Health Effects of Eleuthero Root
Eleuthero root has been used to increase energy and immunity for generations in Korea, China, Japan and parts of Russia. While you might hear eleuthero called Siberian ginseng because of its similar properties, it's actually not related to common ginseng. As a so-called adaptogenic herb, eleuthero has diverse health benefits as it helps the body adapt to environmental and internal stress.
Boosted Energy and Reduced Fatigue
Many of the medicinal uses of eleuthero center on its stimulant properties, which help users recover from exhaustion. Animal research published in the Journal of Ethnopharmacology found that during intense exercise, eleuthero may reduce fatigue by helping the body use fat more efficiently and lower levels of blood urea nitrogen and lactic acid.
These effects may have implications for athletes. A small study reported in the Chinese Journal of Pharmacology found that a daily dose of 800 mg of eleuthero root for eight weeks improved blood pressure and flow as well as performance, metabolism and energy during recreational exercise. Study participants had a 3% higher heart rate, 12% higher peak oxygen saturation and 23% longer endurance time.
Relief From Cold Symptoms
A study published in the journal Phytotherapy Research looked at the impact of the herb Andrographis along with eleuthero for children with cold symptoms. Researchers found that those who received treatment with this combination early in the course of the cold had less severe symptoms of shorter duration than children in the control group. Additional studies have replicated this effect with symptoms of the flu and pneumonia.
Better Blood Glucose and Cholesterol Control
Research has associated eleuthero root with improved blood glucose levels for individuals who have type 2 diabetes. A study in the International Journal of Clinical Nutrition linked 480 mg of eleuthero root to lower fasting and post-meal blood glucose among study participants with type 2 diabetes.
In addition, a study in the journal Biochemical and Biophysical Research Communications looked at the impact of calcium and eleuthero for postmenopausal women who had high cholesterol. These researchers found that the women who took the calcium with eleuthero showed reduced oxidative stress and LDL cholesterol compared with the women who took only calcium.
Promotion of Wound and Nerve Healing
Antibacterial and anti-inflammatory properties in eleuthero root may help ulcers and wounds heal more quickly. Some research also shows that this supplement prevents ulcers from forming in individuals who have type 2 diabetes and decreases peripheral neuropathy pain associated with the disease. Animal studies have linked eleuthero with the regeneration of damaged nerves.
Enhanced Bone Health
Eleuthero has been used to promote bone and muscle strength in traditional Asian medicine for thousands of years. Much more recently, Korean researchers found that a combination of Chinese foxglove, Panax ginseng and eleuthero reduced pain and improved mobility for participants with osteoarthritis. While we still need more research, a 2013 study in the journal Molecules found that rodents displayed nearly a 17% increase in bone density after a daily regimen of 800 mg of eleuthero for eight weeks.
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