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Holist Nurs Pract. 2008 Jul-Aug;22(4):220-4. doi: 10.1097/01.HNP.0000326005.65310.7c.

Deconstructing an adaptogen: Eleutherococcus senticosus.

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Norristown Area School District, Norristown, PA 19403, USA.


The dried roots and rhizomes of Eleutherococcus senticosus (Araliacaea) plant are used in various preparations, primarily for its "adaptogenic" properties. An adaptogen supports health and prevents disease in both sick and healthy individuals through nonspecific effects, which neutralize various environmental and physical stressors while remaining relatively safe and free of side effects. The term "adaptogen," which has not been well defined scientifically, undermines the need for increased inquiry and research into the many promising effects of this herb. The primary clinical applications, pharmacology, evidence of efficacy, contraindications, drug interactions, and current clinical and scientific research are also reported.

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