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Pterocarpus santalinus

Botanical Nmae :Pterocarpus santalinus
Family: Fabaceae
Subfamily:Faboideae
Tribe: Dalbergieae
Genus: Pterocarpus
Species:P. santalinus
Kingdom: Plantae
Order: Fabales

Common Names: Red Sandlewood,Red sanders and Saunderswood

Indian vernacular names:
Bengali: Rakta Chandan; Guj.: Ratanjali; Hindi: Lal Chandan, Ragat Chandan,Rukhto Chandan, Undum; Kannada.: Agslue, Honne; Mal.: Patrangam, Tilaparni; Marathi.: Tambada Chandana; Or.: Raktachandan; Tamil.: Atti, Chensandanam, Semmaram, Sivaffu Chandanam; Telugu:Agaru gandhamu, Errachandanam, Raktachandanam, Rakta ghandhamu.

Habitat : Pterocarpus santalinus is native to southern Eastern Ghats mountain range of South India.

Description:
Pterocarpus santalinus is a light-demanding small tree, growing to 8 metres (26 ft) tall with a trunk 50–150 cm diameter. It is fast-growing when young, reaching 5 metres (16 ft) tall in three years, even on degraded soils. It is not frost tolerant, being killed by temperatures of ?1 °C.

The leaves are alternate, 3–9 cm long, trifoliate with three leaflets.
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The flowers are produced in short racemes. The fruit is a pod 6–9 cm long containing one or two seeds.

This tree is valued for the rich red color of its wood. The wood is not aromatic. The tree is not to be confused with the aromatic Santalum sandalwood trees that grow natively in South India.

Medicinal Uses:
Pterocarpus santalinus is used in traditional herbal medicine as an antipyretic, anti-inflammatory, anthelmintic, tonic, hemorrhage, dysentery, aphrodisiac, anti-hyperglycaemic and diaphoretic.

Used occasionally in India for diabetes; the antidiabetic constituent is pterostilbene which also has insecticidal activity. Employed in pharmacy for coloring tinctures.

Other Uses:
The wood has historically been valued in China, particularly during the Qing Dynasty periods, and is referred to in Chinese as zitan and spelt tzu-t’an by earlier western authors such Gustav Ecke, who introduced classical Chinese hardwood furniture to the west.

Due to its slow growth and rarity, furniture made from zitan is difficult to find and can be expensive. It has been one of the most prized woods for millennia.

In India sandalwood is one main and lucrative market for smugglers, as a high price is paid for this wood in China. Since the exporting of sandalwood is illegal in India, the underground market is growing and there are a number of arrests every year of those trying to smuggle this wood to China.

The other form of zitan is from the species Dalbergia luovelii, Dalbergia maritima, and Dalbergia normandi, all similar species named in trade as bois de rose or violet rosewood which when cut are bright crimson purple changing to dark purple again. It has a fragrant scent when worked.

Shamisen: Red sandalwood has been used for making the bridge and also the neck of the Japanese musical instrument Shamisen.

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Costly & rare articles are made from this red sandle wood….click & see 

Religion & speritulality ...Red sandle wood Prayer Bead Mala Necklace are very costly bids used in Tibetian Budhism….CLICK & SEE 
Disclaimer : The information presented herein is intended for educational purposes only. Individual results may vary, and before using any supplement, it is always advisable to consult with your own health care provider.

Resources:

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pterocarpus_santalinus
http://www.herbnet.com/Herb%20Uses_RST.htm

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Bai Zhu

Botanical Name :Atractylodes macrocephala
Family: Asteraceae
Tribe: Cynareae
Genus: Atractylodes
Kingdom: Plantae
Order: Asterales

Parts Used : The rhizomes are collected in November when the lower leaves begin withering. They are stripped of the small roots and sun-dried or heat-dried.

Common Name : Bai Zhu

Habitats: E. Asia – China, Japan and Korea.   Pastures and waste ground. Grassland and forests at elevations of 600 – 2800 metres.

Descriptiopn :
Bai Zhu  is a  Perennial herbaceous plant, 40-60 cm. high. Stems cylindrical, much-branched in the upper part. Leaves alternate, toothed, the lower 3-lobed with long petiole, the upper entire, short-petioled. Inflorescence in terminal head; flowers small, lilac, all tubulous. Achene globose, with a coma of hairs.
It is hardy to zone 6. It is in flower from Jul to August, and the seeds ripen from Aug to September. The flowers are dioecious (individual flowers are either male or female, but only one sex is to be found on any one plant so both male and female plants must be grown if seed is required)
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The plant prefers light (sandy), medium (loamy) and heavy (clay) soils and requires well-drained soil.The plant prefers acid, neutral and basic (alkaline) soils..It can grow in semi-shade (light woodland) or no shade.It requires moist

Cultivation :
Succeeds in any well-drained soil in sun or partial shade. This species is probably hardy in most of Britain, it tolerates temperatures down to at least -15°c. Widely cultivated in China for its use as a medicinal herb. This species is dioecious. Both male and female plants need to be grown if seed is required.

Propagation :
Seed – sow spring in a cold frame and only just cover the seed. Prick out the seedlings when they are large enough to handle and plant them out into their permanent positions in the following spring or early summer.

Chemical composition: The rhizomes contain essential oil 1.5%, atractylol, atractylon; glucoside, inulin, vitamin A, potassium atractylate.

Medicinal Uses:
Antibacterial;  DiureticSedativeStomachic;  Tonic.

Bai Zhu is widely used in traditional Chinese medicine. The root contains an essential oil, glucoside and inulin. It is a bitter-sweet tonic herb that acts mainly upon the digestive system and strengthens the spleen. The root is antibacterial, diuretic, hypoglycaemic, sedative, stomachic and tonic. It is used in the treatment of poor appetite, dyspepsia, abdominal distension, chronic diarrhoea, oedema and spontaneous sweating. It is often used in conjunction with other herbs such as Codonopsis tangshen and Glycyrrhiza uralensis. Combined with Baical skullcap (Scutellaria baicalensis) it is used to prevent miscarriage. The roots are harvested in the autumn and baked for use in tonics

It has traditionally been used as a tonic for the digestive system, building qi and strengthening the spleen.  The rhizome has a sweet, pungent taste, and is used to relieve fluid retention, excessive sweating, and digestive problems such as diarrhea and vomiting.  It is also used in the treatment of poor appetite, dyspepsia, abdominal distension, and edema. It is often used in conjunction with other herbs such as Codonopsis tangshen and Glycyrrhiza uralensis. Combined with Baical skullcap (Scutellaria baicalensis) it is used to prevent miscarriage.

Disclaimer:
The information presented herein is intended for educational purposes only. Individual results may vary, and before using any supplements, it is always advisable to consult with your own health care provider.

Resources:
http://www.herbnet.com/Herb%20Uses_AB.htm
http://www.pfaf.org/user/Plant.aspx?LatinName=Atractylodes+macrocephala
http://sulwhasoo-sulwhasoo.blogspot.com/2010/12/update-history-of-whoo-chung-line.html
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Atractylodes

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Styphnolobium japonicum

Botanical Name : Styphnolobium japonicum
Family: Fabaceae
Subfamily: Faboideae
Genus: Styphnolobium
Tribe: Sophoreae
Species: S. japonicum
Kingdom: Plantae
Division: Magnoliophyta
Class: Magnoliopsida
Order: Fabales
Syn. Sophora japonica
Common Names :Pagoda Tree,Chinese Scholar, Japanese pagodatree or Scholar tree.

Habitat :Styphnolobium japonicum is native to eastern Asia (mainly China; despite the name, it is introduced in Japan), is a popular ornamental tree in Europe, North America and South Africa, grown for its white flowers, borne in late summer after most other flowering trees have long finished flowering.Open country between 300 and 1000 metres in W. China.

Description:
A decidious Tree growing  into a lofty tree 10-20 m tall with an equal spread, and produces a fine, dark brown timber.
It is hardy to zone 5 and is not frost tender. It is in flower in September, and the seeds ripen in November. The flowers are hermaphrodite (have both male and female organs) and are pollinated by Insects.It can fix Nitrogen. Compound leaves with small leaflets.  Medium to dark green, with yellowish fall color.Stems are  Green, flowers are creamy white, bloom in late summer.  Flowers are shaped like flowers of pea plants and have a faint fragrance.

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The plant prefers light (sandy), medium (loamy) and heavy (clay) soils, requires well-drained soil and can grow in nutritionally poor soil.The plant prefers acid, neutral and basic (alkaline) soils..It cannot grow in the shade.It requires moist soil and can tolerate drought.It can tolerate atmospheric pollution.

Cultivation:-
Succeeds in a well-drained moderately fertile soil in full sun. Tolerates poor soils, atmospheric pollution, heat and, once established, drought. Hardy to about -25° when mature, but it can be damaged by severe frosts when it is young[200]. A very ornamental and fast growing tree, it grows best in hot summers. It grows best in the warmer areas of the country where the wood will be more readily ripened and better able to withstand winter cold. Trees take 30 years to come into flower from seed, but they do not often ripen their seed in Britain. Cultivated in China for the rutin contained in its leaves and ovaries. Plants should be container-grown and planted out whilst young, older plants do not transplant well. Plants in this genus are notably resistant to honey fungus. This species has a symbiotic relationship with certain soil bacteria, these bacteria form nodules on the roots and fix atmospheric nitrogen. Some of this nitrogen is utilized by the growing plant but some can also be used by other plants growing nearby.

Propagation:-
Seed – best sown as soon as it is ripe in a greenhouse. Pre-soak stored seed for 12 hours in hot (not boiling) water and sow in late winter in a greenhouse. Prick out the seedlings as soon as they are large enough to handle into individual pots in the greenhouse, and grow them on for 2 years under protected conditions. Plant them out into their permanent positions in early summer of their third year. Cuttings of young shoots with a heel, July/August in a frame. Air-layering.

Edible Uses:-
Edible Parts: Flowers;  Leaves.

Young leaves and flowers – cooked. The leaves need to be cooked in three lots of water in order to remove the bitterness. This will also remove most of the vitamins and minerals. The leaves are a rich source of rutin, they contain much more than the usual commercial source, buckwheat (Fagopyrum esculentum). The ovaries, before the flowers open, contain up to 40% rutin. A tea can be made from the young leaves and flowers. An edible starch is obtained from the seed.

Medicinal Uses :
Abortifacient;  Antibacterial;  Anticholesterolemic;  Antiinflammatory;  Antispasmodic;  Diuretic;  Emetic;  Emollient;  Febrifuge;  Hypotensive;  Purgative;
Skin;  Styptic;  Tonic.

This species is commonly used in Chinese medicine and is considered to be one of the 50 fundamental herbs. It came second in a study of 250 potential antifertility agents. Diuretic, emollient, febrifuge, tonic. The flowers and flower buds are antibacterial, anticholesterolemic, anti-inflammatory, antispasmodic, haemostatic and hypotensive. The ovaries, especially just before the plant flowers, are a rich source of rutin and this is a valuable hypotensive agent. The buds, flowers and pods are concocted and used in the treatment of a variety of ailments including internal haemorrhages, poor peripheral circulation, internal worms etc. This remedy should not be prescribed for pregnant women. The seedpods are abortifacient. The seed is emetic and haemostatic. It is used in the treatment of haemorrhoids, haematuria, uterine bleeding, constipation, stuffy sensation in the chest, dizziness, red eyes, headache and hypertension.It should be used with caution since it is toxic. The leaves are laxative. They are used in the treatment of epilepsy and convulsions. A decoction of the stems is used in the treatment of piles, sore eyes and skin problems.

S. japonicum is one of the 50 fundamental herbs used in traditional Chinese medicine.

Other Uses :-
Dye;  Wood.

A yellow dye is obtained from the seedpods and the flowers. It is green when mixed with indigo. Wood – tough, light, strong, of superior quality. Used in carpentry.

Gardening:
The Guilty Chinese Scholartree was a historic Pagoda Tree in Beijing, on which the last emperor of the Ming Dynasty, Chongzhen, hanged himself.

Known Hazards : The plant contains cytosine, which resembles nicotine and is similarly toxic.

Disclaimer:
The information presented herein is intended for educational purposes only. Individual results may vary, and before using any supplements, it is always advisable to consult with your own health care provider.

 

Resources:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Styphnolobium_japonicum
http://www.wsu.edu/~lohr/wcl/trees/styphno/wstjades.html
http://www.pfaf.org/user/Plant.aspx?LatinName=Sophora+japonica

http://www.integrativepractitioner.com/article_ektid14854.aspx

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Red yeast rice (Monascus purpureus)

Dried grain red yeast rice

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Latin name: Monascus purpureus
Other names: Hong Qu, red rice, red yeast
Synonyms:
Alkaloids, angkak, anka, ankaflavin, Asian traditional fermentation foodstuff, astaxanthin, beni-koju, ben-koji, Chinese red yeast rice, citrinin, CRYR, dehydromonacolin K, dietary red yeast, dihydromeyinolin, dihydromonacolin K, dihydromonacolin L, DSM1379, DSM1603, ergosterol, flavonoids, GABA, glycosides, HMG-CoA reductase inhibitors, hon-chi, hong qu, hongqu, hung-chu, hydroxymethylglutaryl coenzyme A reductase, KCCM11832, koji, linoleic acid, lovastatin, M9011, mevinolin, monacolin hyroxyacid, monacolin J, monacolin K, monacolin K (hydroxyl acid form), monacolin L, monacolin M, monacolin X, Monascaceae (yeast family), monascopyridine A, monascopyridine B, monascopyridine C, monascopyridine D, monascorubramine, monascorubrin, Monascus , Monascus anka , Monascus purpureus fermentate, Monascus purpureus HM105, Monascus purpureus NTU568, Monascus purpureus Went rice, Monascus ruber , oleic acid, orange anka pigment, palmitoleic acid, Phaffia rhodozyma , red fermented rice, red koji, red leaven, red mould rice, red rice, red rice yeast, red yeast, red yeast rice extract, rice, RICE products, rubropunctamine, rubropunctatin, RYR, RYRE, saponins, statins, stearic acid, xuezhikang, Xue Zhi Kang, yellow anka pigment, zhitai, Zhi Tai.

Definition:

Red yeast rice, red fermented rice, red kojic rice, red koji rice, or ang-kak, is a bright reddish purple fermented rice, which acquires its colour from being cultivated with the mold Monascus purpureus. In Japan, it is known as beni-koji ( lit. “red koji”) or akakoji ( also meaning “red koji”) and in Taiwan it is sometimes also called âng-chau , in Taiwanese. Among the Hakka, it is known as fungkiuk. In China it is widely available under the brand name XueZhiKang, and in Singapore it is available as Hypocol.

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Red yeast rice is sold in jars at Asian markets as a pasteurized wet aggregate, whole dried grains, or as a ground powder. It was a commonly used red food colouring in East Asian and Chinese cuisine prior to the discovery of chemical food colouring. It has also been used in Chinese herbal medicine.

Red yeast rice is the product of yeast ( Monascus purpureus ) grown on rice, and is served as a dietary staple in some Asian countries. It contains several compounds collectively known as monacolins, substances known to inhibit cholesterol synthesis. One of these, “monacolin K,” is a potent inhibitor of HMG-CoA reductase, and is also known as mevinolin or lovastatin (Mevacor®, a drug produced by Merck & Co., Inc).

Red yeast rice extract has been sold as a natural cholesterol-lowering agent in over the counter supplements, such as CholestinTM (Pharmanex, Inc). However, there has been legal and industrial dispute as to whether red yeast rice is a drug or a dietary supplement, involving the manufacturer, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA), and the pharmaceutical industry (particularly producers of HMG-CoA reductase inhibitor prescription drugs or “statins”).

The use of red yeast rice in China was first documented in the Tang Dynasty in 800 A.D. A detailed description of its manufacture is found in the ancient Chinese pharmacopoeia, Ben Cao Gang Mu-Dan Shi Bu Yi, published during the Ming Dynasty (1368-1644). In this text, red yeast rice is proposed to be a mild aid for gastric problems (indigestion, diarrhea), blood circulation, and spleen and stomach health. Red yeast rice in a dried, powdered form is called Zhi Tai. When extracted with alcohol it is called Xue Zhi Kang.

Red yeast rice has been used in China as a preservative, spice, and food coloring. It’s used to give Peking duck its characteristic red color and can also be an ingredient in fish sauce, fish paste, and rice wine. Red yeast rice is used in traditional Chinese medicine as a remedy for poor circulation, indigestion, and diarrhea.

Red yeast rice contains naturally-occurring substances called monacolins. Monocolins, particularly one called lovastatin, is believed to be converted in the body to a substance that inhibits HMG-CoA reductase, an enzyme that triggers cholesterol production. This is the way the popular statin drugs work.

Because of this action, red yeast rice products containing a higher concentration of monocolins have been developed and marketed as a natural product to lower cholesterol.

The problem is that the primary ingredient in these supplements, lovastatin, is also the active pharmaceutical ingredient in prescription drugs for high cholesterol such as Mevacor. In fact, lovastatin was originally derived from another type of red yeast called Monascus ruber.

Production:-
Red yeast rice is produced by cultivating Monascus purpureus on polished rice. The rice is first soaked in water until the grains are fully saturated. The raw soaked rice can then either be directly inoculated, or steamed for the purpose of sterilizing and cooking the grains prior to inoculation. Inoculation is done by mixing M. purpureus spores or powdered red yeast rice together with the processed rice. The mix is then incubated in an environment around room temperature for 3–6 days. During this period of time, the rice should be fully cultured with M. purpureus, with each rice grain turning bright red in its core and reddish purple on the outside.

The fully cultured rice is then either sold as the dried grain, or cooked and pasteurized to be sold as a wet paste, or dried and pulverized to be sold as a fine powder. China is the world’s largest producer of red yeast rice.

Due to the high cost of chemical dyes, some producers of red yeast rice have tried to adulterate their products with red dye #2 Sudan Red G (in Chinese).

Uses:

Culinary

The dried grain can be prepared and eaten in the same manner as white rice–a common practice among Asians. It can also be added to other foods.

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Red yeast rice is used to colour a wide variety of food products, including pickled tofu, red rice vinegar, char siu, Peking Duck, and Chinese pastries that require red food colouring. It is also traditionally used in the production of several types of Chinese wine, Japanese sake (akaisake), and Korean rice wine (hongju), imparting a reddish colour to these wines.

Although used mainly for its colour in cuisine, red yeast rice imparts a subtle but pleasant taste to food.

Traditional Chinese Medicine
In addition to its culinary use, red yeast rice is also used in traditional Chinese herbology and traditional Chinese medicine. Its use has been documented as far back as the Tang Dynasty in China in 800 A.D. and taken internally to invigorate the body, aid in digestion, and remove “blood blockages”.

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Modern Medicine
Red yeast rice when produced using the ‘Went’ strain of Monascus purpureus contains significant quantites of the HMG-CoA reductase inhibitor lovastatin which is also known as mevinolin, a naturally-occurring statin. It is sold as an over the counter dietary supplement for controlling cholesterol (See ref.: Medicine Net). There is strong scientific evidence for its effect in lowering blood levels of total cholesterol, low-density lipoprotein/LDL (“bad cholesterol”), and triglyceride levels (see below). Because an approved drug is identical to the molecule it is therefore regulated as a drug by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA).

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In 1998, the U.S. district court in Utah allowed a product containing red yeast rice extract known as Cholestin to be sold without restriction, but this was reversed on appeal. (Moore, 2001) (see ref.: PDRhealth). Cholestin as a product continues to be marketed but no longer contains red yeast rice (RYR). Other companies sell red yeast rice products but most of them use a different strain of yeast or different growing conditions, resulting in RYR with a negligible statin content. The labeling on these new products often says nothing about cholesterol lowering. As late as August 2007, FDA noted supplements being sold containing significant lovastatin levels.(FDA, 2007)

In 2006 Liu et al published a meta-analysis of clinical trials (Chinese Med 2006;1:4-17). The article cited 93 published, controlled clinical trials (91 published in Chinese). Total cholesterol decreased by 35 mg/dl, LDL-cholesterol by 28 mg/dl, triglycerides by 35 mg/dl, and HDL-cholesterol increased by 6 mg/dl. Zhao et al reported on a four-year trial in people with diabetes (J Cardio Pharmacol 2007;49:81-84). There was a 40-50% reduction in cardio events and cardio deaths in the treated group. Ye et al reported on a four-year trial in elderly Chinese patients with heart disease (J Am Geriatr Soc 2007;55:1015-22). Deaths were down 32%. There is at least one report in the literature of a statin-like myopathy caused by red yeast rice (Mueller PS. Ann Intern Med 2006;145:474-5).

An article in the June 15, 2008, issue of the American Journal of Cardiology found that red yeast rice may provide benefits beyond those provided by statins. The researchers reported that the benefits seemed to exceed those reported with lovastatin alone.

ConsumerLab.com found large variation in the active compounds between red yeast rice supplements, and also found that some of them were contaminated with citrinin, a nephrotoxic mycotoxin. Evidence about the side effects of red yeast rice is limited, but it may have similar side effects to the drug lovastatin, which include kidney problems and other side effects.[4] Regular medical monitoring is needed to detect such effects.

Evidence:
These uses have been tested in humans or animals. Safety and effectiveness have not always been proven. Some of these conditions are potentially serious, and should be evaluated by a qualified healthcare provider.

Uses based on scientific evidence :-

High cholesterol
Since the 1970s, human studies have reported that red yeast lowers blood levels of total cholesterol, low-density lipoprotein/LDL (“bad cholesterol”), and triglyceride levels. Other products containing red yeast rice extract can still be purchased, mostly over the Internet. However, these products may not be standardized and effects are not predictable. For lowering cholesterol, there is better evidence for using prescription drugs such as lovastatin…..GRADE: A

Coronary heart disease
Preliminary evidence shows that taking Monascus purpureus by mouth may result in cardiovascular benefits and improve blood flow. Additional study is needed before a firm recommendation can be made…GRADE: C

Diabetes
Early human evidence suggests the potential for benefits in diabetics. Additional study is needed before a firm recommendation can be made….GRADE C

Key to grades :-
A: Strong scientific evidence for this use;
B: Good scientific evidence for this use;
C: Unclear scientific evidence for this use;
D: Fair scientific evidence against this use;
F: Strong scientific evidence against this use.

Regulation:-
Red yeast rice is classified as a dietary supplement by the FDA. Because of its similarity to the statin drugs, there is an ongoing legal debate about whether red yeast rice should be reclassified as a prescription drug rather than a dietary supplement.

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Uses based on tradition or theory :-
The below uses are based on tradition or scientific theories. They often have not been thoroughly tested in humans, and safety and effectiveness have not always been proven. Some of these conditions are potentially serious, and should be evaluated by a qualified healthcare provider.

Acetaminophen toxicity, anthrax, anti-inflammatory, antimicrobial, antioxidant, blood circulation problems, bruised muscles, bruises, cancer, colic in children, cuts, diarrhea, digestion, dysentery (bloody diarrhea), exercise performance enhancement, food additive (coloring), food preservative, hangover, high blood pressure, HIV (associated hyperlipidemia), immunosuppression, indigestion, liver disorders, metabolic disorders, obesity, ovarian cancer, postpartum problems, spleen problems, stomach problems, weight loss, wounds.

Dosing:
The below doses are based on scientific research, publications, traditional use, or expert opinion. Many herbs and supplements have not been thoroughly tested, and safety and effectiveness may not be proven. Brands may be made differently, with variable ingredients, even within the same brand. The below doses may not apply to all products. You should read product labels, and discuss doses with a qualified healthcare provider before starting therapy.

Adults (18 years and older)
1,200 milligrams of concentrated red yeast powder capsules have been taken two times per day by mouth with food.

The average consumption of naturally occurring red yeast rice in Asia has been reported as 14-55 grams per day.

Children (younger than 18 years)
There is not enough scientific evidence to recommend red yeast for children.

Safety:
The U.S. Food and Drug Administration does not strictly regulate herbs and supplements. There is no guarantee of strength, purity or safety of products, and effects may vary. You should always read product labels. If you have a medical condition, or are taking other drugs, herbs, or supplements, you should speak with a qualified healthcare provider before starting a new therapy. Consult a healthcare provider immediately if you experience side effects.

Allergies
There is one report of anaphylaxis (a severe allergic reaction) in a butcher who touched meat containing red yeast.

Side Effects and Warnings:-
There is limited evidence on the side effects of red yeast. Mild headache and abdominal discomfort can occur. Side effects may be similar to those for the prescription drug lovastatin (Mevacor®). Heartburn, gas, bloating, muscle pain or damage, dizziness, asthma, and kidney problems are possible. People with liver disease should not use red yeast products.

In theory, red yeast may increase the risk of bleeding. Caution is advised in patients with bleeding disorders or taking drugs that may increase the risk of bleeding. Dosing adjustments may be necessary. A metabolite of Monascus called mycotoxin citrinin may be harmful.

Pregnancy and Breastfeeding
Prescription drugs with similar chemicals as red yeast cannot be used during pregnancy. Therefore, it is recommended that pregnant or breastfeeding women not take red yeast.

Interactions:-
Most herbs and supplements have not been thoroughly tested for interactions with other herbs, supplements, drugs, or foods. The interactions listed below are based on reports in scientific publications, laboratory experiments, or traditional use. You should always read product labels. If you have a medical condition, or are taking other drugs, herbs, or supplements, you should speak with a qualified healthcare provider before starting a new therapy.

Interactions with Drugs
There are not many studies of the interactions of red yeast rice extract with drugs. However, because red yeast rice extract contains the same chemicals as the prescription drug lovastatin, the interactions may be the same. Fibrate drugs or other cholesterol-lowering medications may cause additive effects or side effects when taken with red yeast. Alcohol and other drugs that may be toxic to the liver should be avoided with red yeast rice extract. Taking cyclosporine, ranitidine (Zantac®), and certain antibiotics with red yeast rice extract may increase the risk of muscle breakdown or kidney damage.

Certain drugs may interfere with the way the body processes red yeast using the liver’s “cytochrome P450” enzyme system. Inhibitors of cytochrome P450 may increase the chance of muscle and kidney damage if taken with red yeast.

In theory, red yeast may increase the risk of bleeding when taken with drugs that increase the risk of bleeding. Some examples include aspirin, anticoagulants (“blood thinners”) such as warfarin (Coumadin®) or heparin, anti-platelet drugs such as clopidogrel (Plavix®), and non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs such as ibuprofen (Motrin®, Advil®) or naproxen (Naprosyn®, Aleve®).

Red yeast may produce gamma-aminobutyric acid (GABA) and therefore can have additive effects when taken with drugs that affect GABA such as neurontin (Gabapentin®).

Red yeast may also interact with digoxin, niacin, thyroid medications, and blood pressure-lowering medications. Caution is advised.

Red yeast may alter blood sugar levels; patients with diabetes or taking insulin or blood sugar-lowering medications by mouth should consult with a qualified healthcare professional, including a pharmacist. Dosing adjustments may be necessary.

Interactions with Herbs and Dietary Supplements

Red yeast may interact with products that cause liver damage or are broken down in the liver. Grapefruit juice may increase blood levels of red yeast. Milk thistle, St. John’s wort, niacin, and vitamin A may interact with red yeast rice extract. Coenzyme Q10 levels may be lowered by red yeast rice extract. Cholesterol-lowering herbs and supplements such as guggul or fish oils may have increased effects when taken with red rice yeast. Although not well studied, red yeast may also interact with astaxanthin and zinc. Caution is advised.

Certain herbs and supplements may interfere with the way the body processes red yeast using the liver’s “cytochrome P450” enzyme system. Inhibitors of cytochrome P450 may increase the chance of muscle and kidney damage if taken with red yeast.

In theory, red yeast may increase the risk of bleeding when taken with herbs and supplements that are believed to increase the risk of bleeding. Multiple cases of bleeding have been reported with the use of Ginkgo biloba , and fewer cases with garlic and saw palmetto. Numerous other agents may theoretically increase the risk of bleeding, although this has not been proven in most cases.

Red yeast may also interact with digitalis (foxglove), or herbs and supplements that affect the thyroid or blood pressure. It may also have anti-inflammatory effects and should be used cautiously with other herbs or supplements that may have anti-inflammatory effects.

Red yeast may alter blood sugar levels in the blood, and patients with diabetes or taking herbs and supplement to control blood sugar should use with caution.

Disclaimer:The information presented herein is intended for educational purposes only. Individual results may vary, and before using any supplements, it is always advisable to consult with your own health care provider.

.
You may Click to see :->

>Red Yeast Rice as Herbals & Supplements

>Red Yeast Rice and Cholesterol
Are there Side Effects of Red Yeast Rice?

>Most important information about red yeast rice

Resources:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Red_yeast_rice
http://www.nlm.nih.gov/medlineplus/druginfo/natural/patient-redyeast.html#skip
http://altmedicine.about.com/od/herbsupplementguide/a/redyeastrice.htm

 

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