If you’re looking for the best andrographis supplements to buy this year, then you’ve come to the right place.
You can also get more info by jumping to our Andrographis Supplements Guide.
Top 10 Andrographis Supplements
|#1||Planetary Herbals Andrographis Full Spectrum||More Info|
|#2||Now Foods Andrographis Extract||More Info|
|#3||Nature’s Way Andrographis||More Info|
|#4||Paradise Herbs Andrographis with Elderberry||More Info|
|#5||Herb Pharm Andrographis||More Info|
|#6||Mediherb – Andrographis||More Info|
|#7||Swanson Full Spectrum Andrographis Paniculata||More Info|
|#8||Vitacost Andrographis||More Info|
|#9||Piping Rock Health Products Andrographis Paniculata||More Info|
|#10||Nature’s Plus – Andrographis||More Info|
Andrographis is a well known herb supplement in the ancient Indian school of Ayurvedic medicine. However, it is less well known in modern Western culture, although with more research that is slowly changing.
According to Gaia Herbs, Andrographis’ most common nickname is Kalmegh, which translates to mean “King of Bitters.” The plant earned this nickname from its reputation as a bitter tonic to support good overall digestive function.
In this article, learn more about Andrographis, including what it is, where it comes from, its major health benefits, how to take it, what to look for in a supplement and how to ensure you have the best possible experience.
NOTE: If you are trying to start a family, are now pregnant or are still breastfeeding, it is best to talk with your doctor before adding Andrographis to your daily health regimen. In the same way, if you are currently being treated for an ongoing health condition and taking medication regularly, please check with your doctor before beginning to take Andrographics as well.
What is Andrographis?
Andrographis, often still called by its full name of Andrographis paniculata, has many benefits if you can get around its somewhat bitter and astringent taste.
According to the Huffington Post, Andrographis grows readily in temperate and tropical climates and is known in Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) circles to have cold, bitter, anti-toxin and heat-clearing properties.
In the Ayurvedic and Chinese medicine traditions, in fact, Andrographis has been used with great success to treat a variety of ailments for over 1,000 years!
The plant itself is a short, herbaceous bush that rarely grows taller than 4 feet and is easy to grow and maintain. The unusual stem is square instead of rounded. Andrographis produces small white flowers with purple alternating stripes. The seeds are yellow/brown in color. All parts existing above ground can be and often are harvested for use as a supplement. The taste of all plant parts is described as uniformly bitter according to Drugs.com.
Benefits of Andrographis
Andrographis is continually being researched for potential new effective uses. Known effective uses include these:
- Fever. Reduction in fever by bringing down the body temperature.
- Swelling. Reduction in inflammation from injury or illness.
- Colds. Shortens recovery time for the common cold and may also prevent colds.
- Sore throat. Eases pain and inflammation.
- Blood clotting. Inhibits blocked arteries and facilitates healthy blood flow.
- Respiratory infection. Reduces healing time.
- Inflammatory bowel disease. Reduces symptoms when taken for at least 8 weeks.
- Digestion. Due to the bitter nature of Andrographis, it can be an effective digestive aid, which it does by increasing the flow of bile from the gall bladder.
- Injury. Can speed healing for wounds.
- Respiratory distress. May be effective for treating asthma and allergies.
- Rheumatoid arthritis. Can ease joint pain and discomfort.
- Anti-fungal. Has been shown to be effective against certain fungal infections.
- Toxicity. Has potential to combat toxicity from mineral over-exposure.
- Malaria. Serves to repel malarial mosquitoes (and kills adults on contact).
Andrographis’ identified active ingredients include proteins, flavonoids, arabinogalactan,polyphenols, andrographolides, paniculides and farnesols. Each of these active ingredients functions as a type of adaptogen, which means it can take on different healing functions to address the needs of the individual.
Are There any Side Effects?
According to WebMD, certain short and longer term side effects are associated with Andrographis use.
When taken for three months or a shorter period of time, Andrographis may cause side effects such as headache, fatigue, appetite loss, diarrhea, rash, runny nose or vomiting.
When taken for longer periods of time or for higher than recommended dosages, Andrographis side effects may be more severe and include the following: enlarged/swollen lymph glands, liver enzyme elevations and more severe allergic reactions.
These side effects are not a guarantee when taking Andrographis for short or long term use, but the chances of developing side effects definitely strengthen when taking higher doses for a longer period of time.
As well, certain contraindications exist as follows:
- Blood clotting. Andrographis has the potential to slow the blood’s ability to clot.
- Immune system. Andrographis can boost immune system function, which may be problematic to those who suffer from autoimmune conditions.
- Blood pressure. Andrographis may possibly lower blood pressure, which could be of concern for those already taking blood pressure medication.
- Fertility. Andrographis is thought to potentially interfere with fertility.
- Pregnancy. A concern exists that use of Andrographis during pregnancy may lead to miscarriage.
There are some known drug interactions as well, including medications that are designed to lower blood pressure, suppress immune system function and slow blood clotting function. As well, it is best not to take Andrographis if you are taking acetaminophen, aspirin, ibuprofen, naproxen and other pain relievers regularly.
How to Take Andrographis
Herbs Are Special reports that dosage recommendations can vary depending on the preparation of the supplement.
For example, if you are taking the dried herb version of Andrographis (in a tea, tincture or capsule form), a dose as low as 0.5 grams or as high as 6 grams may be indicated. Similarly, if taking the liquid (tincture or extract) version, a dose as light as 3 mL or as high as 12 mL may be taken (with one teaspoon equalling 5 grams).
For general purposes, most individuals can take up to 6 grams of Andrographis daily on a short-term basis without risk of serious side effects. However, it is always best to talk with your doctor first before deciding on your individual daily dosage, and to start out at the very low end of the recommended daily dosage until you see how you respond to taking Andrographis daily.
You can take Andrographis before meals in tea, tincture, powder, liquid extract or capsule form. Because Andrographis is stimulating to the digestion, taking it before meals when your stomach is empty is preferable to taking it after or between meals.
What to Look for in a Good Andrographis Supplement
When choosing a good Andrographis supplement, always look for a manufacturer or brand name you recognize and trust. This will ensure that the supplement has the highest degree of purity. If at all possible, choose an organically-sourced Andrographis supplement that is non-GMO.
Read the supplement label carefully to ensure there are no fillers, artificial ingredients, preservatives or possible allergens included. If you have a known allergy, check to be sure that the supplement is manufactured in a facility that does not also handle dairy, soy, gluten, tree nuts/nuts, seafood or other known allergens.
For best results, select a supplement with servings at the low end of the recommended daily dosage spectrum. This will give you flexibility in dosage.
Licorice is a common additive in Andrographis supplements to mask the bitter taste, but it is best to avoid Andrographis supplements that include licorice for a variety of reasons and especially if you are pregnant, have any kidney or heart conditions, have been diagnosed with rare muscle disease or have high blood pressure.
Also avoid sweetened Andrographis, even if the sweetener used is stevia. The herb is most effective when taken plain in as close to its natural state as possible.
By taking some time to learn more about Andrographis as an herb, including its many benefits, recommended daily dosages, the different formulations you can choose from and when to avoid taking it, you can ensure you have the most positive outcome from use of this ancient and powerful herb.