Turkey Rhubarb Root Extract

Veterinarian Reviewed on June 14, 2012 by Paulina Nelega, RH
Posted in Uncategorized

Turkey Rhubarb Root Extract (Rheum Palmatum)

The Rhubarb root occurs in trade and commerce under various names depending on the routes by which the herb was formerly transported to European markets. But the geographical origin, uses and properties of all the species are just the same. Turkey Rhubarb is native to the mountains of western China and Tibet.


The Turkey Rhubarb Root is thick and oval shaped. It has several branches that are tapering. Internally the root is a deep yellow color and externally it is brown. The roots produce a sweet potato yam scent when burned. It is readily available from many herbalists or can be grown in the garden too. It is said that the Turkey Rhubarb root extract can also be used for incense. The root needs to be harvested in the early spring after 4 to 6 years of growth. The Turkey Rhubarb Root needs to be fully dried to remove excess moisture, which can cause fungus or attract other parasites.

History and Origin

The Turkey Rhubarb Root extract has been in use for at least the past four millennia. It originated in the northwestern areas of Tibet and China, where it grows well in the slopes and valleys at elevations of 5,000 to 13,000 feet. For the proper development of roots, a neutral or acidic soil is needed. It was originally established in Europe during the Renaissance period. It became a cure in Persia and Arabia and was used by physicians to effectively treat cholera.

Ancient Uses

The Turkey Rhubarb Root has been used for more than two thousand years as a mild and powerful laxative. It helps to empty the intestines and relieve constipation by helping to create easy bowel movements. The anthraquinone glycosides that are found in the Turkey Rhubarb Root extract produce a purging action that help treat chronic constipation. Frequent and loose motions are common upon its consumption. It was used for children too as it has a mild action and helped to treat anal fissures.

Modern Uses

The Turkey Rhubarb Root is commonly used today as an astringent as it helps to treat problems such as internal bleeding and hemorrhoids. The tannin present in the Turkey Rhubarb Root extract supersedes the anthraquinone activity thereby lowering a person’s chances of having dehydration during a bout of diarrhea. It provides relief against inflamed mucous. The Rhubarb root extract is considered stomachic and provides relieve against gastric disorders and gives tone and strength to the stomach. It helps release toxins by improving the functioning of the liver and gallbladder. It encourages the flow of bile. The Turkey Rhubarb Root extract is an anti-microbial which is also capable of treating pinworms, threadworms and ringworms.

Side Effects

Pregnant and nursing women are advised not to consume the Turkey Rhubarb root extract. People suffering from Colitis and intestinal obstruction should also avoid the consumption of this extract. Long-term use can cause dependence and a tendency to develop chronic constipation. The Rhubarb leaves should not be consumed, as they are extremely toxic in nature. People with a history of kidney stones should also avoid consumption of the Turkey Rhubarb Root extract.

Read also: Astragalus Root Extract

Our Expert

Paulina Nelega, RH
Paulina Nelega, RH, has been in private practice as a Clinical Herbalist for over 15 years. She has developed and taught courses in herbal medicine, and her articles on health have appeared in numerous publications. She is very passionate about the healing power of nature. Ask Dr. Jan

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