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Eucommia ulmoides, also known as Du Zhong, Gutta-Percha, and Cortex Eucommia, has been used for thousands of years in Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) practices and in modern medical practices to treat a wide range of ailments. Because it is believed to work as an antioxidant and as an anti-inflammatory drug, it is commonly used by people affected by arthritis, osteoporosis, and hypertension. It is also believed to work as a tonic to detoxify the liver and kidneys. Some practitioners claim that it will prevent miscarriages as well.
Although only a few studies have been completed involving the human use of Eucommia ulmoides, some of those studies suggest that this Chinese remedy may have a positive effect on people with hypertension. Specifically, 62 people with hypertension used extracts of Eucommia ulmoides. Of those 62 people, 94 percent of them had improved blood pressure. In a separate study, 251 people with hypertension were studied. 125 of those people had substantial improvements when they consumed the drug, while 80 people had moderate blood pressure improvements. Consequently, people with high blood pressure or hypertension may benefit from its use.
Besides treating hypertension, some homeopathic medical practitioners recommend Eucommia ulmoides to treat impotence, frequent urination, and liver or kidney deficiencies. In addition, it is often recommended to give the bones additional strength and help prevent osteoporosis. Pregnant women who have some vaginal bleeding are encouraged to use the drug to prevent miscarriage as well.
The Eucommia ulmoides is a deciduous tree native to Asia. Its bark is the portion of the tree that is most commonly used for medicinal purposes. The bark or its extract is often sold as a tea. It can also be dried and packaged in capsule form. In most cases, the bark is combined with several other ingredients, with the bark making up only a small percentage of the ingredients.
Most people consider it to be a safe remedy since it has been used since ancient times. Studies have not been conducted to see how it affects children, breastfeeding mothers, and pregnant women, so caution should be used. In addition, it is unknown how it will react with most pharmaceuticals, meaning that care should be used before consuming this remedy in combination with other drugs. A medical practitioner should be consulted before using Eucommia ulmoides.
@Scrbblchick -- One way to know what's in herbal supplements that you buy is to get them from a reputable health food store where the people know what's in their products, or from a TCM practitioner who can guarantee the quality and potency of the ingredients.
In other words, you don't buy things like this from the Internet. You might get lucky and get a good product, but unless you stay with a trusted brand (probably recommended from the health food store), you will probably end up with a bad batch, eventually.
I guess that's cynical, but that's been my experience in buying herbals online.
I have hypertension and I wouldn't mind trying this stuff if I thought it would work without too many side effects. The problem I have with herbal remedies like this is that they are so hard to find in a pure form. You never know what an herb has been "cut" with. A pill might only contain 10 percent of the herb and 90 percent fillers -- or another, unnamed herb. Companies aren't required to list everything if they don't submit the drug to the FDA for approval.
I'm not saying it doesn't work -- just that you never know exactly what you're getting sometimes. That makes me leery about trying something like this.
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