the effects of juice extracted from black radish root on gallstones and blood lipids in mice. The mice were fed a lithogenic diet that encourages the formation of gallstones, increases cholesterol and triglyceride levels and decreases healthy, high-density lipoprotein, or HDL, cholesterol levels. After treatment with black radish root juice for six days, the mice showed fewer cholesterol gallstones, reduced cholesterol and triglyceride levels and increased HDL cholesterol levels. The study concluded that Spanish black radish shows promise in treating cholesterol gallstones and lowering blood lipid levels

Health benefits of radish

Since ancient times, Chinese believe that eating radish and other brassica group vegetables such as cabbage, cauliflower, and napa-cabbage would bring wholesome health.

They are one of very low calorie root vegetables. Fresh root provides just 16 calories per 100g. Nonetheless; they are a very good source of anti-oxidants, electrolytes, minerals, vitamins and dietary fiber.

Radish, like other cruciferous and Brassica family vegetables, contains isothiocyanateanti-oxidant compound called sulforaphane. Studies suggest that sulforaphane has a proven preventive role against prostate, breast, colon and ovarian cancers by virtue of its cancer-cell growth inhibition, and cyto-toxic effects on cancer cells.

Fresh roots are good source of vitamin C; provide about 15 mg or 25% of DRI of vitamin C per 100 g. Vitamin-C is a powerful water soluble anti-oxidant required by the body for synthesis of collagen. It helps the body scavenge harmful free radicals, prevention from cancers, inflammation and help boost immunity.

In addition, they contain adequate levels of folates, vitamin B-6, riboflavin, thiamin and minerals such as iron, magnesium, copper and calcium.

Further, they contain many phytochemicals like indoles which are detoxifying agents and zea-xanthin, lutein and beta carotene, which are flavonoid antioxidants. Their total antioxidant strength, measured in terms of oxygen radical absorbance capacity (ORAC value), is 1736 µmol TE/100 g.

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RHEUM PALMATUM - RHUBARB ROOT

Part Used: Rhizome of Rheum palmatum and other species (not to be confused with the garden rhubarb).

Constituents: Anthraquinone derivatives such as chrysophanic acid (=chrysophanol), emodin, aloe-emodin, rhein & physcion, with their O-glycosides such asglucorhein, chrysophanein, glucoemodin; sennosides A-E, reidin C &others.

Tannins; in Chinese Rhubarb: d-catechin and epicatechin gallate (this constituent is an important polyphenolic compound also found in green tea that exert anti-mutagenic anti-proliferative, and anti-neoplastic poperties and also found to be important in anti-aging (see ageless tonic); it neutralizes free radicals and prevents cell damage; it stimulates detoxification through selective induction and modification of phase I and phase II metabolic enzymes (see Zhang,G., Muira,Y., et al (2000) Induction of apoptosis and cell arrest in cancer cells by in vivo metabolites of teas. Nutr Cancer 38(2):265-273 .) , with various cinnamoyl and coumaroyl golloyl glucosides and fructoses.

Stilbene derivatives; related stilbene glycosides present in othertypes

Miscellaneous; volatile oil, containing diisobutyl phthalate, cinnamicand ferulic acids; rutin, fatty acids, calcium oxalate etc 

Actions: Bitter, laxative, astringent. Purgative, to eliminate pathogenic heat, to invigorate blood circulation and eliminate stasis, to treat jaundice, detoxification; fever with constipation and abdominal fullness, haematemesis and epistaxis associated with excessive heat in the blood, dysmenorrhoea and amenorrhoea, acute jaundice, acute appendicitis, intestinal obstruction; intestinal parasites; eliminate lead, increases circulation, detoxification.

Indications: Rhubarb Root has a purgative action for use in the treatment of constipation, but also has an astringent effect following this. It therefore has a truly cleansing action upon the gut, removing debris and then astringing with antiseptic properties as well. Note: Rhubarb Root may color the urine yellow or red. Priest & Priest tell us that it is a "mild stimulating tonic to alimentary mucous membrane, liver and gall ducts - removes viscid mucus. Small doses - tonic hepatic. Large doses - cathartic." They give the following specific indications: diarrhoea anddysentary, summer diarrhoea, functional dyspepsia.

Ellingwood recommends it for the following patholgies: atonicconditions of the bowels, with debility or generalrelaxation, wether diarrhoea, dysentary, choleramorbus, cholera infantum.

King's Dispensatory gives it specific indications and uses as "gastric irritation, nausea, vomiting, elongated tongue reddened at tip and edges; irritative diarrhoea with tenderness on pressure; sour smelling discharges imparting to a child a sour odour; gastro-intestinal irritation with nervous irritability, restlessness, screaming and convulsive muscular contractions; constipation, with a sense of intestinal constriction and abdominal contraction; light-coloured fecal discharge.

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ROSA CANINA - ROSE HIPS

Scientific names: Commonly derived from Rosa canina, R. rugosa, R. acicularis, or R. cinnamomea. Numerous other species of rose have been used for the preparation of rose hips.

Common names: Rose hips also are known as heps and dog rose (R. canina).

Efficacy-safety rating:

No safety concerns despite wide use.

What is Rose Hips?

Rose hips are a perennial plant with thorny branches that give way to pink and white flowers and scarlet fruits, called “hips.” These rose hips are the ripe ovaries or seeded fruit of roses forming on branches after the flower. They are oval in shape and appear fleshy, shrunken, and wrinkled. Inside the hips are 3 or more small yellow-brown seeds. R. canina is native to Europe, North Africa, and temperate areas of Asia. The fruits (hips) are picked in autumn and used medicinally.

What is it used for?

Traditional/Ethnobotanical uses

Once used as a folk remedy for chest ailments,R. canina hips were popular in the Middle Ages. They are a natural source of vitamin C, which has led to their widespread use in natural vitamin supplements, teas, and various other preparations including soups and marmalades. Although these products have been used historically as nutritional supplements, they also have been used as mild laxatives and diuretics. Rose hip syrup was used as a nourishing drink for children and to flavor teas and jams.

Nutritional uses

Fresh rose hips contain 0.5 to 1.7% vitamin C. However, the vitamin C content of dried, commercially available rose hips products varies considerably. While some accounts suggest that rose hips are the richest natural source of vitamin C, a number of more concentrated sources have been identified. Citrus fruits contain approximately 50 mg vitamin C per 100 g; uncooked broccoli, kale, and kiwi fruit, approximately 100 mg; black currants, guavas, and some tropical vegetables, 200 to 300 mg; rose hips (Rosa canina), 1,250 mg; acerola or Barbados cherry (Malpighia punicifolia), 1,000 to 2,330 mg; andTerminalia ferdinandiana, up to 3,150 mg. In addition to vitamin C, rose hips also contain vitamins A, B1, B2, B3, and K. Other ingredients include pectin, tannins, flavonoids, carotenoids, and a variety of minor components.

In supportive therapy for cases of vitamin deficiency, use of rose hips for vitamin C is rational. Because a significant amount of the natural vitamin C in rose hips may be destroyed during drying and processing, many “natural vitamin supplements” have some form of vitamin C added to them. One must read the label carefully to determine what proportion of the vitamin C is derived from rose hips vs other sources. This information, however, is not always available on the package label but, when freshly consumed, rose hips have extremely high levels of vitamins in a form readily absorbed by the body.

Other uses

Rose hips also have been used for diuretic actions (its diuretic action has been disputed), to reduce thirst, and to alleviate gastric inflammation. None of these medicinal uses has been proven clinically.

What is the recommended dosage?

There is no recent clinical evidence upon which dosage recommendations can be based. Classical use of rose petals was 3 to 6 g daily.

Side Effects

There have been no reported side effects except in those exposed to rose hips dust who have developed severe respiratory allergies.

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RUMEX ACETOSELLA - SHEEP SORREL HERB

Medicinal Action and Uses: The whole herb is employed medicinally, in the fresh state. The action is diuretic, refrigerant and diaphoretic, and the juice extracted from the fresh plant is of use in urinary and kidney diseases. Renée Caisse (the Canadian nurse who popularized Caisse - formula for life threatening illness - as a cancer preventive) felt this herb was the most active cancer preventive among all the herbs present in the old Indian brew. "The herb that will prevent cancer… is the dog-eared sheep sorrel, sometimes called sour grass," she said on a number of occasions. And she may have been right. Interestingly, for hundreds of years, sheep sorrel has appeared in historical archives in both North America and Europe as a preventative against cancer. In 1926, the National Cancer Institute was presented with a recipe from Canada which was said to be an old Indian cure for cancer. The main ingredient was none other than sheep sorrel. Renée Caisse observed that not only was sheep sorrel effective in attacking and breaking down tumours, it also was effective in alleviating many chronic conditions and degenerative diseases. It has been reported by other researchers that sheep sorrel relieves internal ulcers, black jaundice and virtually all skin diseases. The seeds of sheep sorrel, steeped in wine, have been used to stop hemorrhages and heavy menstrual flow. In addition, the seeds an anti-venomous property that relieves bites and rids the body of poisons [toxins]. Sheep sorrel reportedly acts as a tonic for the urinary tract. Poultices can be made with an infusion of the leaves and applied directly to boils and tumours. In 1475, Thorleif Bjornsson, author of an Iceland Medical Manuscript, wrote, "Its juice put in the eyes makes them bright .. its juice in the ear makes one hear well.”

Sheep sorrel contains high amounts of vitamins A and B-complex, especially in its seed, C, D, E, K, P and vitamin U. Hungarian researchers have found that the leaves of sheep sorrel have a total carotenoid content of 8-12 percent.

It's also rich in minerals, including calcium, chlorine, iron, magnesium, silicon, sodium, sulfur, and trace amounts of copper, iodine, manganese, and zinc. Other vital health-giving elements in sheep sorrel are the carotenoids and chlorophyll which are present in the leaves and stems, and several organic acids which include malic, oxalic, tannic, tartaric, and citric, an antioxidant. Chlorophyll, the substance which makes plants green, resembles hemoglobin in human blood. And like hemoglobin, [it] carries oxygen to every cell in our body. Sheep sorrel is rich in oxalic acid in the form of potassium oxalate. Oxalic acid has been shown to be a powerful oxidizing acid which stimulates the human system into activity. Oxalic acid combines with calcium to aid in digestive assimilation, plus, oxalic acid stimulates the peristaltic action of the intestines and may even be responsible for increased blood coagulation. Using just the root of the sheep sorrel, people have gained improvement from stomach hemorrhages and jaundice conditions. It can be seen that sheep sorrel, a truly remarkable herb by itself, surely plays a vital role as part of the great healing power of ESSIAC. Note by Dr. Juergen Buche, N.D.: One of the prime properties of sheep sorrel does not get mentioned in the above article which was copied verbatim (pages 79 to 81) from the book: "The Essiac Report - Canada's Remarkable Unknown Cancer Remedy" by Richard Thomas. It is the following: Sheep sorrel lowers the resistance of parasites which can cause many misunderstood symptoms (1). In other words, sheep sorrel kills parasites and this is of primordial importance in the treatment of many diseases and cancer preventive in particular. Sheep Sorrel is highly praised as a vermifuge - intestinal worms have no resistance to the natural properties of this herb. Sorrel is also considered a good remedy for stomach hemorrhage and profuse menstruation. Additionally, a tincture of Sheep Sorrel can support conditions which have a tendency for tissue degeneration. Sorrel root is best known for its astringent properties, though it has also been used historically as an antiseptic, diuretic, hepatic, and laxative. Throughout the centuries, the Sorrels have appeared in historical archives as an unproven folk remedy for cancer in both Europe and America . In the late 1740's, legislation was introduced in Williamsburg , Virginia , that permitted Mrs. Mary Johnson to use this plant as a treatment for rogue cells. In the 1868 Canadian Pharmacy Journal, the leaves of both the Sheep Sorrel and the taller Common Sorrel (Rumex acetosa) were included in the list of Canadian medicinal plants. In 1926, the National Cancer Institute received a recipe from Canada citing an old Indian cure for cancer using a paste of this plant made with bread. Historically, Sheep Sorrel has been known to prevent the spread of contagious diseases such as the plague, and has overcome fevers caused by cholera and malaria. The parts of this plant used medicinally are the above ground portions.

Sheep Sorrel has also had several traditional culinary uses, including the addition of the leaves to salad, egg dishes, soups, and stews; and as a juice (from the leaves) used to curdle milk to make cheese. Sheep Sorrel is sometimes called sour-grass because of its sharp taste. This herb is known to add a lovely tart taste to food, and has been used to make cool, refreshing beverages. A tea made from the leaves & stem will act as a diuretic, and may be helpful to support problems with gravel and stones.

For mouth and throat ulcers, a tea made from the leaves & flowers of this plant may provide some relief. In China , raw Sheep Sorrel is given after birthing to "cool" the reproductive area and prevent infection.

The primary chemical constituents: anthraquinones (chrysophanol, emodin), oxalic acid, tartaric acid, beta carotene, vitamin C, and tannins. This herb is highly praised as a vermifuge - intestinal worms have no resistance to the properties of this herb. Sorrel is also considered a good remedy for stomach hemorrhage and profuse menstruation.

One of Sheep Sorrel's main claims to fame is its inclusion in the herbal tea, Essiac, which is purported to be effective in the preventative fight against cancer, though this has never been clinically proven. Additionally, a tincture of Sheep Sorrel has a very decided action in those cases where there is a tendency for tissue degeneration. More about Caisse - formula for life threatening illness - : www.Herbactive.co.uk/essiac.php

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SAMBUCUS NIGRA FRUCTUS - ELDER BERRY

It is a deciduous shrub or small tree growing to 4–6 m (rarely to 10 m) tall. The bark, light grey when young, changes to a coarse grey outer bark with lengthwise furrowing. The leaves are arranged in opposite pairs, 10–30 cm long, pinnate with five to seven (rarely nine) leaflets, the leaflets 5–12 cm long and 3–5 cm broad, with a serrated margin.

The hermaphrodite flowers are borne in large corymbs 10–25 cm diameter in mid summer, the individual flowers white, 5–6 mm diameter, with five petals; they are pollinated by flies.

The fruit is a dark purple to black berry 3–5 mm diameter, produced in drooping clusters in the late autumn; they are an important food for many fruit-eating birds, notably Blackcaps.
The dark blue/purple berries can be eaten when fully ripe but are mildly poisonous in their unripe state.[6] . All green parts of the plant are poisonous, containing cyanogenic glycosides (Vedel & Lange 1960). The berries are edible after cooking and can be used to make jam, jelly, chutney and Pontack sauce. Also when cooked they go well with blackberries and with apples in pies.

The flowerheads are commonly used in infusions, giving a very common refreshing drink in Northern Europe and Balkans. Commercially these are sold as elderflower cordial, etc. In Europe, the flowers are made into a syrup or cordial (in Romanian: Socată, in Swedish: fläder(blom)saft), which is diluted with water before drinking. The popularity of this traditional drink has recently encouraged some commercial soft drink producers to introduce elderflower-flavoured drinks (Fanta Shokata, Freaky Fläder). The flowers can also be dipped into a light batter and then fried to make elderflower fritters. In Scandinavia and Germany, soup made from the elder berry (e.g. the German Fliederbeersuppe) is a traditional meal.

Both flowers and berries can be made into elderberry wine, and in Hungary an elderberry brandy is produced (requiring 50 kg of fruit to produce 1 litre of brandy). The alcoholic drink sambuca is not made with elderberries. In south-western Sweden, it is traditional to make a snaps liqueur flavored with elderflower. It is also made and sold commercially, under the name Hallands Fläder, named after the landscape where it is traditionally made. Elderflowers are also used in liqueurs such as St. Germain and a mildly alcoholic sparkling elderflower 'champagne'.

In Beerse, Belgium, a variety of Jenever called Beers Vlierke is made from the berries.
This plant is traditionally used as a medicinal plant by many native peoples and herbalists alike.

Stembark, leaves, flowers, fruits, root extracts are used to treat bronchitis, cough, upper respiratory cold infections, fever. A small (N=60) double blind clinical trial published in 2004 showed reduction in both duration and severity of flu-like symptoms for patients receiving elderberry syrup versus placebo.

In a placebo-controlled, double-blind study, black elderberry (Sambucus nigra) was shown to be effective for treating Influenza B.[9] People using the elderberry extract recovered much faster than those only on a placebo. The study was published in the Journal of Alternative Complementary Medicine.

A small study published in 2004 showed that 93% of flu patients given extract were completely symptom-free within two days; those taking a placebo recovered in about six days. This current study shows that, indeed, it works for type A flu, reports lead researcher Erling Thom, with the University of Oslo in Norway.[10] However, the study that showed these results was sponsored by an Israeli company that produces various black elderberry extracts.

Elderberry flowers are sold in Ukrainian and Russian drugstores for relief of congestion, specifically as an expectorant to relieve dry cough and make it productive. The dried flowers are simmered for 15 minutes, the resulting flavorful and aromatic tea is poured through a coffee filter. Some individuals find it better hot, others cold, and some may experience an allergic reaction.

The flowers can be used to make an herbal tea as a remedy for inflammation caused by colds and fever.

 

SCUTELLARIA BAICALENSIS - BAIKAL

Baikal skullcap (Scutellaria baicalensis) is a perennial herb native to southern China and throughout Korea. Scutellaria baicalensis is one of approximately 350 Scutellaria species.
Scutellaria baicalensis root is widely used in China as an adjuvant to chemotherapy for lung cancer. It is also commonly used in herbal medicine in Japan. Early studies have found that Scutellaria baicalensis may have anticancer properties. However, there is little clinical evidence. In Western herbalism, Baikal skullcap is also known as an ingredient in PC-SPES, used for prostate cancer.
Traditional uses include antibacterial, cancer-preventive, antifungal, anti-inflammatory, antiviral, and neuroprotective. Strong supportive evidence for Scutellaria baicalensis for any use is lacking at this time.

Constituents
1-Octen-3-ol, 2',3',5,7-tetrahydroxy flavone, 2',5,6',7-tetrahydroxyflavanonol (THF), 3,7,11,15-tetramethyl-2-hexadecen-1-ol (7.8%), 5,6,7,3',4'-pentahydroxy flavanone-7-O-glucuronide, 5,6,7-trimethylbaicalein, 5,7,2',6'-tetrahydroxyflavone, 5,7,2'-trihydroxyflavone, 6,7-di-O-nicotinoylscutebarbatine G, 6-O-(2-carbonyl-3-methylbutanoyl)scutehenanine A, 6-O-acetylscutehenanine A, 6-O-methyl-baicalin-7-O-beta-glucopyranuronoside, 6-O-nicotinoyl-7-O-acetylscutebarbatine G, 6-O-nicotinoylscutebarbatine G, (6S,9R)6-hydroxy-4,4,7a-trimethyl-5,6,7,7a-tetrahydro-1-benzofuran-2(4H)-one, 7-D-glucuronic acid-5,6-dihydroxy-flavone, (11E)-6alpha-acetoxy-7beta,8beta-dihydroxy-ent-clerodan-3,11,13-trien-15,16-olide (6-acetoxybarbatin C, 2), (13R)-6alpha,7beta-dihydroxy-8beta,13-epoxy-11beta-nicotinyloxy-ent-clerodan-3-en-15,16-olide (scutelinquanine D, 1), amino acids, Antoksyd S (C/E/XXI), Antoxid, apigenin, baicalein, baicalein 6-O-beta-glucopyranuronoside, baicalein 7-D-beta-glucuronate, baicalin, ban-ji-ryun (Korean), banjiryun (Korean), ban-zhi-lian (Chinese), berberine, BZL101, caicalin, carthamidin, Chinese skullcap, chrysin, chrysin-6-C-alpha-L-arabinopyranosyl-8-C-beta-D-glucopyranoside, cinnamate 4-hydroxylase (SbC4H), ethyl-7-O-apigenin-glucuronate, flavonoidglycoside, flavonoids, glucan S b RP-1?, herba Scutellariae barbatae, hexahydrofarnesylacetone, huang-qin, huangqin, isocarthamidin, Lamiaceae (family), luteolin, menthol, minerals, neobaicalein, neoclerodane diterpenoids, neoderodane diterpenoids, organic acids, oroxylin A, oroxylin A-7-O-glucuronide, PC-SPES, phenylalanine ammonia-lyase isoforms (SbPAL1, SbPAL2, and SbAPL3), (S)-2-(4-hydroxyphenyl)-6-methyl-2,3-dihydro-4H-pyran-4-one, SBJ, Scutelleria baicalensis spp., Scutellaria barbata spp., Scutellaria rivularis Wall., scute, scute root, skullcapflavone, trihydroxyflavone, viscidulin III, water-soluble polysaccharides (WSPS'-1, WSPS'-2, and WSPS'-3), wogoninglucuronide, wogonoside.

Evidence Table

These uses have been tested in humans or animals. Safety and effectiveness have not always been proven. Some of these conditions are potentially serious, and should be evaluated by a qualified healthcare provider. GRADE *

Traditional uses of Baikal skullcap include pain and inflammation. Preliminary research suggests no effect from a product for arthritis containing Baikal skullcap. Further research is required.

Traditional uses of Baikal skullcap include brain protection. Preliminary research suggests no effect from a product for minimal brain dysfunction containing Baikal skullcap. Additional research is needed before a conclusion can be drawn.

Traditional uses of Baikal skullcap include cancer prevention. It is a common ingredient in traditional Chinese medicine products. Preliminary research suggests some immunological changes with use in cancer patients. Further research is required.

Traditional uses of Baikal skullcap include liver protection. Preliminary research suggests that some preliminary benefit was associated with a product containing Baikal skullcap with respect to hepatitis B. Additional research is needed before a conclusion can be drawn.

Tradition / Theory
The below uses are based on tradition, scientific theories, or limited research. They often have not been thoroughly tested in humans, and safety and effectiveness have not always been proven. Some of these conditions are potentially serious, and should be evaluated by a qualified healthcare provider. There may be other proposed uses that are not listed below.

Uses

Allergies, Alzheimer's disease, anemia, antibacterial, antifungal, anti-inflammatory, antioxidant, antiseptic, antiviral, asthma, atherosclerosis (hardening of the arteries), bone marrow suppression (drug-induced), bronchitis, candidal infection, chemotherapy adverse effects, cognition, dental conditions, diabetes, estrogenic agent, fever, , hearing impairment, heart disease, HIV, high blood pressure, high cholesterol, immunomodulation (affects the immune system), jaundice, kidney disorders, laxative, liver protection, menopause, methicillin-resistant (MRSA), mitochondrial disorders, myocardial ischemia (insufficient blood and oxygen flow to heart), neurological trauma (physical injury to the brain or spinal cord), neuroprotection (nerve protection), obesity, osteoporosis, pain, pain relief, Parkinson's disease, platelet aggregation inhibition (blood thinner), pneumonia, prostate cancer preventive, pulmonary conditions (lung conditions), sedative, sepsis, skin conditions, stress, stroke, thrombosis (blood clots).

 

SPINACCIA OLERACEA - SPINACH LEAF

Spinach (Spinacia oleracea) is an edible flowering plant in the family Amaranthaceae. It is native to central and western Asia.

It is an annual plant (rarely biennial), which grows to a height of up to 30 cm. Spinach may survive over winter in temperate regions. The leaves are alternate, simple, ovate to triangular, very variable in size from about 2–30 cm long and 1–15 cm broad, with larger leaves at the base of the plant and small leaves higher on the flowering stem. The flowers are inconspicuous, yellow-green, 3–4 mm diameter, maturing into a small, hard, dry, lumpy fruit cluster 5–10 mm across containing several seeds.

Common spinach, Spinacia oleracea, was long considered to be in the family Chenopodiaceae, but in 2003, that family was merged into the family Amaranthaceae in the order Caryophyllales. Within the family Amaranthaceae, Amaranthoideae and Chenopodioideae are now subfamilies, for the amaranths and the chenopods, respectively.

The English word "spinach" dates to the late 14th century, and is from espinache (Fr. épinard), of uncertain origin. The traditional view derives it from O.Prov. espinarc, which perhaps is via Catalan espinac, from Andalusian Arabic اسبيناخ asbīnākh, from Arabic السبانخ al-sabānikh, from Persian اسپاناخ aspānākh, meaning purportedly 'green hand',[1] but the multiplicity of forms makes the theory doubtful.[2]

History

Spinach is thought to have originated in ancient Persia (modern Iran and neighboring countries). It is not known by whom, or when, spinach was introduced to India, but the plant was subsequently introduced to ancient China, where it was known as "Persian vegetable" (bōsī cài; 波斯菜; present:菠菜). The earliest available record of the spinach plant was recorded in Chinese, stating it was introduced into China via Nepal (probably in 647 AD).[3]

In AD 827, the Saracens introduced spinach to Sicily.[4] The first written evidence of spinach in the Mediterranean was recorded in three 10th-century works: the medical work by al-Rāzī (known as Rhazes in the West) and in two agricultural treatises, one by Ibn Waḥshīyah and the other by Qusṭus al-Rūmī. Spinach became a popular vegetable in the Arab Mediterranean and arrived in Spain by the latter part of the 12th century, where the great Arab agronomist Ibn al-ʻAwwām called it رئيس البقول raʼīs al-buqūl, 'the chieftain of leafy greens'.[5] Spinach was also the subject of a special treatise in the 11th century by Ibn Ḥajjāj.[6]

The prickly-seeded form of spinach was known in Germany by no later than the 13th century, though the smooth-seeded form was not described until 1552. (The smooth-seeded form is used in modern commercial production.)[3]

Spinach first appeared in England and France in the 14th century, probably via Spain, and it gained quick popularity because it appeared in early spring, when other vegetables were scarce and when Lenten dietary restrictions discouraged consumption of other foods. Spinach is mentioned in the first known English cookbook, The Forme of Cury (1390), where it is referred to as spinnedge and/or spynoches.[7] Smooth-seeded spinach was described in 1552.[3]

In 1533, Catherine de' Medici became queen of France; she so fancied spinach, she insisted it be served at every meal. To this day, dishes made with spinach are known as "Florentine", reflecting Catherine's birth in Florence.[8]

During World War I, wine fortified with spinach juice was given to French soldiers weakened by hemorrhage.[9]

Culinary information
Nutrition
Nutrient contents in %DV of common foods (Raw, Uncooked) per 100 gms [show] Vitamins Minerals

Ch. = Choline; Ca = Calcium; Fe = Iron; Mg = Magnesium; P = Phosphorus; K = Potassium; Na = Sodium; Zn = Zinc; Cu = Copper; Mn = Manganese; Se = Selenium; %DV = %Daily value i.e. % of DRI ( Dietary reference intake ) Note : All nutrient values including protein are in %DV per 100 grams of the food item. Significant values are highlighted in light Gray color and bold letters.[10][11] Cooking reduction = % Maximum typical reduction in nutrients due to boiling without draining for Ovo-lacto-vegetables group[12][13]

Spinach, raw Nutritional value per 100 g (3.5 oz)
Energy 97 kJ (23 kcal)
Carbohydrates 3.6 g
Sugars 0.4 g
Dietary fiber 2.2 g
Fat 0.4 g
Protein 2.9 g
Vitamins
Vitamin A equiv.
beta-carotene
lutein zeaxanthin (59%) 469 μg (52%) 5626 μg 12198 μg
Vitamin A 9377 IU
Thiamine (B1) (7%) 0.078 mg
Riboflavin (B2) (16%) 0.189 mg
Niacin (B3) (5%) 0.724 mg
Vitamin B6 (15%) 0.195 mg
Folate (B9) (49%) 194 μg
Vitamin C (34%) 28 mg
Vitamin E (13%) 2 mg
Vitamin K (460%) 483 μg
Trace metals
Calcium
(10%)
99 mg
Iron
(21%)
2.71 mg
Magnesium
(22%)
79 mg
Manganese
(43%)
0.897 mg
Phosphorus
(7%)
49 mg
Potassium
(12%)
558 mg
Sodium
(5%)
79 mg
Zinc
(6%)
0.53 mg
Other constituents
Water 91.4 g

Units
μg = micrograms • mg = milligrams
IU = International units

Percentages are roughly approximated using US recommendations for adults.
Source: USDA Nutrient Database

In a 100 g serving providing only 23 calories, spinach has a high nutritional value, especially when fresh, frozen, steamed, or quickly boiled. It is a rich source (> 20% of the Daily Value, DV) of vitamin A, vitamin C, vitamin K, magnesium, manganese, folate and iron (right table). Spinach is a good source (10-19% of DV) of the B vitamins riboflavin and vitamin B6, vitamin E, calcium, potassium and dietary fiber (right table).

Iron
Spinach, along with other green leafy vegetables,[14] is rich in iron. For example, the United States Department of Agriculture states that a 180-g serving of boiled spinach contains 6.43 mg of iron, whereas a 170-g ground hamburger patty contains at most 4.42 mg.[14] However, spinach contains iron absorption-inhibiting substances, including high levels of oxalate, which can bind to the iron to form ferrous oxalate and render much of the iron in spinach unusable by the body.[15] In addition to preventing absorption and use, high levels of oxalates remove iron from the body.[15][16]

Calcium
Spinach also has a moderate calcium content which can be affected by oxalates, decreasing its absorption.[15][17] The calcium in spinach is among the least bioavailable of food calcium sources.[15][18] By way of comparison, the human body can absorb about half of the calcium present in broccoli, yet only around 5% of the calcium in spinach.[19]

Types of spinach

A distinction can be made between older varieties of spinach and more modern ones. Older varieties tend to bolt too early in warm conditions. Newer varieties tend to grow more rapidly, but have less of an inclination to run up to seed. The older varieties have narrower leaves and tend to have a stronger and more bitter taste. Most newer varieties have broader leaves and round seeds.

The three basic types of spinach are:

Savoy has dark green, crinkly and curly leaves. It is the type sold in fresh bunches in most supermarkets in the United States. One heirloom variety of savoy is Bloomsdale, which is somewhat resistant to bolting. Other common heirloom varieties are Merlo Nero (a mild variety from Italy) and Viroflay (a very large spinach with great yields).
Flat- or smooth-leaf spinach has broad, smooth leaves that are easier to clean than Savoy. This type is often grown for canned and frozen spinach, as well as soups, baby foods, and processed foods. Giant Noble is an example variety.
Semi-savoy is a hybrid variety with slightly crinkled leaves. It has the same texture as Savoy, but it is not as difficult to clean. It is grown for both fresh market and processing. Tyee Hybrid is a common semi-savoy.

Spinach output in 2012

The Environmental Working Group reported spinach is one of the dozen most heavily pesticide-contaminated produce products.[22] The most common pesticides found on spinach are permethrin, dimethoate, and DDT.[citation needed] Spinach is high in cadmium contamination. An FDA study found more in boiled spinach in the early 90's (0.125 mg/kg) than in the 320 other foods studied.[23]

Spinach is packaged in air, or in nitrogen gas to extend shelf life. Some packaged spinach is exposed to radiation to kill any harmful bacteria that may be on the leaves. The Food and Drug Administration approves of irradiation of spinach leaves up to 4.0 kilograys; however, using radiation to sanitize spinach is of concern because it may deplete the leaves of their nutritional value. Researchers at the Agricultural Research Service experimentally tested the concentrations of vitamins C, E, K, B9, and four other carotenoids in packaged spinach following irradiation. They found with increasing level of irradiation, four nutrients showed little or no change. Those nutrients include vitamins B9, E, K, and the carotenoid neoxanthin. This study showed the irradiation of packaged spinach to have little or no change to the nutritional value of the crop, and the health benefits of irradiating packed spinach to reduce harmful bacteria seem to outweigh the loss of nutrients.[24]

In popular culture

The cartoon character Popeye the Sailor Man is portrayed as having a strong affinity for spinach, becoming physically stronger after consuming it. The commonly accepted version of events states this portrayal was based on faulty calculations of the iron content.[25] In this version, German scientist Emil von Wolff misplaced a decimal point in an 1870 measurement of spinach's iron content, leading to an iron value ten times higher than it should have been, and this faulty measurement was not noticed until the 1930s. This caused the popular misconception that spinach is high in iron that makes the body stronger.[26]

Criminologist Mike Sutton wrote an article in the Internet Journal of Criminology, claiming the Popeye and iron link is just another long-standing myth, and spinach was chosen and promoted in Popeye for its vitamin A content alone.[27][28] In the cited article, he also disputes the above — what he calls the Spinach Popeye Iron Decimal Error Story (SPIDES) — due to lack of verifiable sources, although he found a different reference from 1934 reporting twenty times the actual iron content.[29] In another article, Sutton distinguishes between the myth of spinach's iron content, which he blames on "bad science", and the myth that the error was caused by a misplaced decimal point.[30]

 

STEVIA REBOUDIANA - STEVIA LEAF

Common local name: Sweet Leaf.

For complete information about Stevia see www.Herbactive.co.uk/stevia.php

There are many very ligitimate reasons for using Stevia as a medicinal food. In spite of the prominence Stevia has obtained as a flavor enhancer, it contains a variety of constituents besides the steviosides and rebaudiosides, generous amounts of sterols, triterpenes, flavonoids, tannins, and an extremely rich volatile oil comprising rich proportions of aromatics, aldehyde, monoterpenes and sesquiterpenes. These and other as of yet unidentified constituents, probably have some impact on human physiology and may help explain some of the reported therapeutic uses of Stevia.

Antihyperglycaemic: Stevioside helps control blood sugar level, making it especially good for type II diabetics. Studies indicate it acts on pancreatic cells helping them produce insulin. In diabetics, a 35.2% fall in normal blood sugar levels is noted 6-8 hours following the ingestion of a Stevia leaf extract. However, it is important to note that Stevia does not lower blood glucose levels in normal subjects.

Jeppesen PB, Gregersen S, Poulsen CR, Hermansen K. The stevioside in whole Stevia acts directly on pancreatic beta cells to secrete insulin: actions independent of cyclic adenosine monophosphate and adenosine triphosphatesensitive K+-channel activity. Metabolism. 2000 Feb;49(2):208-14. PMID: 10690946

Gregersen S, Jeppesen PB, Holst JJ, Hermansen K. Antihyperglycemic effects of stevioside in type 2 diabetic subjects. Metabolism. 2004;53(1):73-76.

Antihypertensive: Stevioside is a great natural way to regulate blood pressure.

Lee, C. N., et al. “Inhibitory effect of stevioside on calcium influx to produce antihypertension.” Planta Med. 2001; 67(9): 796-9.

Hsu, Y. H., et al. “Antihypertensive effect of stevioside in different strains of hypertensive rats.” Zhonghua Yi Xue Za Zhi ( Taipei ). 2002; 65(1): 1-6.

Antioxidizin g: Stevia has been shown to have great anti-oxidizing properties, even more than green tea.

Xi, Y., T. Yamaguchi, et al. (1998). Antioxidant mechanism of Stevia rebaudiana extract and antioxidant activity of inorganic salts. Nippon Shokuhin Kagaku Kogaku Kaishi 45(5): 317-322. {a} Fac. Agric., Tohoku Univ. , 1-1 Tsutsumidori-Amaniya, Aoba-ku, Sendai-shi, Miyagi 981-8555

Xi, Y., T. Yamaguchi, et al. (1998). Antioxidant activity of Stevia rebaudiana. Nippon Shokuhin Kagaku Kogaku Kaishi 45(5): 310-316. {a} Fac. Agric., Tohoku Univ. , 1-1 Tsutsumidori-Amamiya, Aoba-ku, Sendai-shi, Miyagi 981-8555, Japan

Anti-bacterial: The ability of Stevia to inhibit the growth and reproduction of bacteria and other infectious organisms is important in at least two respects. First, it may help explain why users of Stevia-enhanced products report a lower incidence of colds and flus, and second, it has fostered the invention of a number of mouthwash and toothpaste products. Research clearly shows that Streptococcus mutans, Pseudomonas aeruginos, Proteus vulgaris and other microbes do not thrive in the presence of Stevia constituents.

Bactericidal activity of a fermented hot-water extract from Stevia rebaudiana Bertoni towards enterohemorrhagic Escherichia coli O157:H7 and other food-borne pathogenic bacteria.

Tomita T, Sato N, Arai T, Shiraishi H, Sato M, Takeuchi M, Kamio Y.

-Anti-plaque: Stevioside not only does not cause cavities, it's also great for oral health because it fights plaque! This is due to it's antibacterial properties, which inhibit the growth of bacteria causing plaque.

(Berry et al., 1981; Yabu et al., 1977).

Digestive Tonic Action : In the literature of Brazil , Stevia ranks high because of its contribution to improve digestion, and that it improved overall gastrointestinal function. Likewise, since its introduction in China , Stevia tea, made from either hot or cold water, has been used as a low calorie, sweet-tasting tea, as an appetite stimulant, and as a digestive aid.

Dozens (if not hundreds) of studies have confirmed this. Just to quote one, this is the conclusion of a study published in "Safety of Stevioside" edited by Jan M.C. Geuns & Johan G. Buyse:

"The conclusion is that Stevia and stevioside are safe when used as sweeteners. Stevioside might be beneficial to type 2 diabetics, and is safe for phenylketonurea (PKU) patients as no aminoacids are involved, as well as for obese patients intending to lose weight by avoiding sugar supplements in the diet, and higher doses are beneficial are beneficial for persons with hypertension (see Geuns, 2004). It is not carcinogenic, not cariogenic, and no allergenicity problems seem to be known. It can be concluded that stevioside used as a sweetener is completely safe". (p 81.)

The first official investigation of possible toxicity from Stevia was performed in 1931 by Pomaret and coworkers in South America . Their tests proved negative for toxicity. They observed that steviosides pass through the human alimentary canal without being altered by digestive processes.

More elaborate safety tests were performed by the Japanese during their evaluations of Stevia as a possible sweetening agent. Few substances have ever yielded such consistently negative results in toxicity trials as has Stevia. Almost every toxicity test imaginable has been performed on Stevia extract or stevioside at one time or another. The results are always negative. No abnormalities in weight change, food intake, cell or membrane characteristics, enzyme and substrate utilization, or chromosome characteristics are recorded. No cancer, no birth defects, no acute and no chronic untoward effects. Nothing.

Glycoside Content

Steviol glycosides 72%

(Stevioside 45%, Rebaudioside A 19%, others 8%)

Other glucosides 8%

Sodium 27.2 mg/100g

Calcium 74.7 mg/100g

Magnesium 221 mg/100g

Protein 6.05 mg/100g

Dietary Fiber 2.77 g/100g

Other constituents: sterols, triterpenes, flavonoids, tannins, and an extremely rich volatile oil comprising rich proportions of aromatics, aldehyde, monoterpenes and sesquiterpenes.

Medicinal Uses: there are many very legitimate reasons for using stevia as a medicinal food. In spite of the prominence stevia has obtained as a flavour enhancer, it contains a variety of constituents besides the steviosides and rebaudiosides, including the nutrients specified above. These and other, as yet unidentified constituents probably have some impact on human physiology and may help explain some of the reported beneficial therapeutic uses of stevia.

............................................ 

 

Cont / Details about the constituents and actions of the individual whole herbal powders contained in Herbactive Herbalist's ABC Daily Herbal NutriPowder Plus

 

TARAXACUM OFFICINALE - DANDELION ROOT

The Dandelion (Taraxacum officinale, Weber, T. Densleonis, Desf; Leontodon taraxacum, Linn.), though not occurring in the Southern Hemisphere, is at home in all parts of the north temperate zone, in pastures, meadows and on waste ground, and is so plentiful that farmers everywhere find it a troublesome weed, for though its flowers are more conspicuous in the earlier months of the summer, it may be found in bloom, and consequently also prolifically dispersing its seeds, almost throughout the year.

Description: From its thick tap root, dark brown, almost black on the outside though white and milky within, the long jagged leaves rise directly, radiating from it to form a rosette Iying close upon the ground, each leaf being grooved and constructed so that all the rain falling on it is conducted straight to the centre of the rosette and thus to the root which is, therefore, always kept well watered. The maximum amount of water is in this manner directed towards the proper region for utilization by the root, which but for this arrangement would not obtain sufficient moisture, the leaves being spread too close to the ground for the water to penetrate.

The leaves are shiny and without hairs, the margin of each leaf cut into great jagged teeth, either upright or pointing somewhat backwards, and these teeth are themselves cut here and there into lesser teeth. It is this somewhat fanciful resemblance to the canine teeth of a lion that (it is generally assumed) gives the plant its most familiar name of Dandelion, which is a corruption of the French Dent de Lion, an equivalent of this name being found not only in its former specific Latin name Dens leonis and in the Greek name for the genus to which Linnaeus assigned it, Leontodon, but also in nearly all the languages of Europe.

There is some doubt, however, as to whether it was really the shape of the leaves that provided the original notion, as there is really no similarity between them, but the leaves may perhaps be said to resemble the angular jaw of a lion fully supplied with teeth. Some authorities have suggested that the yellow flowers might be compared to the golden teeth of the heraldic lion, while others say that the whiteness of the root is the feature which provides the resemblance. Flückiger and Hanbury in Pharmacographia, say that the name was conferred by Wilhelm, a surgeon, who was so much impressed by the virtues of the plant that he likened it to Dens leonis. In the Ortus Sanitatis, 1485, under 'Dens Leonis,' there is a monograph of half a page (unaccompanied by any illustration) which concludes: 'The Herb was much employed by Master Wilhelmus, a surgeon, who on account of its virtues, likened it to "eynem lewen zan, genannt zu latin Dens leonis" (a lion's tooth, called in Latin Dens leonis).' In the pictures of the old herbals, for instance, the one in Brunfels' Contrafayt Kreuterbuch, 1532, the leaves very much resemble a lion's tooth. The root is not illustrated at all in the old herbals, as only the herb was used at that time.

The name of the genus, Taraxacum, is derived from the Greek taraxos (disorder), and akos (remedy), on account of the curative action of the plant. A possible alternative derivation of Taraxacum is suggested in The Treasury of Botany: 'The generic name is possibly derived from the Greek taraxo ("I have excited" or "caused") and achos (pain), in allusion to the medicinal effects of the plant.' There are many varieties of Dandelion leaves; some are deeply cut into segments, in others the segments or lobes form a much less conspicuous feature, and are sometimes almost entire. The shining, purplish flower-stalks rise straight from the root, are leafless, smooth and hollow and bear single heads of flowers. On picking the flowers, a bitter, milky juice exudes from the broken edges of the stem, which is present throughout the plant, and which when it comes into contact with the hand, turns to a brown stain that is rather difficult to remove. Each bloom is made up of numerous strapshaped florets of a bright golden yellow. This strap-shaped corolla is notched at the edge into five teeth, each tooth representing a petal, and lower down is narrowed into a claw-like tube, which rests on the singlechambered ovary containing a single ovule. In this tiny tube is a copious supply of nectar, which more than half fills it, and the presence of which provides the incentive for the visits of many insects, among whom the bee takes first rank. The Dandelion takes an important place among honey-producing plants, as it furnishes considerable quantities of both pollen and nectar in the early spring, when the bees' harvest from fruit trees is nearly over. It is also important from the beekeeper's point of view, because not only does it flower most in spring, no matter how cool the weather may be, but a small succession of bloom is also kept up until late autumn, so that it is a source of honey after the main flowers have ceased to bloom, thus delaying the need for feeding the colonies of bees with artificial food. Many little flies also are to be found visiting the Dandelion to drink the lavishly-supplied nectar. By carefully watching, it has been ascertained that no less than ninety-three different kinds of insects are in the habit of frequenting it. The stigma grows up through the tube formed by the anthers, pushing the pollen before it, and insects smearing themselves with this pollen carry it to the stigmas of other flowers already expanded, thus insuring cross-fertilization. At the base of each flower-head is a ring of narrow, green bracts the involucre. Some of these stand up to support the florets, others hang down to form a barricade against such small insects as might crawl up the stem and injure the bloom without taking a share in its fertilization, as the winged insects do. The blooms are very sensitive to weather conditions: in fine weather, all the parts are outstretched, but directly rain threatens the whole head closes up at once. It closes against the dews of night, by five o'clock in the evening, being prepared for its night's sleep, opening again at seven in the morning though as this opening and closing is largely dependent upon the intensity of the light, the time differs somewhat in different latitudes and at different seasons. When the whole head has matured, all the florets close up again within the green sheathing bracts that lie beneath, and the bloom returns very much to the appearance it had in the bud. Its shape being then somewhat reminiscent of the snout of a pig, it is termed in some districts 'Swine's Snout.' The withered, yellow petals are, however soon pushed off in a bunch, as the seeds, crowned with their tufts of hair, mature, and one day, under the influence of sun and wind the 'Swine's Snout' becomes a large gossamer ball, from its silky whiteness a very noticeable feature. It is made up of myriads of plumed seeds or pappus, ready to be blown off when quite ripe by the slightest breeze, and forms the 'clock' of the children, who by blowing at it till all the seeds are released, love to tell themselves the time of day by the number of puffs necessary to disperse every seed. When all the seeds have flown, the receptacle or disc on which they were placed remains bare, white, speckled and surrounded by merely the drooping remnants of the sheathing bracts, and we can see why the plant received another of its popular names, 'Priest's Crown,' common in the Middle Ages, when a priest's shorn head was a familiar object. Small birds are very fond of the seeds of the Dandelion and pigs devour the whole plant greedily. Goats will eat it, but sheep and cattle do not care for it, though it is said to increase the milk of cows when eaten by them. Horses refuse to touch this plant, not appreciating its bitter juice. It is valuable food for rabbits and may be given them from April to September forming excellent food in spring and at breeding seasons in particular.

The young leaves of the Dandelion make an agreeable and wholesome addition to spring salads and are often eaten on the Continent, especially in France . The full-grown leaves should not be taken, being too bitter, but the young leaves, especially if blanched, make an excellent salad, either alone or in combination with other plants, lettuce, shallot tops or chives.

Young Dandelion leaves make delicious sandwiches, the tender leaves being laid between slices of bread and butter and sprinkled with salt. The addition of a little lemon-juice and pepper varies the flavour. The leaves should always be torn to pieces, rather than cut, in order to keep the flavour.

John Evelyn, in his Acetana, says: 'With thie homely salley, Hecate entertained Theseus.' In Wales , they grate or chop up Dandelion roots, two years old, and mix them with the leaves in salad. The seed of a special broad-leaved variety of Dandelion is sold by seedsmen for cultivation for salad purposes. Dandelion can be blanched in the same way as endive, and is then very delicate in flavour. If covered with an ordinary flower-pot during the winter, the pot being further buried under some rough stable litter, the young leaves sprout when there is a dearth of saladings and prove a welcome change in early spring. Cultivated thus, Dandelion is only pleasantly bitter, and if eaten while the leaves are quite young, the centre rib of the leaf is not at all unpleasant to the taste. When older the rib is tough and not nice to eat. If the flower-buds of plants reserved in a corner of the garden for salad purposes are removed at once and the leaves carefully cut, the plants will last through the whole winter.

The young leaves may also be boiled as a vegetable, spinach fashion, thoroughly drained, sprinkled with pepper and salt, moistened with soup or butter and served very hot. If considered a little too bitter, use half spinach, but the Dandelion must be partly cooked first in this case, as it takes longer than spinach. As a variation, some grated nutmeg or garlic, a teaspoonful of chopped onion or grated lemon peel can be added to the greens when they are cooked. A simple vegetable soup may also be made with Dandelions.

The dried Dandelion leaves are also employed as an ingredient in many digestive or diet drinks and herb beers. Dandelion Beer is a rustic fermented drink common in many parts of the country and made also in Canada . Workmen in the furnaces and potteries of the industrial towns of the Midlands have frequent resource to many of the tonic Herb Beers, finding them cheaper and less intoxicating than ordinary beer, and Dandelion stout ranks as a favourite. An agreeable and wholesome fermented drink is made from Dandelions, Nettles and Yellow Dock.

In Berkshire and Worcestershire, the flowers are used in the preparation of a beverage known as Dandelion Wine. This is made by pouring a gallon of boiling water over a gallon of the flowers. After being well stirred, it is covered with a blanket and allowed to stand for three days, being stirred again at intervals, after which it is strained and the liquor boiled for 30 minutes, with the addition of 3 1/2 lb. of loaf sugar, a little ginger sliced, the rind of 1 orange and 1 lemon sliced. When cold, a little yeast is placed in it on a piece of toast, producing fermentation. It is then covered over and allowed to stand two days until it has ceased 'working,' when it is placed in a cask, well bunged down for two months before bottling. This wine is suggestive of sherry slightly flat, and has the deserved reputation of being an excellent tonic, extremely good for the blood.

The roasted roots are largely used to form Dandelion Coffee, being first thoroughly cleaned, then dried by artificial heat, and slightly roasted till they are the tint of coffee, when they are ground ready for use. The roots are taken up in the autumn, being then most fitted for this purpose. The prepared powder is said to be almost indistinguishable from real coffee, and is claimed to be an improvement to inferior coffee, which is often an adulterated product. Of late years, Dandelion Coffee has come more into use in this country, being obtainable at most vegetarian restaurants and stores. Formerly it used occasionally to be given for medicinal purposes, generally mixed with true coffee to give it a better flavour. The ground root was sometimes mixed with chocolate for a similar purpose. Dandelion Coffee is a natural beverage without any of the injurious effects that ordinary tea and coffee have on the nerves and digestive organs. It exercises a stimulating influence over the whole system, helping the liver and kidneys to do their work and keeping the bowels in a healthy condition, so that it offers great advantages to dyspeptics and does not cause wakefulness.

Parts Used Medicinally: The root, fresh and dried, the young tops. All parts of the plant contain a somewhat bitter, milky juice (latex), but the juice of the root being still more powerful is the part of the plant most used for medicinal purposes.

History: The first mention of the Dandelion as a medicine is in the works of the Arabian physicians of the tenth and eleventh centuries, who speak of it as a sort of wild Endive, under the name of Taraxcacon. In this country, we find allusion to it in the Welsh medicines of the thirteenth century. Dandelion was much valued as a medicine in the times of Gerard and Parkinson, and is still extensively employed.

Dandelion roots have long been largely used on the Continent, and the plant is cultivated largely in India as a remedy for liver complaints.

The root is perennial and tapering, simple or more or less branched, attaining in a good soil a length of a foot or more and 1/2 inch to an inch in diameter. Old roots divide at the crown into several heads. The root is fleshy and brittle, externally of a dark brown, internally white and abounding in an inodorous milky juice of bitter, but not disagreeable taste.

Only large, fleshy and well-formed roots should be collected, from plants two years old, not slender, forked ones. Roots produced in good soil are easier to dig up without breaking, and are thicker and less forked than those growing on waste places and by the roadside. Collectors should, therefore only dig in good, free soil, in moisture and shade, from meadow-land. Dig up in wet weather, but not during frost, which materially lessens the activity of the roots. Avoid breaking the roots, using a long trowel or a fork, lifting steadily and carefully. Shake off as much of the earth as possible and then cleanse the roots, the easiest way being to leave them in a basket in a running stream so that the water covers them, for about an hour, or shake them, bunched, in a tank of clean water. Cut off the crowns of leaves, but be careful in so doing not to leave any scales on the top. Do not cut or slice the roots or the valuable milky juice on which their medicinal value depends will be wasted by bleeding.

Chemical Constituents: The chief constituents of Dandelion root are Taraxacin, acrystalline, bitter substance, of which the yield varies in roots collected at different seasons, and Taraxacerin, an acrid resin, with Inulin (a sort of sugar which replaces starch in many of the Dandelion family, Compositae), gluten, gum and potash. The root contains no starch, but early in the year contains much uncrystallizable sugar and laevulin, which differs from Inulin in being soluble in cold water. This diminishes in quantity during the summer and becomes Inulin in the autumn. The root may contain as much as 24 per cent. In the fresh root, the Inulin is present in the cell-sap, but in the dry root it occurs as an amorphodus, transparent solid, which is only slightly soluble in cold water, but soluble in hot water. There is a difference of opinion as to the best time for collecting the roots. The British Pharmacopceia considers the autumn dug root more bitter than the spring root, and that as it contains about 25 per cent insoluble Inulin, it is to be preferred on this account to the spring root, and it is, therefore, directed that in England the root should be collected between September and February, it being considered to be in perfection for Extract making in the month of November. Bentley, on the other hand, contended that it is more bitter in March and most of all in July, but that as in the latter month it would generally be inconvenient for digging it, it should be dug in the spring, when the yield of Taraxacin, the bitter soluble principle, is greatest.

On account of the variability of the constituents of the plant according to the time of year when gathered, the yield and composition of the extract are very variable. If gathered from roots collected in autumn, the resulting product yields a turbid solution with water; if from spring-collected roots, the aqueous solution will be clear and yield but very little sediment on standing, because of the conversion of the Inulin into Laevulose and sugar at this active period of the plant's life.

In former days, Dandelion Juice was the favourite preparation both in official and domestic medicine. Provincial druggists sent their collectors for the roots and expressed the juice while these were quite fresh. Many country druggists prided themselves on their Dandelion Juice. The most active preparations of Dandelion, the Juice (Succus Taraxaci) and the Extract (Extractum Taraxaci), are made from the bruised fresh root. The Extract prepared from the fresh root is sometimes almost devoid of bitterness. The dried root alone was official in the United States Pharmacopoeia.

The leaves are now often used, also for making Herb-Beer. A medicinal tincture is sometimes made from the entire plant gathered in the early summer. It is made with proof spirit. When collecting the seeds care should be taken when drying them in the sun, to cover them with coarse muslin, as otherwise the down will carry them away. They are best collected in the evening, towards sunset, or when the damp air has caused the heads to close up. The tops should be cut on a dry day, when quite free of rain or dew, and all insect-eaten or stained leaves rejected.

Medicinal Action and Uses: Diuretic, tonic and slightly aperient. It is a general stimulant to the system, but especially to the urinary organs, and is chiefly used in kidney and liver disorders.

Dandelion is not only official but is used in many patent medicines. Not being poisonous, quite big doses of its preparations may be taken. Its beneficial action is best obtained when combined with other agents.

The tincture made from the tops may be taken in doses of 10 to 15 drops in a spoonful of water, three times daily.

It is said that its use for liver complaints was assigned to the plant largely on the doctrine of signatures, because of its bright yellow flowers of a bilious hue.

In the hepatic complaints of persons long resident in warm climates, Dandelion is said to afford very marked relief. A broth of Dandelion roots, sliced and stewed in boiling water with some leaves of Sorrel and the yolk of an egg, taken daily for some months, has been known to cure seemingly intractable cases of chronic liver congestion.

A strong decoction is found serviceable in stone and gravel: the decoction may be made by boiling 1 pint of the sliced root in 20 parts of water for 15 minutes, straining this when cold and sweetening with brown sugar or honey. A small teacupful may be taken once or twice a day.

Dandelion is used as a bitter tonic in atonic dyspepsia, and as a mild laxative in habitual constipation. When the stomach is irritated and where active treatment would be injurious, the decoction or extract of Dandelion administered three or four times a day, will often prove a valuable remedy. It has a good effect in increasing the appetite and promoting digestion.

Dandelion combined with other active remedies has been used in cases of dropsy and for induration of the liver, and also on the Continent for phthisis and some cutaneous diseases. A decoction of 2oz. of the herb or root in 1 quart of water, boiled down to a pint, is taken in doses of one wineglassful every three hours for scurvy, scrofula, eczema and all eruptions on the surface of the body.

Dandelion Tea: Infuse 1oz. of Dandelion in a pint of boiling water for 10 minutes; decant, sweeten with honey, and drink several glasses in the course of the day. The use of this tea is efficacious in bilious affections, and is also much approved of in the treatment of dropsy.

Or take 2oz. of freshly-sliced Dandelion root, and boil in 2 pints of water until it comes to 1 pint; then add 1oz. of compound tincture of Horseradish. Dose, from 2 to 4oz. Use in a sluggish state of the liver.

Or 1oz. Dandelion root, 1oz. Black Horehound herb, 1/2oz. Sweet Flag root, 1/4oz. Mountain Flax. Simmer the whole in 3 pints of water down to 1 1/2 pint, strain and take a wineglassful after meals for biliousness and dizziness.

For Gall Stones: 1oz. Dandelion root, 1oz. Parsley root, 1oz. Balm herb, 1/2oz. Ginger root, 1/2oz. Liquorice root. Place in 2 quarts of water and gently simmer down to 1 quart, strain and take a wineglassful every two hours. (See our Liver and Gall Bladder Flush Programme, www.Herbactive.co.uk/liverflush.php )

For a young child suffering from jaundice: 1oz. Dandelion root, 1/2 oz. Ginger root, 1/2 oz. Caraway seed, 1/2 oz. Cinnamon bark, 1/4 oz. Senna leaves. Gently boil in 3 pints of water down to 1 1/2 pint, strain, dissolve 1/2 lb. sugar in hot liquid, bring to a boil again, skim all impurities that come to the surface when clear, put on one side to cool, and give frequently in teaspoonful doses.

A Liver and Kidney Mixture: 1oz. Broom tops, 1/2 oz. Juniper berries, 1/2 oz. Dandelion root, 1 1/2 pint water. Boil in gredients for 10 minutes, then strain and adda small quantity of cayenne. Dose, 1 tablespoonful, three times a day.

A Medicine for Piles: 1 OZ. Long-leaved Plantain, 1 OZ. Dandelion root, 1/2 oz. Polypody root, 1 OZ. Shepherd's Purse. Add 3 pints of water, boil down to half the quantity, strain, and add 1 OZ. of tincture of Rhubarb. Dose, a wineglassful three times a day. Celandine ointment to be applied at same time.
In Derbyshire, the juice of the stalk is applied to remove warts.
(This information from A Modern Herbal by Mrs Grieve)

Dandelion root is used to improve appetite and minor digestive problems. Some modern naturopathic physicians believe that it can help detoxify the liver and gallbladder. It shows proven value as a diuretic, flushing excess water from the body. It is believed by many experts to promote the flow of bile and stimulates the appetite. Dandelion juice once was quite popular as a diuretic, laxative, and remedy for rheumatism.

Dandelion is considered a remedy for the following conditions:

Appetite loss

Indigestion

Kidney and bladder stones

Liver and gallbladder problems

Urinary tract infections

 

Dandelion Nutritional Content: Dandelion contains lactupicrine, a bitter principle, tannin, insulin, a latex-like substance, polysaccharides, and carotene.

Actions: cholagogue; inflammation and congestion of liver and gall-bladder; cholecystitis, gall stones, atonic dyspepsia with constipation, muscular rheumatism; congestive jaundice - specific. Good general tonic.

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THEOBROMA - RAW COCOA

Cacao products are from a fair trade supplier in Peru, from the rich and fertile soils of South America. The Latin name literally means food of the Gods. There is a great history of use of Cacao in South America and the beans were once valued so highly that they were used as currency. Cacao is rich in nutrients and feel good phyto-chemicals. Raw Cacao has over 300 nutritional constituents preserved; whereas heat treated Cocoa unfortunately loses most of this.

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TRITICUM SATIVA - WHEATGRASS

Action: Improves function of the heart, affects the vascular system, the uterus, the intestine and the lungs; a body cleanser; rebuilds, neutralises toxins; detoxification, can dissolve scars that are formed in the lungs from breathing acid gasses increases haemoglobin production; reduce high blood pressure; gives the blood iron which helps circulation; purifies the blood; acts as a detergent on the body. Helps overcome dandruff. Rub the juice into the scalp: vaginal infections (douche); tooth decay; sore throat; pyorrhoea of the mouth; skin troubles; keep hair from greying; It helps overcome ageing and gives energy to the sex hormones. Anaemia, capillaries; toxic metals - lead, cadmium, mercury, aluminium, and excessive amounts of copper; builds up the white blood cells. It has been reported that Chlorophyll: Inhibits chromosome damage and this action may effectively block or prevent cancer. Increases your resistance to X rays. Eliminates germs and inhibits the growth of harmful bacteria. Reduces the damaging effects of radiation burns. Stimulates the regeneration of fresh tissue. Purifies the liver and relieves pancreas inflammation. Dramatically raises the oxygen level in the tissue cells. Cleanses the walls of blood vessels. Strengthens the cell walls which may improve the function of the heart, intestines, lungs, uterus and vascular system. To increase oxygen at the cellular level may be vital in eliminating cancer. Otto Warburg in the 1930's demonstrated that cancer cannot grow rapidly in the presence of oxygen. His theory was that cancer is a process of cell mutation engendered by a lack of oxygen at the cellular level. He reasoned that an effective cancer therapy must increase the oxygen content of the blood. Because chlorophyll increases the oxygen content of the blood, it may in fact decrease cell mutation and therefore counteract cancer. Chlorophyll, also because of its high oxygen content, may be effective against other conditions including AIDS and HIV-related viruses. Research at the Linus Pauling Institute and the Anderson Hospital in Texas has shown that chlorophyll juice produces some immunity against many carcinogens and strengthens the immune system. Japanese researchers have reportedly discovered that chlorophyll juice inhibits chromosome damage, which is a precursor of cancer. Carotenoid is a vital element in chlorophyll. Hungarian researchers have found that the leaves of sheep sorrel (also included in the ABC Daily Powder, see above) have a total carotenoid content of 8-12 percent. Beta carotene is a member of the family of carotenoids. Research from multiple sources has shown that beta carotene is converted to vitamin A in our liver. Vitamin A strengthens the immune system by increasing the production of white blood cells. It is white blood cells that destroy cancer cells. Beta carotene is an antioxidant which means it can control the build-up of harmful free radials. Free radicals can actually alter genes and seriously damage cell walls. All carotenoids and especially beta carotene are coming under closer scientific scrutiny because of their ability to strengthen the immune system. Dr. Harinder Garewal, at the University of Arizona Cancer Center in Tucson, found that pre-cancerous lesions in the mouth diminished in size in 70% of the patients tested with only 30 mg of carotene a day.

Cont / Details about the constituents and actions of the individual whole herbal powders contained in Herbactive Herbalist's ABC Daily Herbal NutriPowder Plus

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ULMUS FULVA – SLIPPERY ELM BARK 

Synonyms: Red Elm. Moose Elm. Indian Elm.

Part Used: The inner bark. The inner bark has important medicinal value and is an official drug of the United States Pharmacopoeia. The bark, which is the only part used, is collected in spring from the bole and larger branches and dried. Large quantities are collected, especially in the lower part of the state of Michigan . As the wood has no commercial value, the tree is fully stripped and consequently dies. The bark as it appears in commerce for use in medicine consists only of the inner bark or bast and is sold in flat pieces 2 to 3 feet long and several inches wide, but only about 1/8 to 1/16 of an inch in thickness. It is very tough and flexible, of a fine fibrous texture, finely striated longitudinally on both surfaces, the outer surface reddish-yellow, with patches of reddish brown, which are part of the outer bark adhering to the inner bast. It has an odour like Fenugreek and a very mucilaginous, insipid taste. The strips can be bent double without breaking: if broken, the rough fracture is mealy, strongly but finely fibrous. The clean transverse section shows numerous medullary rays and altemate bands of bast parenchyma, thus giving it a chequered appearance. A section moistened and left for a few minutes, and again examined, shows large swollen mucilage cells. The powdered bark is sold in two forms: a coarse powder for use as poultices and a fine powder for making a mucilaginous drink. The disintegrated bark forms, when moistened, a flexible and spongy tissue, which is easily moulded into pessaries, teats, and suppositories. It is recommended that ten-year-old bark should be used. The powder should be greyish or fawncoloured. If dark or reddish, good results will not be obtained. The powdered bark is said to be often adulterated with damaged flour and other starchy substances. 

Habitat: The United States , Canada . 

Description: The Slippery Elm is a small tree abundant in various parts of North America . The branches are very rough, the leaves long, unequally toothed, rough with hairs on both sides, the leaf-buds covered with a dense yellow Wool. The flowers are stalkless.

Constituents: The principal constituent of the bark is the mucilage contained in large cells in the bast. This mucilage is very similar to that found in linseed. It is precipitated by solutions of acetate and subacetate of lead, although not by alcohol The mucilage does not dissolve, but only swells in water and is so abundant that 10 grains of the powdered bark will make a thick jelly with an ounce of water.

Medicinal Action and Uses: Demulcent, emollient, expectorant, diuretic, nutritive. The bark of this American Elm, though not in this country as in the United States an official drug, is considered one of the most valuable remedies in herbal practice, the abundant mucilage it contains having wonderfully strengthening and healing qualities. It not only has a most soothing and healing action on all the parts it comes in contact with, but in addition possesses as much nutrition as is contained in oatmeal, and when made into gruel forms a wholesome and sustaining food for infants and invalids. It forms the basis of many patent foods. 

Slippery Elm Food is generally made by mixing a teaspoonful of the powder into a thin and perfectly smooth paste with cold water and then pouring on a pint of boiling water, steadily stirring meanwhile. It can, if desired, be flavoured with cinnamon, nutmeg or lemon rind. This makes an excellent drink in cases of irritation of the mucous membrane of the stomach and intestines, and taken at night will induce sleep. Another mode of preparation is to beat up an egg with a teaspoonful of the powdered bark, pouring boiling milk over it and sweetening it. 

Taken unsweetened, three times a day, Elm Food gives excellent results in gastritis, gastric catarrh, mucous colitis and enteritis, being tolerated by the stomach when all other foods fail, and is of great value in bronchitis, bleeding from the lungs and consumption (being most healing to the lungs), soothing a cough and building up and preventing wasting. 

A Slippery Elm compound excellent for coughs is made as follows: Cut obliquely one or more ounces of bark into pieces about the thickness of a match; add a pinch of Cayenne flavour with a slice of lemon and sweeten, infusing the whole in a pint of boiling water and letting it stand for 25 minutes. Take this frequently in small doses: for a consumptive patient, about a pint a day is recommended. It is considered one of the best remedies that can be given as it combines both demulcent and stimulating properties. Being mucilaginous, it rolls up the mucous material so troublesome to the patient and passes it down through the intestines.

In typhoid fever, the Slippery Elm drink, prepared as for coughs, is recommended, serving a threefold purpose, to cleanse, heal and strengthen, the patient being allowed to drink as much as desired until thirst has abated, and other remedies can be used. If the patient is not thirsty, a dose of 2 large tablespoonfuls every hour for an adult has been prescribed. 

The bark is an ingredient in various lung medicines. A valuable remedy for Bronchitis and all diseases of the throat and lungs is compounded as follows: 1 teaspoonful Flax seed, 1 OZ. Slippery Elm bark, 1 OZ. Thoroughwort, 1 stick Liquorice, 1 quart water. Simmer slowly for 20 minutes. Strain and add 1 pint of the best vinegar and 1/2 pint of sugar. When cold, bottle. Dose: 1 tablespoonful two or three times a day. 

In Pleurisy, the following is also recommended: Take 2 oz. each of Pleurisy root, Marsh Mallow root, Liquorice root and Slippery Elm bark. Boil in 3 pints of water down to 3 gills. Dose: 1/2 teaspoonful every half-hour, to be taken warm.

As a heart remedy, a pint of Slippery Elm drink has been prescribed alternately with Bugleweed compound.

Slippery Elm bark possesses also great influence upon diseases of the female organs.

It is particularly valuable both medicinally and as an injection in dysentery and other diseases of the bowels, cystitis and irritation of the urinary tract. The injection for inflammation of the bowels is made from an infusion of 1 OZ. of the powder to 1 pint of boiling water, strained and used lukewarm. Other remedies should be given at the same time.

An injection for diarrhoea may also be made as follows: 1 drachm powdered Slippery Elm bark, 3 drachms powdered Bayberry, 1 drachm powdered Scullcap.

Pour on 1/2 pint of boiling water, infuse for half an hour, strain, add a teaspoonful of tincture of myrrh and use lukewarm.

As an enema for constipation, 2 drachms of Slippery Elm bark are mixed well with 1 OZ. of sugar, then 1/2 pint of warm milk and water and an ounce of Olive Oil are gently stirred in. 

Injection for worms (Ascarides): 1/2 drachm Aloes powder, 1 drachm common salt, 1/2 drachm Slippery Elm powder (fine). When well mixed, add 1/2 pint warm water and sweeten with molasses, stirring well. 

Slippery Elm mucilage is also prescribed to be mixed with Oil of Male Fern (2 oz. of the mucilage to 1 drachm of the oil) as a remedy for the expulsion of tapeworm 

The Red Indians have long used this viscous inner bark to prepare a healing salve, and in herbal medicine a Slippery Elm bark powder is considered one of the best possible poultices for wounds, boils, ulcers, burns and all inflamed surfaces, soothing, healing and reducing pain and inflammation. 

It is made as follows: Mix the powder with hot water to form the required consistency, spread smoothly upon soft cotton cloth and apply over the parts affected. It is unfailing in cases of suppurations, abscesses, wounds of all kinds, congestion, eruptions, swollen glands, etc. In simple inflammation, it may be applied directly over the part affected; to abscesses and old wounds, it should be placed between cloths. If applied to parts of the body where there is hair, the face of the poultice should be smeared with olive oil before applying. 

In old gangrenous wounds, an excellent antiseptic poultice is prepared by mixing with warm water or an infusion of Wormwood, equal parts of Slippery Elm powder and very fine charcoal and applying immediately over the part.

A very valuable poultice in cases where it is desirable to hasten suppuration or arrest the tendency to gangrene is made by mixing the Slippery Elm powder with brewer's yeast and new milk. (from A Modern Herbal by Mrs M Greave)

Compound Bran poultice is made by mixing with hot vinegar equal quantities of wheaten Bran with Slippery Elm powder. This is an excellent poultice for severe rheumatic and gouty affections, particularly of the joints, synovitis etc.

Herbal poultices, generally made from the bruised, fresh leaves of special herbs, are frequently mixed with Slippery Elm and boiling water sufficient to give the mass consistency.

Marshmallow Ointment, one of the principal ointments used in herbal medicine, has a considerable proportion of Slippery Elm bark in its composition. It is made as follows: 3 oz. Marshmallow leaves, 2 OZ. Slippery Elm bark powder, 3 oz. Beeswax, 16 OZ. Lard. Boil the Marshmallow and Slippery Elm bark in 3 pints of water for 15 minutes. Express, strain and reduce the liquor to half a pint. Melt together the lard and wax by gentle heat, then add the extract while still warm, shake constantly till all are thoroughly incorporated and store in a cool place.

The bark of Slippery Elm is stated to preserve fatty substances from becoming rancid.

Actions and uses: demulcent, emollient, nutritive, anti-tussive, astringent; gastritis, gastric and duodenal ulcer - specific, enteritis, colitis, convalescent tonic.

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UNCARIA TORMENTOSA – CAT'S CLAW

The parts used medicinally include the inner bark and root.

U. tomentosa is used in nootropic drugs, as well as in treatment of cancer prevention and HIV infection. It contains several alkaloids that are responsible for its overall medical effects, as well as tannins and various phytochemicals.[5] The chemotype of the plant determines the dominant type of alkaloid it produces, and thus its properties in vivo. One chemotype has roots which produce mostly the pentacyclic alkaloids that are responsible for the immune-strengthening effects desired by most consumers. The second chemotype produces tetracyclic oxindole alkaloids known as rhynchophylline and isorhynchophylline which counteract the immune-strengthening actions of the pentacyclic alkaloids, reduces the speed and force of the heart's contraction, and in high doses produce ataxia, lack of coordination and sedative effects.[4] Since U. tomentosa comes in at least these two different chemotypes, without chemical testing it is impossible to know which chemical compounds will predominate in a plant collected randomly from a natural setting. 

Some ingredients appear to act as anti-inflammatory, antioxidant and cancer preventive agents.[5] Cat's Claw is used to treat intestinal ailments such as Crohn's disease, gastric ulcers and tumors, parasites, colitis, gastritis, diverticulitis and leaky bowel syndrome, while manufacturers claim that U. tomentosa can also be used in the treatment of AIDS in combination with AZT, the treatment and prevention of arthritis and rheumatism, diabetes, PMS, chronic fatigue syndrome, prostate conditions,[6] immune modulation,[7] Lyme disease[8] and systemic lupus erythematosus.[9] A 2005 review of the scholarly literature on Cat's Claw indicates there is supporting evidence toward its use in preventative to cancer, inflammation, viral infection and vascular conditions, and for its use as an immunostimulant, antioxidant, antibacterial and CNS-related agent.[5] 

Numerous investigations have been carried out to isolate and determine secondary metabolites of Uncaria tomentosa. So far, over fifty identified compounds have been already reported including oxindole alkaloids (speciophylline, mitraphylline, uncarine F, pteropodine, isomitraphylline, uncarine E), ursane type pentacyclic triterpenes with a variety of ursolic acid derivatives, quinovic acid glycosides, sterols and procyanidins. These compounds may be responsible for many pharmaceutical properties described in literature. Cat's claw contains ajmalicine, akuammigine, campesterol, catechin, carboxyl alkyl esters, chlorogenic acid, cinchonain, corynantheine, corynoxeine, daucosterol, epicatechin, harman, hirsuteine, hirsutine, iso-pteropodine, loganic acid, lyaloside, mitraphylline, oleanolic acid, palmitoleic acid, procyanidins, pteropodine quinovic acid glycosides, rhynchophylline, rutin, sitosterols, speciophylline, stigmasterol, strictosidines, uncarines, and vaccenic acid.

Actions: adaptogen; immunostimulant, digestive tonic. Enhances phagocytosis. Crohn's disease, ulcers, asthma, arthritis, iritis, shingles, dysbiosis and chronic fatigue syndrome (CFS, ME, FM); enhance overall immunity while increasing stamina; viral infections; enhance emotional stability - even in the midst of extreme stress, fight infections in AIDS patients and decrease the visible size of some skin tumours and cysts within two weeks; reduction in the side-effects of radiation and chemotherapy in cancer patients; fibromyalgia; adaptogen, anti-oxidant, anti-tumour, anti-microbial and anti-inflammatory properties; powerful cellular reconstructor; cancer preventive, arthritis, gastritis, female hormonal imbalances.

Indigenous use: The indigenous peoples of South and Central America have used U. tomentosa for medicinal purposes for two thousand years or more. Researchers have investigated the use of the plant by the Asháninka tribe of Peru, who use the plant as a general health tonic, contraceptive, anti-inflammatory agent for the gastrointestinal tract, and as a treatment for diarrhea, rheumatic disorders, acne, diabetes, cancer preventive and diseases of the urinary tract.[10]

Allergies: Individuals allergic to plants in the Rubiaceae family and different species of Uncaria may be more likely to have allergic reactions to Cat's Claw.[11] Reactions can include itching, rash and allergic inflammation of the kidneys. In one documented case, kidney failure occurred in a patient with Lupus erythematosus[12] but it is not known if this was due to an allergic reaction or another cause.

Footnotes:

1. ^ Gattuso, M., Di Sapio, O., Gattuso, S. & Li Pereyra, E. (2004). Morphoanatomical studies of Uncaria tomentosa and Uncaria guianensis bark and leaves. Phytomedicine, 11, 213–223.

2. ^ Piscoya J, Rodriguez Z, Bustamante SA, et al. Efficacy and safety of freeze-dried cat's claw in osteoarthritis of the knee: mechanisms of action of the species Uncaria guianensis. Inflamm Res. 2001;50:442–448.

3. ^ Keplinger, K., Laus, G., Wurm, M., Dierich, M.P. & Teppner, Herwig. (1999). Uncaria tomentosa (Willd.) DC.—Ethnomedicinal use and new pharmacological, toxicological and botanical results. Journal of Ethnopharmacology, 64, 23–34. Available on-line as a PDF

4. ^ a b Nutrition Forum article by Varro E. Tyler on Cat's Claw (Warning: pop-ups)

5. ^ a b c Heitzman , M.E. , Neto, C.C., Winiarz, E., Vaisberg, A.J. & Hammon, G.B. (2005). Ethnobotany, phytochemistry and pharmacology of Uncaria (Rubiaceae). Phytochemistry, 66(1), 5-29. PMID 15649507

6. ^ NutraSanus article on Cat's Claw

7. ^ Information on Cat's Claw

8. ^ Treatment of Lyme disease with Cat's Claw

9. ^ Cat's claw used to treat Lupus erythematosus

10. ^ The Longwood Herbal Task Force article on Cat's Claw

11. ^ Intelihealth article discussing uses and dangers of Cat's Claw

12. ^ Hilepo JN, Bellucci AG, Mossey RT. (1977). Acute renal failure caused by 'cat's claw' herbal remedy in a patient with systemic lupus erythematosus. Nephron, 77(3) pg. 361.

 

References:

* Germplasm Resources Information Network: Uncaria tomentosa

* Rain-tree.com article on Cat's Claw discussing its properties and actions

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VACCINIUM MYRTILLUS - BILBERRY FRUIT

Synonyms: Whortleberry. Black Whortles. Whinberry. Trackleberry. Huckleberry. Hurts. Bleaberry. Hurtleberry. Airelle. Vaccinium Frondosum. Blueberries.
Parts Used: The ripe fruit. The leaves.
Habitat: Europe, including Britain , Siberia and Barbary .

Actions and uses: eye disorders (poor vision, cataracts, glaucoma, macular degeneration). The active anthocyanoside flavonoids in bilberry strengthen the integrity of eye tissue, improve circulation to the eyes and increase oxygen and energy levels in the eye. Enhances circulation and blood vessel integrity throughout the body. Antioxidant.

Description : V. myrtillus grows abundantly in our heathy and mountainous districts, a small branched shrub, with wiry angular branches, rarely over a foot high, bearing globular wax-like flowers and black berries, which are covered when quite ripe with a delicate grey bloom, hence its name in Scotland, 'Blea-berry,' from an old North Countryword, 'blae,' meaning livid or bluish. The name Bilberry (by some old writers 'Bulberry') is derived from the Danish 'bollebar,' meaning dark berry . There is a variety with white fruits. The leathery leaves (in form somewhat like those of the myrtle, hence its specific name) are at first rosy, then yellowish-green, and in autumn turn red and are very ornamental. They have been utilized to adulterate tea. Bilberries flourish best on high grounds, being therefore more abundant in the north and west than in the south and east of England: they are absent from the low-lying Cambridgeshire and Suffolk, but on the Surrey hills, where they are called 'Hurts,' cover the ground for miles. The fruit is globular, with a flat top, about the size of a black currant. When eaten raw, they have a slightly acid flavour. When cooked, however, with sugar, they make an excellent preserve. Gerard tells us that 'the people of Cheshire do eate the black whortles in creame and milke as in these southern parts we eate strawberries.' On the Continent, they are often employed for colouring wine.

Stewed with a little sugar and lemon peel in an open tart, Bilberries make a very enjoyable dish. Before the War, immense quantities of them were imported annually from Holland , Germany and Scandinavia . They were used mainly by pastrycooks and restaurant-keepers.

Owing to its rich juice, the Bilberry can be used with the least quantity of sugar in making jam: half a pound of sugar to the pound of berries is sufficient if the preserve is to be eaten soon. The minuteness of the seeds makes them more suitable for jam than currants.

Constituents : Quinic acid is found in the leaves, and a little tannin. Triturated with water they yield a liquid which, filtered and assayed with sulphate of iron, becomes a beautiful green, first of all transparent, then giving a green precipitate.

Medicinal Action and Uses : The fruits are astringent, and are especially valuable in diarrhoea and dysentery, in the form of syrup. The ancients used them largely, and Dioscorides spoke highly of them. They are also used for discharges, and as antigalactagogues. A decoction of the leaves or bark of the root may be used as a local application to ulcers, and in ulceration of the mouth and throat. The fruit is helpful in scurvy and urinary complaints, and when bruised with the roots and steeped in gin has diuretic properties valuable in dropsy and gravel. A tea made of the leaves is also a remedy for diabetes if taken for a prolonged period.

Diarrhea and wounds: Bilberry ( Vaccinium myrtillus ) has been used in traditional European medicine for nearly a thousand years, primarily to treat diarrhea. Bilberry fruit contains high concentrations of tannins, substances that act as both an anti-inflammatory and an astringent. The latter quality in particular may help wounds heal more quickly. Bilberry is believed to help people with diarrhea by reducing the intestinal inflammation associated with the condition.

Diabetes: Bilberry leaves have traditionally been used to control blood sugar levels in people with diabetes. A couple of modern day reports of a few individuals with type 2 (adult onset) diabetes as well as animal studies suggest that this traditional use may have merit. Rigorous scientific studies are needed.

Antioxidants: A close relative of the cranberry, bilberry fruits contain flavonoid compounds called anthocyanidins. Flavonoids are plant pigments that have excellent antioxidant properties. This means that they scavenge damaging particles in the body known as free radicals and have been shown to help prevent a number of long-term illnesses such as heart disease, cancer preventive, and an eye disorder called macular degeneration (a disease of the retina that can lead to blindness; see Visual Disturbances listed below). Animal studies have found that anthocyanidins may strengthen blood vessels, improve circulation, and prevent the oxidation of LDL ("bad") cholesterol, a major risk factor for atherosclerosis (plaque in blood vessels that leads to blockage and, therefore, heart attack and stroke). Research in people is needed.

Chronic fatigue syndrome: Some experts propose that bilberry may relieve the symptoms of chronic fatigue syndrome because of its antioxidant properties.

Ulcers: Studies in rats have found that anthocyanidins from bilberry fruits help prevent stomach ulcers caused by a variety of factors including stress, medications, and alcohol.

Visual disturbances: Anthocyanidins found in bilberry fruits may also be useful for people with vision problems. During World War II, British fighter pilots reported that bilberries improved their night time vision and helped them quickly adjust to darkness. A recent study, however, comparing a bilberry extract of anthocyanidins to placebo in young men with normal vision did not confirm any improvement in night vision from this supplement. The study included 12 men. More research is required to determine whether the traditional stories of improved night vision from bilberry is scientifically true. Today, it is believed that anthocyanidins may help protect the retina, the nerve layer that lines the back of the eye and sends nerve impulses to the visual areas of the brain. Studies conducted in the 1960s, 70s, and 80s suggest that the anthocyanidins contained in bilberry fruit preparations improve symptoms of a variety of visual disturbances including nearsightedness, cataracts, and macular degeneration.

Other Species: V. arboreum , or Farkleberry. This is the most astringent variety, and both berries and root-bark may be used internally for diarrhoea, chronic dysentery, etc. The infusion is valuable as a local application in sore throat, chronic ophthalmia, leucorrhoea, etc.

V. resinosum, V. damusum , and V. gorymbosum have properties resembling those of V. myrtillus .

The Bog Bilberry ( V. uliginosum ) is a smaller, less erect plant, with round stems and untoothed leaves, greyish green beneath. Both flowers and berries are smaller than those of the common Bilberry. This kind is quite absent in the south and only to be found in mountain bogs and moist copses, in Scotland , Durham and Westmorland.

The berries of both species are a favourite food of birds.

The 'Huckleberry' of North America , so widely appreciated there, is our Bilberry - the name being an obvious corruption of 'Whortleberry.'

Recipe for Bilberry Jam: Put 3 lb. of clean, fresh fruit in a preserving pan with 1 1/2 lb. of sugar and about 1 cupful of water and bring to the boil. Then boil rapidly for 40 minutes. Apple juice made from windfalls and peelings, instead of the water, improves this jam. To make apple juice, cover the apples with water, stew down, and strain the juice through thick muslin. Blackberries may also be added to this mixture. If the jam is to be kept long it must be bottled hot in screw-top jars, or, if tied down in the ordinary way, more sugar must be added.

Bilberry juice yields a clear, dark-blue or purple dye that has been much used in the dyeing of wool and the picking of berries for this purpose, as well as for food, constitutes a summer industry in the 'Hurts' districts. Owing to the shortage of the aniline dyestuffs formerly imported from Germany, Bilberries were eagerly bought up at high prices by dye manufacturers during the War, so that in 1917 and 1918 a large proportion of the Bilberry crop was not available for jam-making, as the dyers were scouring the country for the little blue-black berries.

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WITHANIA SOMNIFERA - ASHWAGANDHA - INDIAN GINSENG

Ashwagandha is one of the versatile ayurvedic herbal remedies with adaptogenic, antistress, antianxiety, antioxidant, cancer-preventive, immunity enhancing, rejuvenating and fertility and stamina enhancing properties. It benefits our system in so many different ways that it will be better to use the word 'versatile herb' for this botanical of ayurvedic medicine. People call it Indian Ginseng. Withania somnifera has been in use since thousands of years in Ayurveda. Most of its traditional uses have been validated by modern research in several ways. WS affects our mind and psychology and memory. Its effects are distinguished on nervous system and immune system.
Traditional Uses Of Ashwagandha: Most of these properties and benefits are taken from the literature of Ancient Ayurvedic Medicine. Aphrodisiac Herb & Semen Quality Promoting Herb: This herb exerts its aphrodisiac action by being an herbal rejuvenative and nervine herb. It is able to tone up the nervous system additionally. The quality and quantity of semen is raised.
Withania somnifera is equally effective in females. It is not a stimulant herb that give good result in the short term and are not a healthier choice for the long term. WS is a good choice for dysmenorrhea associated with physical weakness.
Withania somnifera is herb of choice for promoting the strength of body. Its rejuvenative action is also famous. With these properties, it is used in muscle weakness, degenerative disorders like arthritis. It provides nutrition to all the seven tissue layers and so it is good for the whole body.
Miscellaneous Actions: It is extolled in Ayurvedic medicine for Leucoderma or white patches, persons with lean and thin bodies, persons who are not maturing properly according to their age, height and weight; in edema, in tubercular infections as adjuvant.
Ashwagandha, Aswagandha, Withania Somnifera, Indian Winter Cherry
Clinical Research Based Ashwagandha Benefits:
Ashwagandha Benefits Through Brain Chemicals:
1. GABA-mimetic activity having anxiolytic effect.
2. Inhibiting Cholinesterase and thereby retaining Acetylcholine for longer time.
3. Slowing down of tolerance of the analgesic effects of morphine.
4. Nootropic like effect in mice.
5. Induction of axon and dendrite outgrowth and resulting in neuritis regeneration and synaptic reconstruction.
Ashwagandha As Immunity Boosting Herb:
1. Immunity stimulating effect through Macrophages.
2. Raised antibody titer against Bordetella pertusis strains (responsible for Diphtheria).
3. Protective effect in Cyclophosphamide induced myelosuppression.
4. Beneficial in Ageing and Copper induced lipid peroxidation.
5. WS helping in Chronic Fatigue Syndrome.
Ashwagandha As Adaptogenic And Anti-Stress Herb:
1. Comparative to Ginseng in Chronic stress models.
2. Protective effect in stress induced neuronal degeneration.
3. Helping to achieve better state to fight against stress.
4. Preventing stress related ulcer.
Ashwagandha As Herbal Rejuvenative And Reproductive Aid:
1. As a great rejuvenative herb in Ayurvedic medicine.
2. Beneficial in degenerative disorders like arthritis, diabetes and hypertension.
3. Ashwagandha is a potent inhibitor of angiogenesis and it has the potential in cancer prevention and treatment.
4. Increasing Libido and sexual function.
5. Increasing the sperm count.
6. Supporting female reproductive system with increase in ovarian weight and increased folliculogenesis.
Ashwagandha Offering A Potential Role In Cancer Therapy:
1. Anti-carcinogenic activity.
2. Growth inhibition of human tumor cell lines.
3. Counteracting mutagenic effect.
4. WS possessing anti-proliferative properties.
5. As a natural source of potent radiosensitizer or chemotherapeutic agent.
6. Useful in Ascitic Sarcoma.
7. Useful in Melanoma induced metastasis.
8. Supportive in Skin carcinoma in rats.
9. Supports DMBA induced Squamous cell carcinoma. Know more about these properties>>>
10. Enhancing cellular immune response to mitogens.
11. Reversing Paclitaxel induced Neutropenia.
12. Anti-granuloma, anti-oxidative and chemoprotective activity.
Ashwagandha In Parkinson's And Alzheimer's Disease:
1. Presence of L-dopa in a herbal formulation with WS.
2. Cognition enhancing and memory improving activity through Cholinergic channels.
3. Mood stabilizer, Learning enhancement and memory retention.
Ashwagandha As Free Radical Scavenger & Antioxidant:
1. Increasing the three natural antioxidants in rat's brain.
2. Immuno-stimulation through Nitric oxide (NO) production in Macrophage.
3. Dose dependent free radical scavenging and protective effect on DNA cleavage.
4. Useful in Iron overload and Lead toxicity.
5. Preventing Neuroleptic induced Extra pyramidal side effects.
Ashwagandha As One Of The Best Herbal Remedies For Anxiety And Depression :
1. WS is one of the best herbal remedies for anxiety and depression
2. Anxiolytic effect comparable to Lorazepam.
3. Antidepressant effect comparable to Imipramine.
4. Found nontoxic in doses up to 100 mg per kg of body weight.
5. As calming, anticonvulsant and antispasmodic effect.
6. Capacity to stimulate Thyroid function in female mice.
Cardiovascular And Diabetic Protection With Ashwagandha:
1. Cardio-protection against ischemic and reperfusion injury.
2. Beneficial in Focal ischemia.
3. Supports anti-atherogenic activity in polyherbal formula.
4. Mild hypoglycemic, diuretic and anti-hypercholesterolemic effect.
5. Supportive in Streptozotocin induced diabetes.
6. Supportive in diabetes induced Cataract.
7. Supports diabetes induced oxidative damage in brain with Aloe vera.
Miscellaneous Effects Of Ashwagandha:
1. Anti-inflammatory activity.
2. Anti-viral and antibacterial activity.
3. Curing the side effects of fungicide.
4. Protective effect in CCl4 induced Hepatotoxicity.
5. Restoration of absorption of glucose in Jejunum similar to anti-inflammatory drug Oxyphenbutazone.
6. Antiulcer activity.
Use Ashwagandha For:
1. Anxiety, Depression, Panic Disorder.
2. As Antioxidant & Free Radical Scavenger.
3. As Body building Aid.
4. For Weakness, Fatigue, Herbal Rejuvenation, Aphrodisiac.
5. As Nervine tonic, calming and antistress agent and adaptogenic herb.

 

YUCCA SCHIDIGERA - YUCCA

Yucca schidigera and spp. (Yucca leaves) - this desert plant appears to be of value in arthritis treatment. It is thought that the herb's benefit in joint disorders may stem from a reduction in bacterial toxins that would otherwise hinder cartilage repair. The Hopi Indians prized this herb as a natural cleanser (lots of saponins), relating to cure baldness. Weiner. Sapoginin - similar to Wild Yam hormones, natural source of progesterone; for bleeding of womb and menstrual disorders. Its asteroidal saponins act as an anticoagulant to resolve clumping of blood cells. Action: cardiac stimulant, anti-inflammatory (arthritis), diuretic, cholagogue (saponins), blood purifier. Shrinks tumours and masses and is cancer-preventive. Uses: hormonal imbalance, varicose veins, acne, ulcers in mouth and skin, cleanses gall bladder, cateract.
Yucca schidigera & Y. filamentosa FAMILY NAME:
Agavaceae/ Lilliaceae COMMON NAME:
Mojave yucca

EVIDENCE FOR EFFICACY (HUMAN DATA)

Clinical Trials
Among a group of 59 patients, 78% of subjects with allergic rhinitis had positive skin prick test to at least one plant, the most frequent sensitization being Ficus benjamina, yucca, ivy and palm tree. Mahillon 2006

A clinical study on the effects of the blend of Yucca schidigera & Quillaja saponaria extracts on cholesterol levels in human's blood & gastrointestinal functions showed a decrease in total & LDL cholesterol levels in blood plasma of hyper-cholesterolemic patients with enhanced in GI symptoms. Kim 2003

A study on contact allergic dermatitis caused by 38 plants on 15 patients revealed that 16 plants including Yucca showed positive skin tests in these individuals. [Article in Croatian] Poljacki 1993

Observational Studies/Case Reports
Occupational allergic contact urticaria to Yucca aloifolia, weeping fig (Ficus benjamina) and Spathiphyllum wallisii was reported in a case of atopic gardener in whom skin prick tests were positive to all three plants & IgE antibodies were found to weeping fig and spathe flower but not to Yucca. Kanerva 2001

[Allergy to yucca.] Munno 2001

Traditional and Folk Use
A study on the availability of fruits and vegetables between racially segregated urban neighbourhoods of Brooklyn, New York revealed that with the exception of bananas, potatoes, okra and yucca, a lower proportion of predominantly black area stores carried fresh produce. Morland 2007

Use in skin disease by Catawba on David Winston's Herbal Therapeutic website. Taylor 1940

Monograph of Y. baccata on p. 49 and Y. glauca on p. 52 from Ethnobotany of the Tewa Indians on Michael Moore's website. Robbins 1916

Monograph of Y. baccata on p.72 and Y. glauca on p.73 from Ethnobotany of the Zuni on Michael Moore's website. Stevenson 1908

See entry on arthritis in the UCLA Online Archive of American Folk Medicine

See entry on cough in the UCLA Online Archive of American Folk Medicine

 

See entry on rheumatism in the UCLA Online Archive of American Folk Medicine

 

See entry on skin ailments in the UCLA Online Archive of American Folk Medicine

 

See entry on hair loss in the UCLA Online Archive of American Folk Medicine

 

See entry on dandruff in the UCLA Online Archive of American Folk Medicine

 

See entry on sunstroke, cataracts, blindness in the UCLA Online Archive of American Folk Medicine

 

See entry on hair loss in the UCLA Online Archive of American Folk Medicine

 

See entry on rheumatism in the UCLA Online Archive of American Folk Medicine

 

Type "yucca" (or the genus and species name for a specific species) in the search field of D. Moerman's Native American Ethnobotany

 

Search for Yucca in Dr. Duke's Phytochem and Ethnobot DB

 

SAFETY DATA

Adverse Effects & Toxicity
No Records

Interactions
No Records

Contraindications
No Records

EVIDENCE OF ACTIVITY

Animal Studies
yucca extracts have anti-arthritic, anti-inflammatory & anti-protozoal effects. Active phytochemicals include steroidal saponins & polyphenolics (resveratrol, yuccaols A, B, C, D and E). Cheeke 2006

Effect of different dietary levels of Yucca schidigera powder on the performance, blood parameters and egg yolk cholesterol of laying quails revealed that Yucca powder supplementation decreased serum glucose, cholesterol triglyceride level in laying quails. Kaya 2003

Production of amines in equine cecal contents in an in vitro model of carbohydrate overload showed that fermentation of carbohydrate by equine cecal microbiota may lead to increased production of amines, however steroidal saponin (of Yucca schidigera extract) was without effect. Bailey 2002

A study on Ruminal metabolism in sheep of saponins from Yucca schidigera showed that ingested saponins were quickly hydrolysed in the rumen to free sapogenins. Flåøyen 2002

A study on Rumen fermentation & nitrogen balance of lambs fed diets of extracts with tannins & saponins showed that low tannin dose decreased bacteria count. Saponin supplementation (Yucca schidigera extract) & high tannin dose showed some potential to reduce ruminal ammonia concentration. Sliwiñski 2002

Dietary manipulation by applying Yucca schidigera extract & anhydrous calcium chloride to reduce aerial ammonia concentrations in nursery pig facilities revealed that addition of Y. schidigera extract or calcium chloride to diet of nursery pigs reduced ammonia concentrations in nursery rooms. Colina 2001

A study to determine whether feeding activated charcoal, Yucca schidigera, & zinc acetate would ameliorate the frequency & odor characteristics of flatulence in dogs showed that these agents reduce malodor of flatus by altering the production of hydrogen sulfide in the large intestine. Giffard 2001

A study on the effect of Yucca schidigera on ruminal fermentation and nutrient digestion in heifers revealed a reduced ammonia concentration and Protozoal numbers in the rumen. Hristov 1999

[Effects of Yucca schdigera extract, Saccharomyces boulardii and enzyme supplementation of wheat-based diets on broiler performance and diet metabolisability.] Preston 1999

A study on the effects of Yucca shidigera extract and soluble protein on performance of cows and concentrations of urea nitrogen in plasma and milk revealed that Y. shidigera extract did not affect percentages or yields of milk components, ruminal NH3 N, or urea N in milk or plasma. Wilson 1998

A study on the effect of Yucca schidigera extract (YSE) on canine & feline fecal volatiles showed that several chemical compound classes present in fecal volatiles and their quantitation in cat indicated significant changes in the concentrations of several compounds after YSE treatment. Lowe 1997

A human panel which monitored effect of Yucca schidigera extract on canine & feline fecal aroma observed that addition of Yucca schidigera extract (YSE) products to canine or feline diets improved the character & reduced the intensity of fecal aroma. YSE treatment also increased Blood urea level. Lowe 1997a

A 6-wk study was conducted to determine the effect of feeding diets containing an antibiotic, a probiotic, or yucca extract on daily gain, feed conversion ratio and urease activity and ammonia production in intestinal contents of broiler chicks was inconclusive. Yeo 1997

Studies conducted to determine the influence of yucca extract on ruminal digestion, fermentation, and ammonia patterns using ruminally and duodenally cannulated dairy cows revealed that Yucca extract did not affect ruminal digestibilities of OM and ADF, and ruminal NH3, pH, or VFA. Wu 1994

A study on the effects of carbadox, copper, or Yucca shidigera extract on growth performance and visceral weight of young pigs revealed no differences. Yen 1993

Yucca saponin fed in a concentration of 63 ppm to turkey poults at 6 to 14 weeks of age did not significantly improve weight gains, feed conversion, or digestive coefficients. Dziuk 1985

Pharmacodynamics
A study on comparative anti-platelet and antioxidant properties of polyphenol-rich extracts from berries of Aronia melanocarpa, seeds of grape, & bark of Yucca schidigera in vitro revealed that all these extracts reduced platelet adhesion, aggregation in blood platelets. Olas 2008

A study on effects of phenolic constituents from Yucca schidigera bark on Kaposi's sarcoma cell proliferation, migration & PAF synthesis revealed that anti-inflammatory properties of Yucca schidigera are due to resveratrol & Yuccaols & provide evidence for anti-tumor & anti-invasive action. Balestrieri 2006

A study on the effect of 12 Plant extracts including Yucca on in vitro rumen microbial fermentation by incubating for 24 h in diluted ruminal fluid revealed that including Yucca 6 extracts had no effect on rumen microbial fermentation. Busquet 2006

A study on the effects of 6 plant extracts including Yucca at different pH on in vitro rumen microbial fermentation in beef cattle revealed that at pH 7.0 Yucca decreased ammonia N concentration; at pH 5.5 it increased total VFA concentration & decreased the ratio of acetate:propionate. Cardozo 2005

Insect growth regulatory effects of some extracts & sterols from aerial parts of Myrtillocactus Geometrizans & methanol extracts of Cedrela salvadorensis and Yucca periculosa were tested against the pests Spodoptera frugiperda & Tenebrio molitor and their insecticidal effects were confirmed. Céspedes 2005

Antifungal activity of steroidal glycosides yuccaloeside B and yuccaloeside C from Yucca gloriosa was investigated in vitro against a panel of human pathogenic fungi, yeasts as well as dermatophytes and filamentous species and their antifungal action was confirmed. Favel 2005

The phenolic compounds of Yucca schidigera namely trans-3,4',5-trihydroxystilbene (trans-resveratrol), trans-3,3',5,5'-tetrahydroxy-4'-methoxystilbene, and yuccaols A and C caused inhibition of blood platelet adhesion and secretion. Olas 2005

A study on the effects of natural plant extracts garlic, cinnamon, yucca, anise, oregano, or pepper on ruminal protein degradation and fermentation profiles in continuous culture showed modified ruminal fermentation. Cardozo 2004

Insect growth inhibition seen with tocotrienols and hydroquinones from Roldana barba-johannis are comparable in activity to those known natural insect growth inhibitors such as gedunin and methanol extracts of Cedrela salvadorensis and Yucca periculosa. Céspedes 2004

A study to examine whether yuccaol A, B or C could affect cytosolic inducible nitric oxide synthase protein expression and nitric oxide (NO) generation in vitro revealed that Yuccaol C when added to the culture medium 1h before lipo-polysaccharide-stimulation can reduce NO release. Marzocco 2004

Phenolic constituents isolated from Yucca schidigera bark with unusual spirostructures, named yuccaols D and E exhibited antioxidant activity in Trolox Equivalent Antioxidant Capacity (TEAC) assay and the coupled oxidation of beta-carotene and linoleic acid (autoxidation) assay. Piacente 2004

Resveratrol and other phenolic compounds from the bark of Yucca schidigera inhibited free radical generation in blood platelets which may be beneficial in protecting against cardiovascular diseases when hyperactivity of platelets is observed. Olas 2003

The methanol extract from the bark of Yucca periculosa afforded 4,4'-dihydroxstilbene, resveratrol and 3,3',5,5'-tetrahydroxy-4-methoxystilbene which had growth regulatory activity against the Fall Army worm and these compounds also demonstrated scavenging properties. Torres 2003

Comparison of the inhibitory effects of different phenolic compounds from Yucca schidigera in thrombin-induced platelet aggregation revealed that phenolics showed stronger antiplatelet actions than resveratrol. These compounds also inhibited thrombin-induced enzymatic platelet lipid peroxidation. Marsch-Martinez 2002

Comparison of total antioxidant content of 30 widely used medicinal plants of New Mexico revealed that antioxidant content of the aqueous extract of Yucca sp. plant root is only 27 micromol/g where that of Ilex paraguensis Mate leaf is 972 micromol Trolox equivalent per gram dry weight. VanderJagt 2002

The use of Yucca schidigera on giardiosis was studied in vitro, in an adherence inhibition assay & in vivo, on trophozoites(intestinal) or cysts(fecal) in infected gerbils and lambs receiving oral doses of whole or butanol-extracted yucca powder. There were effects on trophozoites but not on cysts. McAllister 2001

The study on effect of herbal drugs on Leishmania Spp. found ethanolic extract of Yucca filamentosa showed strongest leishmanicidal activity (100% inhibition at 5 microg/ml). The bioactivity-guided fractionation led to isolation of 3 components (Yuccasaponins MC 1--3). Plock 2001

A saponin fraction from Yucca schidigera exhibited growth-inhibitory activities against certain food-deteriorating yeasts, film-forming yeasts & dermatophytic yeasts & fungi. From this fraction, many new anti-yeast monodesmosidic spirostanol saponins were isolated & their structures elucidated. Miyakoshi 2000

Effect of steroidal saponin (SAP) from Yucca schidigera extract on ruminal bacteria and fungi were investigated in pure culture studies finding that the ruminal bacteria differed in their responses to SAP. Wang 2000

A study on the effect of Quillaja saponaria saponins and Yucca schidigera plant extract on growth of Escherichia coli showed that these compounds have the potential to modulate microbial growth in natural and artificial fermenters. Sen 1998

[Application of saponins in foods and cosmetics: saponins of Mohave yucca and Sapindus mukurossi.] Tanaka 1996

A study on the influence of Yucca shidigera extract on ruminal ammonia concentrations and ruminal microorganisms revealed that it is unlikely for Y. shidigera extract to influence ammonia concentration in the rumen directly, but its saponins have antiprotozal properties. Wallace 1994

Yucca leaf protein (YLP) n inhibitor of tobacco mosaic virus isolated from the leaves of Yucca recurvifolia Salisb. stops the protein synthesis in herpes simplex virus-infected cells and inhibits HSV-1 virus replication as well as HSV-2 and human cytomegalovirus. Hayashi 1992

An aquo-alcoholic extract of flowers of Yucca glauca showed antitumor activity against B16 melanoma in mice. Systematic fractionation led to separation of two galactose containing polysaccharides with activity against B16 melanoma in mice but not against L1210 or P388 leukemias. Ali 1976

Analytical Chemistry
An analysis of methanol extract of Yucca gloriosa revealed the presence of 5 phenolic derivatives - Gloriosaols A-E and these compounds exhibited strong antioxidant activity as measured by the TEAC assay. Bassarello 2007

A new steroidal saponin, yuccalan, from leaves of Yucca smalliana was isolated by a bioassay linked fractionation method & its structure elucidated by spectroscopic techniques, including IR, MS, 1D & 2D 1H-NMR, & 13C-NMR. It showed antifungal activities against Rhizoctonia & Fusarium. Jin 2007

Nutrient & antinutritional/toxic factors present in edible flowers consumed in Mexico- Agave salmiana, Aloe vera, Arbutus xalapensis, Cucurbita pepo, Erythrina americana, Ery.caribaea, Euphorbia radians & Yucca filifera were determined. Saponins were present in A. salmiana and Y. filifera. Sotelo 2007

Investigation of spectrophotometrically determined substances in Yucca extract by GC/MS, TLC and on-column injection GC revealed that the total amount of sapogenin estimated by GC was approximately 2% - similar to that measured by spectrophotometry. Uematsu 2004

Eight steroidal saponins have been isolated from Yucca schidigera Roezl. trunk, and their structures were established by spectral (MS and NMR) techniques. These included three novel furostanol glycosides and five known spirostanol glycosides. Oleszek 2001

Five phenolic constituents were identified in Yucca schidigera bark, & their structures were established by spectral(FABMS & NMR)experiments. These include 2 known stilbenes, resveratrol and trans-3,3',5,5'-tetrahydroxy-4'-methoxystilbene, as well as 3 novel compounds, yuccaols A, B, & C. Oleszek 2001a

Structure elucidation of a new gitogenin-based steroidal saponin that has a strong leishmanicidal activity similar to preparations used in clinical practice was isolated by bioactivity-guided fractionation of the ethanolic extract of Yucca filamentosa L. leaves. Plock 2001

A spectrophotometric method was developed for the determination of saponin in Yucca extract or its preparation for food additive use. A saponin fraction of Yucca extract was prepared by column chromatography which was converted into a sapogenin and measured at 430 nm absorbance. Uematsu 2000

From ethanolic extract of influorescence of Yucca aloifolia a new spirostanol glycoside has been isolated & characterized. Kishor 1992

Eight new steroidal glycosides, tentatively named YS-VI, -VII, -VIII, -IX, -X, -XI, -XII and -XIII were isolated from the caudex of Yucca gloriosa along with P-1, YG-2 and YG-3 previously obtained from flowers. The structures of five of these compounds were elucidated. Nakano 1991

[High-pressure liquid chromatographic separation of steroidal sapogenins isolated from Yucca aloifolia L.] Sener 1987

[Structure of steroid glycosides from the roots of Yucca filamentosa L.] [Article in Russian] Lazur’evskii 1975

[Sterols of Yucca glauca tissue cultures and seeds.] Stohs 1975

[Sapogenins of Yucca glauca tissue cultures.] Stohs 1974

[A phytochemical investigation of Yucca schottii (Liliaceae).] Backer 1972

[The steroid sapogenin constituents of Agave americana, A. variegata and Yucca gloriosa.] Dewidar 1970

[An evaluation of Yucca mohavensis as a source of food grade saponin.] Oser 1966

[Effects of enzymes on Yucca glauca Nutt. and other steroid-yielding monocotyledons.] Blunden 1965

[A histochemical and ultrastructural study of yucca seed proteins.] Horner 1965

[Aloifoline, a new oncolytic antibiotic isolated from Yucca aloifolia.] Sokoloff 1964

[On The Sterol Sapogenins In The Stalks And Leaves (Fresh And Fermented) Of Yucca Guatemalensis Baker.] [Article in French] Panouse 1963

[Studies on the yucca species and its steroid sapogenin content. 1. Steroid sapogenin of Yucca aloefolia l.] [Article in German] Tomowa 1963

[Extraordinary abundance of ascorbic acid in plant leaves from Guiana (cassava, yucca, agave).] [Article in French] Floch 1957

[Steroidal sapogenins. XXXVII. Association of sapogenins and unsaturated sterols in Agave, Dioscorea, and Yucca.] Williaman 1956

[Studies on the steroidal components of domestic plants. IV. Constituents of Yucca species. (1). ] Takeda 1954

 

Genetics & Molecular Biology
A study on the phylogeny of yuccas revealed limited monophyly of traditional taxa, suggesting rapid recent diversification, introgression, or non-monophyletically circumscribed taxa. Pellmyr 2007

 

It is suggested that floral scent plays a key role in obligate pollination. Strong conservation of floral scent composition in two allopatric yuccas mutualism between yuccas and yucca moths has been case for several million years. Svensson 2006

 

The phenolics from the bark of Yucca Schidigera: Yuccaols A, B, & C, trans-resveratrol and trans - 3.3',5.5'-tetrahydroxy -4'-methoxystilbene were tested by Ames method with Salmonella typhimurium strains TA97, TA98, TA100, TA102 & found to be non-toxic and non-mutagenic. Czeczot 2003

 

A study on the origin of a complex key innovation in an obligate insect-plant mutualism between yuccas and yucca moths revealed that the tentacle evolved quickly through expression of the genetic template for the galea at an apical growth bud on the first segment of the maxillary palp. Pellmyr 2002

 

To establish the origin of yucca-yucca moth association, exhibiting forty million years of mutualism, a molecular clock for the moths based on mtDNA was proposed which indicates that colonization of yuccas had occurred by 41.5 +/- 9.8 million years ago. Pellmyr 1999

 

The antimutagenic activity of methanolic extract of Yucca schidigera against Trp-P-1 was demonstrated by Ames assay using Salmonella typhimurium TA98. The antimutagenic compound was identified to be 3,4',5-trihydroxystilbene. Uenobe 1997

 

Phylogenic evidence for reversal of an obligate mutualism is shown in which within the yucca moth complex, distinct cheater species derived from obligate pollinators inflict a heavy cost on their yucca hosts by laying their eggs but not pollinating the yucca. Pellmyr 1996

 

The association of species of yucca & their pollinating moths is considered one of 2 classic cases of obligate mutualism between floral hosts & their pollinators. It is shown that modern Yucca-yucca moth relationship was developed independently more than once by colonization of a new host. Bogler 1995

 

In complex mutualism between yuccas & moths that pollinate their flowers the truly coevolved features of the interaction appear to be the evolution of active pollination by the moths, the associated morphological structures in moths for carrying pollen, & exclusion of copollinators by yuccas. Pellmyr 1992

 

Microbodies containing bipyramidal crystalline nucleoid inclusions occur within every cortical cell in roots of Yucca torreyi. The functions of these unspecialized peroxisomes may be based upon cytochemical detection of their partial enzyme complement. Kausch 1984

 

A study on Opuntia phaeacantha and Yucca baccata revealed that Crassulacean acid metabolism predominates as the major carbon pathway of these plants, which do not facultatively utilize the reductive pentose phosphate cycle of photosynthesis as the primary carboxylation reaction. Szarek 1976

 

 

Cultivation, Conservation & Ecology
A study on pattern and timing of diversification in Yucca (Agavaceae) revealed that specialized pollination such as plant-moth pollination mutualism did not escalate rates of diversification. Smith 2008

 

Yucca6, a dominant mutation in Arabidopsis, affects auxin accumulation and auxin-related phenotypes as it is involved in a Trp-dependent auxin biosynthetic pathway and acts as a functional member of the YUCCA family with unique roles in growth and development. Kim 2007

 

Micropropagation of Yucca valida a source of steroidal saponins was done to generate isogenic or clonal lines. 17 such clonal lines propagated showed that variability found between plants derived from seeds were also manifested in these clonal lines but with less internal coefficient of variation. Arce-Montoya 2006

 

The interaction between scape-feeding bogus yucca moth, Prodoxus decipiens & one of its yucca hosts, Yucca filamentosa, by comparing female reproductive success of plants with & without moth larvae was studied and showed that P. decipiens influences nitrogen distribution in Y. filamentosa. Althoff 2004

 

To see how mutualisms function in community settings a model of pairwise interactions was used between plants & pollinating seed parasite insects (e.g.,yuccas & yucca moths) in the presence of flower-feeding insects (florivores) or insects that parasitize seeds but fail to pollinate (exploiters). Bronstein 2003

 

Additional to known highly coevolved pollination mutualism accompanied by reciprocal diversification seen among genera, Ficus (Moraceae) and Yucca (Agavaceae), a monoecious tree genus, Glochidion (Euphorbiaceae), was shown to exhbit mutualism with moth genus, Epicephala (Gracillariidae). Kato 2003

 

Effect of pollinator-inflicted ovule damage on floral abscission in the yucca-yucca moth mutualism was studied in Yucca filamentosa and it was observed that that physical damage to ovules caused by ovipositing is sufficient to explain selective fruit abscission. Marr 2003

 

Coevolved mutualisms between senita cacti, yuccas & their respective obligate pollinators, benefit both species involved in interaction. It is hypothesized that fruit abortion in yucca & senita could be the function of limiting pollinator abundance & increasing fruit production. Holland 2002

 

Phylogenetic studies have revealed that Tegeticula yuccasella is a complex of at least 13 distinct species, 8 of which are specific to 1 yucca species. Moths in closely related genus Prodoxus also specialize on yuccas but do not pollinate and their larvae feed on different plant parts. Althoff 2001

 

Yucca glauca is a C(3) evergreen rosette species locally common in the C(4)-dominated grasslands of the central Great Plains and Y. glauca's morphological similarities to desert species (steeply angled leaves, evergreen habit) may be critical to its success in grasslands. Maragni 2000

 

Pollen dispersal in obligate pollination mutualism between Yucca filamentosa and Tegeticula yuccasella was investigated raising question why moths often deposit self-pollen to the detriment of their offspring & comparison of yucca-yucca moth interaction with other obligate pollinator mutualisms. Marr 2000

 

A study revealed that Callose synthesis in spirostanol (saponin from Yucca) treated carrot cells is not triggered by cytosolic calcium, cytosolic pH or membrane potential changes. Messiaen 1995

 

High CO(2) concentrations, in excess of 2%, were observed during the day in a range of taxonomically separated plants (Opuntia., Agave., Yucca, Ananas, Aloe., Cattleya sp. and Phalanopsis sp.) and below ambient air concentrations were observed at night. Cockburn 1979

 

Cultivation information from the USDA Forest Services's National Seed Laboratory publication, Woody Plant Seed Manual

ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS FOR ORIGINAL RESEARCH BY: Dr.J.Mohanasundaram, MD, PhD. March 2008

 

 

ZINGIBER OFFICINALIS - GINGER ROOT

Zingiber officinalis (Ginger root, Sheng Jiang)

Actions and uses: stimulant, stomachic, anti-emetic, carminative, flatulent dyspepsia, rubefacient, diaphoretic; circulatory stimulant, stimulant to yang, dissolves phlegm, dyspepsia, colic, nausea, vomiting cold hands and feet, weak pulse, cough with profuse sputum. Travel sickness. Stimulant, carminative, anti-spasmodic, rubefacient, diaphoretic, emmenagogue.

Indications: Ginger may be used as a stimulant of the peripheral circulation in cases of bad circulation, chilblains and cramps. In feverish conditions, Ginger acts as a useful diaphoretic, promoting perspiration. As a gargle it may be effective in the relief of sore throats. Externally it is the base of many fibrositis and muscle sprain treatments. Ginger has been used world-wide as an aromatic carminative and pungent appetite stimulant. In India , and in other countries with hot and humid climates, ginger is eaten daily and is a well-known remedy for digestion problems. Its wide-spread use is not only be due to flavor, but to the anti-oxidant and anti-microbial effects, necessary for preservation of food, essential in such climates.

Temperature: pungent, warm;

Meridian : HE, LU, SP, ST, KI.

Part Used: The rootstock.

Constituents: The whole complex of primary plant constituents and a characteristic array of secondary plant constituents are present. Pharmacologically important constituents include: Volative oil, containing mainly zingiberene and bisabolene, pungent principles; a mixture of phenolic compounds. Actions: diaphoretic (for Wind and Cold), anti-emetic, expectorant; common cold with cough and thin, white phlegm; vomiting, diarrhoea, abdominal fullness; pungent, warm. Ginger in the diet lowers cholesterol levels and platelet aggregation. In the latter it is better than garlic.

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Bilberry - Diarrhea and wounds: Bilberry fruit contains high concentrations of tannins, substances that act as both an anti-inflammatory and an astringent. Antioxidants: This means that they scavenge damaging particles in the body known as free radicals and have been shown to help prevent a number of long-term illnesses such as heart disease, cancer-preventive, and an eye disorder called macular degeneration (a disease of the retina that can lead to blindness; Animal studies have found that anthocyanidins may strengthen blood vessels, improve circulation, and prevent the oxidation of LDL ("bad") cholesterol, a major risk factor for atherosclerosis (plaque in blood vessels that leads to blockage and, therefore, heart attack and stroke). Research in people is needed. Chronic fatigue syndrome. Ulcers: Studies in rats have found that anthocyanidins from bilberry fruits help prevent stomach ulcers caused by a variety of factors including stress, medications, and alcohol. Visual disturbances: Anthocyanidins found in bilberry fruits may also be useful for people with vision problems. Today, it is believed that anthocyanidins may help protect the retina, the nerve layer that lines the back of the eye and sends nerve impulses to the visual areas of the brain. Studies conducted in the 1960s, 70s, and 80s suggest that the anthocyanidins contained in bilberry fruit preparations improve symptoms of a variety of visual disturbances including nearsightedness, cataracts, and macular degeneration.

Guarana is well known for its stimulant action. Guarana is reputed to increase mental alertness and fight fatigue and also to increase stamina and physical endurance; it combats premature aging, detoxifies the blood and is useful for flatulence, obesity, dyspepsia, fatigue and for arteriosclerosis; it is used for cellulite due to its lipolytic and vasodilation action.

Suma root - Nutritionally, Suma root contains 19 different amino acids, a large number of electrolytes and trace minerals including iron, magnesium, cobalt, silica, zinc and the vitamins A, B-1, B-2, E, K, and pantothenic acid. The high content of germanium accounts for its properties as an oxygenator at the cellular level. The root of Suma is composed of up to 11% saponins. These saponins include a group of novel chemicals called pfaffosides as well as pfaffic acids, glycosides and nortriperpenes. These saponins have clinically demonstrated the ability to inhibit cultured tumour cell melanomas and help to regulate blood sugar levels. The pfaffosides and pfaffic acid derivatives in Suma have been patented as antitumour compounds in two Japanese patents.

Propolis - 16 amino acids present in Propolis at more than 1%. Of the total amino acids present, arginine and proline together made of 45.8%. A further 8 amino acids were present in traces. Propolis stimulates tissue regeneration is due to the presence of arginine because of its role in stimulating the production of nucleic acid. Around 14 mineral trace elements are found in Propolis, of which iron and zinc are the most common. Other minerals found include gold, silver, caesium, mercury, and lead. Propolis clears lead from the body by attracting it to itself. Organic compounds include ketones, lactones, quinones, steroids, benzoic acid and esters, vitamins and sugars.

Psyllium seed – soothing, gentle laxative action, used fo IBS, mucus colitis, chronic diarrhoea, detoxifier.

Rhubarb root - It has a truly cleansing action upon the gut, removing debris, mucus and parasites, and then astringing the gut contents with antiseptic properties.

Cat's claw - Some ingredients appear to act as anti-inflammatory, antioxidant and cancer-preventive agents. Cat's Claw is used to treat intestinal ailments such as Crohn's disease, gastric ulcers and tumors, parasites, colitis, gastritis, diverticulitis and leaky bowel syndrome, while manufacturers claim that U. tomentosa can also be used in the treatment of AIDS in combination with AZT, the treatment and prevention of arthritis and rheumatism, diabetes, PMS, chronic fatigue syndrome, prostate conditions, immune modulation, Lyme disease and systemic lupus erythematosus. A 2005 review of the scholarly literature on Cat's Claw indicates there is supporting evidence toward its use in preventing cancer, inflammation, viral infection and vascular conditions, and for its use as an immunostimulant, antioxidant, antibacterial and CNS-related agent.

Ginger root - A whole complex of primary plant constituents and a characteristic array of secondary plant constituents are present. Pharmacologically important constituents include: volative oil, containing mainly zingiberene and bisabolene, pungent principles; a mixture of phenolic compounds. Actions: diaphoretic (for Wind and Cold), anti-emetic, expectorant; common cold with cough and thin, white phlegm; digestive regulator, abdominal fullness; pungent, warm. Ginger in the diet lowers cholesterol levels and platelet aggregation. In the latter it is better than garlic.

Main article completed 17 February 2011, updated June 2017

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Prescriptions

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General advice to consumers on the use of herbal remedies from the Medicines Healthcare products Regulatory Agency

From the website of the Medicines Healthcare products Regulatory Agency (www.mhra.gov.uk) Department of Health, UK

• Remember that herbal remedies are medicines. As with any other medicine they are likely to have an effect on the body and should be used with care. • Herbal remedies may sometimes interact with other medicines. This makes it particularly important to tell your doctor or pharmacist if you are taking a herbal remedy with other medicines such as prescribed medicines (those provided through your doctor or dentist). • Treat with caution any suggestion that a herbal remedy is '100% safe' or is 'safe because it is natural'. Many plants, trees, fungi and algae can be poisonous to humans. It is worth remembering that many pharmaceuticals have been developed or derived from these sources because of the powerful compounds they contain. Any medicine, including herbal remedies, which have an effect on the body should be used with care. • Treat with caution any herbalist or other person who supplies herbal remedies if they are unwilling or unable to provide written information, in English, listing the ingredients of the herbal remedy they are providing. • If you are due to have a surgical operation you should always remember to tell your doctor about any herbal remedy that you are taking. • Anyone who has previously experienced any liver complaint, or any other serious health complaint is advised not to take any herbal remedy without speaking to their doctor first.

PRECAUTIONS:

Pregnant/Breast-feeding mothers

Few conventional medicines have been established as safe to take during pregnancy and it is generally recognised that no medicine should be taken unless the benefit to the mother outweighs any possible risk to the foetus. This rule should also be applied to herbal medicinal products. However, herbal products are often promoted to the public as being “natural” and completely “safe” alternatives to conventional medicines. Some herbal ingredients that specifically should be avoided or used with caution during pregnancy. As with conventional medicines, no herbal products should be taken during pregnancy unless the benefit outweighs the potential risk.

Volatile Oils

Many herbs are traditionally reputed to be abortifacient and for some this reputation can be attributed to their volatile oil component.(6) A number of volatile oils are irritant to the genito-urinary tract if ingested and may induce uterine contractions. Herbs that contain irritant volatile oils include ground ivy, juniper, parsley, pennyroyal, sage, tansy and yarrow. Some of these oils contain the terpenoid constituent, thujone, which is known to be abortifacient. Pennyroyal oil also contains the hepatotoxic terpenoid constituent, pulegone. A case of liver failure in a woman who ingested pennyroyal oil as an abortifacient has been documented.

Uteroactivity

A stimulant or spasmolytic action on uterine muscle has been documented for some herbal ingredients including blue cohosh, burdock, fenugreek, golden seal, hawthorn, jamaica dogwood, motherwort, nettle, raspberry, and vervain. Herbal Teas Increased awareness of the harmful effects associated with excessive tea and coffee consumption has prompted many individuals to switch to herbal teas. Whilst some herbal teas may offer pleasant alternatives to tea and coffee, some contain pharmacologically active herbal ingredients, which may have unpredictable effects depending on the quantity of tea consumed and strength of the brew. Some herbal teas contain laxative herbal ingredients such as senna, frangula, and cascara. In general stimulant laxative preparations are not recommended during pregnancy and the use of unstandardised laxative preparations is particularly unsuitable. A case of hepatotoxicity in a newborn baby has been documented in which the mother consumed a herbal tea during pregnancy as an expectorant. Following analysis the herbal tea was reported to contain pyrrolizidine alkaloids which are known to be hepatotoxic.

Breast-feeding mothers

A drug substance taken by a breast-feeding mother presents a hazard if it is transferred to the breast milk in pharmacologically or toxicologically significant amounts. Limited information is available regarding the safety of conventional medicines taken during breast-feeding. Much less information exists for herbal ingredients, and generally the use of herbal remedies is not recommended during lactation.

Paediatric Use

Herbal remedies have traditionally been used to treat both adults and children. Herbal remedies may offer a milder alternative to some conventional medicines, although the suitability of a herbal remedy needs to be considered with respect to quality, safety and efficacy. Herbal remedies should be used with caution in children and medical advice should be sought if in doubt. Chamomile is a popular remedy used to treat teething pains in babies. However, chamomile is known to contain allergenic sesquiterpene lactones and should therefore be used with caution. The administration of herbal teas to children needs to be considered carefully and professional advice may be needed.

Perioperative use

The need for patients to discontinue herbal medicinal products prior to surgery has recently been proposed. The authors considered eight commonly used herbal medicinal products (echinacea, ephedra, garlic, ginkgo, ginseng, kava, St John’s Wort, valerian). On the evidence available they concluded that the potential existed for direct pharmacological effects, pharmacodynamic interactions and pharmacokinetic interactions. The need for physicians to have a clear understanding of the herbal medicinal products being used by patients and to take a detailed history was highlighted. The American Society of Anaesthesiologists (ASA) has advised patients to tell their doctor if they are taking herbal products before surgery and has reported that a number of anaesthesiologists have reported significant changes in heart rate or blood pressure in some patients who have been taking herbal medicinal products including St John’s Wort, ginkgo and ginseng. MCA is currently investigating a serious adverse reaction associated with the use of ginkgo prior to surgery. In this case, the patient who was undergoing hip replacement experienced uncontrolled bleeding thought to be related to the use of ginkgo.

From the website of the Medicines Healthcare products Regulatory Agency (www.mhra.gov.uk) Department of Health, UK

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