Sarsaparilla is a vine-like woody plant, which is indigenous to Central and South American rain frosts, Mexico, certain parts of Australia, the Caribbean Islands, Jamaica as well as certain parts of South East Asia. It was introduced to Europe in the late 15th century. The scientific name of sarsaparilla is smilax ornate and it belongs to the lily family. This vine is known to reach up to fifty feet in length. Sarsaparilla bears small flowers and black, blue or red berry like fruits. The root of sarsaparilla is long and tuberous. It has a spicy-sweet and pleasant taste, when it is processed, however, before processing the roots are bitter, sticky and often tend to have a strong odor. Since, there are many sarsaparilla benefits, it has been used for centuries in the manufacturing of herbal medicines. We will now see sarsaparilla herbal benefits.
What are the Benefits of Sarsaparilla
Among the first health benefits of sarsaparilla is that it is a great blood purifier and is also a tonic, which boosts stamina and energy. It is considered as a fine tonic herb, has antibacterial and anti-inflammatory properties. Sarsaparilla is rich in Vitamin A, Vitamin B complex, Vitamin C as well as Vitamin D. It is also a rich source of iron, manganese, sodium, silicon, sulfur, copper, zinc and iodine. Sarsaparilla also contains amino acids.
- Sarsaparilla is used to treat nervous system disorders.
- It is also used in psoriasis and eczema treatment. Sarsaparilla contains saponin, which helps to disable bacterial components called endotoxins, which show up in the bloodstreams of people afflicted with psoriasis.
- Patients suffering from inflammatory disorders like rheumatism and gout, have benefited from the regular consumption of sarsaparilla. However, it does not help to relieve acute cases of gout, but its use helps in preventing attacks when it is taken for over a period of couple of months.
- One of the benefits is its use as a diuretic and laxative. It helps the body to get rid of excess water from the body and also helps to treat mild case of constipation.
- Sarsaparilla is also known to induce sweating, thereby purifying the blood.
- It is also known to increase the excretion of uric acid, which makes it an effective in the treatment of urinary tract infections and other complications that involve the kidney and liver.
- Among many of the sarsaparilla uses, famous is its use to offset fever and increase body strength and resistance.
- Since it also known to have anti-inflammatory properties, it is said to be effective in alleviating conditions like arthritis.
- The antibacterial properties are effective in neutralizing internal and external infection, such as abscesses, acne, boils, wounds and other skin disorders.
- Sarsaparilla is also said to be useful in maintaining the balance of the glandular system.
There are some misconceptions associated with this plant. It is said that it contains plant steroids, which according to some are similar to human hormones. However, the body is not able to change the plant steroids into human steroids, hence the claim is not yet confirmed and validated through scientific evidence. Due to such perceived properties, sarsaparilla has been advertised as a sexual enhancer for men and also as steroid replacement for athletes and body builders. Because the claims are not verified, you may not want to fall prey to such false propaganda and avoid any side effects as well.
There are many benefits of sarsaparilla, but before you use this herb to treat any of the disorders, it is recommended you talk to your health care professional regarding the same. Since the exact dosage to treat various conditions have not been established, altering the dosage can result in dangerous complications.