Goldenseal is a Native American medicinal plant that was introduced to early settlers by Cherokee Indians. It is grown in Canada and Eastern US. To this day, goldenseal is utilized for its ability to protect the body in more ways than one. Here are 5 critical goldenseal benefits that can make the difference in your life, especially during the winter.
Goldenseal grows in moist forest soils or damp meadows. It is also commonly referred to as the ox-eye daisy, golden daisy, maudlinwort, moon daisy, eye balm, yellow root, orange root, yellow puccoon, eye root and ground raspberry.
The major active components of goldenseal are berberine and beta-hydrastine, which bear antimicrobial and astringent properties, respectively. Other active alkaloids include tetrahydroberberastine, canadaline, berberine, hydrastine, and canadine, all of which contribute to its medicinal effects.
The winter season often invites illness and makes our bodies more susceptible to bacteria, viruses and other predators. To prevent sickness and fight off what you may already have, goldenseal is a necessary component of your at-home apothecary. Here are 5 goldenseal benefits that can save the day (and the season):
1. Boost Immunity
Goldenseal is popularly used to boost the body’s immunity. Often, it is paired with echinacea in certain cold and flu-fighting formulas. Goldenseal has shown the ability to enhance immune function by increasing antigen-specific immunoglobulin production.
2. Fight bacteria
In a synergistic effort among goldenseal’s flavonoids, the medicinal plant exhibits a powerful antimicrobial ability. Goldenseal fights bacteria, viruses, fungi, protozoans, helminthes and chlamydia. It is also referred to as a natural antibiotic. Clinically, berberine itself is used as a treatment for bacterial diarrhea, wounds and sores, intestinal parasite infections and ocular trachoma infections.
3. Prevent Cancer
According to researchers, goldenseal may inhibit the growth and multiplication of cancer cells.
4. Protect the Liver
Goldenseal has shown to bear hepatoprotective effects, meaning that it has the ability to protect the liver and prevent it from failing. This comes in handy the day after a night of debauchery or, in some cases, an accidental overdose.
5. Lower Cholesterol
Berberine is already considered a unique cholesterol-lowering alkaloid. However, goldenseal, which contains berberine among other alkaloids, may be better at fighting cholesterol than isolated berberine itself. Due to its highly multiple bioactive components, goldenseal has shown to lower LDL (bad) cholesterol and plasma cholesterol more effectively.
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Photo Credit: Forest Farming