Scientific Name: Rhamnus purshiana, Rhamnaceae family
Common Names : Chittim wahoo, sacred bark, holy
bark, Persian bark, puchiana bark, Christ's thorn, bear
wood, California buckthorn, purchiana bark, and chittam bark.
Part used: Bark
Active Compounds: Aloe emodin Anthraglycosides, Anthraquinones, Barbaloin, Cascarosides A and B, Chrysaloin, Chysophanic acid, Emodin Fatty Acids, Frangulin factors, Glycosides Lipids, Resins, Rhamnetin Rhein, Tannins
Applications: Primary uses: chronic constipation, colitis
colon problems,digestive problems, gallbladder disorders, gallstones, gas, gout, hemorrhoids, intestinal problems, jaundice, liver problems, pancreas function, parasites. The anthraquinones have potent antibacterial properties. Cascara constituents act as chelating agents and are effective in the prevention of urinary stones.
Additional uses coughs, croup, diverticulitis, insomnia, nervous conditions, and pituitary gland disorders.
Colon cancer is a leading cause of death in the US. Diets high in saturated fats and low in fiber are a significant factor. Using cascara sagrada and consuming a diet of whole, unprocessed foods
may permanently solve chronic constipation and, consequently, improve health. Safe for use with hemorrhoids. Improves gallbladder, pancreas, and liver function: stimulates secretions of
liver, bile secretion, stomach, pancreas and lower bowel.
Used to calm the nerves and promote sleep.
Some of the anthraquionones found in Cascara sagrada
have remarkable anti-tumor activity.
The bark of the Cascara Sagrada is the desired portion of this plant. While it has been used in large doses to induce vomiting, its primary use is that of a laxative. It actively promotes peristalsis of the intestines. When used in prescribed dosages, it will typically produce a bowel movement within six to eight hours. Constipation is the only ailment that Cascara sagrada has been clinically proven to be effective against, however, there are claims that it will also provide relief for headaches, nausea, high blood pressure, irritable bowel syndrome, gall bladder, and yellow jaundice.
Northern California native Americans introduced this herb, which they called sacred bark, to 16th century Spanish explorers. Much milder in its laxative effect than buckthorn, it became popular in Europe as a treatment for constipation. Cascara has been an approved treatment for constipation in the U.S. Pharmacopoeia since 1890.
By the early 19th century it was used by other settlers of the Pacific Northwest.
It was officially described by 1805, and in 1877 Cascara sagrada was admitted to the
US Pharmacopoeia and is still included there as an
official medicine. A bitter fluid extract of Cascara sagrada was subsequently marketed to physicians by a drug company and that form was also exported to Europe in 1883.
Of Cascara sagrada The US Dispensatory recorded this -it often appears
to restore tone to the relaxed bowel and in this way produces a permanent
beneficial effect.; Small doses were taken to improve digestion.
It was used as a traditional folk medicine treatment for liver disorders.
Tincture of this herb have been used to discourage nail
biting and thumb sucking.
Dosage: Decoction: tea can be taken 30-60 drops in juice or water, 2-3 times daily for constipation.
Dosages of cascara for adults
Children and Elderly : 1/4 to 1/2 the normal adult dose.
Provide small doses, initially. Effects occur within 6-10 hours.
To be taken after meals or at bedtime.
Applications: Used in large doses to induce vomiting, its primarily use is as a laxative. It actively promotes peristalsis of the intestines. When used in prescribed dosages, it will typically produce a bowel movement within 6-8 hours. Constipation is the only ailment that Cascara Sagrada has been clinically proven to be effective against, but there are claims that it will also provide relief for headaches, nausea, high blood pressure, irritable bowel syndrome, gall bladder, and yellow jaundice. It is said to enhance gallbladder ducts function through an increase of bile secretion It is used to calm the nerves and promote sleep. Some of the anthraquionones found in Cascara Sagrada have remarkable anti-tumor activity. Cascara sagrada can help expel parasites, and it was a traditional folk medicine treatment for liver disorders.
It is not habit forming, as are many chemical laxatives, so is recommended for cases of chronic constipation.
A small, deciduous tree growing15-20 feet in height. It has pubescent stems covered with reddish-brown bark and sometimes grey lichen. Dark green elliptic to oblong-ovate leaves with prominent veins and toothed margins. Leaves are rounded at the base with somewhat hairy undersides. Short-stemmed clusters of small, greenish-white flowers grow from the upper leaf axils. The bark is collected in early spring and summer.
Safety: No toxicity found at recommended dosages.Pregnant women or nursing mothers should not use this herb as its laxitive effects can transfer. Not recommended for those with chronic diarrhea, irritable bowel syndrome or ulcers. Cascara sagrada and senna commonly cause yellow-brown urine, the presence of which is harmless. Unless prescribed by a health provider, children under the age of 12 should not use this herb.
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