Senna Herb - Uses And Side Effects
Other Names : Aden senna, Cassia acutifolia, Cassia augustifolia, Cassia senna, Mecca senna, nubian senna, and tinnevally senna.
A well-known ingredient in many nonprescription laxatives, senna is the dried leaf or pod of Alexandria senna and Tinnevelley senna. Both species have recently been referred to by botanists as Senna alexandrina. They are members of the pea family native to Eurasia, now cultivated commercially in the Middle East and India. Tinnevelley senna is most widely used in the United States.
The ancient Egyptian doctors used senna over 3500 years ago for their royal patients and the elite. It was also used by the Arabian physicians as far back 9th century A.D. After being introduced to Europe during the Crusades, its popularity as an herbal remedy exploded. While available as single product, senna is often combined with a variety of aromatic herbs.
Products containing senna are sold under such names as Senekot, Senexon, Senokot-S, Senolax, and Senna Leaves.
Common doses of Senna
Senna comes as:
Some experts recommend the following doses:
To make a tea or an infusion, place 100 grams of senna leaves and 5 grams of sliced ginger or coriander in I liter of distilled boiling water.
Uses of Senna herb
Senna contains hydroxyanthracene glycosides known as sennosides. These glycosides stimulate colon activity and thus have a laxative effect. Also, these glycosides increase fluid secretion by the colon, with the effect of softening the stool and increasing its bulk. Specifically, senna may help to :-
Side effects of Senna
Call your health care practitioner if you experience any of these possible side effects of senna:
This herb also can cause:
Are there any interactions?
Combining herbs with certain drugs may alter their action or produce unwanted side effects. Don't use senna while taking:
Important points to remember
What the research shows
Senna seems to be safe and effective in treating constipation, but overuse can lead to many harmful effects. Medical experts say you should use it only occasionally and only for short periods.
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