Boxthorn, Lycium barbarum, Matrimony Vine
- Indications, but with no proof of efficacy:
Blood, liver and kidney tonic
Improving the immune system Malaria
Strengthen muscles and bone
- Risk of Drug Interaction: Moderate
- Adverse effects: Rare
Parts of the plant used: froot and root bark
Goji is a Chinese shrub that produces a small red fruit that is believed to prolong life. It have been used for over 2000 years in traditional Chinese medicine. Dried berries ang goji juice became popular in Occident because of their antioxidant effect.
Direction of use
To date, to study has been conducted to prove the benefits of goji.
There is little information on doses but a typical dose of 1 cup of tea per day or more is used. However, the concentration of the tea may vary based on how it is prepared.
- Side effects
Few side effects have been associated with goji. Its root bark may cause nausea and vomiting.
Those suffering from diabetes, hypertension or hypotension should exercise caution when taking goji.
Goji may increase the effects of diabetes and blood pressure medication. It may also interact with oral anticoagulants such as Coumadin and increase the risk of bleeding. If you are already taking medication, check with your pharmacist to see whether it is compatible with goji before ingesting.
- Pregnancy and breastfeeding
Goji is not recommended for pregnant women as it is an abortifacient. There is no data available on breastfeeding.
In 2004, Canada adopted new regulations that control the manufacturing, packaging, labeling and importing of natural health products. The new regulations also include an adverse reaction reporting system. Products that conform to the regulation's criteria are identified with a natural product number (NPN) and can be legally sold in Canada. This number indicates that the product meets specific criteria for safety and purity, not that it is effective for any indication.
Medicinal plant contents vary naturally from plant to plant - just as fruits from the same package may vary in taste and texture. There is no standard to measure the active content of each plant. Thus, efficacy of natural products should be expected to vary from brand to brand as well as from bottle to bottle of the same brand.
For more information about the Natural Health Products Regulations, or to check if a product has been assessed, visit the Health Canada website at www.hc-sc.gc.ca/dhp-mps/prodnatur/index-eng.php.
- Natural Medicines Comprehensive Database, Therapeutic Research Faculty, 2010
- Passeportsanté.net. Lycopène. www.passeportsante.net
- The Review of Natural Products, 6th Edition, 2010
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The patient information leaflets are provided by Vigilance Santé Inc. This content is for information purposes only and does not in any manner whatsoever replace the opinion or advice of your health care professional. Always consult a health care professional before making a decision about your medication or treatment.