Wednesday, 30 October 2013

Chinese Herbs – Ze Xie (Rhizoma Alismatis Orientalis)

Ze Xie is also known as Alisma. The sweet, bland and cold herb has been used in TCM as anti-pyretic , as anti-bacterial, hypoglycemic, hypotensive, anti tumor, anti-allergic, etc., as it eliminates water, clear Heat, diuretic, etc., by enchaining the functions of bladder and kidney channels.

Ingredients
1. Alisol A、B、C
2. Alosol A monoacetate
3.  Alisol A monoacetate
4. Alisol B monoacetate
5. Alisol C acetate
6. Epi-alisol A, 24-Acetyl alisol A
7. 23-Acetylalisol B
8.. 23-Acetyl alisol C
9. Etc.

Health Benefits
1. Hypoglycemic activities 
In the study of the hypoglycemic effects of eight compounds belonging to protostane-type triterpenes in the alcohol extract of Alismatis Rhizoma (AEA), showed that AEA increased glucose uptake in 3T3-L1 adipocyte model, not increase adipogenesis; AEA inhibited alpha-glucosidase activity; alisol A-24-aceate (8) was absorbed by 3T3-L1 adipocytes; and two compounds were detected in blood and three were detected in urine in SD rats. So AEA had protostane-type triterpenes, these type compounds in AEA may have hypoglycemic activity via inhibition of alpha-glucosidase activity and promotion of glucose uptake(1).
2. Hyperlipidemia
In the study to describe the scientific evidence for the efficacy of TCM and attempts to identify potential TCM formulas for treating hyperlipidemia, researchers at the Tsinghua University, indicated that the three basic approaches, including excretory function enhancement, cardiovascular system improvement, and tonic effect reinforcement, are emerging among TCM formulas for the treatment of hyperlipidemia. These approaches may be useful in controlling blood lipid levels, preventing cardiovascular complications, and adjusting bodily functions in hyperlipidemic patients. However, solid evidence of the efficacy of these treatments is required(2).
3. Intestinal permeability
The investigation of the herbal medicines which play a main role in Chinese herbal formula Jianpi Huoxue Decoction for improving intestinal permeability and protect alcohol-induced liver injury and intestine damage, showed that Rasux Paeonia Alba (Baishao), Rhizoma Alismatis (Zexie) and Fructus Schisandrae Chinensis (Wuweizi) were the main herbal drugs in Jianpi Huoxue Decoction in improving intestinal permeability, and the doses for rats were 1.33, 0.50 and 0.17 g/kg respectively. In the verification experiment, combination of Baishao, Zexie and Wuweizi significantly decreased the endotoxin level in plasma of rats with Lieber-DeCarli-induced liver injury and showed reliability(3).
4. Anti migration activity
Researchers at the College of Pharmaceutical Sciences of Zhejiang University, in the study of development of fluorescence imaging based assay for screening compounds with anti-migration activity, indicated that out of 24 components from Rhizoma Alismatis screened,  one component with anti-migration activity. These results show that the new proposed method with good precision, stability and linear range has the potential to assay the inhibitory activity of anticancer compounds(4).
5. Etc.

Side Effects
1. Do not use in case of damp cold or spermatorrhea or leucorrhagia as a result of  kidney yang deficiency
2. Do not use the herb in newborn, children or if you are pregnant or breast feeding without first consulting with the related field specialist.
3. Etc.


Sources
(1) http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/22613807
(2) http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/22306102
(3) http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/22088590

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