Astragalus Beneficial in Patients with Seasonal Allergic Rhinitis Greensboro NC

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Janice J Hessling, MD
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Elliott W Stevens Jr, MD
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Roselyn Marie Hicks, MD
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Eugene Shaner LeBauer
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Roselyn Marie Hicks
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Teresa S Bratton, MD
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John Joseph Zieminski, MD
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Astragalus Beneficial in Patients with Seasonal Allergic Rhinitis

Astragalus Beneficial in Patients with Seasonal Allergic Rhinitis.
Date: Thursday, June 18, 2009
Source: Phyother Res
Related Monographs: Allergies, Astragalus
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Hay fever (Allergic rhinitis) and conjunctivitis, (inflammation of the eyelid) are the most common manifestations of allergic reactions. Seasonal allergic rhinitis is caused by an allergic reaction to pollens and spores which are carried by the wind. Some of these sources would be ragweed, grass pollen, tree pollen and fungus.  In addition to individual sensitivity and geographic differences in local plant populations, the amount of pollen in the air can be a factor in whether hay fever symptoms develop. Hot, dry, windy days are more likely to have increased amounts of pollen in the air than cool, damp, rainy days when most pollen is washed to the ground. Symptoms of allergic rhinitis resemble a cold, but they are not caused by a virus. When you inhale an allergen, your immune system springs into action, releasing substances known as IgEs into your nasal passages, along with inflammatory chemicals such as histamines. Your nose, sinuses, or eyes may become itchy and congested. Scientists aren't sure what causes your immune system to overreact to an allergen.

Astragalus is a plant native to Asia and has been valued by the Chinese for centuries for its immune-enhancing and adaptogenic properties. As an adaptogen, it may modify and improve the body's response to stress through action on the adrenal cortex. Experiments have reported that astragalus promotes regeneration of cells in the bronchi after viral infection. Astragalus can be safely taken for months without the risk of suppressing immunologic function. It is often used as a gentle and effective remedy for seasonal hay fever and other allergies.

Researchers at the Clinical Hospital Dubrava in Zagreb, Croatia investigated the efficacy and safety of astragalus in patients suffering with seasonal allergic rhinitis (SAR). Astragalus membranaceus is an active component of an herbal and mineral complex (HMC) which is registered in Croatia as a food supplement. The double-blind, placebo-controlled trial involved 48 patients with moderate to severe SAR. The results of the 6-week trial were that HMC significantly decreased allergy symptoms and improved quality of life in comparison to the placebo group. The authors concluded that HMC was therapeutically effective and safe in treating patients with SAR and should be further tested in larger, multicentre trials with an increased number of patients.1  

1 Matkovic Z, Zivkovic V, Korica M, et al. Efficacy and safety of Astagalus membranaceus in the treatment of patients with seasonal allergic rhinitis. Phytother Res. Jun2009.

This information is educational in context and is not to be used to diagnose, treat or cure any disease. Please consult your licensed health care practitioner before using this or any medical information.
©2000-2009 CCG, Inc. All Rights Reserved.