Astragulas- Adaptogen and Ayurvedic Herb
Herb Profile: I will be adding herb profiles on a weekly basis for your education. The books I do promote really need to be read to grasp how to use these herbs properly and to get the most benefit for your health.
Ayurvedic herbs have been used for 5000 years in this ancient healing medicine. It is still practiced today in those countries with success. They know how to use these herbs correctly and safely. It is your responsibility to become educated on how to use these herbs properly. The book listed at the bottom of this herb profile. This herb is generally used in combination with other herbs for greater benefit to the organ or system. To get healing you need to address your body system and its strengths and weaknesses. Imbalance sets into our weaknesses which leads to illness.
Ayurvedic medicine is based on the person’s individual constitution and their imbalances at the time. It is very specific to you and your health issue. The first step is to take a quiz that identifies your constitution characters such as thin or heavy; emotional constitution; mental makeup; very fascinating ; Take the dosha or constitution quiz here.
Astragalus membranaceus; Family: Fabaceae;
Common Names: Huang qi (Chinese) , hwang-gi (Korean); milk vetch and kibana-ogi (Japanese)
Taste/Energy: Sweet, slightly warm, and moist
Medicinal Part Used: 4 year mature Root ( yellow in color)
Natural Habitat: native to China
Growing Requirements: Full sun; sandy soil; low nitrogen levels
Medicinal Benefits: Adaptogen; antibacterial; antioxidant; antiperspirant; anti-inflammatory; heart tonic; liver protective; tonic for immune system functioning, anti-tumor inhibiting; Chinese studies show promise with combined with ligusticum fruit increased survival time for breast and some cell lung cancers; spleen supporting; used as a spleen tonic for lung qi;
Used in Ayurvedic medicine to prevent colds, flu, viruses, lung infections, other infections. Do not use in acute illness because in Ayurvedic medicine protocols, this feeds the illness. Used as a preventative tonic for everyday use.
Liver, Kidney and Spleen Benefits: used in Ayurvedic medicine to protect the liver and kidney combined with milk thistle, Schisandra, and turmeric (liver herbs) or kidney herbs such as cordyceps, nettle seed, and S. miltirrhiza.
Cardio Benefits; Used combined with dan shen, dang gui, and corydalis tuber for angina and mild congestive heart failure;
Cancer: Is used to reduce the side effects from chemo and radiation treatments depending on the cancer treatment medications; consult dr first before using it.
Properties: polysaccharides including astragalans 1, 11, and 111; glucuronic acid, astragalosides1 go v11, flavones and isoflavones
How it is used: herb is usually found in combination with other herbs such as herbs to protect the liver, kidneys, or spleen. Comes in tinture; capsules, or powder.
Dosage: Please refer to Adaptogens; Herbs for Strength, Stamina, and Stress Relief by David Wiston and Steven Maimes which gives specific dosage for many health issues and animals. The authors go into great detail on doses and usage with children and pets. The book is well worth the cost. This is the main book I use to study adaptogen herbs with the most specific detail on how to use it with different health issues. If you plan on using adaptogen herbs, you need to educate yourself and do it correctly.
Medicinal Uses and Indications
“Astragalus has been used for the following:
- Adaptogen. Protects the body from stress and disease.
- Anemia. One early study suggested astragalus may improve blood counts in people with aplastic anemia. The study was poorly designed, so more research is needed.
- Colds and influenza. In TCM, astragalus is used as part of an herbal combination to prevent or treat colds, although TCM theory holds that, in some cases, it may make colds worse. Evidence in animal and laboratory tests suggests it may act against viruses like the ones that cause colds.
- Diabetes. Astragalus appears to lower blood sugar. More studies are needed to determine whether it can help treat diabetes.
- Fatigue or lack of appetite from chemotherapy. Some studies suggest astragalus may help reduce side effects from chemotherapy. The studies have not been well designed, however. More research is needed.
- Heart disease. Several studies suggest that astragalus may act as an antioxidant and help treat heart disease. Other studies suggest astragalus may help lower cholesterol levels.
- Hepatitis. A few studies have used a combination of herbs containing astragalus to treat hepatitis. Results have been mixed.
- Kidney disease. Preliminary research suggests astragalus may help protect the kidneys and may help treat kidney disease. More studies are needed.
- Seasonal allergies. One study found that astragalus may help reduce symptoms in people who have allergic rhinitis or hayfever.
- Cancer. Preliminary studies suggest astragalus may have anti-tumor effects, specifically against melanoma and leukemia.”
Moderate Interaction-Consult your doctor if using medications listed below; consult with your doctors if taking medications before you go on herbs. Herbs can potentate or decrease the effectiveness of medications.
- Cyclophosphamide (Cytoxan, Neosar) interacts with ASTRAGALUS
- Lithium interacts with ASTRAGALUS
- Medications that decrease the immune system (Immunosuppressants) interacts with ASTRAGALUS ( Azathioprine which is Imuran; basiliximab which is Simulect; cyclosporine which is Neoral and Sandimmune; daclizumba or Zenapax; muromonab-CD3; mycophenolate or CellCept; prednisone; corticosteroids; and similar medicines; these medicines decrease immune system functioning. Astragalus increases immune function.