Harpagophytum procumbem or otherwise Devil’s claw is a plant of Pedalaceae family. The Devil’s claw is so called because the fruit externally has sharp hooks and can not easily be bitten by animals. When the fruit ripes, it scatters the seeds.The active substances of devil’s claw are harpagoside, beta-sitosterol, phenolic acid, alkaloids and some flavonoids.
- Cholagogue (promotes the secretion of bile)
- Appetite stimulant
- Arthritis. The plant is very famous as a natural medicine against arthritis, osteoarthritis, tendinitis, the synovitis and muscle pains. It has high anti-inflammatory activity which is comparable to that of cortisone.
- Painkiller. Studies have shown that there are no side effects if taken daily. It can be administered to individuals suffering from chronic pain instead of the common pain relievers such as ibuprofen, acetaminophen and paracetamol. It is an excellent painkiller for muscle and joint pain, pain in the lower part of the spine and rheumatic pain.
- Digestion. Tea from the rhizome of the plant is used as a tonic and in indigestion, because it stimulates the production of digestive juices in stomach and bile.
- Skin problems. In the form of ointment it can be used to irritated skin, acne and dothiines.
In tablets and tincture. It is recommended to be consumed daily for at least one month. The recommended dosage for the tincture is 30 drops, twice a day.
Should not be used by pregnant women or people who suffer from stomach and duodenal ulcers.