Goldenseal is an ancient perennial plant, native to the forested regions of Canada and the US. For a great number of Americans, goldenseal is the 1st plant that comes to mind when talking about herbs.
Currently, goldenseal is the 3rd most sold plant by volume. It is collected primarily from its natural habitat but in recent years this has been done extremely carefully since there is a risk of the precious plant going extinct.
History of Goldenseal
Goldenseal has long been used for medicine by Native Americans. Cherokees and other tribes would mix it with bear fat and use it as an insect repellant. They also used it to treat wounds, inflammation, ear pain, ulcers, stomach and liver diseases.
Goldenseal was brought to Europe in 1760. In the 19th century, the herb became a favorite for numerous doctors. At the beginning of the 20th century, goldenseal became the key component of the popular medicine called the "Golden Medical Discovery". Presently, the plant's popularity is threatened due to its disappearance as a species from the wild.
Composition of Goldenseal
Goldenseal is rich in the alkaloids canadine, berberine and hydrastine. It also contains essential oils, sugars, albumin and lignin.
Choosing and Storing Goldenseal
In most states, gathering goldenseal from its natural environment is illegal.
Medium altitude mountains meadows and agricultural areas at the edges of deciduous forests are suitable. The areas need to be humid but with well draining soils. Products with goldenseal can be bought from specialized stores.
Benefits of Goldenseal
Goldenseal is a potent natural antibiotic, which enters the bloodstream directly and gets rid of infections. It helps restore the liver and aids in the first signs of cold and flu.
Topically, goldenseal is used to treat acne, as a wash for the eyes, herpes, eczema, skin problems and pus sores. The roots of the plant are mainly used for medicinal purposes, for various problems and conditions.
Goldenseal is an excellent antibacterial agent, it destroys bacteria and viruses. Because of this it is incredibly effective against bacterial and viral infections.
When it comes to the circulatory system, the herb fortifies blood vessel walls and treats hemorrhoids. It controls excessive menstrual bleeding and bleeding after birth, as well as various menstrual disorders.
Goldenseal also has a positive effect on the digestive system. It is used for chronic large intestinal and rectal inflammation, colitis, dyspepsia, constipation, gastritis, peptic ulcers and loss of appetite. It reduces gastritis inflammation, increases digestive secretion.
Goldenseal stimulates the kidneys, aids in urinary tract infections, boosts the immune system. As far as the respiratory system, it is used for lung inflammation, infections.
The herb stimulates pancreatic function, aids spleen, lymphatic system and colon function.
Goldenseal is effective against nighttime sweating, alcoholism, vomiting and liver diseases. It alleviates rheumatic and muscle pains.
It's also used as a mouthwash with excellent antiseptic action for throat inflammation, tonsillitis, gum inflammation. Other uses are for vaginal washes during ovaritis and leukorrhea.
Dangers of Goldenseal
Extended use and large doses of goldenseal are not recommended. Elderly persons and children need to take small doses only.
Never use it during pregnancy. Taking raw goldenseal can lead to mucosal inflammation and the appearance of ulcers.See more