Claw (Una de gato)
Cat's Claw is the English name given for a woody vine that grows wild
in the Peruvian rain forests. Cat's Claw is also known as Una de gato.
The Ashaninka Indians of the Peruvian Amazon used the bark to make a
tea that was used for many ailments.
The most active compound in Cat's Claw extract is an alkaloid called
isoteropodine. Isoteropodine has antioxidant properties. Other active
alkaloids include isomitraphylline, pteropodine, isorynchophyllline
and rynchophylline. Alkaloids are responsible for the bitter taste.
Cat's Claw bark also contains compounds called Quinovic Acid Glycosides.
Researchers are studying other compounds; proanthocyanidins, polyphenols
and triterpenes, and the plant sterols that might explain the antioxidant,
anti-viral, anti-tumor and anti-inflamatory properties
attributed to this herb.
Studies show that the inner bark of the vine contains the same beneficial
properties as the root. If the root is harvested for the Cat's Claw
extract, the plant is killed. It is said that the current pace of Cat's
Claw root extraction may lead to extinction in the next few years.
WARNING: Do not use if you are pregnant or nursing.
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