Serenoa repens

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Gottleib, R. (2006). Saw Palmetto. Retrieved from: http://www.artmajeur.com/en/artist/raphaelg/collection/architectural-and-biological-illustrations/1086633/artwork/saw-palmetto/1212021

Botanical Name: Serenoa repens
Common name: Saw Palmetto
Family: Arecaceae (Hoffmann, 2010, p. 583)
Parts used: Fruit (berry) (Hoffmann, 2010, p. 583)

 

History/Folklore: Traditionally associated with treatment of the prostate gland (Bone & Mills, 2013, p. 804). Other traditional use includes conditions of the respiratory tract, notably when accompanied by catarrh (Bone & Mills, 2013, p. 804). The Eclectics administered the herb for upper and lower respiratory complaints; atrophy of reproductive organs; and benign prostatic hypertrophy (Bone & Mills, 2013, p. 804).

 

Constituents:

  • Essential oil
  • Fixed oil (caproic, lauric and palmitic acid)
  • Sterols
  • Polysaccharides

(Hoffmann, 2010, p. 583)

 

Actions

  • Diuretic (Hoffmann, 2010, p. 583)
  • Urinary antiseptic (Hoffmann, 2010, p. 583)
  • Endocrine agent (Hoffmann, 2010, p. 583)
  • Anti-inflammatory (Bone & Mills, 2013, p. 804; Bone, 2010, p. 400)
  • Male tonic (Bone, 2010, p. 400)
  • Spasmolytic (Bone, 2010, p. 400)
  • Antiandrogenic (Bone, 2010, p. 400; Bone & Mills, 2013, p. 804)

 

Indications

  • Symptoms of benign prostatic hyperplasia (Hoffmann, 2010, p. 583)

Appears to inhinit dihydrotestosterone (DHT) (potentially responsible for multiplication of prostate cells) by blocking activity of enzyme 5-α-reductase (Hoffmann, 2010, p. 583)

  • Difficulties with urination (Hoffmann, 2010, p. 583)
  • Inflammation of genitourinary tract (Bone, 2010, p. 400)
  • Cystitis (Bone, 2010, p. 400)
  • Atrophy of sexual tissues (Bone, 2010, p. 400)
  • Sex hormone deficiency (Bone, 2010, p. 400)
  • Noninfectious prostatitis (Bone, 2010, p. 400)
  • Odema (Bone & Mills, 2013, p. 804)
  • Male pattern baldness (topical) (Bone & Mills, 2013, p. 804)

 

Preparation: Dried berry decoction, tablets, capsules or liquid extract (Bone & Mills, 2013, p. 804)

 

Dosage:

  • 0-4.5mL liquid extract (1:2)/day
  • 15-15mL liquid extract (1:2)/week (Bone, 2010, p. 400)

 

Cautions and Contraindications: None known (Bone, 2010, p. 400)

Capsella bursa-pastoris

Capsella_bursa-pastoris_Sturm23

Sturm, J. (1796). Deutschlands Flora in Abbildungen. Retrieved from: http://www.biolib.de

Botanical Name: Capsella bursa-pastoris
Common name: Shepherd’s Purse (Hoffmann, 2003, p. 535)
Family: Brassicaceae (Natural Standard, 2014)
Parts used: Ariel Parts (Hoffmann, 2003, p. 535)

 

Active Constituents:

  • Flavonoids: luteolin-7-rutinoside & quercetin-3-rutinoside
  • Plant acids: fumaric & bursic acids

(Hoffmann, 2003, p. 535)

 

Actions

  • Astringent (Hoffmann, 2003, p. 535)
  • Diuretic (Hoffmann, 2003, p. 535)
  • Anti-inflammatory (Hoffmann, 2003, p. 535)

 

Indications

  • To alleviate water retention in kidney disorders (Hoffmann, 2003, p. 535)
  • Diarrhoea (Hoffmann, 2003, p. 535)
  • Dysentery
  • Nose bleeds (Hoffmann, 2003, p. 535)
  • Wounds (Hoffmann, 2003, p. 535)
  • Passive hemorrhage (gastric and intestinal) (Hoffmann, 2003, p. 535)
  • Hematuria (Hoffmann, 2003, p. 535)
  • Chronic menorrhagia (Hoffmann, 2003, p. 535)
    • Stimulate menstruation (Hoffmann, 2003, p. 535)
    • Reducing excess menstrual flow (Hoffmann, 2003, p. 535)
  • “Dysfunctional uterine bleeding” (Bone & Mills, 2013, p. 295)
  • Atonic dyspepsia
  • Bruised or strained muscles (topical) (Hoffmann, 2003, p. 535)
  • Rheumatic joints (topical) (Hoffmann, 2003, p. 535)
  • Threatened miscarriage (Bone & Mills, 2013, p. 301)

 

Preparation & Dosage:

  • 1-4g dried herb/tds
  • 1-4mL liquid extract (1:1 in 25%)/tds

(Hoffmann, 2003, p. 535)

 

Cautions & Contraindications:

  • Should be avoided in kidney stones due to oxalic acid content (Hoffmann, 2003, p. 535)
  • Caution to be taken in pregnancy due to potential emmenagogue action and effect on uterine tone (Natural Standard, 2014)

Rubus idaeus

799px-Rubus_idaeus_Sturm08014

Sturm, J. (1796). Deutschlands Flora in Abbildungen. Retrieved from: http://www.biolib.de

Botanical Name: Rubus idaeus
Common name: Red Raspberry (Hoffmann, 2003, p. 578)
Family: Rosaceae (Hoffmann, 2003, p. 578)
Parts used: leaf, fruit (Hoffmann, 2003, p. 578)

 

History/Folklore: While the fruit have been eaten as a fruit, raspberry leaves have been used traditionally to prepare the uterus for childbirth (Braun & Cohen, 2010, p. 782).

 

Constituents:

  • Flavonoids: glycosides of kaempferol and quercetin
  • Tannins
  • Fruit sugar
  • Volatile oil
  • Pectin
  • Citric acid
  • Malic acid

(Hoffmann, 2003, p. 578)

 

Actions

  • Astringent (Hoffmann, 2003, p. 578; Bone, 2003, p. 381; Braun & Cohen, 2010, p. 783)
  • Tonic (Hoffmann, 2003, p. 578)
  • Anti-inflammatory (Braun & Cohen, 2010, p. 783)
  • Partus preparatory (Braun & Cohen, 2010, p. 783; Bone, 2003, p. 381; Hoffmann, 2003, p. 578)

 

Indications

  • Pregnancy
    • Strengthen and tones tissue of the uterus (Hoffmann, 2003, p. 578)
    • Strengthens contractions (Hoffmann, 2003, p. 578)
  • Abnormal bleeding of uterus, stomach or intestine (Bone, 2003, p. 381)
  • Leukorrhea (Hoffmann, 2003, p. 578)
  • Ulcers (Hoffmann, 2003, p. 578)
  • Bleeding gums (Hoffmann, 2003, p. 578)
  • Tonsillitis (Topical) (Bone, 2003, p. 381)
  • Conjunctivitis (Bone, 2003, p. 381)
  • Dysmenorrhea (Bone, 2003, p. 381)
  • Diarrhoea (Braun & Cohen, 2010, p. 783)

 

Dosage:

  • 5-14mL liquid extract (1:2)/day
  • 30-100mL liquid extract (1:2)/week

(Bone, 2003, p. 381)

 

Preparation

  • Gargle for sore throat (Hoffmann, 2003, p. 578)
  • Infusion: 4-8g dried leaf/tds (Braun & Cohen, 2010, p. 784)


Cautions

  • May cause gastrointestinal discomfort due to tannin content (Braun & Cohen, 2010, p. 784)
  • Clinical studies suggest that the herb is safest when consumed after the first trimester (Braun & Cohen, 2010, p. 784)

 

Contraindications

  • Constipation
  • Peptic ulcer
  • Gastrointestinal conditions associated with inflammation

(Braun & Cohen, 2010, p. 784)

 

Interactions: May decrease absorption of iron, magnesium and calcium (Braun & Cohen, 2010, p. 784)

Alchemilla vulgaris

sy4662

Plymley, K. (n.d.). Darwin Country. Retrieved from: http://www.darwincountry.org/explore/002939.html?ImageID=1334&Page=42&sid=

Botanical Name: Alchemilla vulgaris
Common name: Lady’s Mantle
Family: Rosaceae (Hoffmann, 2003, p. 525)
Parts used: Leaf and flowering shoots (Hoffmann, 2003, p. 525)
 

Constituents: Tannins (mainly glycosides of ellagric acid) and salicycle acid (Hoffmann, 2003, p. 525)

 

Actions

  • Astringent (Hoffmann, 2003, p. 525)
  • Diuretic (Hoffmann, 2003, p. 525)
  • Anti-inflammatory (Hoffmann, 2003, p. 525)
  • Emmenagogue (Hoffmann, 2003, p. 525)
  • Vunerary (Hoffmann, 2003, p. 525)

 

Indications

  • Menstrual pain (Hoffmann, 2003, p. 525)
  • Excessive bleeding (Hoffmann, 2003, p. 525)
  • Symptoms of menopause (Hoffmann, 2003, p. 525; Bone & Mills, 2013, p. 300)
  • Menorrhagia (Hoffmann, 2003, p. 525)
  • Metrorrhagia (Hoffmann, 2003, p. 525)
  • Diarrhoea (Hoffmann, 2003, p. 525)
  • Ulcers and sores of oral cavity (Hoffmann, 2003, p. 525; Bone & Mills, 2013, p. 141)
  • Laryngitis (Hoffmann, 2003, p. 525)

 

Dosage & Preparation:

  • Tincture (1:4 in 25%): 2-4mL/tds (Hoffmann, 2003, p. 525)
  • Infusion: 2tsp/1 cup water/tds (Hoffmann, 2003, p. 525)
  • Prepared as a mouthwash for laryngitis and mouth ulcers (Hoffmann, 2003, p. 525)

 

Cautions: Not recommended in constipation, iron-deficent anaemia and malnutrition due to tannin content (Bone & Mills, 2013, p. 191)

Angelica polymorpha/Angelica sinensis

97612523

Panoramio. (n.d.). Angelica polymorpha(Wildflower) @ Fukushima Japan. Retrieved from: http://www.panoramio.com/photo/97612523

Botanical Name: Angelica polymorpha/Angelica sinensis
Common name: Dong Quai, dan giu (Chinese) (Bone & Mills, 2013, p. 517)
Family: Umbelliferae (Bone & Mills, 2013, p. 518)
Parts used: root (Bone, 2003, p. 182)

Quality: warm, pungent, sweet (Pole, 2006, p. 768)

History/Folklore: Dong quai has a long history of use as a female tonic, and is ofter referred to as ‘the woman’s ginseng’ (Bone & Mills, 2013, p. 517).

Constituents: Essential oil (mainly phthalides ligustilide and n-butylindenephthalide); phytosterols; ferulic aicd; coumarins (incl. angelol and angelicone) (Bone & Mills, 2013, p. 518).

Actions

  • Anti-inflammatory (Bone & Mills, 2013, p. 517; Pole, 2006, p. 768)
  • Anti-anemic (Bone, 2003, p. 182; Bone & Mills, 2013, p. 517)
  • Anti-platelet (Bone & Mills, 2013, p. 517; Pole, 2006, p. 768)
  • Female tonic (Bone, 2003, p. 182)
  • Mild laxative (Bone & Mills, 2013, p. 517; Pole, 2006, p. 768)
  • Anti-arrhythmic (Bone & Mills, 2013, p. 517)
  • Immune-stimulant (Pole, 2006, p. 768)
  • Anti-spasmodic (Pole, 2006, p. 768)
  • Antibiotic (Pole, 2006, p. 768)
  • Analgesic (Pole, 2006, p. 768)
  • Hepatoprotective (Pole, 2006, p. 768)
  • Mild sedative (Pole, 2006, p. 768)

TCM specific: Tonifies and moves blood, drains wind-dampness, moistens dryness and unblocks bowles (Pole, 2006, p. 768)

 

Indications

  • Dysmenorrhoea (Bone, 2003, p. 182)
  • Irregular menstruation (Bone, 2003, p. 182)
  • Amenorrhoea (Bone, 2003, p. 182)
  • Chronic hepatitis (Bone, 2003, p. 182)
  • Chronic cirrhosis (Bone, 2003, p. 182)
  • Constipation (Bone, 2003, p. 182)
  • Abdominal Pain (Bone, 2003, p. 182)
  • Swelling (Bone, 2003, p. 182)
  • Bruising (Bone, 2003, p. 182)
  • Infertility (Bone, 2003, p. 182)

TCM specific

  • Blood deficiency (Bone & Mills, 2013, p. 517)
  • Congealed blood (Bone & Mills, 2013, p. 517)

 

Dosage & Preparation:

  • Liquid extract (1:2): 4.8-8.5mL/day or 30-60mL/week (Bone, 2003, p. 182)
  • Decoction: 3-15g/day dried root (Bone & Mills, 2013, p. 517)
  • Tincture (1:5): 10-15mL/day (Bone & Mills, 2013, p. 517)

 

Cautions: There has been a report of a man developing gynaecomastia after ingestion of Don Quai capsuals for 1 months (Bone & Mills, 2013, p. 522)

 

Contraindications

TCM specific:

  • Diarrhoea caused by weak digestion
  • Haemorrhagic disease
  • Heavy periods or bleeding tendency
  • Tendency to spontaneous abortion
  • Acute viral infections (Bone, 2003, p. 182)
  • Pregnancy (Bone, 2003, p. 182)

 

Combinations: For dysmenorrhoea combine with Corydalis, white peony and Ligusticum (Bone, 2003, p. 182)

Interactions: Warfarin (Bone, 2003, p. 182)

Asparagus racemosa

Asparagus racemosus-1

Prasad, S. R. (n.d.). ASPARAGUS (Shatavari) as Multi target Drug in Women. Retrieved from: http://technoayurveda.com/Shatavari.html

Botanical Name: Asparagus racemosa
Common name: Shatavari, Wild Asparagus, Satavar (Hindi), Satavari (Sanskrit) (Pole, 2006, p. 217)
Family: Liliaceae (Pole, 2006, p. 217)
Parts used: Root (Bone, 2003, p. 409)
Quality: Bitter, sweet, cooling (Pole, 2006, p. 217)

History: Shatavari is regarded in Ayurvedic medicine as part of the rasayana group, which translates to the path that primordial tissue takes (Bone, 2003, p. 410). Australian aboriginals used shatavari topically in a wash for scabies, ulceration and chicken pox (Bone, 2003, p. 410).

Constituents: Steroidal saponins (incl. shatavarin I); alkaloids (incl. pyrrolizidine alkaloid ‘asparagamine A’); and mucilage (Bone, 2003, p. 410).

Actions

  • Tonic (Bone, 2003, p. 409)
  • Galactagogue (Bone, 2003, p. 409; (\Pole, 2006, p. 217)
  • Sexual tonic (Bone, 2003, p. 409)
  • Female reproductive tonic (Pole, 2006, p. 217)
  • Adaptogen (Bone, 2003, p. 409; Pole, 2006, p. 217)
  • Sapsmolytic (Bone, 2003, p. 409)
  • Antidiarrheal (Bone, 2003, p. 409)
  • Diuretic (Bone, 2003, p. 409; Pole, 2006, p. 217)
  • Aphrodisiac (Bone, 2003, p. 409; Pole, 2006, p. 217)
  • Immunosuppressant (Bone, 2003, p. 409)
  • Immunomodulator (Pole, 2006, p. 217)
  • Nervine (Pole, 2006, p. 217)
  • Demulcent (Pole, 2006, p. 217)
  • Anti-inflammatory (Pole, 2006, p. 217)
  • Anti-bacterial (Pole, 2006, p. 217)

Indications

  • Promote conception (Bone, 2003, p. 409)
  • Sexual debility (Both male and female) (Bone, 2003, p. 409)
  • Infertility (Bone, 2003, p. 409; Pole, 2006, p. 217)
  • Impotence (Bone, 2003, p. 409)
  • Promote lactation (Bone, 2003, p. 409; Pole, 2006, p. 217)
  • Menopause (Bone, 2003, p. 409)
  • Promote appetite in children (Bone, 2003, p. 409)
  • Infections (Bone, 2003, p. 409)
  • Diarrhea (Bone, 2003, p. 409)
  • Colic (Pole, 2006, p. 217)

Dosage & Preparation:

  • Liquid extract (1:2): 4.5-8.5mL/day or 30-60mL/week (Bone, 2003, p. 409)

Contraindications

  • Acute lung congestion (Pole, 2006, p. 218)
  • High kapha and/or āma (Pole, 2006, p. 218)

Combinations: Combine with Ashwagandha for a uterine tonic or to promote fertility in both male and females (Pole, 2006, p. 218)

Interactions: None known (Bone, 2003, p. 409)

Paeonia lactiflora

Paeonia_lactiflora_White_Wings

Peony, White Wings. Retrieved from: http://www.insideiris.com/feature_plants/3573/Peony__White_Wings

Botanical Name: Paeonia lactiflora
Common name: White Peony, Paonia (Bone, 2003, p. 458), Bai shae (Chinese) (Hempen & Fischer, 2007, p. 776)
Family: Paeoniaceae (Bone, 2003, p. 458)
Parts used: Root (Bone, 2003, p. 458)

Quality: Neutral, cool tendency (Hempen & Fischer, 2007, p. 776)

Constituents: Paeoniflorin (a glucoside with cagelike monoterpene structure) (Bone, 2003, p. 458)

Actions

  • Sapsmolytic (Bone, 2003, p. 458)
  • Skeletal muscle relaxant (Bone, 2003, p. 458)
  • Anti-convulsant (Bone, 2003, p. 458)
  • Anti-inflammatory (Bone, 2003, p. 458; Hempen & Fischer, 2007, p. 776)
  • Sedative (Hempen & Fischer, 2007, p. 776)
  • In vitro research shows active constituent paeoniflorin to inhibit testosterone synthesis in ovaries but not in adrenal glands (Bone, 2003, p. 459)
  • TCM specific: tonifies blood, tonifies and nourishes jing, harmonizes and tonifies liver, relieves pain, descend yang, cools blood, moves and regulates qi and relieves spasm (Hempen & Fischer, 2007, p. 776)

 

Indications

  • Polycystic ovarian syndrome (Bone, 2003, p. 458)
  • Infertility (Bone, 2003, p. 458)
  • Dysmenorrhoea (Bone, 2003, p. 458)
  • Skeletal muscle cramps and spasm (Bone, 2003, p. 458)
  • Fibroids (Bone, 2003, p. 458)
  • Angina (Bone, 2003, p. 458)
  • Epilepsy (Bone, 2003, p. 458)
  • Rheumatoid arthritis (Bone, 2003, p. 458)
  • Enhance memory (Bone, 2003, p. 458)
  • Anti-platelet (Hempen & Fischer, 2007, p. 776)

 

Dosage & Preparation:

  • Liquid extract (1:2): 4.5-8.5mL/day or 30-60mL/day (Bone, 2003, p. 458)
  • 10-15g/day (Hempen & Fischer, 2007, p. 776)

Contraindications: In TCM the herb in contraindicated in fullness and distension in the chest, cold deficiency and diarrhoea (Hempen & Fischer, 2007, p. 777)

 

Combinations:

  • For dysmenorrhoea combine with licorice (Bone, 2003, p. 458)
  • For skeletal muscle cramps and spasm combine with licorice (Bone, 2003, p. 458)
  • For fibroids, combine with Paeonia suffructicosa, Poria cocos, Cinnamomum cassia and Prunus persica (Bone, 2003, p. 458)
  • For angina combine with Stervia rebaudiana and ginsenosides (Bone, 2003, p. 458)
  • For epilepsy combine with licorice and fossilized mammalian tooth (Bone, 2003, p. 458)

 

Interactions:

  • Use with caution in combination with barbiturates and sedatives (Hempen & Fischer, 2007, p. 776)
  • Use with cation in combination with anti-coagulants and anti-platelet medications (Hempen & Fischer, 2007, p. 776)