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Eleuthero Root (Siberian Ginseng) Benefits and Side Effects

Eleuthero [Eleutherococcus senticosus] utilizes the plant’s root.  Modern research has shown that these herbs improve the body’s capacity to cope with stress, so they have become popular remedies for enhancing mental function and physical performance during times of overwork, fatigue, exhaustion or convalescence. Other known names are Ci wu ju, Shigoka Devil’s Shrub, Eleuthero, Ussurian Thorny Pepperbush, Touch-Me-Not, Russian Ginseng, and Wild Pepper.

Offering extra energy during stressful times, Siberian ginseng is recommended by herbalists as a stimulating herb for people who are tired and run-down, especially those affected by stress.  It is traditionally used to help rebuild energy levels during the recovery period following an illness, and may be beneficial for some sufferers of chronic fatigue syndrome when professionally prescribed.

Do not use these herbs if you are pregnant or breastfeeding.

Proper Dosage for Siberian Ginseng

Eleuthero Root the Ginseng from SiberiaTake commercially prepared Siberian ginseng tablets according to the manufacturer’s instructions (up to a maximum of 3 g per day) for a period of up to 6 weeks, followed by a 2-week break.

Eleuthero Root will help reduce fatigue, build stamina, and stimulate the immune system against stress..  It helps the body to resist infection during prolonged times of mental and physical stress, including athletes wanting to increase energy levels, performance, endurance and its stamina-building advantages.  It has been used as a sedative, and can relieve depression, helps Attention Deficit Disorder (ADD), concentration, improves memory and sensitivity to environmental pollution.  It might also offer help during chemotherapy, radiation side effects, and can help detoxify the liver.

Benefits and Uses of Eleuthero Root

Normalizing body functions, Eleuthero Root is useful during stressful or other situations that might alter those functions, helping the body to adapt and be back to its overall sense of well-being.  The herb contains active chemical components, eleutherosides, appearing to inhibit the stress response by reducing the activity of the adrenal cortex and is an immune system stimulant that is especially useful for preventing infection during times of intense physical activity.

It helps the liver to detox harmful toxins from radiation exposure.  In Russia, studies show that using Eleuthero Root removes the side effects from chemotherapy.  It also has been used to treat bone marrow suppression due to chemo or radiation therapy.

It is thought by some researchers that it increases the synthesis of the interferon drug, that boosts the activity of the immune system, interfering with every viral infection stage.  (Interferon is used for AIDS and Hepatitis C viral infections.)  It stimulates the activation of immune system components being the B- and T-cells that attack bacteria, offering usefulness in treating many types of infection.  It’s been successful treating bronchitis and chronic lung conditions.

It has been used in Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM), to remedy rheumatic disease and heart conditions.  Thought to reduce blood pressure and cholesterol, restore cardiovascular health, Eleuthero Root has been considered by herbalists.

Increasing circulation, Siberian Ginseng helps in restoring memory, concentration, and mental clarity, that might be weakened by less blood flow to the brain.

Eleuthero Root, by balancing serotonin, norepinephrine, dopamine, and epinephrine, aids these mood determining brain chemicals.

Siberian Ginseng may also be useful when the HPA (hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal axis) is depleted, having symptoms that include fatigue, stress, neurasthenia and sore muscles associated with the hypofunctioning of an underactive endocrine system.

Recent evidence suggests that Eleuthero Root may prove valuable in the long-term management of various diseases of the immune system, including HIV, chronic fatigue syndrome and other autoimmune illnesses.

In men, it appears to stimulate the body’s production of testosterone and may be helpful in increasing sex drive and fighting impotence.

Chinese healers believe that Siberian Ginseng is an herbal sedative and one of the best remedies for insomnia.

Eleuthero Side Effects and Contraindications

Men with prostate disorders should not use Eleuthero Root.  It contains compounds that might stimulate testosterone production.  Pregnant and nursing women may use it but should avoid products that also contain Panax Ginseng.  If persons take digoxin (Lanoxin or Lanoxicaps) for cardiac arrhythmia or congestive heart failure, they should consult their healthcare professional before taking this herbal supplement.  Do not take Ginseng if you suffer from hypertension.  Rare side effects have been reported including insomnia, drowsiness, tachycardia, headache, nervousness, and hypoglycemia.

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  • Eleutherococcus senticosus is not Siberian Ginseng, although it is believed to have similar properties. In the United States, it is illegal to call Eleutherococcus senticosus ginseng []. Only plants in the panax family are actually ginseng. If you want to be respected, you should avoid such errors.

    I grant you, Eleutherococcus senticosus is a mouthful and doesn’t seem to have a simple common name. Why not call it Siberian Aralia?

    Rhea Barron

    May 30, 2014

  • Thank you for the feedback. Actually Eleuthro is the easy short name for Eleuthococcus Stenicosus but early in it’s time in the united states before a series of major lawsuits made it illegal it was known as Siberian ginseng and it is still more popularly known by that name even today.


    June 2, 2014

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