Health: Wellness Center
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  • Alder Buckthorn

    Alder Buckthorn: Main Image
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    Also indexed as:Buckthorn (Alder), Frangula, Rhamnus frangula
    Alder Buckthorn: Main Image© Martin Wall
    Common names:
    Buckthorn (Alder), Frangula
    Botanical names:
    Rhamnus frangula

    Parts Used & Where Grown

    Alder buckthorn is a tall shrub native to northern Europe. The bark of alder buckthorn is removed, cut into small pieces, and dried for one year before being used medicinally. Fresh bark has an emetic (vomit-inducing) property and is therefore not used.

    • Reliable and relatively consistent scientific data showing a substantial health benefit.
    • Contradictory, insufficient, or preliminary studies suggesting a health benefit or minimal health benefit.
    • For an herb, supported by traditional use but minimal or no scientific evidence. For a supplement, little scientific support.

    Our proprietary “Star-Rating” system was developed to help you easily understand the amount of scientific support behind each supplement in relation to a specific health condition. While there is no way to predict whether a vitamin, mineral, or herb will successfully treat or prevent associated health conditions, our unique ratings tell you how well these supplements are understood by the medical community, and whether studies have found them to be effective for other people.

    For over a decade, our team has combed through thousands of research articles published in reputable journals. To help you make educated decisions, and to better understand controversial or confusing supplements, our medical experts have digested the science into these three easy-to-follow ratings. We hope this provides you with a helpful resource to make informed decisions towards your health and well-being.

    This supplement has been used in connection with the following health conditions:

    Used for AmountWhy
    Constipation
    20 to 30 mg of anthraquinone glycosides (calculated as glucofrangulin A) per day2 stars[2 stars]
    Alder buckthorn is considered a stimulant laxative because it stimulates bowel muscle contractions.

    Traditional Use (May Not Be Supported by Scientific Studies)

    Alder buckthorn has been used as a cathartic laxative in northern and central Europe, including England, for centuries.1 Despite its decline in importance when the similar shrub Rhamnus purshiana or cascara sagrada was discovered in America,2 alder buckthorn is still used, particularly in Europe.

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    The information presented in Aisle7 is for informational purposes only. It is based on scientific studies (human, animal, or in vitro), clinical experience, or traditional usage as cited in each article. The results reported may not necessarily occur in all individuals. Self-treatment is not recommended for life-threatening conditions that require medical treatment under a doctor's care. For many of the conditions discussed, treatment with prescription or over the counter medication is also available. Consult your doctor, practitioner, and/or pharmacist for any health problem and before using any supplements or before making any changes in prescribed medications. Information expires June 2015.


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