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'What's in the soup?' - Health-giving Astragalus root


Last updated 1/11/2007 at Noon

Astragalus root is a Chinese herb that has been used for centuries to give long-term immune support. Now a popular herb in the US, the MD Anderson Cancer Clinic found that chemotherapy patients required less treatment and recovered quicker when astragalus was added. Astragalus is safe to use daily for long-term immune enhancement.

To use, thinly slice five-year-old roots into ½” by 2” strips. After 45 minutes of boiling, they can be used as an herbal tea (warm or cold) and can be added to other herbal teas. Placing these strips into soups, beans, rice, stews and pasta sauces may also make it easier to include them in daily meals.

Rocky Peak Farms (the Peak) at 936 South Main Avenue puts astragalus roots into the soups they serve every day. It is more effective if taken daily. They also sell fresh dried organic astragalus ready to be used. Taken over a period of time, astragalus will positively affect the bone marrow to produce more white blood cells (immune cells), which help fight off colds and flu. It will also help lymphatic tissue to form.

For people who have circulation problems, astragalus can help in blood circulation to the skin and heart. It has also shown to be of benefit in the prevention of hepatitis.

Astragalus is known as a “Superior Herb” that is non-toxic and can be taken daily as a tonic to lower blood pressure via vasodialation. It can also help to reduce fatigue and strengthen digestion.

The herb is a kidney tonic for kidney infections. It helps with edema and enhances lung function. However, astragalus is not recommended when a high fever is involved.

Next time when bringing water to a boil for that soup, sauce, rice casserole, bean chili or exotic pasta dish, drop in a couple of small astragalus roots. Astragalus has no unpleasant taste and is considered ‘healthy eating.’

This information was derived from various herb sources, including Steven Schechter, ND, Natural Healing Institute. Individuals should always refer to their primary healthcare providers for all health needs.


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