Astragalus protects heart cells from lipid peroxidation


Saponins in astragalus protect the heart muscle from dangerous lipid peroxidation and blood clotting.[1]

Astragalus reduces heart rate in congestive heart failure and reduces discomfort

19 patients with congestive heart failure were treated with an astragalus ingredient called ‘Astragaloside IV’. After two weeks, chest pain and breathing difficulties significantly improved. At the same time, the heart rate dropped from 88 to 64 bpm on average, which is due to a vitalisation of and increased circulation to the heart muscle.[2]

Studies have shown that astragalus has a cardioprotective effect in cases of myocardial ischemia

Astragalosides IV, found in Astragalus membranaceus, have demonstrated cardioprotective activity in myocardial ischemia both in vivo and in vitro.[3]  Astragalus helps combat viral heart inflammation (myocarditis). Administration of Astragalus to patients with viral myocarditis resulted in an increase in T3, T4 and T4/T8 cell counts.[4]

Effect of astragalus on cancer

Astragalus has been used against cancer for millennia. Astragalus has shown excellent effects in studies with certain cancers in particular, such as small cell lung tumours, melanoma (skin cancer) and kidney cancer (see ‘Astragalus studies’).

Effect of astragalus in lung cancer

Ten out of 12 patients with small cell lung cancer who were treated with astragalus achieved survival rates of 3-17 years.[5]

Astragalus in studies on kidney cancer and melanoma

In vitro astragalus membranaceus has proved its antitumoural effects on melanoma and kidney cancer.[6]

Astragalus enhances the effects of chemotherapy and prolongs life

In studies, astragalus has been shown to enhance the effects of chemotherapy and prevent relapses. In addition, lifespan was significantly increased and the toxic side effects of the chemotherapeutic agents were reduced.[7]


Effect on sperm activity, male infertility

In studies, astragalus increased sperm activity by 146 %, while the other 17 herbs tested failed to do so. Astragalus is thus ideally suited for increasing fertility in men with an existing desire to have children.

Effect on allergies

In numerous studies, astragalus has demonstrated a regulatory effect on the immune system, which is of paramount importance in allergic diseases.

Astragalus is used as a tragacanth extract to treat allergies, and here it promotes the synthesis of IgG antibodies and thus contributes to the elimination of allergens. The expression of T-bet mRNA and T helper 1 cytokines, such as IFN-γ, is promoted, the activity of genes involved in the inflammation process during an allergic reaction is regulated, and the release of histamine is inhibited, resulting in the prevention of allergy symptoms. Astragalus has proven its worth here against pollen, house dust mite and animal hair allergies.

Effect on asthma

Studies have shown that astragalus counteracts airway inflammation in chronic asthma.

Effect of astragalus on Parkinson’s 

Astragalus protects the dopaminergic neurons and also, in this way, helps combat Parkinson’s.

Effect on diabetes  and its long-term consequences

Astragalus counteracts the formation of advanced glycaemic end products (AGEs) which cause neuropathic complications in diabetes.


Rejuvenation with astragalus

Astragalus takes on the challenge of rejuvenation in a multitude of ways:

-                   antioxidant effect

-                   immunostimulatory effect

-                   antiglycation

-                   protection of telomeres from shortening

-                   extending effect of telomeres

-                   repair of DNA

Let’s take a look back:

We are writing in the year 2009. Along with other highly promising projects, three Stockholm researchers have been nominated for the Nobel Prize for Medicine after making a truly sensational discovery that could play a crucial role in both cancer healing and anti-ageing.

The three molecular biologists, Jack W. Szostak, Elizabeth H. Blackburn, and Carol W. Greider of the Karolinska Institute in Stockholm provide radical answers on the function of telomeres on our chromosomes and the associated ‘immortality enzyme’ ‘telomerase’, and thus receive the coveted Nobel Prize for Medicine for 2009.

To explain further: With each cell division, the ends of the chromosomes, called telomeres, become shorter. However, if an enzyme called ‘telomerase’ is added to the telomeres, the chromosome ends of this enzyme are synthesised and reattached.

This precise action occurs in cancer cells, meaning it can split indefinitely. Conversely, it is known that people suffering from ‘old-age disease’ lack the enzyme ‘telomerase’.

Other progeria diseases, such as ‘Werner syndrome’, confirm this. Telomere length is a reliable measure of our age and is also a trigger for the unpleasant ageing phenomena known to us all.

Conversely, the telomerase mechanism makes the cells virtually immortal because telomerase rejuvenates the cell, or at least it can prevent further shortening of the telomeres, thus effectively reversing or stopping ageing.

Unfortunately, although the gene capable of turning on telomerase is present in every single human cell, it remains unused in all normal cells, except for germ cells, stem cells, and cancer cells, which are considered immortal because they can divide indefinitely.

Certain telomerase activators from astragalus root, such as astragaloside IV and cycloastragenol, now have the amazing ability to activate the gene and thereby activate telomerase in normal body cells, protecting telomeres from shortening and even triggering telomere extension.

‘For the first time in the history of medicine, we have the potential to effectively reduce and possibly even completely eliminate the adverse effects of the ageing and degradation process associated with insufficient telomerase and short telomeres’. (Noel Thomas Patton, founder of TA Sciences)

The renowned Harvard University confirms the telomerase theory of ageing 

In November 2010, Harvard Medical School created a sensation by publishing an article about a research experiment that not only succeeded in stopping mammalian ageing processes, but had even reversed them!

The telomerase activation described led to the biological rejuvenation of brain cells, the spleen and the reproductive organs, and the biological age of mice equivalent to an 80-year-old man could be reversed to the age of young adults.

Another study by Harvard researchers confirmed that shortening telomeres are the main cause of biological ageing.

Also, studies at the University of Toronto in Canada have clearly shown that increasing telomerase activity in normal human cells with associated telomere extension leads to the extended lifespan we all hope for.[8]

What’s more, certain diseases disappeared automatically as the cells were rejuvenated, such as Alzheimer's, arthritis and osteoporosis. The researchers rounded off their research with the following revolutionary conclusion: ‘Ageing does not cause short telomeres, but short telomeres cause ageing’ and ‘Diseases do not make you old, ageing leads to various diseases’.

Usually, the pharmaceutical industry reacts very quickly to current, sensational research results, which it tries to convert into cold hard cash. In fact, it has since been researching a new substance that, according to the principle of telomerase, can extend the telomeres again, or at the very least, protect them from further shortening and thereby rejuvenate the cell or prevent it from ageing.

The Big Pharma approach always follows the same principles:

-                             look at nature’s principle of action;

-                             extract individual substances which are responsible for the principle of action from nature, or attempt to make them synthetically;

-                             apply for a patent for the resulting isolated drug;

-                             develop a drug from it;

-                             commission (positive) studies;

-        launch the marketing machinery;

-        cash in to the tune of millions and billions.

All Big Pharma drugs are based almost exclusively on mechanisms which Big Pharma has taken, or has tried to take, from complex biochemical principles that have matured over millions of years in nature!

It is arrogant, ignorant, and simply presumptuous (and stupid) to assume that a team of professors and doctors would be able to understand and imitate developments in highly complex systems of nature, which have a biofunctional adaptive evolution of millions of years, in a matter of weeks or months. At this point, we cite the double Nobel laureate and vitamin researcher Linus Pauling, who really got to the heart of this modern problem:

‘... anything that is not ‘orthomolecular’ (proper molecules known to the organism) in the treatment and prevention of chronic diseases will fail. The mechanism of our physical systems is reluctant, in the medium term, to react positively with non-orthomolecular (‘toximolecular’) substances. ‘Conventional medicine’ will try to compensate for the non-observance of this maxim – born of narrow-mindedness and ignorance of the laws of nature – with money, research giantism and propaganda. This endeavour will fail and result in a huge cost explosion in health care, resulting in severe social upheaval, economic and political crises. Even industries that unite into huge conglomerates to cope with financing toximolecular, non-biological ‘drugs’ will fail. No money in the world would be able to reproduce or even surpass the development of drugs from hundreds of millions of years of biofunctional adaptive development’.

And if it were not enough that this highly questionable approach of Big Pharma places an unnecessary burden on insurance funds, causes cost explosions, and begs patients to pay more, by far the most significant drawback of this practice is that many useless medicines are produced, which have disproportionate benefit-risk profiles, which make patients already suffering from ‘Disease A’ suffer from ‘Disease B’ and then ‘Disease C’, and often even lead to premature death! Now, of course, one could ask the legitimate question: why is the pharmaceutical industry not exploring the natural object as a whole, for example, to use a potentially effective, complete fruit, a complete medicinal mushroom or herb against disease?

This question can be explained simply by way of the patent system:

In order to be able to approve a drug, corresponding studies must be submitted, which cost the pharmaceutical companies millions per individual approval study.

But it is impossible to patent natural remedies as a whole – logically, because an apple grows on the tree, a fungus in the forest. This state of affairs is omnipresent and familiar to everyone, does not correspond to any newly discovered, intellectual achievement that needs to be protected – and therefore is not worthy of protection (patentable)! However, if one were to pursue approval studies for a drug that is not patentable in advance, the expensive information gained would be common knowledge and could therefore be used by the competition!

The pharmaceutical company, which has commissioned the expensive studies, would be left footing the bill for the costs, while the competition would be grateful for the free insights and market the drug itself! 

Another scenario for better understanding:

Imagine you want to buy a car; instead of a car, you get a steering wheel and four wheels. Of course, such an incomplete vehicle cannot be driven and even if it could be driven, it would be anything but safe on the road...! 

This is exactly what Big Pharma does: It isolates certain substances from a natural whole or attempts to recreate them synthetically. This is like taking an individual out of an orchestra and demanding the same piece of music in the same quality! It goes without saying that this will only end in failure!

In plain English:

The vast majority of drugs are nothing but unsuitable counterfeits of natural active ingredients – not only are they not very effective, but they also come with numerous side effects!

This little digression into the pharma industry's questionable approach to drug development was needed here to help you understand why the highly acclaimed ‘pharmaceutical research’, into which billions of dollars are pumped every year, is in fact failing! 

[1]Purmova J. and Opletal L. Phytotherapeutic aspects of diseases of the cardiovascular system. 5. Saponins and possibilities of their use in prevention and therapy. Ceska Slov Farm 1995; 44, p. 246–251.

[2] Luo H. M. et al.: Nuclear cardiology study on effective ingredients of Astragalus membranaceus in treating heart failure. Chung Kuo Chung Hsi I Chieh Ho Tsa Chih 1995; 15, p. 707 ff.

[3] Planta Med. 2006 Jan; 72 (1), p. 4–8.

[4] Huang Z. Q. et al.: Effect of Astragalus membranaceus on T-lymphocyte subsets in patients with viral myocarditis. Chung Kuo Chung Hsi I Chieh Ho Tsa Chih 1995; 5, p. 328–330.

[5] Cha R. J. et al.: Non-surgical treatment of small cell lung cancer with chemoradio-immunotherapy and traditional Chinese medicine. Chung Hua Nei Ko Tsa Chih 1994; 33, p. 462–466.

[6] Wang Y. et al.: Phytochemicals potentiate interleukin-2 generated lymphokine-activated killer cell cytotoxicity against murine renal cell carcinoma. Mol Biother 1992; 4, p. 43–146.

[7] Zee-Cheng RK. Shi-quan-da-bu-tang (ten significant tonic decoction), SQT. A potent Chinese biological response modifier in cancer immunotherapy, potentiation and detoxification of anticancer drugs. Methods Find Exp Clin Pharmacol.

[8] Reconstitution of telomerase activity in normal human cells leads to elongation of telomeres and extended replicative life span; Homayoun Vaziri1 and Samuel Benchimol; Department of Medical Biophysics, Ontario Cancer Institute, University of Toronto, 610 University Avenue, Toronto, Ontario M5G 2M9, Canada