Japanese knotweed uses are far greater than people think. From Lyme Disease and cardiovascular health to anti-cancer and skin health, learn more here

Today we are going over some Japanese knotweed uses. Japanese knotweed (Polygonum cuspidatum) is a superstar medicine whose native habitat is in Asia. It is seriously invasive here in North America and elsewhere. As a medicinal herb, however, it is unparalleled in what it can do and in the diversity of its actions.

The vigorously growing root, which can travel deep and far, is the source of Japanese knotweed’s (Hu zhang is its Chinese name) multifaceted virtues. First, the Chinese would say that it regulates and invigorates blood. “Invigorating the blood” means that it helps blood move through blockages, helps to dispel stasis, and enlivens sluggish circulation. It also means it is a serviceable antiinflammatory agent. In Chinese medicine, “stuck blood” equals pain. Stuck blood in joints translates as joint pain and arthritis. Japanese knotweed is excellent medicine for helping with joint health and relieving joint pain.

Secondly, it helps “tone the blood” and the cardiovascular system via its antioxidant properties. Japanese knotweed arguably contains the highest levels of resveratrol in the plant kingdom. Western research supports resveratrol’s superior antioxidant and cardioprotective capabilities, making Japanese knotweed an excellent choice in protocols for protecting and improving overall health of the heart.

Third, the same blood-invigorating property makes it very useful in female reproductive protocols addressing dysmenorrhea (painful, clotty menstruation) and amenorrhea (scanty or absent menstruation). Japanese knotweed is also one of the key ingredients in a famous Chinese herbal hormonal replacement formula that is used in some menopausal and post-menopausal deficiency protocols.

Additionally, Japanese knotweed has an important and unique ability to help with angiogenesis, meaning it has skin regenerating properties and is a very valuable agent in burn protocols, even with third degree burns. Taking the root medicine internally is very useful in promoting skin growth if someone has been burned badly.

Japanese knotweed also has anticancer properties and is used extensively in China for the treatment and prevention of many types of cancer. It stimulates the immune system and the production of white blood cells. It is very useful in protocols addressing acute and chronic leukopenia, meaning low white blood cell count, whether due to sickness, cancer, radiation therapy, or old age.

Japanese knotweed also crosses the blood-brain barrier, making it very useful as an antioxidant and antiinflammatory agent for protecting an maintaining the health of the brain. It also acts as a courier for other herbs, helping these medicines to also cross the blood-brain barrier.

On top of that, it is a very good alterative for the lymphatic system, aiding in removing toxins from blood and tissues. If that weren’t enough, it is also a superlative, broad-spectrum antimicrobial agent, demonstrating antiviral, antibacterial and antispirochetal activity. It makes for a serviceable ingredient in the treatment of microbial infections, especially in the blood and respiratory system. And it is also antispasmodic to the airways, helping to relieve spastic coughing.

Its cooling, antiinflammatory properties also benefit the liver and gallbladder. It helps to relieve discomfort of biliary sludge and gallstones by thinning  bile, allowing the gallbladder to secrete it more efficiently. It also helps to drain excess heat out of the blood and body via the large intestine-colon, as well as through the kidneys and bladder. Its blood purifying properties also extend to the urinary system, and it is a serviceable remedy for gout, helping to relieve inflammation while also aiding the the removal of excess uric acid from the blood.

Japanese knotweed uses in relation to Lyme Disease

Japanese knotweed uses have gained popularity in the US because of Lyme disease, where it is employed as an effective, broad-spectrum antimicrobial in bacterial, viral, and even fungal inhibitory regimens. Japanese knotweed’s antimicrobial activity extends to spirochete bacteria, one of which – Borrelia — is the main culprit in Lyme disease. All of this adds up to Japanese knotweed being one of the go-to herbs, not only in anti-Lyme formulas, but in any antibacterial or antiviral formula.

I would not hesitate to use Japanese knotweed in formulas to address the current Covid19 pandemic crisis, and it is already an ingredient in my Antibacterial, Antiviral and Lyme Aid formulas. I could just as easily add it to my Antifungal formula, too.

So, in Japanese knotweed we find a superstar for Lyme disease. Not only does it inhibit the actual organism and stimulate the immune system, but it’s also protective to the main areas that Lyme disease attacks and compromises, such as the brain and nervous system, the heart, and joints. It is a one-stop shopping medicine for treating Lyme, although I would never use it by itself, because Lyme is so insidious and tenacious, and also because I am an advocate of using herbs together in formulas. Japanese knotweed would be one of the first herbs I would think of in such a protocol, and its “courier” properties help the whole of any formula become greater than the sum of its parts.

I could go on and on in greater detail about its medicinal merits, but there you have it. Japanese knotweed uses are widespread and profound, and it should be utilize. It works as a tea, as a powder, and in tincture form. Please have at the medicine. Japanese knotweed is here to stay, and it is here in force. Native plant enthusiasts will applaud your efforts.


Interested in becoming an herbalist?

The first online herbal medicine course from Clearpath School of Herbal Medicine — Foundations of Western Herbalism, Part 1 — begins with a systematic and comprehensive exploration of human beings and health, utilizing the lenses of Western/European and First Nations/Native American healing modalities while also interweaving these traditional principles and practices with contemporary scientific and medical understanding.

Learn more about this online herbalist course here. You can watch an introductory video and take a deeper look at the information you will learn from this course.

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