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Monday, 14 July 2014

Herbal Therapy - Chickweed and Obesity

Chickweed is a cool-season annual plant often eaten by chickens., genus S. media, belonging to the family Caryophyllaceae, native to Europe. The herb has been used in herbal medicine to treat skin conditions, indigestion, eczema, cough, rashes, etc. and as astringent, carminative, demulcent, diuretic, expectorant, laxative, refrigerant, vulnerary agent.

Chemical constituents(1)(2)
1. Igenin 6-C-beta-D-galactopyranosyl-8-C-alpha-L-arabinopyranoside
2. Apigenin 6-C-alpha-L-arabinopyranosyl-8-C-beta-D-galactopyranoside
3. Apigenin 6-C-beta-D-galactopyranosyl-8-C-beta-L-arabinopyranoside
4. Apigenin 6-C-beta-D-glucopyranosyl-8-C-beta-D-galactopyranoside
5. Apigenin 6, 8-di-C-alpha-L-arabinopyranoside
6. Alkaloidal glycoside
7. Glucodichotomine B
8. Neolignan glycosides
9. Dichotomosides A, B, C, and D
10. Phenylpropanoid glycoside
11. Dichotomoside E
12. Saponins
13. Mucilage
14. PABA
15. Coumarin,
16. Flavonoids (rutin)
17. Hydroxycoumarin

Obesity is defined as a medical condition of excess body fat has accumulated overtime, while overweight is a condition of excess body weight relatively to the height. According to the Body Mass Index(BMI), a BMI between 25 to 29.9 is considered over weight, while a BMI of over 30 is an indication of obesity. According to the statistic, 68% of American population are either overweight or obese.
In progesterone-induced obesity model in female albino mice, conducted by the CMR College of Pharmacy, showed that Methanolic extract of S. media (MESM) inhibits the increase in body weight, adipose tissue weight and size, and upturned obesity and associated complications and may bebeneficial in suppression of obesity induced by progesterone(3). Other study suggested that the anti-obesity effects of Llyophilized juice extracted from the plant in high-fat-diet fed mice may be partly mediated through delaying the intestinal absorption of dietary fat and carbohydrate by inhibiting digestive enzymes(4).

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References
(a) [Studies on chemical constituents from stellaria media. I].[Article in Chinese] by Dong Q1, Huang Y, Qiao SY.(PubMed)
(b) Bioactive constituents from Chinese natural medicines. XIV. New glycosides of beta-carboline-type alkaloid, neolignan, and phenylpropanoid from Stellaria dichotoma L. var. lanceolata and their antiallergic activities by Morikawa T1, Sun B, Matsuda H, Wu LJ, Harima S, Yoshikawa M.(PubMed)
(1) [Studies on chemical constituents from stellaria media. I].[Article in Chinese] by Dong Q1, Huang Y, Qiao SY.(PubMed)
(2) Bioactive constituents from Chinese natural medicines. XIV. New glycosides of beta-carboline-type alkaloid, neolignan, and phenylpropanoid from Stellaria dichotoma L. var. lanceolata and their antiallergic activities by Morikawa T1, Sun B, Matsuda H, Wu LJ, Harima S, Yoshikawa M.(PubMed)
(3)Antiobesity effect of Stellaria media against drug induced obesity in Swiss albino mice by Chidrawar VR1, Patel KN, Sheth NR, Shiromwar SS, Trivedi P.(PubMed)
(4) Quality assessment and anti-obesity activity of Stellaria media (Linn.) Vill by Rani N1, Vasudeva N, Sharma SK.(PubMed)