Astragalus is also known as huang qi, bei qi, hwanggi and milk vetch.
Many varieties of astragalus are known to man (Astragalus membranaceus being the most popular and commonly used species). The root of this plant is very important and used for medicinal purposes. Although this plant has been used in traditional Chinese medicine for thousands of years, its medicinal properties are little known in other parts of the world.
Health Benefits of Astragalus
The health benefits of astragalus are not limited only to common illnesses. It aids in treating and preventing a large number of diseases and disorders. Following are benefits associated with the herb.
In the ancient times, astragalus was significantly used for treating wounds because of its anti-inflammatory properties. It helps in treating frequent bouts of cold and flu. It helps in treating edema and other skin problems.
One of the major functions of astragalus is that it helps in boosting the immunity. It is believed to help in forming immune cells. Due to this function of astragalus, it aids in treating many illnesses and infections. It makes a person immune or resistant to diseases.
Treats Digestive Illnesses
It improves digestion and function of the gastrointestinal tract. Astragalus reduces acidity, and helps in treating stomach ulcers and other disorders of the stomach.
The herb is used to increase energy, enhance metabolism and also boost stamina in individuals. It is used to treat chronic fatigue, lack of energy and appetite in people.
Promotes Heart Health
One of the best known benefits of astragalus root is prevention of heart diseases. It acts as an antioxidant and helps in getting rid of the free radicals. It is used to treat hypertension, improve cardiac function and prevent congestive heart failure.
Other Health Benefits
• It is believed to help in quick recovery after chemotherapy.
• It is used to increase the white blood cell count and also treat anemia.
• It is believed to protect the heart from oxidative damage.
• As it helps in lowering blood sugar, astragalus helps in managing diabetes.
• Although not proven, the root of this herb is believed to aid in prevention of kidney diseases and cancer to some extent.
Astragalus Dosage and Side Effects
There is no standard recommended dose for this herb. You should consult the doctor before consuming astragalus in any form. The herb is not recommended for children, pregnant women, or people suffering from chronic illnesses.
Natural herbs and supplements do not suit everyone and can have potential side effects associated with it. Some of the astragalus side effects observed are rash, nausea, abdominal pain, diarrhea, etc. No other serious or long-term side effects are observed.
The herb interacts with other drugs and medications. Therefore, people suffering from chronic diseases or taking medication on a daily basis should avoid using astragalus without the doctor's consultation.
These are some of the potential health benefits of astragalus as claimed by researchers. However, studies and experiments are yet to be carried out to prove the claims. If they are proved effective, astragalus can truly be called a wonder herb. Until then, consult your doctor before consuming this herb or its supplements.
Disclaimer: This article is meant only to provide information. It does not promote the product. Proper consultation is recommended before using the herb.