Thursday, September 9, 2010
As the cold and flu season nears, it's a good thing to have a bottle of Astragalus in your medicine cabinet. Astragalus has been used for thousands of years in the traditional Chinese medicine to help the body fight disease. It is adaptogenic, meaning it helps the body fight against physical, mental and emotional stress. Because it supports and protects the immune system, it is used to prevent colds and flu.
Astragalus contains antioxidants, which protect our cells against the damage caused by free radicals. It has antibacterial and anti-inflammatory properties and is sometimes used topically for wounds as well. Its antiviral properties have been studied and it has been found effective against colds. Very good news for us as we now have an effective alternative for drugs!
Astragalus can be given to children to support their immune systems. I give my kids 1/3 of the adult dosage and I follow the dosage on the bottle. I use this herb when the children start complaining about throat hurting or at the first sign of sniffles. I break open the capsule (just 1), mix in with yogurt, in it goes and they are none the wiser. Traditional Chinese medicine warns against giving Astragalus to children with fever because it can make the fever last longer or perhaps make it even stronger.
I have used Astragalus many times when I feel the first signs of trouble and I honestly feel it has helped me remain in good health. As with anything else, you need to watch your reaction to this herb and discontinue use if you spot any signs of trouble. You can purchase Astragalus at your local health store or grocery store like HEB.