|Other Names: Harpagophytum procumbens, Grapple Plant, Wood Spider.|
Devil's claw is a plant native to southern Africa, and the name comes from the small hooks on the plant's fruit. The active ingredients
are believed to be iridoid glycosides called harpagosides, which are found in the
Most of the world's supply comes from Namibia, South Africa and Botswana.
Why do people use it?
The herb has been used for thousands of years in Africa to treat fever, rheumatoid arthritis, skin conditions, and conditions involving the gallbladder, pancreas, stomach and kidneys.
It is used to improve digestion, as the bitter taste of the tea is thought to stimulate digestive juices.
However, the primary use today is for inflammation and pain including:
* Back pain
* Neck pain
* Rheumatoid arthritis
According to a study in the Journal of Ethnopharmacology, sales of preparations
in Germany were estimated to be $50 million dollars in 2005, accounting for
75% of the prescriptions for rheumatism.
What research has been done?
There is some evidence for its use, however one randomized controlled trial found only a modest benefit.
* A German study examined the use for moderate back, neck, and shoulder muscle tension and pain. In the,
patents took 480 mg twice a day and 32 people took a placebo. The results showed there was a significant reduction in pain in the people taking
the herb compared to the placebo group.
* A study published in the journal Rheumatology compared an extract providing 60 mg harpagosides a day and and 12.5 mg a day of the anti-inflammatory Vioxx
in patients with an acute exacerbation of low back pain. The plant was as effective as Vioxx in reducing pain.
* A study published in the journal Joint Bone Spine compared six 435 mg capsules of powdered devil's claw extract a day
with 100 mg a day of the osteoarthritis drug diacerhein in patients with osteoarthritis of the knee or hip. After four months,
it was shown as effective as the diacerhein at relieving pain, improving mobility, and reducing the need for
* In a European Journal of Anaesthesiology study, people with back pain rated
high on a pain scale received a standardized daily dose of 50 mg or 100 mg harpagosides or placebo.
The plant showed a reduction in pain - more than the placebo.
For inflammation and pain, it is usually taken in capsule form. A daily dose
should provide at least 50 mg of harpagosides per day.
For indigestion and appetite loss, a tea is made by steeping 1 teaspoon of chopped or powdered dry root in 2 cups of boiling water for at least 20 minutes. It is then strained and cooled.
* It should not be used by people with gastric or duodenal ulcers.
* People with gallstones should consult a doctor before using.
* People with diabetes or who are taking medication that affects their blood sugar should only use
it under the supervision of a doctor.
* It should not be used by people who are, or may be pregnant, as it is may cause uterine contractions.
It has been known to trigger a allergic reactions.
Some studies have reported stomach upset, a sensation of fullness, tinnitus (ringing in the ears), and headache.
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4 0z. Devil's Claw Cut Tea - B01DEVC-4oz
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