Larrea grows in the deserts of southwest America. It lives a very long life because of the powerful actions of its constituents. It just never gets sick. It is resistant to free radical damage.
About the only way to kill Larrea is to chop it down, or starve it for water, which is very hard to do when it thrives in a desert.
The leaf of this plant is one of the most powerful anti-oxidants in nature.
It is so powerful that the food industry has isolated what they believe to be the main anti-oxidant constituent and use it as a food preservative. I wouldn’t use the plant for this purpose because it is very bitter. You might preserve your food but no one would want to eat it
The anti-microbial actions prevent bacteria, virus, and fungus from replicating.
It is also anti-inflammatory. It reduces histamine from lung tissue and inhibits lung spasms. The anti-oxidants stabilizes cell membranes preventing inflammation.
It is a great blood purifier. Some people will drop a leaf or two in their drinking water. This is an acquired taste. Although the leaves are very small, just one or two leaves in a gallon of water will give it a little bit of a bitter taste.
No wonder it is so powerful when such a little bit will make a difference. The cleansing properties also work on the lymph, liver and urinary tract.
It lowers serum LDL and VLDL (the bad fats).
It also has constituents that give it healing and antiaging properties.
It is one of the natural alternatives for cancer treatment. Studies have shown Larrea to prevent cancer cells from eating the sugars they need for survival. The cancer cells literally starve to death. The anti-oxidants in Larrea help to prevent the beginning cell changes that lead to cancer. They also protect against damage caused by cells that promote tumor growth.
Extensive research on Larrea in the 1970s and 1980s found Larrea to be safe to use. But if you do a web search you will find statements that Larrea is toxic to the liver. This does not come from a research trial but from the experience of one woman that developed jaundice and liver failure while taking Larrea.
Never mind that this woman was also taking five different drugs known to be toxic to the liver. None of those drugs were considered to be the problem, only the natural herb. After an extensive review from medical experts they found no clinical data indicating Larrea to be toxic to the liver. But the stigma remains.
Some of the powerful constituents of Larrea should not be taken internally for extended amounts of time. If taking internally (capsules or infusion of ½ teaspoon to a pint of water) take for about eight weeks then go off of it for four weeks. (I take a very small dose of two or three leaves in a half gallon of water on a daily basis for immune support.)
As always if pregnant do not use. Research with pregnant women has not been done so we do not know if it will affect the baby.
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