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Sep 20 10 2:29 AM

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I would like to keep this thread with information only posts.   We can discuss issues with herbals in the general forum.  Thanks.   Please submit any information and research so I can post here. 

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Posts: 1,690

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Sep 20 10 2:40 AM

This herb from South America has been around for a while and has diverse effects.

Wikipedia says this::

Uncaria tomentosa

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Uncaria tomentosa
Scientific classification
Kingdom: Plantae
(unranked): Angiosperms
(unranked): Eudicots
(unranked): Asterids
Order: Gentianales
Family: Rubiaceae
Genus: Uncaria
Species: U. tomentosa
Binomial name
Uncaria tomentosa
(Willd. ex Schult.) DC.[1]
Uncaria tomentosa (popularly known in English as Cat's Claw, although that name is also used for various other plants; in Spanish as Uña de Gato or as Indian name Vilcacora) is a woody vine found in the tropical jungles of South and Central America, which derives its name from its claw-shaped thorns. It is used as an alternative medicine in the treatment of a variety of ailments.



Uncaria tomentosa is a liana deriving its name from hook-like thorns that resemble the claws of a cat. U. tomentosa can grow up to 30 m (100 ft) tall, climbing by means of these thorns. The leaves are elliptic with a smooth edge, and grow in opposite whorls of two. Cat's claw is indigenous to the Amazon rainforest, with its habitat being restricted primarily to the tropical areas of South and Central America.

Medicinal uses

The parts used medicinally include the inner bark and root, taken in the form of capsules, tea and extract.
U. tomentosa is used in nootropic drugs, as well as in treatment of cancer and HIV infection. It contains several alkaloids that are responsible for its alleged medical effects, as well as tannins and various phytochemicals.[6] 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.[5] 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 anticancer agents.[6] As a herbal treatment, 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,[7] immune modulation,[8] Lyme disease[9] and systemic lupus erythematosus.[10] A 2005 review of the scholarly literature on Cat's Claw indicates there is supporting evidence toward its use in treating cancer, inflammation, viral infection and vascular conditions, and for its use as an immunostimulant, antioxidant, antibacterial and CNS-related agent.[6]
The following is from Dr. Leslie Taylor
From book The Healing Power of Rainforest Herbs:

*I would make a suggestion to purchase products from  for several reasons including a guarantee of potency, highest potency, fair-trade and care of the ecosystem.

Main Actions Other Actions Standard Dosage
  • stimulates immune system
  • relieves pain
  • Vine Bark
  • reduces inflammation
  • kills viruses
  • Decoction: 1 cup twice daily
  • protects cells
  • detoxifies
  • Capsules: 1-2 g 2-3
  • fights free radicals
  • cleanses blood
  •   times daily
  • cleanses bowel
  • increases urination
  • Fluid Extract: 2-4 ml
  • kills cancer cells
  • lowers blood pressure
  •   twice daily
  • kill leukemia cells
  • reduces cholesterol
  • Tincture: 2-4 ml
  • tones and balances
  • decreases depression
  •   twice daily
        Standardized Extract:
        follow the label instructions

    Cat's claw (U. tomentosa) is a large, woody vine that derives its name from hook-like thorns that grow along the vine and resemble the claws of a cat. Two closely related species of Uncaria are used almost interchangeably in the rainforests: U. tomentosa and U. guianensis. Both species can reach over 30 m high into the canopy. U. tomentosa has small, yellowish-white flowers, whereas U. guianensis has reddish-orange flowers and thorns that are more curved. Cat's claw is indigenous to the Amazon rainforest and other tropical areas of South and Central America, including Peru, Colombia, Ecuador, Guyana, Trinidad, Venezuela, Suriname, Costa Rica, Guatemala, and Panama.

    There are other species of plants with a common name of cat's claw (or uña de gato) in Mexico and Latin America; however, they are entirely different plants, not belonging to the Uncaria genus, or even the Rubiaceae family. Several of the Mexican uña de gato varieties have toxic properties.

    Both South American Uncaria species are used by the indigenous peoples of the Amazon rainforest in very similar ways and have long histories of use. Cat's claw (U. tomentosa) has been used medicinally by the Aguaruna, Asháninka, Cashibo, Conibo, and Shipibo tribes of Peru for at least 2,000 years. The Asháninka Indian tribe in central Peru has the longest recorded history of use of the plant. They are also the largest commercial source of cat's claw from Peru today. The Asháninka use cat's claw to treat asthma, inflammations of the urinary tract, arthritis, rheumatism, and bone pain; to recover from childbirth; as a kidney cleanser; to cure deep wounds; to control inflammation and gastric ulcers; and for cancer. Indigenous tribes in Piura use cat's claw to treat tumors, inflammations, rheumatism, and gastric ulcers. Other Peruvian indigenous tribes use cat's claw to treat diabetes, urinary tract cancer in women, hemorrhages, menstrual irregularity, cirrhosis, fevers, abscesses, gastritis, rheumatism, tumors, and inflammations as well as for internal cleansing and to "normalize the body." Reportedly, cat's claw has also been used as a contraceptive by several different tribes of Peru (but only in very large dosages). Dr. Fernando Cabieses, M.D., a noted authority on Peruvian medicinal plants, explains that the Asháninka boil 5 to 6 kg (about 12 pounds) of the root in water until it is reduced to little more than 1 cup. This decoction is then taken 1 cup daily during the period of menstruation for three consecutive months; this supposedly causes sterility for three to four years.

    Cat's claw has been used in Peru and Europe since the early 1990s as an adjunctive treatment for cancer and AIDS as well as for other diseases that target the immune system. In herbal medicine today, cat's claw is employed around the world for many different conditions, including immune disorders, gastritis, ulcers, cancer, arthritis, rheumatism, rheumatic disorders, neuralgias, chronic inflammation of all kinds, and such viral diseases as herpes zoster (shingles). Dr. Brent Davis, D.C. has written several articles on cat's claw and refers to it as the "opener of the way" for its ability to cleanse the entire intestinal tract and its effectiveness in treating stomach and bowel disorders (such as Crohn's disease, leaky bowel syndrome, ulcers, gastritis, diverticulitis, and other inflammatory conditions of the bowel, stomach, and intestines). Dr. Julian Whitaker, M.D. reports using cat's claw for its immune-stimulating effects, for cancer, to help prevent strokes and heart attacks, to reduce blood clots, and for diverticulitis and irritable bowel syndrome.

    Cat's claw has several groups of plant chemicals that account for much of the plant's actions and uses. First and most studied is a group of oxidole alkaloids that has been documented with immune-stimulant and antileukemic properties. Another group of chemicals called quinovic acid glycosides have documented anti-inflammatory and antiviral actions. Antioxidant chemicals (tannins, catechins and procyanidins) as well as plant sterols (beta-sitosterol, stigmasterol, and campesterol) account for the plant's anti-inflammatory properties. A class of compounds known as carboxyl alkyl esters found in cat's claw has been documented with immunostimulant, anti-inflammatory, anticancerous, and cell-repairing properties.

    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, uncarine A thru F, and vaccenic acid.

    With so many documented traditional uses of this important rainforest plant, it is not surprising that it came to the attention of Western researchers and scientists. Studies began in the early 1970s when Klaus Keplinger, a journalist and self-taught ethnologist from Innsbruck, Austria, organized the first definitive work on cat's claw. Keplinger's work in the 1970s and 1980s led to several extracts of cat's claw being sold in Austria and Germany as herbal drugs, as well as the filing of four U.S. patents describing extraction procedures for the immune-stimulating oxindole alkaloids. These novel oxindole alkaloids fueled worldwide interest in the medicinal properties of this valuable vine of the rainforest. Other independent researchers in Spain, France, Japan, Germany, and Peru followed Keplinger, many of them confirming his research on the immunostimulating alkaloids in the vine and root. Many of these studies published from the late 1970s to early 1990s indicated that the whole oxindole alkaloid fraction, whole vine bark and/or root bark extracts, or six individually-tested oxindole alkaloids, when used in relatively small amounts, increased immune function by up to 50%. These study results were substantiated by Canadian researchers at the University of Ottawa (1999) and by Peruvian researchers (1998), both working with whole vine extract.

    Proprietary extracts of cat's claw have been manufactured since 1999, and clinical studies, funded by the manufacturers of these extracts, have been published showing that these cat's claw products continue to provide the same immune-stimulating benefits as has been documented for almost 20 years.

    But then facts concerning cat's claw's benefits became confusing, as often happens with market-driven research. A manufacturer of a cat's claw extract funded a test tube study about these immune-stimulating alkaloids. The research indicated that, supposedly, two different types (chemotypes) of cat's claw vines are growing in the rainforest, and/or that cat's claw produces "good alkaloids" and "bad alkaloids." It has coined the "good ones" pentacyclic (POA) alkaloids and the "bad ones" tetracyclic (TOA) alkaloids; both are oxindole alkaloids. The research and marketing attempts to suggest that one set of "bad alkaloids" counteracts the immune benefits of the "good alkaloids."

    This research has not been confirmed by independent researchers - that is, those who are not selling cat's claw or being paid by companies selling cat's claw. This research has also not been confirmed in humans or animals. This market-driven research would seek to discount or disprove all the definitive, independent research done over the last three decades in Japan, Peru, Germany, Spain, and the United States (including the four U.S. patents filed by these same researchers). Much of the previous independent research was performed on whole oxindole extracts and whole root or vine extracts (some in humans and animals). This research documented the presence of both types of alkaloids, both of which showed immune stimulant actions. Indeed, some of the "new research" refuted the marketer's original (and independently confirmed) findings! As for the possibility of a "new chemotype": a plant doesn't change its chemical constituency in five years. Again, two species of cat's claw exist - U. tomentosa and U. guianensis; they have a similar chemical makeup but a different ratio of oxindole alkaloids. Admittedly U. tomentosa has declined in the Peruvian rainforest because of overharvesting in the last five to eight years. The lower growing and easier-to-find U. guianensis variety is a common "adulterant" in many large lots of cat's claw bulk material being exported out of South America today.

    In addition to its immunostimulating activity, in vitro anticancerous properties have been documented for these alkaloids and other constituents in cat's claw. Five of the oxindole alkaloids have been clinically documented with in vitro antileukemic properties, and various root and bark extracts have demonstrated antitumorous and anticancerous properties. Italian researchers reported in a 2001 in vitro study that cat's claw directly inhibited the growth of a human breast cancer cell line by 90%, while another research group reported that it inhibited the binding of estrogens in human breast cancer cells in vitro. Swedish researchers documented it inhibited the growth of lymphoma and leukemia cells in vitro in 1998. Early reports on Keplinger's observatory trials with cancer patients taking cat's claw in conjunction with such traditional cancer therapies as chemotherapy and radiation reported fewer side effects to the traditional therapies (such as hair loss, weight loss, nausea, secondary infections, and skin problems). Subsequent researchers have shown how these effects might be possible: they have reported that cat's claw can aid in DNA cellular repair and prevent cells from mutating; it also can help prevent the loss of white blood cells and immune cell damage caused by many chemotherapy drugs (a common side effect called leukopenia).

    Another significant area of study has focused on cat's claw's anti-inflammatory properties. While plant sterols and antioxidant chemicals found in cat's claw account for some of these properties, new and novel plant chemicals called quinovic acid glycosides were documented to be the most potent anti-inflammatory constituents of the plant. This study and subsequent ones indicated that cat's claw (and, especially, its glycosides) could inhibit inflammation from 46% up to 89% in various in vivo and in vitro tests. The results of these studies validated its long history of indigenous use for arthritis and rheumatism, as well as for other types of inflammatory stomach and bowel disorders. It was also clinically shown to be effective against stomach ulcers in an in vivo rat study.

    Research in Argentina reports that cat's claw is an effective antioxidant; other researchers in 2000 concluded that it is an antioxidant as well as a remarkably potent inhibitor of tumor necrosis factor (TNF) alpha production. TNF represents a model for tumor growth driven by an inflammatory cytokine chemical. Other researchers in the United States reported in 2002 that the anti-inflammatory actions of cat's claw are not attributable to immunostimulating alkaloids but rather to another group of chemicals called carboxyl alkyl esters. This would explain why a product comprised of mostly alkaloids showed only modest benefit to arthritis patients in a study by another group that was incidentally selling a special alkaloid preparation of cat's claw. The same group of anti-inflammatory glycoside chemicals also demonstrated in vitro antiviral properties in another earlier study.

    In addition to the immunostimulant alkaloids, cat's claw contains the alkaloids rhynchophylline, hirsutine, and mitraphylline, which have demonstrated hypotensive and vasodilating properties. Rhynchophylline has shown to prevent blood clots in blood vessels, dilate peripheral blood vessels, lower the heart rate, and lower blood levels of cholesterol. Some of the newer research indicates that cat's claw might be helpful to people with Alzheimer's disease; this could be attributable to the antioxidant effects already confirmed or, possibly, to the dilation of peripheral blood vessels in the brain by alkaloids such as rhynchophylline.

    Another research group recently reported that cat's claw's immune-stimulating alkaloids pteropodine and isopteropodine might have other properties and applications. They reported that these two chemicals have shown to have a positive modulating effect on brain neurotransmitters called 5-HT(2) receptors. These receptor sites are targets for drugs used in treating a variety of conditions, including depression, anxiety, eating disorders, chronic pain conditions, and obesity.


    Cat's claw has grown quite popular in the natural products industry and is mostly taken today to boost immune function, as an all over tonic and preventative to stay healthy, for arthritis and inflammation, for bowel and colon problems, and as an complementary therapy for cancer. The most common forms used today are cat's claw capsules and tablets, both of which have become widely available in most health food stores at reasonable prices. There are also newer (and more expensive) proprietary extracts of cat's claw in tablets and capsules, some backed by research-albeit paid-for research.

    A good-quality, natural cat's claw vine bark with naturally occurring chemicals is the best value, money wise. It contains all the natural chemicals that nature provides in the proper ratio (including immune-stimulating alkaloids, anti-inflammatory glycosides, and antioxidant chemicals), without chemical intervention. Some invasive extraction and manufacturing techniques may only extract one particular type of chemical, or change the complex ratio of naturally occurring chemicals in the plant-which ignores the efficiency and synergy of the plant. Scientists do not fully know how all these complex chemicals work together in harmony. In fact, scientists are still discovering new and novel active chemicals in this plant, even after 20 some-odd years of research on cat's claw. As the market demand has increased for this rainforest plant over the last five years, more companies have gone into the business of harvesting it, and the quality of the bulk materials coming in from South America can be sometimes questionable. Oftentimes, a combination of U. tomentosa and U. guianensis is harvested and sold as "cat's claw" (as, presently, the guianensis species is found more easily). Pick a good quality and trusted label and manufacturer for the best results and the best value.


    Main Preparation Method:
    decoction, fluid extract, or capsules Main Actions (in order):
    immune stimulant, anti-inflammatory, antimutagenic (cellular protector), anticancerous, antiulcerous Main Uses:
    1. as an immune stimulant and an adjunctive therapy for cancer (to reduce side effects of chemotherapy and protect cells)
    2. as a bowel cleanser and anti-inflammatory for Crohn's, colitis, diverticulitis, irritable bowel syndrome (IBS), and other bowel problems
    3. as an anti-inflammatory for arthritis (all kinds) and muscle pains/strains/injuries
    4. as a general daily tonic (to tone, balance, and strengthen all body functions)
    5. for stomach ulcers and ulcerative colitis and as an ulcer preventative/ stomach and bowel protector)
    Properties/Actions Documented by Research:
    anti-inflammatory, antiulcerous, anticancerous, antidepressant, antileukemic, antimutagenic (cellular protector), antioxidant, antitumorous, antiviral, contraceptive, immune stimulant Other Properties/Actions Documented by Traditional Use:
    analgesic (pain-reliever), anticoagulant (blood thinner), antidysenteric, blood cleanser, detoxifier, diuretic, gastrotonic (tones, balances, strengthens the gastric system), hypocholesterolemic (lowers cholesterol), tonic (tones, balances, strengthens overall body functions), wound healer Cautions: Do not use before or after an organ or bone marrow transplant since it boosts immune function. May also have a mild blood thinning effect.


    Traditional Preparation: For general immune and prevention benefits, practitioners usually recommend 1 g daily of vine powder in tablets or capsules. Therapeutic dosages of cat's claw are reported to be as high as 20 g daily and average 2-3 grams two or three times daily. Generally, as a natural aid for arthritis and bowel and digestive problems 3-5 g daily is recommended, if a good product is obtained. Alternatively, a standard vine bark decoction can be used much the same way indigenous people of the Amazon use it. The dosage for a standard decoction for general health and maintenance is 1/2-1 cup of a decoction once daily and up to 1 cup three times daily in times of special needs. Adding lemon juice or vinegar to the decoction when boiling will help extract more alkaloids and fewer tannins from the bark. Use about 1/2 teaspoon of lemon juice or vinegar per cup of water. For standardized and/or proprietary extract products, follow the label instructions.



    • Cat's claw has been clinically documented with immunostimulant effects and is contraindicated before or following any organ or bone marrow transplant or skin graft.
    • Cat's claw has been documented with antifertility properties and is contraindicated in persons seeking to get pregnant. However, this effect has not been proven to be sufficient for the product to be used as a contraceptive, and it should not be relied on for such.
    • Cat's claw has chemicals that can reduce platelet aggregation and thin the blood. Check with your doctor first if you are taking coumadin or other blood-thinning drugs and discontinue use one week to ten days prior to any major surgical procedure.
    • Cat's claw vine bark requires sufficient stomach acid to help break down the tannins and alkaloids during digestion and to aid in absorption. Avoid taking bark capsules or tablets at the same time as antacids. Avoid taking high tannin (dark-colored) liquid extracts and tinctures directly by mouth and dilute first in water or acidic juice (such as orange juice).
    • Large dosages of cat's claw (3-4 gram dosages at a time) have been reported to cause some abdominal pain or gastrointestinal problems, including diarrhea (due to the tannin content of the vine bark) in some people. The diarrhea or loose stools tend to be mild and go away with continued use. Discontinue use or reduce dosage if diarrhea persists longer than three or four days.


    Drug Interactions:

    • Due to its immunostimulant effects, cat's claw should not be used with medications intended to suppress the immune system, such as cyclosporin or other medications prescribed following an organ transplant. (This theory has not been proven scientifically.)
    • Based upon in vivo rat studies, cat's claw may protect against gastrointestinal damage associated with nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) such as ibuprofen.
    • Cat's claw may potentiate coumadin and blood-thinning drugs.


      Colombia for dysentery, gonorrhea
      French Guiana for dysentery
      Peru for abscesses, AIDS, arthritis, asthma, blood cleansing, bone pains, cancer, cirrhosis, diabetes, diarrhea, disease prevention, dysentery, fevers, gastric ulcers, gastritis, gonorrhea, hemorrhages, herpes, immune disorders, inflammations, intestinal affections, menstrual irregularity, kidney cleansing, prostatitis, rheumatism, shingles, skin disorders, stomach disorders, ulcers problems, urinary tract disorders, tumors, wounds
      Suriname for dysentery, intestinal disorders, wounds


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      Posts: 1,690

      #2 [url]

      Sep 20 10 2:47 AM

      Simarouba is another South American herb that has a long history of treating amoebic problems, I found references of using this back in the early 1900's as recommended by physicians.  Of course with the advent, this herb was forgotten.   It belongs to the family as Ya Dan Zi or also known as Java Brucea which has shown some effectivness in treatment of blastocystis hominis, however I have not found toxicity issues with Simarouba versus Java Brucea.  

      Here is the information from Raintree's Dr. Leslie Taylor


      Simaruba - Simarouba glauca, amara Simaruba - Simarouba glauca, Simaruba - Simarouba glauca, amara Simaruba - Simarouba glauca,

      Database File for:

      (Simarouba amara)

      Simaruba - Simarouba glauca, amara Simaruba - Simarouba glauca PLANT
      Simaruba - Simarouba glauca, amara Simaruba - Simarouba glauca,


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    • Family: Simaroubaceae
      Genus: Simarouba
      Species: amara, glauca
      Synonyms: Quassia simarouba, Zwingera amara, Picraena officinalis, Simarouba medicinalis
      Common Names: Simarouba, gavilan, negrito, marubá, marupá, dysentery bark, bitterwood, paradise tree, palo blanco, robleceillo, caixeta, daguilla, cedro blanco, cajú-rana, malacacheta, palo amargo, pitomba, bois amer, bois blanc, bois frene, bois negresse, simaba
      Part Used: Bark, wood, leaves

      From The Healing Power of Rainforest Herbs:

      Main Actions Other Actions Standard Dosage
    • kills parasites
    • relieves pain
    • Bark
    • kills amebas
    • reduces fever
    • Decoction: 1 cup 2-3
    • kills bacteria
    • promotes menstruation
    • times daily
    • kills viruses
    • hydrates skin
    • Tincture: 5-10 ml twice daily
    • relieves dystentery
    • promotes perspiration
    • kills leukemia cells
    • treats malaria
    • reduces tumor growth
    • expels worms

      Simarouba is a medium-sized tree that grows up to 20 m high, with a trunk 50 to 80 cm in diameter. It produces bright green leaves 20 to 50 cm in length, small white flowers, and small red fruits. It is indigenous to the Amazon rainforest and other tropical areas in Mexico, Cuba, Haiti, Jamaica, and Central America.

      The leaves and bark of Simarouba have long been used as a natural medicine in the tropics. Simarouba was first imported into France from Guyana in 1713 as a remedy for dysentery. When France suffered a dysentery epidemic from 1718 to 1725, simarouba bark was one of the few effective treatments. French explorers "discovered" this effective remedy when they found that the indigenous Indian tribes in the Guyana rainforest used simarouba bark as an effective treatment for malaria and dysentery - much as they still do today. Other indigenous tribes throughout the South American rainforest use simarouba bark for fevers, malaria, and dysentery, as a hemostatic agent to stop bleeding, and as a tonic.

      Simarouba also has a long history in herbal medicine in many other countries. In Cuba, where it is called gavilan, an infusion of the leaves or bark is considered to be astringent, a digestion and menstrual stimulant and an antiparasitic remedy. It is taken internally for diarrhea, dysentery, malaria, and colitis; it is used externally for wounds and sores. In Belize the tree is called negrito or dysentery bark. There the bark (and occasionally the root) is boiled in water to yield a powerful astringent and tonic used to wash skin sores and to treat dysentery, diarrhea, stomach and bowel disorders, hemorrhages, and internal bleeding. In Brazil it is employed much the same way against fever, malaria, diarrhea, dysentery, intestinal parasites, indigestion, and anemia. In Brazilian herbal medicine, simarouba bark tea has long been the most highly recommended (and most effective) natural remedy against chronic and acute dysentery.

      The main active group of chemicals in simarouba are called quassinoids, which belong to the triterpene chemical family. Quassinoids are found in many plants and are well known to scientists. The antiprotozoal and antimalarial properties of these chemicals have been documented for many years. Several of the quassinoids found in simarouba, such as ailanthinone, glaucarubinone, and holacanthone, are considered the plant's main therapeutic constituents and are the ones documented to be antiprotozal, anti-amebic, antimalarial, and even toxic to cancer and leukemia cells.

      The main plant chemicals in simarouba include: ailanthinone, benzoquinone, canthin, dehydroglaucarubinone, glaucarubine, glaucarubolone, glaucarubinone, holacanthone, melianone, simaroubidin, simarolide, simarubin, simarubolide, sitosterol, and tirucalla.

      After a 200-year documented history of use for dysentery, its use for amebic dysentery was finally validated by conventional doctors in 1918. A military hospital in England demonstrated that the bark tea was an effective treatment for amebic dysentery in humans. The Merck Institute reported that simarouba was 91.8% effective against intestinal amebas in humans in a 1944 study and, in 1962, other researchers found that the seeds of simarouba showed active anti-amebic activities in humans. In the 1990s scientists again documented simarouba's ability to kill the most common dysentery-causing organism, Entamoeba histolytica, as well as two diarrhea-causing bacteria, Salmonella and Shigella.

      Scientists first looked at simarouba's antimalarial properties in 1947, when they determined a water extract of the bark (as well as the root) demonstrated strong activity against malaria in chickens. This study showed that doses of only 1 mg of bark extract per kg of body weight exhibited strong antimalarial activity. When new strains of malaria with resistance to our existing antimalarial drugs began to develop, scientists began studying simarouba once again. Studies published between 1988 and 1997 demonstrated that simarouba and/or its three potent quassinoids were effective against malaria in vitro as well as in vivo. More importantly, the research indicated that the plant and its chemicals were effective against the new drug-resistant strains in vivo and in vitro. While most people in North America will never be exposed to malaria, between 300 and 500 million cases of malaria occur each year in the world, leading to more than one million deaths annually. Having an easily-grown tree in the tropics where most malaria occurs could be an important resource for an effective natural remedy-it certainly has worked for the Indians in the Amazon for ages.

      It will be interesting to see if North American scientists investigate simarouba as a possibility for North America's only malaria-like disease: the newest mosquito-borne threat, West Nile virus. It might be a good one to study because, in addition to its antimalarial properties, clinical research has shown good antiviral properties with simarouba bark. Researchers in 1978 and again in 1992 confirmed strong antiviral properties of the bark in vitro against herpes, influenza, polio, and vaccinia viruses.

      Another area of research on simarouba and its plant chemicals has focused on cancer and leukemia. The quassinoids responsible for the anti-amebic and antimalarial properties have also shown in clinical research to possess active cancer-killing properties. Early cancer screening performed by the National Cancer Institute in 1976 indicated that an alcohol extract of simarouba root (and a water extract of its seeds) had toxic actions against cancer cells at very low dosages (less than 20 mcg/ml). Following up on that initial screening, scientists discovered that several of the quassinoids in simarouba (glaucarubinone, alianthinone, and dehydroglaucarubinone) had antileukemic actions against lymphocytic leukemia in vitro and published several studies in 1977 and 1978. Researchers found that yet another simarouba quassinoid, holacanthone, also possessed antileukemic and antitumorous actions in 1983. Researchers in the UK cited the antitumorous activity of two of the quassinoids, ailanthinone and glaucarubinone, against human epidermoid carcinoma of the pharynx. A later study in 1998 by U.S. researchers demonstrated the antitumorous activity of glaucarubinone against solid tumors (human and mouse cell lines), multi-drug-resistant mammary tumors in mice, and antileukemic activity against leukemia in mice.

      Simarouba is the subject of one U.S. patent so far and, surprisingly, it's not for its antimalarial, anti-amebic, or even anticancerous actions. Rather, water extracts of simarouba were found to increase skin keratinocyte differentiation and to improve skin hydration and moisturization. In 1997, a patent was filed on its use to produce a cosmetic or pharmaceutical skin product. The patent describes simarouba extract as having significant skin depigmentation activity (for liver spots), enhancing the protective function of the skin (which maintains better moisturization), and having a significant keratinocyte differentiation activity (which protects against scaly skin).

      While at least one scientific research group attempts to synthesize one or more of simarouba's potent quassinoids for pharmaceutical use, the plant remains an important natural remedy in the herbal pharmacopeias of many tropical countries and in the rainforest shaman's arsenal of potent plant remedies. Natural health practitioners outside of South America are just beginning to learn about the properties and actions of this important rainforest medicinal plant and how to use it in their own natural health practices.

      Simarouba bark tea is still the first line of defense for amebic dysentery and diarrhea among the natural products available. It's also a good natural remedy for viruses. Although not widely available in the U.S. today, it can be found in bulk supplies and in various natural multi-herb anti-parasite and anti-viral formulas.

      Main Preparation Method: decoction or tincture Main Actions (in order):
      antidysenteric, amebicide, antiparasitic, antiviral, antihemorrhagic (reduces bleeding) Main Uses:
      1. for dysentery (amebic and bacterial) and diarrhea
      2. for intestinal worms and internal parasites
      3. for malaria
      4. as an astringent to stop bleeding internally (stomach ulcers, hemorrhages, etc) and externally for wounds
      5. for viral infections
      Properties/Actions Documented by Research:
      amebicide, antibacterial, anticancerous, antidysenteric, antileukemic, antimalarial, antimutagenic (cellular protector), antiparasitic, antitumorous, antiviral, vermifuge (expels worms) Other Properties/Actions Documented by Traditional Use:
      analgesic (pain-reliever), antihemorrhagic (reduces bleeding), astringent, bitter, carminative, diaphoretic (promotes sweating), digestive stimulant, febrifuge (reduces fever), menstrual stimulant, tonic (tones, balances, strengthens overall body functions) Cautions: Large dosages might cause nausea and vomiting.

      Traditional Preparation: For diarrhea or dysentery, the traditional remedy calls for preparing a standard decoction with the bark. A teacup full (about 6 ounces) is taken 2-3 times daily. Five to ten ml of a bark tincture twice daily can be substituted if desired.

      Contraindications: Reported side effects at high dosages (approx. three times the traditional remedy) include increased perspiration and urination, nausea, and/or vomiting.
      Drug Interactions: None reported.

        Country Uses
        Amazonia for bleeding, constipation, dysentery, fever, malaria
        Belize for bowel disorders, diarrhea, dysentery, excessive menstruation, hemorrhages, internal bleeding, skin, sores, stomach disorders, wounds
        Brazil for anemia, anorexia, bitter digestive aid, diarrhea, dysentery, dyspepsia, fever, hemorrhages, intestinal parasites, malaria
        Cuba for bleeding, colitis, diarrhea, digestive sluggishness, dysentery, malaria, menstrual disorders, parasites, sores, wounds
        for colic, diarrhea, gonorrhea, malaria
        El Salvador for amebic infections, digestive stimulation
        Haiti for aches (body), anemia, dysentery, dyspepsia, fever, menstrual disorders, pain, rheumatism, skin problems, and to increase perspiration
        Mexico for amebic infections, dyspepsia, fever, malaria
        Peru for diarrhea, dysentery, fever, intestinal gas, malaria, stomach pains
        Elsewhere for bleeding, colds, diarrhea, dysentery, fever, malaria,

              The above text has been printed from The Healing Power of Rainforest Herbs by Leslie Taylor, copyrighted © 2005
              All rights reserved. No part of this document may be reproduced or transmitted in any form or by any means, electronic or mechanical, including photocopying, recording, or by any information storage or retrieval system, including websites, without written permission.

              A complete Technical Data Report is available for this plant.

              † The statements contained herein have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. The information contained in this plant database file is intended for education, entertainment and information purposes only. This information is not intended to be used to diagnose, prescribe or replace proper medical care. The plant described herein is not intended to treat, cure, diagnose, mitigate or prevent any disease. Please refer to our Conditions of Use for using this plant database file and web site.

              Third-Party Published Research on Simarouba

              All available third-party research on simarouba be found at PubMed. A partial listing of the third-party published research on simarouba is shown below:

              Antimalarial, Antiparasitic, & Antiamebic Actions:
              Francois, G., et al. ”Antimalarial and cytotoxic potential of four quassinoids from Hannoa chlorantha and Hannoa klaineana, and their structure-activity relationships.” Int. J. Parasitol. 1998; 28(4): 635-40.
              Franssen, F. F., et al. “In vivo and in vitro antiplasmodial activities of some plants traditionally used in Guatemala against malaria.” Antimicrob. Agents Chemother. 1997; 41(7): 1500–3.
              Wright, C. W., et al. “Quassinoids exhibit greater selectivity against Plasmodium falciparum than against Entamoeba histoyltica, Giardia intestinalis or Toxoplasma gondii in vitro." J. Eukaryot. Microbiol. 1993; 40(3): 244–46.
              Kirby, G. C., et al. “In vitro studies on the mode of action of quassinoids with activity against chloroquine-resistant Plasmodium falciparum.Biochem. Pharmacol. 1989; 38(24): 4367–74.
              O’Neill, M. J., et al. “Plants as sources of antimalarial drugs, Part 6. Activities of Simarouba amara fruits." J. Ethnopharmacol. 1988; 22(2): 183–90.
              O’Neill, M. J., et al. “The activity of Simarouba amara against chloroquine-resistant Plasmodium falciparum in vitro." J. Pharm. Pharmacol. 1987; Suppl. 39: 80.
              Monjour, I., et al. “Therapeutic trials of experimental murine malaria with the quassinoid, glaucarubinone.” C. R. Acad. Sci. Ill. 1987; 304(6): 129–32.
              Trager, W., et al. “Antimalarial activity of quassinoids against chloroquine-resistant Plasmodium falciparum in vitro." Am. J. Trp. Med. Hyg. 1981; 30(3): 531–37.
              Duriez, R., et al. “Glaucarubin in the treatment of amebiasis." Presse Med. 1962; 70: 1291.
              Spencer, C. F., et al. “Survey of plants for antimalarial activity.” Lloydia 1947; 10: 145–74.
              Cuckler, A. C., et al. “Efficacy and toxicity of simaroubidin in experimental amoebiasis.” Fed. Proc. 1944; 8: 284.
              Shepheard, S., et al. "Persistent carriers of Entameba histolytica." Lancet 1918: 501.

              Antimicrobial Actions:
              Morre, D. J., et al. “Effect of the quassinoids glaucarubolone and simalikalactone D on growth of cells permanently infected with feline and human immunodeficiency viruses and on viral infections.” Life Sci. 1998; 62(3): 213-9.
              Rahman, S., et al. “Anti-tuberculosis activity of quassinoids.” Chem. Pharm. Bull. 1997; 45(9): 1527-9.
              Kaif-A-Kamb, M., et al. “Search for new antiviral agents of plant origin.” Pharm. Acta Helv. 1992; 67(5–6): 130–147.
              Caceres, A. “Plants used in Guatemala for the treatment of gastrointestinal disorders. 1. Screening of 84 plants against enterobacteria." J. Ethnopharmacol. 1990; 30(1): 55–73.
              May, G., et al. “Antiviral activity of aqueous extracts from medicinal plants in tissue cultures.” Arzneim-Forsch 1978; 28(1): 1–7.

              Anticancerous & Antileukemic Actions:
              Rivero-Cruz, J. F., et al. “Cytotoxic constituents of the twigs of Simarouba glauca collected from a plot in Southern Florida.” Phytother. Res. 2005; 19(2): 136-40.
              Mata-Greenwood, E., et al. “ Novel esters of glaucarubolone as inducers of terminal differentiation of promyelocytic HL-60 cells and inhibitors of 7,12-dimethylbenz[a]anthracene-induced preneoplastic lesion formation in mouse mammary organ culture.” J. Nat. Prod. 2001; 64(12): 1509-13.
              Morre, D. J., et al. “Mode of action of the anticancer quassinoids--inhibition of the plasma membrane NADH oxidase.” Life Sci. 1998; 63(7) :595-604.
              Valeriote, F. A., et al. “Anticancer activity of glaucarubinone analogues.” Oncol Res. 1998; 10(4): 201–8.
              Ohno, N., et al. “Synthesis of cytotoxic fluorinated quassinoids.” Bioorg. Med. Chem. 1997; 5(8): 1489-95.
              Klocke, J. A., et al. "Growth inhibitory, insecticidal and antifeedant effects of some antileukemic and cytotoxic quassinoids on two species of agricultural pests." Experientia. 1985 Mar 15; 41(3): 379-82.
              Handa, S. S., et al. “Plant anticancer agents XXV. Constituents of Soulamea soulameoides.” J. Nat. Prod. 1983; 46(3): 359–64.
              Polonsky, J. “The isolation and structure of 13,18-dehydroglaucarubinone, a new antineoplastic quassinoid from Simarouba amara.” Experientia. 1978; 34(9): 1122–23.
              Ghosh, P. C., et al. “Antitumor plants. IV. Constituents of Simarouba versicolor.” Lloydia. 1977; 40(4): 364–69.
              Ogura, M. et al. “Potential anticancer agents VI. Constituents of Ailanthus excelsa (Simaroubaceae)." Lloydia. 1977; 40(6): 579–84.

              Antipsoriatic Actions:
              Bonte, F., et al. “Simarouba amara extract increases human skin keratinocyte differentiation." J. Ethnopharmacol. 1996; 53(2): 65–74.

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              #3 [url]

              Sep 20 10 6:57 PM

              The following is from  by Dr. Leslie Taylor
              Family: Simaroubaceae
              Genus: Quassia
              Species: amara
              Synonyms: Quassia alatifolia, Q. officinalis, Q. amargo, Simaroube officinale
              Common names: amargo, bitter ash, bitterholz, bitterwood, bois amer, bois de quassia, crucete, quassia, cuassia, fliegenholz, guabo, hombre grande, jamaica bark, kashshing, maraubá, marupá, palo muneco, pau amarelo, quassia amarga, quassiawood, ruda, simaruba, simarubabaum, quassiaholz, quassia de cayenne, quassie, quina, simaba, Suriname wood
              Parts Used: wood, leaves

              From The Healing Power of Rainforest Herbs:

              Main Actions Other Actions Standard Dosage
            • kills parasites
            • reduces inflammation
            • Wood, Bark
            • kills lice
            • kills cancer cells
            • Infusion: 1 cup 2-3 times daily
            • expels worms
            • kills leukemia cells
            • Capsules: 1-2 g 2-3 times daily
            • kills insects
            • prevents tumors
            • Maceration: 1 cup 2-3 times daily
            • kills larva
            • kills viruses
            • treats malaria
            • dries secretions
            • prevents ulcers
            • cleanses blood
            • stimulates digestion
            • mildly laxative
            • increases bile
            • sedates
            • reduces fever
            • increases saliva

              Amargo is a small tropical tree, growing only 2-6 m in height. It is indigenous to Brazil, Peru, Venezuela, Suriname, Colombia, Argentina, and Guyana. It has beautiful red flowers and fruits that turn red as they mature. Known botanically as Quassia amara, it is marketed and used interchangeably with another tree species, Picrasma excelsa. Sharing the common name of quassia (and many of Quassia amara's constituents and uses), P. excelsa is much taller (up to 25 m in height) and occurs farther north in the tropics of Jamaica, the Caribbean, the Lesser Antilles, and northern Venezuela. In herbal medicine in the United States and Europe, very little distinction is made between the two species of trees; they are used identically and just called quassia. The name amargo means "bitter" in Spanish and describes its very bitter taste.

              In the Amazon rainforest, amargo is used much in the same manner as quinine bark: for malaria and fevers and as a bitter digestive aid. It grows at lower elevations (where quinine does not) and contains many of the same antimalarial phytochemicals (plant chemicals) as quinine. In addition, it is used as an insecticide and tonic, and for hepatitis. Brazilian Indians use the leaves in a bath for measles as well as in a mouthwash used after tooth extractions. Indians in Suriname use the bark for fever and parasites. Throughout South America, amargo is a tribal remedy for debility, digestion problems, fever, liver problems, parasites, malaria, snakebite, and back spasms.

              In current Brazilian herbal medicine systems, amargo is considered a tonic, digestion stimulant, blood cleanser, insecticide, and mild laxative. It is recommended for diarrhea, intestinal worms, dysentery, dyspepsia, excessive mucus, expelling worms, intestinal gas, stomachache, anemia, and liver and gastrointestinal disorders. In Peru, amargo is employed as a bitter digestive aid to stimulate gastric and other digestive secretions as well as for fevers, tuberculosis, kidney stones and gallstones. In Mexico, the wood is used for liver and gallbladder diseases and for intestinal parasites. In Nicaragua, amargo is used to expel worms and intestinal parasites as well as for malaria and anemia. Throughout South America, the bitter principles of amargo are used to stimulate the appetite and secretion of digestive juices, as well as to expel worms and intestinal parasites.

              In herbal medicine in the United States and Europe, amargo is employed as a bitter tonic for stomach, gallbladder, and other digestive problems (by increasing the flow of bile, digestive juices, and saliva); as a laxative, amebicide, and insecticide; and to expel intestinal worms. In Europe, it is often found as a component in various herbal drugs that promote gallbladder, liver, and other digestive functions. In Britain, a water extract of the wood is used topically against scabies, fleas, lice, and other skin parasites. U.S. herbalist David Hoffman recommends it as an excellent remedy for dyspeptic conditions, to stimulate production of saliva and digestive juices, and to increase the appetite (as well as for lice infestations and threadworms). He also notes, "It may safely be used in all cases of lack of appetite such as anorexia nervosa and digestive sluggishness."
              PLANT CHEMICALS

              Amargo bark contains many active constituents including bitter principles reported to be 50 times more bitter than quinine. While amargo contains many of the same types of antimalarial chemicals as quinine bark, it also contains another chemical called quassin. The large amount of quassin in the bark and wood gives amargo a bitterness rating of 40,000. The bark also contains the phytochemicals quassimarin and simalikalactone D. Quassimarin has demonstrated antileukemic and antitumorous properties in various studies, and simalikalactone D has been documented to have antimalarial, antiviral, antitumor, and anticancer activities. Other quassinoids have demonstrated anti-amebic actions in vivo and in vitro.

              The main chemicals identified in amargo include: beta-carbolines, beta-sitostenone, beta-sitosterol, dehydroquassins, gallic acid, gentisic acid, hydroxyquassins, isoparain, isoparaines, isoquassins, malic acid, methylcanthins, methoxycanthins, methoxycantins, nigakilactone A, neo-quassins, nor-neoquassin, parain, paraines, quassialactol, quassimarin, quassins, quassinol, quassol, and simalikalactone D.

              Several early clinical studies performed on amargo verified its traditional use as a natural insecticide, documenting it as an effective treatment for head lice infestation in humans. One of these studies reported a 99% effectiveness in 454 patients who had only two topical treatments one week apart. In a 1991 double-blind placebo trial on 148 children with head lice, those treated with an amargo bark extract reported fewer new cases, demonstrating a preventative activity against lice. In addition, an amargo water extract has been reported to work quite well against aphids in the garden, and researchers in India have discovered larvicidal activity against several types of insects, including mosquitoes. Since amargo has long been used for malaria in South America, researchers studied this biological effect as well. One study showed strong in vivo antimalarial activity in mice.

              Amargo was reported to have antiviral activity when scientists at Texas Christian University demonstrated in 1996 that a water extract was active in vitro against cells infected with HIV. A 1978 in vivo study reported that amargo wood and/or sap extracts (as well as the isolated chemical quassimarin) inhibited the growth of leukemia in mice. Most recently, in 2002, an extract of the amargo wood was shown to have antiulcerous actions in mice, inhibiting the formation of gastric ulcers (induced by stress and various chemical means). Prior to this study, a U.S. patent was awarded on the quassinoid phytochemicals in amargo, finding them to have "remarkable antiulcer effects with low toxicities." In another in vivo study, amargo was reported to have pain-relieving, muscle-relaxant, and sedative effects in rats and mice.

              Amargo is still heavily relied upon as a natural remedy in South America for parasites of all kinds. It is slowly catching on here in North American herbal medicine practices for parasites and head lice, but it is predominately used here as a bitter digestive aid and remedy for digestive disorders. Amargo wood is on the FDA's GRAS list (generally regarded as safe). The wood and its main bitter chemical, quassin, also are approved as food additives - and are employed in beverages and baked goods for their bitter taste. Toxicity studies performed on rats and mice reported no toxicity in oral dosages up to 5 g per kg of body weight.


              Main Preparation Method: decoction or capsules Main Actions (in order):
              antiparasitic, pediculicide (kills lice), digestive stimulant, bitter digestive aid, liver bile stimulant, antilithic (prevents kidney stones) Main Uses:
              1. for lice and skin parasites
              2. for intestinal parasites and amebic infections
              3. for malaria
              4. for digestive problems (ulcers, dyspepsia, intestinal gas and bloating, sluggish digestion, anorexia)
              5. as a liver/gallbladder aid to increase bile and eliminate toxins and stones
              Properties/Actions Documented by Research:
              amebicide, analgesic (pain-reliever), anticancerous, antileukemic, antimalarial, antiparasitic, antitumorous, antiulcerous , antiviral, bitter, gastroprotective, insecticide, larvicide, muscle relaxant, pediculicide (kills lice), sedative Other Properties/Actions Documented by Traditional Use:
              antibacterial, antilithic (prevents kidney stones), antispasmodic, antivenin, carminative (expels gas), febrifuge (reduces fever), liver and gallbladder bile stimulant, digestive stimulant, hepatoprotective (liver protector), hepatotonic (tones, balances, strengthens liver functions), hypoglycemic, sialogogue (increases saliva), tonic (tones, balances, strengthens), vermifuge (expels worms) Cautions: It interferes with fertility. Large amounts might cause nausea and stomach irritation.


              Traditional Preparation: The traditional remedy as a digestive aid is 1/2 teaspoon of wood powder infused in one cup of boiling water. This is taken 10-15 minutes before or with meals. Alternatively, 1g in tablets or capsules can be taken two or three times daily on an empty stomach for an internal parasite cleanse. Another remedy calls for 2 teaspoons of wood powder or chips to be soaked in 1 cup of cold water overnight (a cold maceration). This is drunk for internal parasites, gallstones, and digestive disorders. This maceration can also be used topically for skin/hair parasites or as a bug spray, especially for aphids on plants and fleas on the dog. For head lice or fleas, prepare a cold maceration (allowing it to macerate/soak for 24 hours). Strain and pour through the hair or apply directly to the skin. It can be washed off in an hour (or simply left on the dog). For lice, repeat every three days for three applications, and for fleas, apply once monthly. Also, a small handful of amargo wood chips can be placed in backyard ponds/fountains (or a few chips in bird baths) to kill mosquito larvae without harming fish or birds.


              • Amargo should not be used during pregnancy.
              • Amargo has been documented to have an antifertility effect in studies with male rats. Men undergoing fertility treatment or those wishing to have children probably should avoid using amargo.
              • Large amounts of amargo can irritate the mucous membrane of the stomach and can lead to nausea and vomiting. Do not exceed recommended dosages.

              Drug Interactions: None reported. However, amargo may interfere with male fertility drugs.


                Brazil for anemia, anorexia, colic, debility, dental pain, diarrhea, digestion disorders, dysentery, dyspepsia, fever, flatulence, gallbladder problems, gallstones, gastrointestinal disorders, gonorrhea, kidney stones, liver problems, malaria, measles, urinary insufficiency, vaginal discharge, and as a bitter digestive stimulant
                Costa Rica for diabetes, diarrhea, fever, worms
                Europe for bile insufficiency, digestive disorders, fleas, gallstones, liver disease, parasites, scabies, threadworms, and as a bitter digestive stimulant
                Guatemala for constipation, diabetes, high blood pressure, nervousness
                Mexico for digestive disorders, gallbladder problems, intestinal parasites, liver disorders, worms, and as a digestive stimulant
                Nicaragua for anemia, bug bites, intestinal parasites, malaria, stings, worms, and as an astringent
                Panama for hyperglycemia, fever, liver disorders, malaria, snakebite
                Peru for cleansing blood, digestive disorders, edema, fever, gallstones, hepatitis, intestinal parasites, kidney stones, stimulating digestion, tuberculosis, worms, and as an insecticide
                for anorexia, cleansing blood, debility, digestive disorders, carcinoma, cirrhosis, constipation, fever, fleas, hyperglycemia, indigestion, leukemia, lice, liver disorders, malaria, parasites, scabies, snakebite, spasms, stimulating digestion, worms, and as a aphidicide and insecticide
                Turkey for diarrhea, digestive difficulty, dysentery, fever, malaria, urinary insufficiency and as an astringent and tonic
                United States. for alcoholism, anorexia, bowel cleansing, convalescence, debility, digestive disorders, fever, gallbladder problems, increasing saliva, intestinal parasites, lice, liver support, spasms, stimulating bile production, stimulating digestion, worms
                Venezuela for constipation, dysentery, fever, worms and as a tonic
                Elsewhere for amebic infections, bacterial infections, cancer, carcinoma, fever, liver disorders, malaria, snakebite, stimulating digestion, tumors, worms, and as an insecticide and tonic

                    The above text has been reprinted from The Healing Power of Rainforest Herbs, by Leslie Taylor. Published and copyrighted by Square One Publishers Inc., © 2005
                    All rights reserved. No part of this document may be reproduced or transmitted in any form or by any means, electronic or mechanical, including photocopying, recording, or by any information storage or retrieval system, including websites, without written permission.

                    A complete Technical Data Report is available for this plant.


                    † The statements contained herein have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. The information contained in this plant database file is intended for education, entertainment and information purposes only. This information is not intended to be used to diagnose, prescribe or replace proper medical care. The plant described herein is not intended to treat, cure, diagnose, mitigate or prevent any disease. Please refer to our Conditions of Use for using this plant database file and web site.

                    Referenced Quotes on Amargo

                    10. Quassia amara L. Simaroubaceae. "Amargo", "Cuasia", "Bitterwood". Insecticidal, tonic, for fever and hepatitis (RAR). Brazilians use the leaf tea in bathing for measles (BDS), a remedy that sounds a bit better than tea of ashes of dry white dog dung. Brazilians also wash the mouth with leaf tea after tooth extraction. Surinamese "Maroons" use the bark for fever and parasites (MJP). Potent aphidicide (MJP).

                    24. "EFFECTS: The amaroid drug (quassinoids) stimulates secretion of gastric juices, increases appetite and aids digestion. It may also have a choleretic effect.
                    Homeopathic Uses: Quassia amara is used for gallbladder complaints, as bitter tonic, purgative and as anthelmintic (for ascarid and threadworms).
                    Dosage: Quassia Wood is used in homeopathic dilutions and in commercial pharmaceutical preparations. Daily Dosage: 500 mg.


                    Third-Party Published Research on Amargo

                    All available third-party research on amargo be found at PubMed. A partial listing of the third-party published research on amargo is shown below:

                    Antimalarial Actions:
                    Mishra, K., et al. "Plasmodium falciparum: In vitro interaction of quassin and neo-quassin with artesunate, a hemisuccinate derivative of artemisinin." Exp. Parasitol. 2009 Dec 29.
                    Cachet, N., et al. "Antimalarial activity of simalikalactone E, a new quassinoid from Quassia amara L. (Simaroubaceae)." Antimicrob. Agents Chemother. 2009 Oct; 53(10): 4393-8.
                    Houel, E., et al. "Quassinoid constituents of Quassia amara L. leaf herbal tea. Impact on its antimalarial activity and cytotoxicity." J. Ethnopharmacol. 2009 Oct; 126(1): 114-8.
                    Bertani, S., et al. "Quassia amara L. (Simaroubaceae) leaf tea: Effect of the growing stage and desiccation status on the antimalarial activity of a traditional preparation." J. Ethnopharmacol. 2007 Apr 20; 111(1):40-2.
                    Bertani, S., et al. "Simalikalactone D is responsible for the antimalarial properties of an amazonian traditional remedy made with Quassia amara L. (Simaroubaceae)." J. Ethnopharmacol. 2006 Nov 3;108(1):155-7.
                    Vigneron, M., et al. “Antimalarial remedies in French Guiana: a knowledge attitudes and practices study.” J Ethnopharmacol. 2005 Apr; 98(3): 351-60.
                    Bertani, S., et al. “Evaluation of French Guiana traditional antimalarial remedies.” J. Ethnopharmacol. 2005 Apr; 98(1-2): 45-54.
                    Ajaiyeoba, E. O., et al. “In vivo antimalarial activities of Quassia amara and Quassia undulata plant extracts in mice.” J. Ethnopharmacol. 1999; 67(3): 321–25.
                    O’Neill, M. J., et al. “Plants as sources of antimalarial drugs: in vitro antimalarial activities of some quassinoids.” Antimicrob. Agents Chemother. 1986; 30(1): 101–4.
                    Trager, W., et al. “Antimalarial activity of quassinoids against chloroquine-resistant Plasmodium falciparum in vitro.Am. J. Trop. Med. Hyg. 1981; 30(3): 531–37.

                    Anti-amebic & Anti-parasitic Actions:
                    Ninci, M. E. “Prophylaxis and treatment of pediculosis [lice] with Quassia amarga.” Rev. Fac. Cien. Med. Univ. Nac. Cordoba 1991; 49(2): 27–31.
                    Wright, C. W., et al. “Use of microdilution to assess in vitro antiamoebic activities of Brucea javanica fruits, Simarouba amara stem, and a number of quassinoids.” Antimicrob. Agents Chemother. 1988; 32(11): 1725-9
                    Jensen, O. “Pediculosis capitis treated with Quassia tincture.” Acta. Derm. Venereol. 1978; 58(6): 557–59.
                    Jensen, O. “Treatment of head lice with Quassia tincture.” Ugeskr. Laeger. 1979; 141(4): 225–26.

                    Insecticidal & Larvicidal Actions:
                    Flores, G., et al. "Antifeedant activity of botanical crude extracts and their fractions on Bemisia tabaci (Homoptera: Aleyrodidae) adults: III. Quassia amara (Simaroubaceae)." Rev. Biol. Trop. 2008 Dec; 56(4): 2131-46.
                    Evans, D. A., et al. “Larvicidal efficacy of Quassin against Culex quinquefasciatus.” Indian J. Med. Res. 1991 Sep; 93: 324-7.
                    Evans, D. A., et al. “Extracts of Indian plants as mosquito larvicides.” Indian J. Med. Res. 1988; 88(1): 38–41.
                    Park, M. H., et al. “Acute insecticidal activity of quassin and its congeners against the American cockroach.” Chem. Pharm. Bull. 1987; 35(7): 3082-5.
                    Roark, R. C. “Some promising insecticidal plants.” Econ. Bot. 1947; 1: 437–45.

                    Anti-fertility Actions:
                    Parveen, S., et al. “A comprehensive evaluation of the reproductive toxicity of Quassia amara in male rats.” Reprod. Toxicol. 2003; 17(1): 45–50.
                    Raji, Y., et al. “Antifertility activity of Quassia amara in male rats - in vivo study.” Life Sci. 1997; 61(11): 1067-74.
                    Njar, V. C., et al. “Antifertility activity of Quassia amara: quassin inhibits the steroidogenesis in rat Leydig cells in vitro.” Planta Med. 1995 Apr; 61(2): 180-2.

                    Antimicrobial Actions:
                    Xu, Z., et al. “Anti-HIV agents 45(1) and antitumor agents 205. (2) Two new sesquiterpenes, leitneridanins A and B, andthe cytotoxic and anti-HIV principles from Leitneria floridana.” J. Nat. Prod. 2000; 63(12): 1712–15.
                    Abdel-Malek, S., et al. “Drug leads from the Kallawaya herbalists of Bolivia. 1. Background, rationale, protocol and anti-HIV activity.” J. Ethnopharmacol. 1996; 50: 157–66.
                    Ajaiyeoba, E.O., et al. “Antibacterial and antifungal activities of Quassia undulata and Quassia amara extracts in vitro.” Afr. J. Med. Med. Sci. 2003 Dec; 32(4): 353-6.
                    Apers, S., et al. “Antiviral activity of simalikalactone D, a quassinoid from Quassia africana.” Planta Med. 2002; 25(9): 1151–55.
                    Morre, D. J., et al. “Effect of the quassinoids glaucarubolone and simalikalactone D on growth of cells permanently infected with feline and human immunodeficiency viruses and on viral infections.” Life Sci. 1998; 62(3): 213-9.

                    Cytotoxic Actions:
                    Kupchan, S. M. “Quassimarin, a new antileukemic quassinoid from Quassia amara.” J. Org. Chem. 1976; 41(21): 3481–82.

                    Gastric & Anti-ulcer Actions:
                    Sugimoto, N., et al. “Analysis of constituents in Jamaica quassia extract, a natural bittering agent.” Shokuhin Eiseigaku Zasshi. 2003 Dec; 44(6): 328-31.
                    Toma, W., et al. “Antiulcerogenic activity of four extracts obtained from the bark wood of Quassia amara L. (Simaroubaceae).” Planta Med. 2002; 68(1): 20–24.
                    Garcia Gonzalez, M., et al. “Pharmacologic activity of the aqueous wood extract from Quassia amara (Simarubaceae) on albino rats and mice.” Rev. Biol. Trop. 1997; 44–45: 47–50.
                    Tada, H., et al. “Novel anti-ulcer agents and quassinoids.” U.S. patent no. 4,731,459. 1988.

                    Anti-inflammatory & Pain-relieving Actions:
                    Verma, N., et al. "Evaluation of inhibitory activities of plant extracts on production of LPS-stimulated pro-inflammatory mediators in J774 murine macrophages." Mol. Cell Biochem. 2009 Oct 8.
                    Toma, W., et al. “Evaluation of the analgesic and antiedematogenic activities of Quassia amara bark extract.” J. Ethnopharmacol. 2003; 85(1): 19–23.

                    Chemical Constituents Identified:
                    Tada, A., et al. "Examination of original plant of Jamaica quassia extract, a natural bittering agent, based on composition of the constituents." Shokuhin Eiseigaku Zasshi. 2009 Feb; 50(1): 16-21.

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                    Posts: 1,690

                    #4 [url]

                    Sep 24 10 3:06 AM

                    As mentioned in other posts, this is a work in progress and I have alot of other material to load. 

                    Anyhow someone sent me an email about Black Seed (black seed oil, nigella sativa, black cumin seed).   She gave me a link to curezone about someone with brain parasites .  

                    And please let me note about 'brain parasites', in my opinion there is so much bad information that floats around the internet especially when dealing with parasites.   There were those who posted information about these brain parasites that really does not have much solid background.  The only parasite I know of that can get in the brain is toxoplasmosis which is a protozoa parasite that is chiefly transmitted by cats.   In the book 'Parasite Rex' which incidentally is a fun read (not a technical manual, but more of a social perspective of parasites), the author talks about toxoplasmosis and its affect on mood and cognition.   I would also add that 'brain fog' is a common complaint of parasite sufferers in which there is good evidence to show that cytokine release is a key part of this and the oxidation caused by the immune reactions are more likely to blame. 
                    Anyhow back to post.  I have never read about preparing the seeds in this way, I am not sure where the idea came from.   But there is a lot of supporting evidence to show the effectivness of black seed, will it work for protozoa?  I think it is worth trying.  Well enough of my ranting, here is some literature about it. 

                    from Wikipedia:

                    Nigella sativa has been used for medicinal purposes for centuries, both as a herb and pressed into oil, in Asia, Middle East, and Africa. It has been traditionally used for a variety of conditions and treatments related to respiratory health, stomach and intestinal health, kidney and liver function, circulatory and immune system support, as analgesic, antiinflammatory, antiallergic, antioxidants, anticancer, antiviral and for general well-being.

                    The seeds have been traditionally used in the Middle East and Southeast Asian countries to treat ailments including asthma, bronchitis, rheumatism and related inflammatory diseases, to increase milk production in nursing mothers, to promote digestion and to fight parasitic infections. Its oil has been used to treat skin conditions such as eczema and boils and to treat cold symptoms. Its many uses have earned nigella the Arabic approbation 'Habbatul barakah', meaning the seed of blessing

                    There have been studies on it for the eradication of certain bacteria which is a good sign that it does have some anti-microbial effects.  Others report help with strengthening immune response, hormones etc. 

                    I do not know if the seeds are better than the oil or vice versa.   Please report if you have taken this so I may update the files. 

                    *Update:  I found this information about using caution with black seeds

                    Sep 22, 2009 Barbara Trejo
                    Black Seeds Precautions - wikimedia commonsThere are many articles on the benefits of Black Seed and Nigella Sativa, but very few articles on the precautions and side effects. This article will address both.
                    Black Seed, also known as Nigella Sativa and black cumin, has been called the "Blessed Seed" for its miraculous curing ability. The black seed has been called the greatest healing herb of all times by many doctors as it heals all diseases including cancers, diabetes, immune problems, eliminating the flu and colds, acne, muscular dystrophy, back aches, skin and stomach disorders and it increases longevity.
                    As with the flu remedy, the recommended dosage includes the use of garlic and olive leaf. Some dosage requirements suggest one teaspoon of oil compared to eating the regular seeds. Please note that the seeds are the Prophetic medicine, not the oils. The oils were not available 2000 years. So when Prophet Mohammad stated, "Use this seed often, as it is a cure for all except death." He meant seeds and not the oils.

                    The oils are concentrated and more and more people prefer the convenience of the oils, but they must be taken differently than the seeds. Black Seed although miraculous, with its many health benefits, still must have some precautions stated.

                    Side Effects of Black Seeds
                    There are no known side effects of this miraculous herb, but it is better to take caution here. Black Seed has been reported to be toxic in the amount of 25 grams or more. But who in the world would take that amount? The maximum dosage for any cure is 3 teaspoons per day. Some sites are telling people to take a large amount of the oil, to sell more products. Follow the suggested dosage requirements, and see that more is not necessary and more does not heal quicker.
                    Warnings of Black Seeds
                    Never take the oil on a full stomach. It needs to be mixed with another liquid such as juice, yogurt or honey and taken one hour before the meal. If taking the oil twice in a day, then the oil should be mixed with honey or juice and taken before bedtime.
                    If taking the seeds, they must be heated. Never take the seeds that have not been heated as they will upset the stomach.
                    How to Heat the Seeds
                    Place one fourth of the seeds in a skillet on low heat. Use only one fourth of the seeds in case the seeds are burned. Stir the seeds every few minutes and keep tasting the seeds until they loose their tart taste. The seeds must be bland. The seeds should pop slightly. Remove them from the heat and let them cool. Place the desired amount in a coffee grinder and grind. Place the desired seeds in vegetarian capsules or in honey.

                    How to Mix the Seeds with the Honey
                    Fill a pint jar with the ground black seeds and add in one fourth a jar of honey. Mix the honey and the black seeds well. Keep adding a little honey at a time until the honey and black seeds are mixed well. It needs to be a very thick consistency. The mixture will thicken more over night. It is very delicious and a sweet treat. Suggested dosage is one teaspoon a day. Do not give the honey mixture to diabetic patients.

                    Precautions for the Use of Black Seeds
                    1.It is not suggested for pregnant women to take black seeds.
                    2.If the patient has a major disease, they need to be monitored by a doctor as black seeds will cause your blood pressure to drop.
                    3.Never mix black seeds with pharmaceutical medicines. Some sites are stating the opposite, but it is not a Prophetic Cure when the "Blessed Seed" is mixed with another ingredient not prescribed by Prophet Mohammad.
                    4.The cure only works with faith and sincerity. Not believing in the cure is the same as not having a cure at all.

                    Black seed or Nigella Sativa is a cure and treatment for many illness, but only when the person follows the exact directions. No treatment will work with trying to combine it with other protocols. Look for the best quality seeds and prepare them as suggested.

                    Read more at Suite101: Precautions and Warnings for Black Seed: Know the Side Effects for the Blessed Herb, Nigella Sativa

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                    Posts: 1,690

                    #5 [url]

                    Sep 24 10 3:46 AM

                    This information is from and is credited to Dr. Leslie Taylor.   From The Healing Power of Rainforest Herbs:

                    I took a formula that was basically a black walnut type of formula but also contained wormseed.   I took it for sometime and noticed inflammation coming down which I attribute to something other than the black walnut formula since I had taken those previously.   The other ingredient that it had was lavendula or lavender which has show some antiprotozoa effects.   Might be looking at again.  

                    Note that it is used for both worm parasites and for amoebic (amebic, dysentery), so it is a 2 for 1 herb. 

                    (Chenopodium ambrosioides)

                    Main database Common name Botanical name Ethnic uses Conditions Actions

                    Family: Chenopodiaceae
                    Genus: Chenopodium
                    Species: ambrosioides
                    Synonyms: Ambrina ambrosioides, A. parvula, A. spathulata, Atriplex ambrosioides, Blitum ambrosioides, Chenopodium anthelminticum, C. integrifolium, C. spathulatum, C. suffruticosum
                    Common Names: Epazote, erva-de-santa maria, wormseed, apasote, chenopode, feuilles a vers, herbe a vers, meksika cayi, paico, pazote, semen contra, semin contra, simon contegras, mexican tea, american wormseed, jesuit’s tea, payco, paiku, paico, amush, camatai, cashua, amasamas, anserina, mastruco, mastruz, sie-sie, jerusalem tea, spanish tea, ambroisie du mexique, wurmsamen, hierba hormiguera

                    Parts Used: Leaf, whole plant, seed

                    Main Actions Other Actions Standard Dosage
                    expels worms
                     increases perspiration
                    kills parasites
                     increases urination

                     kills amebas
                     increases breast milk
                    mildly laxative
                     promotes menstruation
                    kills bacteria
                     stimulates digestion
                    prevents ulcers
                     calms nerves
                    repels insects
                     mildly sedative
                       heals wounds
                       kills cancer cells

                    Decoction: 1/2 cup once daily

                    Epazote is an annual herb that grows to about 1 m in height. It has multi-branched, reddish stems covered with small, sharply toothed leaves. Epazote bears numerous small yellow flowers in clusters along its stems. Following the flowers, it produces thousands of tiny black seeds in small fruit clusters. It is easily spread and re-grown from the numerous seeds it produces which is why some consider it an invasive weed. The whole plant gives off a strong and distinctive odor.
                    Epazote is native to Mexico and the tropical regions of Central and South America where it is commonly used as a culinary herb as well as a medicinal plant. It has been widely naturalized throughout the world and can be found growing in parts of the southern United States. In Brazil the plant's name is erva-de-santa-maria or mastruço; in Peru its called paico. It is known throughout Mexico and Latin America as epazote. The Siona name of this plant means worm remedy and here in America it is referred to as wormseed - both referring to it long history of use against intestinal worms.

                    In the Yucatan, indigenous Indian groups have long used epazote for intestinal parasites, asthma, excessive mucus, chorea (a type of rheumatic fever that affects the brain) and other nervous afflictions. The Tikuna Indians in the Amazon use it to expel intestinal worms and as a mild laxative. The Siona-Secoya and Kofán Indian tribes in South America also use epazote for intestinal worms (usually by taking one cup of a leaf decoction each morning before eating for three consecutive days). The Kofán Indians also use the plant as a perfume-tying it to their arm for an 'aromatic' bracelet. (However, most Americans consider the smell of the plant quite strong and objectionable - calling it skunk-weed!) Creoles use it as a worm remedy for children and a cold medicine for adults while the Wayãpi use the plant decoction for stomach upsets and internal hemorrhages caused by falls. In Piura a leaf decoction is used to expel intestinal gas, as a mild laxative, as an insecticide, and as a natural remedy for cramps, gout, hemorrhoids, intestinal worms and parasites and nervous disorders. Some indigenous tribes bathe in a decoction of epazote to reduce fever and will also throw a couple of freshly uprooted green plants onto their fires to drive mosquitoes and flies away.

                    In herbal medicine systems throughout Latin America epazote is a popular household remedy used to rid children and adults of intestinal parasites, worms and amebas. The plant is also used in cooking - it is said to prevent intestinal gas if the leaves are cooked and/or eaten with beans and other common gas-forming foods. The leaves and seeds of epazote have long been used in Central and South American medicine as a vermifuge (to expel intestinal worms). In Brazilian herbal medicine, it is considered an important remedy for worms (especially hookworms, round worms and tape worms) and is also used for coughs, asthma, bronchitis and other upper respiratory complaints; for angina, to relieve intestinal gas, to promote sweating and as a general digestive aid. It is used for similar conditions in Peruvian herbal medicine today. Local people in the Amazon region in Peru also soak the plant in water for several days and use it as a topical arthritis remedy. In other South American herbal medicine systems the plant is used for asthma, bronchitis, diarrhea, dysentery, and menstrual disorders. Externally it has been used as a wash for hemorrhoids, bruises, wounds, contusions and fractures.

                    The plant's ability to expel intestinal worms has been attributed to the essential oil of the seed and 'Oil of Chenopodium' has been used for several centuries worldwide as a worm remedy. The oil was once in the U.S. Pharmacopoeia as a drug used against amebas, roundworms and hookworms. The therapeutic dose of the essential oil however does have other toxic effects, therefore it fell from favor as an internal remedy many years ago. Intake of 10 mg of the oil has been known to cause cardiac disturbances, convulsions, respiratory disturbances, sleepiness, vomiting and weakness and even death.

                    PLANT CHEMICALS
                    Epazote is rich in chemicals called monoterpenes. The seed and fruit contain a large amount of essential oil which has a main active chemical in it called ascaridole. This chemical was first isolated in 1895 by a German pharmacist living in Brazil and it has been attributed with most of the vermifuge (worm-expelling) actions of the plant. Ascaridole has been also documented with sedative and pain-relieving properties as well as antifungal effects. Application of the oil topically was reported to effectively treat ringworm within 7-12 days in a clinical study with guinea pigs. In other in vitro clinical studies, ascaridole was documented with activity against a tropical parasite called Trypanosoma cruzi as well as strong anti-malarial and insecticidal actions.

                    The main chemicals found in epazote include alpha-pinene, aritasone, ascaridole, butyric-acid, d-camphor, essential oils, ferulic-acid, geraniol, l-pinocarvone, limonene, malic-acid, menthadiene, menthadiene hydroperoxides, methyl-salicylate, myrcene, p-cymene, p-cymol, safrole, saponins, spinasterol, tartaric-acid, terpinene, terpinyl-acetate, terpinyl-salicylate, triacontyl-alcohol, trimethylamine, urease, and vanillic-acid.

                    A decoction and infusion of the plant was analyzed in vitro to determine if they had toxic effects. At various concentrations the extracts caused cellular aberrations in the test tube, indicating possible toxic effects. However, in the 1970's the World Health Organization reported that a decoction of 20 g of leaves rapidly expelled parasites without any apparent side effects in humans. In 1996 extracts from the leaves of epazote were given to 72 children and adults with intestinal parasitic infections. A stool analysis was performed before and eight days after treatment. On average, an antiparasitic efficacy was seen in 56% of cases. With respect to the tested parasites, epazote leaf extract was 100% effective against the common intestinal parasites, Ancilostoma and Trichuris, and, 50% effective against Ascaris.

                    In a study in 2001, thirty children (ages 3-14 years) with intestinal roundworms were treated with epazote. Doses given were 1 ml of extract per kg of body weight for younger children (weighing less than 25 pounds), and 2 ml of extract per kg of body weight in older children. One dose was given daily on an empty stomach for three days. Stool examinations were conducted before and 15 days after treatment. Disappearance of the ascaris eggs occurred in 86.7%, while the parasitic burden decreased in 59.5%. In addition, this study also reported that epazote was 100% effective in eliminating the common human tapeworm (Hymenolepsis nana).

                    In other research epazote has been documented with toxic effects against snails. and was shown to have an in vitro toxic action against drug-resistant strains of Mycobacterium tuberculosis. In 2002, a U.S. patent was filed on a Chinese herbal combination containing epazote for the treatment of peptic ulcers. This combination (containing Chenopodium essential oil) was reported to inhibit stress-induced, as well as various chemical and bacteria-induced ulcer formation. The most recent research has documented the anticancerous and antitumorous properties of epazote. In one study an extract of the entire plant of epazote showed the ability to kill human liver cancer cells in the test tube. Another study reported that the essential oil of epazote (as well as its main chemical, ascaridole) showed strong antitumorous actions against numerous different cancerous tumor cells (including several multi-drug resistant tumor cell lines) in the test tube.

                    CURRENT PRACTICAL USES
                    Due to the toxicity of the essential oil (usually distilled from the seeds), the oil of this plant is no longer recommended for internal use. The leaves of the plant (containing smaller amounts of essential oil) is the preferred natural treatment for intestinal parasites in herbal medicine systems today throughout the world. It is best to find a source for only epazote leaves, as products sold as 'whole herb' can contain a significant amount of seeds (and resulting essential oil) depending on when it was harvested. For intestinal worms and parasites, most herbalists and practitioners recommend ½ cup of a standard leaf decoction taken in the morning on an empty stomach for three days in a row. On the fourth day, a mild laxative is given to evacuate the bowel (and the dead and dying parasites and worms). This is repeated two weeks later to address any worm eggs that may have survived and hatched.

                    EPAZOTE PLANT SUMMARY 
                    Main Preparation Method: infusion or capsules
                    Main Actions (in order):
                    antiparasitic, vermifuge (expels worms), insecticidal, digestive stimulant, hepatoprotective (liver protector)
                    Main Uses:
                    for intestinal worms and parasites
                    for skin parasites, lice, and ringworm
                    to tone, balance, and strengthen the liver (and for liver flukes and parasites)
                    to tone, balance, and strengthen the stomach and bowel ( and for acid reflux, intestinal gas, cramping, chronic constipation, hemorrhoids, etc)
                    for coughs, asthma, bronchitis, and other upper respiratory problems
                    Properties/Actions Documented by Research:
                    amebicide, antibacterial, anticancerous, antimalarial, antiparasitic, antitumorous, ascaricide (kills Ascaris parasitic worms), insecticidal, molluscicidal (kills snails), vermifuge (expels worms)
                    Other Properties/Actions Documented by Traditional Use:
                    analgesic (pain-reliever), antacid, anti-inflammatory, antihepatotoxic (liver detoxifier), antimicrobial, antiseptic, antispasmodic, antiulcer, carminative, contraceptive, diaphoretic (promotes sweating), digestive stimulant, diuretic, gastrototonic (tones, balances, strengthens), hepatoprotective (liver protector), laxative, lactagogue (promotes milk flow), menstrual stimulant, nervine (balances/calms nerves), sedative, tonic (tones, balances, strengthens overall body functions), wound healer
                    Cautions: It should not be used during pregnancy or while breast-feeding. Don't use essential oil internally.

                    Traditional Preparation:: For intestinal parasites: one-half cup of a leaf decoction once daily on an empty stomach for three days. A decoction of the leaves is employed (in ½ cup dosages) for menstrual, respiratory, and digestive problems on an as-needed basis.

                    The plant and essential oil should not be used during pregnancy and lactation. Not only does the plant have toxic activity, it has also been traditionally used to induce abortions.
                    While epazote has been used by indigenous tribes as a contraceptive, this use is not verified by clinical research (nor should it be relied on for such). However, the use of the plant is probably contraindicated for couples trying to get pregnant.
                    The oil of epazote is considered extremely toxic and should not be taken internally.
                    Drug Interactions: None known.

                    Belize for digestive problems, hangovers, intestinal gas, intestinal parasites, and as a sedative
                    Brazil for  angina, bacterial infections, bronchitis, bruises, circulation problems, colds, coughs, contusions, digestive sluggishness, dyspepsia, falls, flu, fractures, gastric disorders, hemorrhoids, hemorrhages, increasing perspiration, insomnia, intestinal gas, intestinal parasites, laryngitis, menstrual difficulties, palpitations, sinusitis, skin parasites, skin inflammation, skin ulceration, spasms, throat inflammation, tuberculosis, worms, wounds, and as an insect repellent and sedative
                    Ecuador for indigestion, intestinal gas, intestinal worms, slow digestion
                    Haiti for parasites, skin sores, stomachache, worms, and as an antiseptic
                    Mexico for colic, increasing perspiration, menstrual disorders, nerves, parasites, toothache, tumors, water retention, worms
                    Panama for asthma, dysentery, worms
                    Peru for abscesses, arthritis, birth control, blood cleansing, cholera, colic, contusions, cough, cramps, diabetes, diarrhea, digestive problems, dysentery, edema, excessive mucous, fractures, gastritis, gout, hemorrhoids, hysteria, increasing perspiration, intestinal gas, liver support, lung problems, memory, menstrual disorders, nervousness, numbness, pain, paralysis, parasites, pleurisy, rheumatism, skin disorders, spasms, stomach pain, tumors, urinary tract inflammation, urinary infections, vaginal discharge, vomiting, water retention, worms, wounds, and as an antacid and antiseptic, insect repellent, and sedative
                    Trinidad for amebic infections, asthma, childbirth, dysentery, dyspepsia, fatigue, fungal infections, lung problems, palpitations, sores, worms
                    Turkey for asthma, digestive problems, menstrual difficulties, nervous disorders, worms
                    United States for childbirth, increasing milk flow, menstrual disorders, nerves, pain, parasites, worms
                    Venezuela for aiding digestion, worms
                    Elsewhere for  amebic infections, anemia, appendicitis, arthritis, asthma, breathing difficulty, bug bites, childbirth, cholera, colds, colic, conjunctivitis, coughs, cramps, dyspepsia, dysentery, fatigue, fever, fungal infections, hookworms, increase perspiration, intestinal parasites, intestinal gas, intestinal ulceration, lactation aid, malaria, measles, menstrual irregularities, nervousness, neurosis, pains, palpitations, paralysis, rheumatism, roundworms, snakebite, stomach problems, spasms, tonic, tumor, water retention, worms, and as an antiseptic, insecticide, and sedative

                    The above text has been preprinted from The Healing Power of Rainforest Herbs by Leslie Taylor, copyrighted © 2005
                    All rights reserved. No part of this document may be reproduced or transmitted in any form or by any means, electronic or mechanical, including photocopying, recording, or by any information storage or retrieval system, including websites, without written permission.

                    † The statements contained herein have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. The information contained in this plant database file is intended for education, entertainment and information purposes only. This information is not intended to be used to diagnose, prescribe or replace proper medical care. The plant described herein is not intended to treat, cure, diagnose, mitigate or prevent any disease. Please refer to our Conditions of Use for using this plant database file and web site.

                    © Copyrighted 1996 to present by Raintree Nutrition, Inc., Carson City, NV 89701.
                    All rights reserved. Please read the Conditions of Use, Copyright Statement
                    and our Privacy Policy for this web page and web site.
                    Last updated 3-20-2010

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                    Posts: 1,690

                    #6 [url]

                    Nov 23 10 6:57 AM

                    Sweet Annie (artemesia annua - sweet wormwood)


                    I finally figured out the artmesia thingy ma gingy.   I now have learned that there are two different forms of artemesia:

                    1.  artemesia annua

                    2.  artemesia absinthium

                    I have always been worried about the toxic effects of wormwood which I now believe that this applies to absinthium and not annua (if any one knows differently, please let me know).   The once outlawed alcohol based drink Absinthe is made from artemesia absinthium and is known for its toxic properties. 

                    Anyhow artemesia annua is toxic to parasites and there was a post that someone was getting relief from drinking the tea (sweet annie tea), but it did not have lasting effects.   Perhaps it might be worth investigating this a bit further or adding to the mix.


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                    Posts: 1,690

                    #7 [url]

                    Nov 30 10 11:40 PM

                    Andrographis     I ran into a couple at Whole Foods who were telling me the benefits of andrographis for colds and flu, so I did a little research on this herbs and here is what I found::


                  • Traditionally used in ayurvedic medicine, andrographis paniculata is highly effective in boosting immune response. Andrographis has both anti-bacterial and anti-viral properties, so it is especially useful for treating patients who have secondary bacterial infections caused by viruses. For example, andrographis might be used by an MRSA patient who is HIV-positive or developed the infection after a cold. Additionally, andrographis is known to have strong anti-inflammatory effects and it may help to relieve pain, congestion and inflammation associated with MRSA infections. Andrographis work in synergy with other supplements, including echinacea and oil of oregano.


                    Effect of Andrographis on Lyme disease

                    There are evidences for curing other spirochetal infections such as Leptospirosis through treatment using herbs like Andrographis. Extract of this herb, in the form of an injection or tablets of the crude extract or of the isolated lactones, was reported to effectively treat leptospirosis. In one evaluation, 31 of 35 cases were said to be cured by the Andrographis lactones. There are people who had used Andrographis treating the Lyme disease (Andrographis is the best all around herb for Lyme!). [Caution: There could be allergic reactions. Read].

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                    #8 [url]

                    Oct 25 16 12:40 AM

                    Doxycycline is an antibiotic that is used in the treatment of a number of types of infections caused by bacteria and protozoa. It is useful for bacterial pneumonia, acne, chlamydia infections, early Lyme disease, cholera and syphilis. It is also useful for the treatment of malaria when used with quinine and for the prevention of malaria. Doxycycline can be used either by mouth or intravenously

                    Moderator: Thanks for posting Karls about doxy - I removed your link, we do not allow spam on this forum. 

                    Last Edited By: linenup Oct 27 16 12:21 AM. Edited 1 time.

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                    #9 [url]

                    Feb 7 17 6:31 AM

                    Message deleted - no spam allowed but if you want to contribute something for people who suffer, you are more than welcome. 

                    Last Edited By: linenup Feb 9 17 11:53 PM. Edited 1 time.

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