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Is there a benefit from taking Astragalus for cancer treatment?

Henry McCann, DAOM
Alternative & Complementary Medicine

Astragalus is a very commonly used Chinese herb with few side effects. It is used as a general Qi tonic and in China is routinely given to cancer patients in addition to other treatments. One study done in China and published in the Indian Journal of Pharmacology has also shown that Astragalus can have anti-tumor effects. That said, Astragalus is not something that is taken as a treatment by itself for cancer and is best used in combination with other conventional and alternative therapies.

However, before taking any herb during chemotherapy or radiation therapy it is advisable to check with your oncologist as well as consult with a professional practitioner of Chinese medicine. In the US this means finding an acupuncturist who also has professional training and certification in Chinese herbal medicine. Even though Astragalus is a commonly used herb, it may not be appropriate for all patients.

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Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.