Benefits Of Angostura (Angostura Trifoliata) For Health

Benefits Of Angostura (Angostura Trifoliata) For Health


Angostura (Angostura Trifoliata)


Angostura (Angostura Trifoliata) is known as other names: Angustura, Angusture, Angusture Vraie, Angostura trifoliata, Bonplandia trifoliata, Carony Bark, Chuspa, Cusparia, Cusparia Bark, Cusparia febrifuga, Cusparia trifoliata, Galipea officinalis, True Angostura...

Angostura trifoliata (botanical name Angostura trifoliata/Galipea officinalis) is a somewhat ambiguous tree or shrub that is mainly found growing in South America. This tree is evergreen in nature, distinguished by its comparatively tall standing and deep colored compounded leaves. Generally, the angostura grows anything between 10 meters and 20 meters in height and has plenteous chunky external bark, which the natives usually use in the form of a traditional medicine.

Benefits Of Angostura (Angostura Trifoliata) For Health
Angostura (Angostura Trifoliata) Picture


Dissimilar to the curly dry bark of cinnamon, the edges of the bark of angostura trees remain straight even after they are dried, primarily owing to their partially spongy structure. However, when the bark becomes very dry, it is easily broken and it comes off to form a crude powder when you apply even little pressure with your hands. However, people prefer to use the angostura bark in its whole form. Since ancient times, the indigenous tribes of South America have used the bark of this evergreen tree in the form of a traditional medicine. However, in present times, this herb is seldom used outside folk remedy and it is not even mentioned in most herbal texts, perhaps barring some incorrect relation to the Angostura® bitters, a completely different substance having no relation with the tree. However, in recent times, people interests in angostura are arisen once again mainly following the discovery of the fact that the bark of this herb contains several active compounds, some of which possess specific cytotoxic (a substance having a toxic effect on particular cells) attributes.


Benefits Of Angostura (Angostura Trifoliata) For Health


Although angostura is a relatively unrecognized herb in the West in contemporary time, native tribes of North America have been using this plant since ages in the form of an herbal medicine for treating various health conditions. This herb is known for its extremely bitter or astringent nature. People take angostura for treating fever, diarrhea, and spasms; and for preventing the return of malaria. Large doses of angostura are used to empty the bowels and cause vomiting.

The bark of angostura is often used in the form of an infusion or a tincture to cure malarial fever (generally used in conjunction with or as an alternative to cinchona - another herb that possesses anti-malarial as well as anti-pyretic properties). The infusion or tincture prepared with angostura bark is also used for treating paralysis, as it has a positive effect on our spinal nerves. Traditionally, it is believed that the bark of angostura possesses tonifying properties that may aid in arousing the paralytic nerves and, at the same time, promote speedier recuperation from palsy, numbness and tremors. Scientists are still examining the effectiveness, safety as well as the potential modern applications of the bark of angostura.

The bark of angostura is used to make an extremely potent decoction. This decoction is consumed unsweetened in the form of a bitter tisane for alleviating stomach cramps, helping digestion and even improving appetite.

Angostura bark has been traditionally used for various remedial purposes, including in the form of a general tonic, as an antimicrobial and antibacterial rinse. Generally, a decoction prepared with the angostura bark has been prescribed to people suffering from various different skin complaints as well as for sterilizing small and also major injuries. Traditionally, people have also been using an extremely strong decoction of angostura bark internally for treating recurrent coughs, whooping coughs as well as common complaints related to the pulmonary system. Findings of many recent studies on angostura bark have shown that it may also have considerable anti-tuberculosis attributes - primarily because the bark encloses two vital active chemical compounds like galipine and angosturin.

Angostura offers several health benefits, which are mainly attributed to its antispasmodic properties. In case your digestive system is weak and you are enduring conditions like irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) or Crohn’s disease, you may consult with your healthcare provider or physician regarding the use of angostura. In addition to helping solve your digestive disorders, this herb will also help in having regular bowel movements.

Angostura bitters work very well on any problem related to the stomach and digestive tract. A few drops of bitters in a some water or just plain can immediately get rid of flatulence, gas, digestion and an upset stomach. Angostura bitters are known to be the remedy for debilitating stomach pain. If your stomach pain persists beyond a few days with only temporary relief, you should seek a doctor’s help.

In South America, people employ this herb for treating dysentery and diarrhea. People who are enduring diarrhea and dysentery usually feel feeble, dehydrated as well as miserable. While such people may change to the BRAT (bananas, rice, applesauce and toast) diet, they may also try taking an angostura recipe.

It has also been reported that the use of angostura is effective for promoting blood circulation - only outward (blood flowing from the heart) blood circulation.

It may be noted that angostura also functions in the form of a diuretic, as it increases urination as well as sweating. Hence, it is believed that use of this herb may also be helpful in weight loss programs, especially for women, who frequently grumble about water retention in the body.

Angostura also offers additional health benefits, such as stimulating hair growth as well as promoting its health. This is primarily because this herb encourages outward blood circulation. In other words, angostura helps to augment the blood circulation to the scalp. As the blood flow to the scalp increases, it helps additional nutriments to be transported to the hair follicles, thereby making the hair healthy and stronger.

Angostura induces perspiration, while improving bowel movement and evacuating bowels regularly. Check with any qualified alternative medicine practitioner and he will inform you that when bowel movements are irregular, they often result in the accumulation of toxins as well as detrimental pathogens inside your body. In such circumstances, you may be plagued with pimples and acne. When perspiration is normal and the bowel movements are healthy, they help you to rinse out the toxic substances as well as the harmful pathogens from the body.

In foods, angostura is used in alcoholic beverages. However, “angostura bitters” which is sometimes used in mixing alcoholic beverages, no longer contains angostura. It is now made from gentian and other bitters.

Angostura (Angostura Trifoliata) Side effects and cautions


Angostura extract is safe for most adults when used in amounts commonly found in foods or drinks. There isn't enough information to know if angostura is safe in medicinal amounts, which are typically larger than the amounts found in foods or drinks.It has been found that taking angostura in large doses may result in nausea and vomiting.

In the absence of any standardized dosage or safety guideline for using this herb, it is advisable that you should use it in moderation. Pregnant women and nursing mothers should avoid using this herb, unless it is absolutely necessary for them and is used under the direction of a professional and very experienced herbal medicine practitioner or healthcare professional. People who are undergoing treatment for malaria or cancer using specific prescription drugs should also use angostura very cautiously.