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Isatis Indigota Root

Veterinarian Reviewed on June 20, 2012 by Paulina Nelega, RH
Posted in Uncategorized

Isatis Indigota Root


Isatis indigota root is also known as Qing Dai or Ban Lan Gen in traditional Chinese medicine. It is called an Indigo plant in western medicine and has been known to have therapeutic effects and immune system stimulating functions.

The herb Isatis indigota is used for the many beneficial effects that it offers; but the Isatis indigota root is one of the most popular parts of the whole plant. It is mainly used as a bulk herb to be used in a variety of teas and tinctures. In traditional Chinese medicine, the Isatis indigota root is thought to influence the heart, lung and the stomach.

History and Origin

The Isatis indigota is known to have numerous therapeutic properties and the Isatis indigota root is just one of the many parts of the plant that is utilized. Ancient Chinese medicine believed that the human body must achieve proper balance and alignment to be able to live well. Isatis indigota root is just one of the many herbs used and when combined with many other traditional herbs to form herbal formulas it can treat a wide variety of ailments.

Ancient Uses

During ancient times, the Chinese were the first to use Isatis indigota plant for its therapeutic properties. It is thought to influence the heart, the lungs and the organs of the gastrointestinal system in humans. Thus, taking teas and herbal preparations made from Isatis indigota root were used to treat illnesses of the upper respiratory tract, to improve cardiac function and also to relieve many illnesses of the gastrointestinal system such as stomach aches, indigestion, bloating, etc.

Modern Uses

There is little change in the use of Isatis indigota root in modern times. It is still combined with other herbs to form herbal formulas to treat illness of the heart, lung and stomach. It is used as a bulk herb, meaning the roots, stems and leaves are prepared, cleaned and chopped into tiny pieces. These are used for teas or soups. Extracts of the Isatis indigota root is used to treat minor gastrointestinal illnesses and help promote balance of the various body systems ultimately gaining health and wellness.
The way Isatis indigota root is harvested and prepared has changed a lot throughout the centuries. Shorter harvesting time and preparation of this herb is now done plus the application of new scientific knowledge to dry and process the Isatis indigota root into fine powder for teas, extracts and supplements are now possible. These are done to enhance the beneficial healing properties of the herb, as well as to decrease the overall toxicity of this herb.

Side Effects

It is important to seek medical advice in the use of Isatis indigota root supplements and herbal preparations. There may be a lot of therapeutic effects that this herb offers but it is still best to consult your doctor or herbalist regarding any adverse effects with any medications you may be currently taking for other ailments.
Isatis indigota root is never prescribed for pregnant and breastfeeding women. It is not advised as a remedy for illnesses of very young children and babies. Learn all about herbs and their therapeutic effects before using and seek consultation before starting any herbal remedy.

Read also: Sleep Problems in Children

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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