Also known as milk vetch, huang qi (or huangqi)

Powerful Immune System Support

Astragalus is an adaptogenic herb used in Traditional Chinese Medicine.

Astragalus (also known as Huang Qi) is a perennial plant that has been traditionally used to boost the immune system. Considered an adaptogenic herb, Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) advocates the use of astragalus to strengthen and restore balance to Qi. Its root, often referred to as Radix Astragali, is essential to many Chinese medicinal formulas prescribed on this basis. Some of these herbal formulas date back over 1000 years to the Song Dynasty(906-1276).(2372)

One such formula was designed with astragalus as its primary ingredient by Imperial Physician's College herbalists. It was used to treat:(23)

  • Anemia
  • Fatigue
  • Unintentional weight loss

Today research into the immune-supporting properties of astragalus have helped explain how astragalus works. Some medical uses have produced promising clinical trial results and applied to modern medical practices. For example, because astragalus boosts immune function and relieves symptoms associated with chemotherapy and other cancer therapies, herbal formulas and astragalus (by itself) are currently included in integrative cancer treatment.(23)

How Does It Work?

Chinese traditional medicine asserts that astragalus improves immunological activity and the ability to resist illness. A number of studies have determined some of the mechanisms by which astragalus and its compounds support the immune system:(2351-525560727785-100)

Astragalus Action Why Is This Important?
  • Removes toxins from the blood and regulating liver and spleen functions.
  • Stimulates growth of spleen cells.

The spleen is a small organ that lays to the left of the top of the stomach. It plays a role in the immune system by:

  • Filtering blood.
  • Recycling red blood cells.
  • Storing platelets and white blood cells.
  • Fighting bacteria (especially those that cause the flu and pneumonia).
  • Regulates production of macrophages and release of inflammatory proteins from them.
  • Enhances the production of lymphokine-activated killer (LAK) cells.
  • Macrophages help get rid of attack foreign or tumor substances in the body and also stimulate other immune system responses. However, unregulated macrophages can release proteins that contribute to chronic inflammation and disease.
  • LAK cells have anticancer effects.
  • Activates CD4 and CD8 T cells within 24 hours of ingestion
  • CD4 immune cells are a type of white blood cell that eradicates bacterial and viral pathogens.
  • CD8-type white blood cells can recognize and destroy virally infected and malignant cells.
  • Enhances production of the regulatory protein CD 69
  • CD 69 has been shown to inhibit immune disorders related to infections and exerts anti-tumor activity.

These immunological effects explain at least some of the antiviral, antibacterial, anti-inflammatory, and antitumor effects that astragalus demonstrates.

Disclaimer: This website is not intended to replace professional consultation, diagnosis, or treatment by a licensed physician. If you require any medical related advice, contact your physician promptly. Information presented on this website is exclusively of a general reference nature. Do not disregard medical advice or delay treatment as a result of accessing information at this site.
Possessing the ability to help the body maintain or restore health in response to stressors.(72)
Circulating life energy; balance is necessary to good health.(70)
Jusentaihoto, also known as Shi Chuan Da Bu Tang or JTT-48.(23)
In particular, astragalans I and II appear to stimulate the immune system.(2385)
Also known as T-helper cells.