Kudzu

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Biological Name: Pueraria lobataKudzu

Family: Leguminosae

Other Names: pueraria, Kudzu, kuzu, Ge-gen

Elements Applied: Roots are commonly applied in herbal medicine

Active Components: Kudzu is characterized by high content of isoflavone glycosides, like puerarin and daidzin, as well as isoflavones, like daidzein. Isoflavone concentration in Kudzu depends very much on its environmental conditions, and ranges from 2 to 12 percent, with puerarin accounting for the largest share, daidzein and daidzin following it.

History: Kudzu root has played a significant role in Chinese medicine, wherefrom its second name ge-gen comes. It was first described in ancient scripture by Shen Nong. Conventional Chinese herbalists prescribed kudzu root for conditions, associated with mild fevers, elevated arterial tension, headaches, and thirst. It was also used for diarrhea, acute measles in children, migraine headaches, and allergies. Contemporary Chinese homeopathists prescribe kudzu for angina pectoris.

Used For: The herb is known to induce perspiration, relieve spasms, provide muscle relaxation, and relieve fevers.

The range of conditions in which it’s applied includes: elevated arterial tension, angina, alcoholism.

Kudzu is beneficial for muscle spasms and tension, particularly those in shoulders and neck, eruptive skin conditions, like measles. It may be applied for fevers induced by influenza and colds, as well as for stiff shoulders and neck. It is characterized by demulcent capacity and can thus be applied for dryness and thirst. The herb is beneficial for a wide variety of conditions, from nervous deafness, colitis, to dysentery and high blood pressure. The flowers are characterized by their capacity to reduce alcohol craving, for which reason they are applied for alcoholism withdrawal symptoms.

Additional Info: Kudzu is a climbing, trailing plant which belongs to perennials. Its large root may reach the height of a human, and is applied in medical remedies by Chinese herbalists and modern homeopathists. Kudzu can be found in shadowy mountainous areas, thin woods, thickets, and at the road sides across China. There are several kudzu species which are applied in herbal medicine.

Preparation and Intake: The common dose is 9-15 grams a day.

Chinese herbalists prescribe kudzu standardized extracts (each pill is 10 mg, contains the root in a dose of 1.5 grams) for angina pectoris. The root is taken thrice per day, with the daily dose summing up to 30-120 mg thrice a day. In form of tincture Kudzu is used at a dose of 1-2 ml thrice per day.

Safety: Kudzu root should be avoided by people with excessive perspiration. Taken in quantities suggested above, the plant is generally safe and won’t produce any side effects on the body.