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Cats Claw

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Cats Claw

By Phillip N. Steinberg, C.N.C.

By now most of you have heard of Cats Claw, a remarkable herb being imported from the Peruvian Amazon. After almost three years of working with and writing about this miracle from the rainforest, I have become increasingly convinced of it's tremendous healing power. It seems to have the ability to help people suffering from many different illnesses both acute and chronic, sometimes in just a matter of a few days. I have personally received testimonials from alternative practitioners, health stores and individuals from all across the United States and other countries, who claim that Cats Claw, also known as Uña de Gato or in Latin as Uncaria tomentosa Willd DC, has literally changed their patients, customers and personal lives.

Though most of these claims are anecdotal in nature, they never the less give us reason for optimism. Based on these reports, there is evidence that Cats Claw can help, at least in some cases, people suffering from tumors and growths, arthritis, bursitis, gout, fibromyalgia, asthma, hay fever, allergies, chemical and environmental sensitivities, multiple sclerosis, shingles, canker sores, chronic fatigue and depression, candidiasis, parasites, dysbiosis, Crohn's disease, ulcers, gastritis, hemorrhoids and inflammatory bowel, prostate problems, diabetes, hypoglycemia, PMS and menstrual irregularities, circulatory problems and various viral and bacterial infections, including secondary infections in AIDS patients. There have also been reports of Cats Claw's effectiveness in reducing the side effects of both radiation and chemotherapy when used in conjunction with conventional cancer adjunctive nutritional therapies. Will all this stand up to scientific scrutiny? I believe that in time it will; however, we will have to wait until the appropriate clinical trials have been completed. For now, at least, Cats Claw seems to be virtually non-toxic and safe to use up to as much as 20 grams per day for several weeks to several months at a time. This is the amount generally used by the indigenous people of Peru, who boil inner bark and/or root in a liter of water for 30 minutes, then consume this decoction throughout the day for a variety of illnesses.

Here in the U.S. individuals with minor illnesses have often responded with as little as 2-4 grams per day in capsule or tablet form. I personally have been taking 1 gram (1,000 mg.) three times per day almost every day for the past three years. I have found this amount to virtually eliminate the pain and discomfort in my lower back associated with an arthritic condition that developed as a result of two car accidents.

I have also witnessed Cats Claw's ability to clear-up sinus, ear and throat infections in 48 to 72 hours and I have used drops of tea in the eyes to clear-up conjunctivitis and powdered herb between toes to clear-up athletes foot.

So, what is it that makes Cats Claw such a powerful natural medicine? The answer lies in the herb's unique phytochemical make-up. In all, the herb contains five different groups of beneficial plant compounds. These include: alkaloids, polyphenols and proanthocyanidins, triterpines, glycosides, and phytosterols. Laboratory research in Austria, Germany, Hungary, Italy, England and Peru has demonstrated that these compounds possess immune augmenting, anti-microbial, anti-tumor, anti-inflammatory, anti-allergic, anti-ulcer, anti-oxidant and adaptogen properties.

Because Cats Claw has been referred to as an adaptogen and anti-oxidant herb, it is suitable to be used on a daily basis by those seeking to maintain maximum resistance to the stresses and strains of modern life. Is Cats Claw an herb for everyone? No, there is a small percentage of people who should not use the herb. These include: anyone taking anti-ulcer medications, transplant patients or those being injected with foreign proteins as a part of their normal therapy. Cats Claw can also cause uterine contractions and therefore, should not be taken by pregnant women or women seeking to conceive.

What about side affects? In a small number of people, Cats Claw will cause constipation or diarrhea and in rare occasions a slight fever or reoccurrence of former symptoms as it drives a deep seated pathology out of the body. These usually pass or normalize within two weeks. I have also heard of a few people who have broken out in a rash after taking Cats Claw. For these reasons, I always suggest starting out with a lower dose and then gradually increase the amount over a ten to thirty day period.

If side effects are going to occur, they will generally do so within the first week. It is important to keep in mind that these side effects are rare and that the vast majority do not experience any at all.

Today, there is a wide variety of Cats Claw products available in capsule, tablet, tea, liquid and powdered extract forms. Most products are made from the inner bark of the vine, however, I recently learned that a small amount of root & root bark is being harvested legally and ecologically in Peru and is now available in various products. Recent assays have determined that Cat's Claw root and root bark contain a significantly higher alkaloid content. There is also a highly specialized pharmaceutical extract developed from the root that is currently being used to treat cancer, AIDS and other diseases in Austria and Germany. The pharmaceutical has not been approved for sale in the U.S.; however, more products containing root and root bark will soon become available from health food stores, mail-order and network marketing companies.

Essiac Tea Plus Cats Claw! Adjunctive Disease Treatment
Cats Claw Benefits


Jeffrey T. Maehr, D.C. (Ret.)
Certified Nutritional Microscopist
Wholistic Nutritional Consultant

Phone: 970-731-9724

Email: drhealth (at) purehealthsystems (dot) com

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