Among the many gems of Chinese medicine is the astralagus root, which is also known as huang qi in Chinese. The astralagus plant is harvested particularly for its roots as it is known to have numerous medicinal properties. As a matter of fact, this root has been used in Chinese medicine for centuries, and Western herbalists are only now getting acquainted to its many amazing benefits.
The plant is slender and often described as flowing and graceful, while the roots are white when they are freshly dug up. As they dry, they take on a yellow hue. The astralagus plants are typically native to China, Mongolia, and Korea and grow well in the northern and eastern parts of China.
Ancient Chinese texts describe how the efficacy of the astralagus root is enhanced when combined with other herbs and medicines. The benefits are many, but the main reason why the astralagus root is consumed is because it positively impacts the immune system.
According to traditional Chinese medicine, the astralagus root is good for problems that arise in the body because of spleen deficiencies. However, here’s a look at some of the other ways in which it can benefit us:
- Astralagus root has been used since time immemorial to infuse the body with energy, gain more strength, and enhance metabolism. Moreover, it has been credited with making the immune system stronger as well.
- People suffering from night sweats seem to have benefited from the astralagus root. It also helps keep away colds and prevents diarrhea, thus making it an overall excellent medicine.
- Wounds and injuries seem to heal faster when astralagus root is mixed in with the medicine and consumed.
- Some of the other functions performed by the astralagus root include improving lung function, bettering the health of the adrenal glands and the gastrointestinal tract, and reducing fatigue greatly.
- There has been some research conducted on the effects of astralagus root, which shows that it can reduce some of the severity of atopic dermatitis and even asthma. However, these studies have mostly been conducted on rodents, and human trials haven’t yet been performed to ensure the accuracy of these claims. Nevertheless, there is plenty of hope with the astralagus root.
Research on the benefits of the astralagus root has been conducted in China extensively, but it hasn’t been corroborated as yet by Western medical practitioners. Despite some skepticism on this subject, it’s good to know that the astralagus root is being used for the following health problems as well:
- Astralagus can help control the hazardous effects of chemotherapy, which is the standard procedure to kill cancerous cells. These studies have also claimed that astralagus root induces the production of interferon, an important chemical of the immune system which also helps fight cancer.
- Some studies have indicated that astralagus can be used in the fight against AIDS. It is also known to be helpful against lupus and can even prevent aging.
- Clinical studies in China have shown that astralagus root can be used to treat chronic aplastic anemia. The results were indeed very favorable.
- The astralagus root is mainly composed of polysaccharides, which have some beneficial effects on insulin resistance and hyperglycemia.
- There are some studies that have shown that the astralagus root can protect the heart tissue and prevent heart failure as well.
- In some cases, the astralagus root can act as a diuretic and be of great help to those suffering from kidney problems.
- The astragalus root contains cycloastragenols and astragalosides, two powerful molecules that have been shown to activate telomerase enzyme production.
All these studies have claimed that there are no side effects on humans. However, the results of these studies have mostly been published in obscure journals in the Far East, and the promises of the efficacy of this root haven’t yet breached Western barriers. Nevertheless, the astralagus root appears to be a wonder herb, and much is to be said for all these studies that have been conducted by Chinese scientists.
Typically, astralagus is completely safe and non-toxic and does not have any side effects. However, when taken along with certain other medications, there may be some complications because of the interaction of Astralgus with the drug. Also, the astralagus root can increase the effects of immune system suppressants, anticoagulants and hypoglycemic agents, so it’s better to consult a doctor before taking astralagus root.
The astralagus root is available in many forms that have been made convenient for easy consumption. There are capsules, extracts, and powders which are easily available online and in the market. A tincture of the astralagus root is also available, while it can even be used topically for the skin. Meanwhile, the actual root can also be used in different ways to derive the maximum benefits and effects.