Buckwheat – Polygonaceae.

Parts used: rhizome and root.

Pharmacy name: rhubarb root – Rhei radix (formerly: Rhizoma Rhei).

Botanical description.Rhubarb is native to the highlands of Western China and Eastern Tibet. However, to obtain pharmaceutical raw materials, rhubarb is specially cultivated in many European countries. Its largest quantity is imported from China, where it is obtained from 5-10-year-old wild plants. Rhubarb medicinal reaches about 2-3 m in height. In the first year, only a fleshy root appears, followed by a rhizome, which from year to year becomes more powerful and from which long lateral roots and numerous tubers extend. Basal leaves with longish petioles, wide heart-shaped, palmately dissected; stem – much smaller, simpler and have short petioles. Small flowers are grouped in paniculate inflorescences that emerge from the axils of the scaphoid upper leaves. During flowering, the peduncle lengthens.

Collection and preparation. Only when the rhizomes become powerful and the roots thick, which happens after about 5-10 years, they are dug up, cleaned of bark and dried in the sun, near a stove or an open window. But before entering the European market, they are traditionally sorted and sorted again.

active ingredients.Anthraquinone and its derivatives (partly in the free, partly in the bound state), as well as tannins, are the main active ingredients of medicinal rhubarb. Healing action m application. In laxative and slimming teas, crushed rhubarb root is not common, although it would be very appropriate there. In large part for convenience, specialty products using rhubarb in the form of an extract or powder from the root have proven to be preferred. In small doses, approximately 0.05-0.5 g, rhubarb root powder has shown itself well in inflammation of the stomach and intestines; at a higher dosage, it acts as a laxative. The German National Health Service recommends rhubarb root for constipation, for all diseases where soft stools are desired, and forbids taking it for bowel obstruction,

Use in homeopathy. The homeopathic remedy Rheum plays a significant role; it is purposefully used when it is necessary to treat diarrhea with a bad smell. The use of a laxative as a fixative corresponds to the homeopathic principle of treatment: “like is treated with like.” Success is achieved especially in the treatment of babies. The so-called teething diarrhea, which is often accompanied by colic, responds well to rhubarb. Use this remedy mainly in dilutions D 1 or D 1and give 3 times every day for 5-10 (up to 20) drops. Side effects at therapeutic doses can not be feared. There are people who can’t stand rhubarb. There were irritations of the skin and mucous membranes, including the intestines, but above all, of course, the oral cavity. After stopping rhubarb, these side effects quickly disappeared. With prolonged use, you can be afraid of loss of potassium in the body.

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