American Herbal Medicine ⑤ Astragalus Could Be Used With Other Herbs Or Foods

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△Astragalus has been used in the US with other herbs for various benefits. imageⓒshutterstock_JUNG EUNKYOUNG

It Helps Enhance Immune System and Reducing Swollenness, and Uncomfortable Symptoms of Chemotherapy

By Dae Sun Hong, L.Ac.

Many acupuncture practitioners are unfamiliar with the fact that Astragalus has been commonly used with Western herbs and works great as much as it is used with Asian herbal medicinal herbs. Astragalus has been used and matched with other herbs and food. As it is used with other herbs or food, it boosts the benefits of the other herbs and food. The synergy effects of Astragalus make the herbs get more popular.

Herbs from Asian medicine and Ayurveda have been widely accepted since the 1980s, and herbs that have been proven their safety and efficacy from the East have been accepted. Especially breaking out COVID-19 and accelerating of spreading natural medicine under the circumstances that there was no way to cure the virus or vaccine.

The herbal supplement market has changed rapidly from the conventional concept. This is why acupuncturists need to pay more attention to the general population’s interest in the herbs we are using.

 

Benefits

  • NIH defines Astragalus as being used for centuries in traditional Asian medicine in combination with other herbs.
  • Its root is used for health care purposes.
  • Commonly combined with other herbs, Astragalus has been promoted as a dietary supplement for many conditions, including upper respiratory infections, allergic rhinitis (hay fever), asthma, chronic fatigue syndrome, and chronic kidney disease, among others. It’s also promoted to strengthen and regulate the immune system. Topical use (application to the skin) of Astragalus is promoted for improving blood flow and speeding up wound healing.

As we all know, Astragalus enhances the immune system and the function of the lungs and spleen and warms the body. In China, the herb has been used to treat chronic hepatitis and certain cancer type.

 

Astragalus with herbal combination

Astragalus with Fang Feng has been used to cure or prevent the common cold of the old and the weak. Astragalus and Fang Feng suppress the activity of the cold virus and reserve the healthy qi.

Astragalus could be used for preventative purposes with the Golden seal. The combination of Astragalus and Golden seal could be applied to nausea, loss of appetite, and insomnia after chemotherapy. The combination is a good substitute for patients who cannot digest restorative formula after the therapy.

Spontaneous sweating is also an indication of Astragalus. Sheng Ma (Black Cohosh) could be added for a stronger treatment effect for spontaneous sweating. The combination boosts and restores a patient’s energy after surgery.

When mixed with CBD, the herb could help psychological symptoms such as anxiety, PTSD, Obsessive Compulsive Diorder, OCD, and delusional disorder.

 

Food Therapy

Food therapy is based on the Asian medicinal theory. Astragalus is one of the most popular ingredients in any food therapy. Ingredients are selected by their characteristics, such as cold, warm, savory, and sour, like formulating herbal formulas. Also, bioavailability is another factor in choosing ingredients for any food therapy dish. For example, Tumeric could be absorbed more with the help of black pepper.

Wikipedia introduces another food therapy. Samgye-tang or ginseng chicken soup, meaning ginseng – chicken – soup in Korean, consists primarily of a whole young chicken filled with garlic, rice, jujube, and ginseng. Astragalus could substitute ginseng or be used together. Samgye-tang is a traditional Korean soup for maintaining health and represents summer health food to preserve qi under sweaty and hot weather. Ginseng and Astragalus both have warm characteristics and help prevent coldness in the digestive tract due to excessive consumption of cold drinks during summer.

Generally, Astragalus is considered safe, but it could be used cautiously for one who is on an immunosuppressant or diabetic medicine to lower glucose levels to prevent excessively lowering glucose levels after taking the herb.