Friday, December 29, 2006

The Alternative 'Ginseng'; Eleutherococcus senticosus

Personally, I like Ginseng but I do not like the price. The price seems to be prohibitive to many and the root is too hot for sensitive individuals. For some, they only need a little bit of nudge, not a full-fledged tractor pushing at them and this is when Siberian Ginseng comes in handy.

Perhaps the only herb that is termed as *adaptogen, Siberian Ginseng or Eleutherococcus senticosus, is almost as miraculous as Ginseng itself. Though milder in action, it occurs frequently in the wild in China, Russia, and Korea. This means it is cheaper too. The Chinese called this; Ci Wu Jia (刺五加) and they used to compare the action of this herb with Ginseng too.

Actually, Ginseng and Siberian Ginseng is two different species. The latter is not from the Panax genus but possesses the same properties a Ginseng does. It is mildly tonic in effect and it helps in fighting stress-induced fatigue. The Russians supplement Ci Wu Jia alongside with Ginseng to athletes, cosmonauts, and factory workers with good result. There is less stress onset symptoms, the most being depletion of adrenaline and corticosteroids. The herb delays the onset of symptoms by regulating the amount of hormone released into the blood stream.

In addition, Siberian Ginseng helps to increase general vitality, strength, endurance, and the ability to overcome the effects of long-term illness. It is used in preference to Ginseng Root, which might be too strong for some sensitive individuals. It “nourishes the adrenal glands, support liver metabolism, and increases energy and endurance against stress and pollution,” said the author of 'The one Earth herbal Sourcebook' by Alan Keith Tillotson in collaboration with his beloved, Nai-shing Hu Tillotson.

According to Farnsworth et al., 1989, Siberian Ginseng has the ability to “increase endurance and capacity to work by improving the ability of the liver and adrenals to regulate hormonal levels, dispose of lactic acid, and regulate blood sugar.

Usually, this is administered as 1:2 tincture; 30 drops three times a day or powdered extract; 500mg to 1000mg two to three times per day.

Quoting from 'The Ginseng Book' by Stephen Fulder, patients with 50% higher doses of anticancer drugs cope better with the consumption of concentrated Eleutherococcus extract daily, which resulted in a longer life. This is done at the famous Petrov Oncological Institure in Leningrad.

*adaptogen are strengthening herbs that bring balance back to the body. Works much like Le' Chartilier's principle. They combine both tonic and balancing properties.

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