Ferula assafoetida

Common Names Pakistan Anjadana Bangladesh Hing England Asafetida India Hing Croatia Asafetida India Hingu Finland Asafetida India Ingu Germany Asafetida India Inguva Guyana Asafetida Afghanistan Kama I anguza Iceland Asafetida Pakistan Kama I anguza Lithuania Asafetida India Kayam Netherlands Asafetida Laos Ma ha hing Poland Asafetida France Merde du diable Russia Asafetida Mozambique Mvuje Spain Asafetida Tanzania Mvuje Sweden Asafetida Zaire Mvuje United States Asafetida Hungary Ordoggyoker France Asafetide India Perungayam Estonia Asafootida India Perunkaya Germany Asafotida Sri Lanka Perunkayan Germany Asant Finland Pirunpaska France Assa Foetida Finland Pirunpihka Italy Assafetida India Raamathan China A-wei Iran Rechina fena Greece Aza Netherlands Sagapeen United States Devil’s dung Turkey Setan bokosu Iceland Djoflatao Turkey Seytan tersi Latvia Driveldrikis Myanmar Sheingho Netherlands Duivelsdrek Tibet Shing-kun Denmark Dyvelsdrak Germany Stinkasant Norway Dyvelsdrekk United States Stinking Read more […]

Herbs For Gastrointestinal Disorders

In herbal medicine, there is a recognized fundamental linkage between the gut and systemic health in conditions as widely ranging as asthma, atopy, autoimmune disease, and even arthritis. This is important, considering that the gut plays a significant role in immune function. Herbalists emphasize the health of the digestive system, bowel movements, and any symptoms related to gut function — even mild digestive disturbances such as burping, mild constipation, inconsistent stools, or excessive flatulence are always considered significant, even if not the reason for presentation for consultation. The herbs outlined below are useful in gastrointestinal health and disease management and are supported by traditional use or research. The lists are by no means complete, and there are differences in the potency of the actions of the individual herbs. However, by knowing the particulars of the patient, an herb might be chosen for its breadth of action when more than 1 system is involved or for a particularly strong action that is needed. Sometimes only a gentle stimulation, triggering an appropriate reflex response or dampening a response, may be all that’s needed to reach equilibrium again. The beauty and art of herbal Read more […]

Stress: Eleuthero

Eleuthero, a native of northeast Asia, is used in traditional Chinese medicine for general weakness and debility, lassitude, anorexia, insomnia, and dream-disturbed sleep. Its use as an adaptogen originated in the former Soviet Union, in the latter half of the twentieth century, when it was researched and promoted by scientists as a substitute for Panax ginseng, which was more expensive and less accessible. Pharmacologic studies have suggested that its effects are at least equal to, and perhaps superior to those of Panax ginseng. Until recently referred to as Siberian ginseng, the herb is now properly referred to as Eleuthero, because of recognition that although the plants are from the same family, their actions arise from very different chemical constituents. Eleuthero’s actions much like ginseng, are considered immunomodulating, stress reducing, performance and energy enhancing, anabolic, and adapto-genic, hence the original misnomer. The herb has demonstrated the ability to improve adrenal function, stress tolerance, enhance immune function and resistance to infection including influenza, and enhance selective memory.” The plant contains phenyl-propionates (e.g., syringin, caffeic acid, sinapyl alcohol, coniferyl Read more […]

Herb-Drug Interactions: Cat’s claw

Uncaria tomentosa DC, Uncaria guianensis J.F.Gmel. (Rubiaceae) Synonym(s) and related species Life-giving vine of Peru, Samento, Saventaro, Una de gato. Pharmacopoeias Cat’s Claw (US Ph 32); Powdered Cat’s Claw (US Ph 32); Powdered Cat’s Claw Extract (US Ph 32); Cat’s Claw Tablets (US Ph 32); Cat’s Claw Capsules (The United States Ph 32). Constituents The main constituents of both the closely related species of cat’s claw include the tetracyclic oxindole alkaloids, isorhynchophylline and rhynchophylline, and the indole alkaloids, dihydrocoryynantheine, hirsutine, and hirsuteine. Quinovic acid glycosides have also been isolated. Note that there are two chemotypes of Uncaria tomentosa, one primarily containing the tetracyclic oxindole alkaloids, isorhynochophylline and rhynchopylline, and one primarily containing the pentacychc oxindole alkaloids, (iso)pteropodine and (iso)mitraphylline. Use and indications Cat’s claw roots, bark and leaves have been used for gastric ulcers, arthritis, gonorrhoea, dysentry, herpes zoster, herpes simplex and HIV, and as a contraceptive. In various preclinical studies, antiviral, anti-inflammatory, antirheumatic, immunostimulating, antimutagenic, antitumour and hypotensive Read more […]

Garlic: Uses

Clinical Use Most studies have used a non-enteric coated dehydrated garlic powder preparation standardised to 1.3% alliin content (Kwai, Lichtwer Pharma) or an aged garlic extract (Kyolic, Wakunaga of America). CARDIOVASCULAR DISEASE Epidemiologic studies show an inverse correlation between garlic consumption and progression of CVD in general. This review will consider the evidence for garlic in the management of specific risk factors such as hypertension and hyperlipidaemia. Additionally, investigation into the effects of garlic directly on the atherosclerotic and arteriosclerotic processes is presented. Hypertension A meta-analysis of seven clinical trials using a garlic preparation, produced commercially as Kwai, found that three showed a significant reduction in SBP and four in DBP. Kwai was used in these studies in the dosage of 600-900 mg daily. Garlic treatment resulted in a mean reduction in SBP of 7.7 mmHg and 5.0 mmHg in DBP compared with placebo. In 2000, the Agency for Health Care Research and Quality analysed results from 27 randomised, placebo-controlled trials and reported that results were mixed. When significant reductions in blood pressure were observed, these were small. Several newer Read more […]

Ginger: Practice Points – Patient Counselling. FAQ

Pregnancy Use Although Commission E suggests that ginger is contraindicated in pregnancy, more recent research suggests that ginger is not contraindicated in pregnancy — doses up to 2 g/day of dried ginger root have been used safely. No adverse effects on pregnancy were observed in multiple studies of ginger or nausea and vomiting. Practice Points / Patient Counselling • Ginger is most often used for its anti-emetic, anti-inflammatory and gastrointestinal effects. • There is clinical support for the use of ginger in the treatment of nausea and vomiting associated with motion sickness, the postoperative period, pregnancy and chemotherapy. • Ginger is traditionally used for gastrointestinal disorders including dyspepsia, poor appetite, flatulence, colic, vomiting, diarrhea and spasms, as well as a diaphoretic in the treatment of the common cold and influenza. • Ginger is also used as an anti-inflammatory agent for arthritis, although large controlled studies have yet to produce strong support for this use. • Although antiplatelet effects have been reported, this requires very large doses and is not likely to be significant in normal therapeutic doses or dietary intake levels. Answers to Read more […]

Ginger: Dosage. Interactions. Contraindications.

Dosage Range The recommended dose ranges widely from 500 mg to 9 g/day dried root or equivalent; however, as there are wide variations in the gingerol concentrations in commercial ginger supplements the effective dosage will depend on the preparation and the indication for use. • Liquid extract (1:2): 0.7-2.0 mL/day. • Dried root: 1-3 g daily in divided doses or 1-2 g taken as a single dose for nausea and vomiting. • Infusion: 4-6 slices of fresh ginger steeped in boiling water for 30 minutes. Adverse Reactions Gastric irritation, heartburn and bloating have been reported in clinical trials. Contact dermatitis of the fingertips has also been reported with topical use. Significant Interactions Controlled studies are not available for many interactions; therefore they are based on evidence of activity and are largely theoretical and speculative. WARFARIN Due to the herb’s antiplatelet effects there is a theoretical risk of increased bleeding at high doses (> 10 g) although this is not evident clinically. There is no evidence of an interaction with warfarin at the usual dietary and therapeutic intakes, and ginger has been shown not to alter prothrombin times in pooled human plasma collected from Read more […]

Guarana: Adverse Reactions. Interactions. Pregnancy Use. Practice Points

Toxicity Animal tests have shown that high doses of 1000-2000 mg/kg (intraperitoneal and oral) do not induce significant alterations in parameters for toxicological screening, suggesting an absence of toxicity. Adverse Reactions Due to a lack of clinical studies testing guarana as a stand-alone treatment, it is difficult to determine what adverse reactions may exist. Based on caffeine content, the following adverse effects may theoretically occur at high doses: agitation, tremor, anxiety, restlessness, headache, seizures, tachycardia and premature ventricular contractions, diarrhea, gastrointestinal cramping, nausea and vomiting and diuresis. Significant Interactions Controlled studies are not available, therefore interactions are theoretical and based on evidence of pharmacological activity with uncertain clinical significance. CNS STIMULANTS Additive stimulant activity is theoretically possible — use with caution. CNS SEDATIVES Antagonistic effects are theoretically possible due to the herb’s CNS stimulant activity. However, one in vivo study found no interaction with pentobarbital. Observe patients taking this combination. DIURETICS Additive diuresis effects are theoretically possible — use this Read more […]

Noni: Clinical Use. Dosage

Noni has been reported to have benefits for people suffering from arthritis, diabetes, high blood pressure, muscle aches and pains, menstrual difficulties, headache, heart disease, atherosclerosis, AIDS, cancers, gastric ulcers, poor digestion, depression, senility and drug addiction. Noni has not been significantly investigated under clinical trial conditions, so evidence for its use is derived from traditional, in vitro and animal studies. ANTICANCER There are anecdotal reports of noni being used as an adjuvant immunotherapy for cancer; however, further research is required to determine its role in clinical practice. HEARING AND MENTAL HEALTH A small placebo-controlled pilot study involving nine hearing impaired osteopenic or osteoporotic women found that ingestion of approximately 50 mL of noni juice over 3 months resulted in improved mental health and a mild protective effect on hearing. Further studies are required to determine the clinical significance of these findings. Noni: Other Uses Noni fruit has been used as a food source. Noni: Dosage Range • There is little human research upon which to make dosage recommendations. • Juice 25 mL (1 oz.) twice daily. Read more […]

Turmeric: Clinical Use. Dosage

In practice turmeric and the various curcuminoidsare used in many forms and administered via various routes. This review will focus mostly on those methods of use that are commonly used and preparations that are available OTC, such as oral dose forms and topical applications. CANCER Epidemiological data suggest that curcumin reduces the rate of colorectal cancer and curcumin has wide-ranging chemopreventive activity in preclinical carcinogenic models, most notably for gastrointestinal cancers. To date, however, there are no controlled trials to attest to turmeric’s efficacy in cancer treatment or prevention. In a phase 1 study, curcumin taken orally for 3 months at a starting dose of 500 mg/day was found to produce histologic improvement in cases of bladder cancer, oral leucoplakia, intestinal metaplasia of the stomach, cervical intraepithelial neoplasm and Bowen’s disease. An ethanol extract of turmeric, as well as an ointment of curcumin, were found to produce remarkable symptomatic relief in patients with external cancerous lesions and there are clinical reports to suggest that curcumin could be safe and effective in the treatment of idiopathic inflammatory orbital pseudotumours. DYSPEPSIA/PEPTIC ULCERS A Read more […]