Herbs For Alcoholism...

Herbs For Alcoholism Herbs for Alcoholism
Breaking an addiction takes more effort than simply adding an herb or two to the diet. Exercise changes the chemistry of the brain and should be added to any nutritional program to fight alcoholism. Contributing to alcoholism are a complex combination of social and physical factors, so social support is also vital to overcoming alcoholism. Herbs for alcoholism can help, however, and should not be overlooked in planning a course of action.

To reduce cravings, herbs for alcoholism include kudzu extract (a traditional Chinese treatment) and evening primose oil. Kudzu is an invasive vine that is found all over the southeastern U.S. Both flowers and roots of the plant are used for treating alcoholism.

Evening Primrose Oil
Evening primrose oil contains GLA, an omega 6 fatty acid. GLA is believed to protect the brain cells from the damage cause by alcohol as well as strengthen the recovering alcoholic's ability to stay sober. It also helps to normalize blood sugar, which can set off the desire to drink. It's healing for the liver as well, making it one of the best herbs for alcoholism. Borage oil and black currant oil also contain GLA.

Milk Thistle
For the health of the liver, milk thistle and dandelion are herbs for alcoholism. With milk thistle, the dried fruit is the part used. The active component is a complex of flavonoids called "silymarin." Because of these flavonoids, milk thistle is thought to block harmful substances (like alcohol) from getting into the liver. It also cleanses those substances from the liver, and may work to rebuild damaged liver cells. Milk thistle is extremely safe and can even be used by pregnant women. Dandelion is thought to have a synergestic effect with milk thistle.

Kava Kava
To aid sleep and reduce anxiety, kava kava is often suggested. It was reported in 2001 to be linked to some cases of liver damage. It would probably be wise to discuss the use of kava kava with a medical professional. Scullcap is a very safe herb for reducing anxiety, as is chamomile, which has a much better taste taken as a tea than does scullcap.

St.John's Wort
St. John's Wort is indicated if alcoholism is a cover-up for depression, and has other qualities which make it one of the best herbs for alcoholism. The Chinese herb shizandra is also used for alcohol related mental problems.

Other related herbs
Herbs for alcoholism that are reported to ease withdrawal symptoms include scullcap, valerian, passionflower, and Angostura bitters, which are made of gentian and quassia. Oatstraw is reported to strengthen the will power.

To speed up the metabolism of alcohol to get it out of the body, and possibly to reduce the alcohol absorbed in the stomach, Asian ginseng or American ginseng can be used.

If using a tincture of herbs to help overcome alcoholism, make sure you use a glycerite and not an alcohol based tincture. The tiny amount of alcohol in a few drops of tincture can be enough to set off the craving to overindulge in alcohol. Herbs for alcoholism that might be included in such a glycerite include valerian, scullcap, oatberry, St. John's Wort, and passionflower.

Research with rats has been done with kudzu and St John's Wort which gave promising results. Both herbs were reported to reduce alcohol use in rats that had shown themselves to be alcohol-preferring. A rat is not going to resist alcohol if it really wants it.

It's not trying to rebuild a broken home life or hold onto its dignity. If these herbs work at all on rats, then it stands to reason they could assist an alcoholic who is trying to kick the habit. On the other hand, a rat doesn't have a buddy urging him to go down to the bar. Overcoming alcoholism is a complex endeavor which will take dedication, support, and faith.

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