Eleuthero root, used in traditional Chinese medicine for thousands of years, is still relatively new as an herbal remedy in the United States. Also known as Siberian Ginseng, Eleutherococcus senticosus is a species of small shrubs found in China, Korea, Russia, and Japan. While eleuthero root is most commonly consumed in pill or supplement form, the leaves and root can also be used in their natural form. Parts of the plant can also be boiled in water or pressed to extract the oils. Eleuthero health uses include the ability to reduce fatigue, boost the immune system, and relieve stress. (1)

8 Eleuthero Health Uses

1. Boosts Immunity

Eleuthero root is referred to as an “adaptogen.” Adaptogens provide support to weakened or overloaded immune systems.  Eleuthero root has been studied for its ability to significantly boost the immune system. Compounds in eleuthero root, including eleutherosides and polysaccharides, may support immune function.  Eleuthero root can help reduce the severity and duration of colds when taken at the first sign of illness, so try taking a supplement or drinking eleuthero tea. (2)

2. Reduces Fatigue

Eleuthero health uses include the ability to naturally boost energy levels. As an adaptogen, eleuthero root works by boosting metabolism, increasing circulation, and having a positive effect on the nervous system. Therefore, it may also help to reduce fogginess and fatigue. (3)

3. Improves Cognition

Because it may improve circulation, eleuthero root also has the ability to increase blood flow to the brain and the small capillaries. This quality may further help increase cognition, improve memory, and keep the brain sharp. But one animal study also shows that the compounds in this herb improve memory and learning in the study animals. Use eleuthero root as a natural supplement for improved cognition. (4)

4. Relieves Stress

As an adaptogen herb, eleuthero root can help the body better handle stressful situations. It works by improving the body’s response to stress in times of anxiety or emotional upset. Therefore, its adaptogenic properties make eleuthero a natural remedy for stress relief. (5)

5. Reduces Neurological Disorders

Eleuthero health uses include the ability to reduce neurological disorders. Antioxidants in eleuthero root work by eliminating many of the free radicals that build up and cause plaque to form in the brain. Eleuthero can help keep neural pathways clear to slow or stop the advancement of neurological disorders such as Alzheimer’s disease. (6)

6. Reduces Inflammation

The anti-oxidant properties of eleuthero can help reduce inflammation, too.  Furthermore, the anti-inflammatory properties of eleuthero root can help significantly improve the flexibility and functionality of joints. By reducing inflammation and pain, it can help naturally treat conditions such as osetoarthritis or gout. (7, 8)

7. Protects Heart Health

Eleuthero health uses also include the ability to benefit the cardiovascular system. In fact, eleuthero root dilates and relaxes the blood vessels to allow more blood to flow with less strain on the arteries and vessels. This lowers blood pressure levels and improves circulation. Additionally, eleuthero may help reduce cholesterol levels. (9)

8. Helps Control Diabetes

Eleuthero works as a natural remedy to help control diabetes. One aspect of diabetes is insulin resistance. In animal studies, insulin resistance and glucose tolerance improved in groups given eleuthero compounds. Furthermore, eleuthero improved pancreatic function of the beta cells. This herb also works by regulating blood sugar levels to prevent diabetic shock. (10)

Caution: If you suffer from a mental condition, such as mania or insomnia, or hormone-related disorders, do not take eleuthero. If you have a heart condition, cancer, or diabetes, eleuthero may be beneficial as a natural remedy, but it should be taken under the guidance of a health care professional. Eleuthero is a powerful herb and may cause interactions when used with other drugs. If you are on medication, talk to your doctor before taking eleuthero as a supplement.