Cat's Claw is used for its flavor, scent, or potential therapeutic properties. Includes flowers, leaves, bark, fruit, seeds, stems, and roots.
This particular herb grows wild in many countries of Central and South America, especially in the Amazon rain forest and dates back to the Inca civilization. The cat's claw herb has been used for centuries in it's native lands to prevent and treat disease.
In more modern times, it has been used for a variety of health conditions, including viral infections such as herpes and HIV, Alzheimer's disease, cancer, and arthritis.
It has been used to support the immune system and promote kidney health, as well as to prevent and abort pregnancy. Therefore, women who are pregnant or trying to become pregnant should avoid using cat's claw because of this.
The inner bark of cat's claw is used to make liquid extracts, capsules, and teas and the preparations of cat's claw can also provide health benefits if applied to the skin.
Studies in humans have shown a possible benefit of cat's claw in osteoarthritis and rheumatoid arthritis. the herb stimulates part of the immune system, but it is not fully conclusive just yet with regards to reducing inflammation and supporting the immune system.
The National Institute on Aging is studying how cat's claw may affect the brain. New avenues for research in Alzheimer's disease treatment are currently being studied.
Few side effects have been reported for cat's claw as long as it is taken at recommended dosages, this applies to most herbs.
The cat's claw herb has lots of positive effects on health, yet still has lots of potential as studies on the herb progress.