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

Astragalus May Help Ease Chronic Eczema

Astragalus helps treat chronic eczema.

Eczema is a common skin condition, with some data suggesting 20% of children are affected by it at some point during childhood. It is characterized by inflamed, oozing, itchy, scaly lesions and thickened skin. This inflammatory skin condition is believed to be related to an overactive immune system. The good news is that promising research suggests astragalus, especially in combination with other beneficial herbs, may help improve symptoms of eczema.(214215)

Atopic dermatitis is the most common form of eczema. It can be triggered by many factors, including allergic reaction, injury, and psychological stress. Animal studies show that topical astragalus combined with 2 other herbal extracts can help control the inflammatory immune response. As a result, symptoms of atopic dermatitis (skin thickening and lesions) were significantly improved.(216217)

Animal studies suggest that astragalus in oral form may be able to help:(215)

  • Prevent the development of eczema.
  • Reduce inflammation of existing lesions.

These effects may be linked to the herb's anti-inflammatory properties.(215)

Clinical Evidence of Benefit

In one clinical study, an herbal supplement containing astragalus helped improve treatment outcomes in patients with eczema resistant to treatment. The adult patients were given 7.5 g/day of the Kampo herbal supplement along with conventional treatment.(48)

They showed moderate to marked improvement of long-term chronic eczema symptoms. Results of this 3-month study indicate there may be some benefit to astragalus which more rigorous research could clarify.(48)

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Such as Angelica sinensis, commonly called female ginseng and dong quai.(214)
Specifically, Hochu-ekki-to, which also includes ginger and licorice.(48)