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Goldenseal belongs in the buttercup family, Ranunculaceae, and is native to the northeastern parts of the United States and the southeastern parts of Canada. It is one of the most harvested wild flowers in the U.S. and was listed as an endangered species in 1991. In 1997, it was listed on Appendix II of the Convention of International Trade in Endangered Species (CITES).
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Benefits of Drinking Goldenseal Tea
The yellow-green root of this remarkable plant signifies its use in treating infections. Goldenseal tea contains berberine, an alkaloid, which has been extensively studied for its antibiotic activity. It has been found to be effective against streptococcus, staphylococcus, E. coli, salmonella, and candida albicans (yeast). It is used to treat respiratory infections (including strep throat), intestinal infections, bladder infections, and yeast infections. Goldenseal tea also helps boost the immune system so infections can be prevented.
In China, berberine is used as a herbal remedy to combat the depression of white blood cells following chemotherapy and radiation therapy. Goldenseal is also beneficial to the cardiovascular system by lowering "bad" cholesterol (LDL) and triglycerides and studies suggest it may have the potential to treat brain tumors and skin cancer.
Other benefits of goldenseal tea include:
- treating indigestion, chronic gas, and diarrhea (including traveler's diarrhea and diarrhea suffered by individuals with AIDS)
- curing and preventing night sweats
- stimulating appetite
- treating liver problems in alcoholics
- improving the digestion of fat
- detoxifying the body
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Preparing Goldenseal Tea
Pour 1 cup of boiling water over 2 teaspoons of dried goldenseal herb, cover, steep for 5-10 minutes, and strain.
You can also get the benefits of goldenseal tea by using it as an eye wash for eye infections and irritations, applying it topically to disinfect cuts and scraps, gargling with it to soothe and treat a sore throat, or using it as a mouthwash to get rid of canker sores.
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Image courtesy of http://www.flickr.com/photos/kjrob/3262539966/
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