What Is senna?
Senna (botanical name Cassia angustifolia) is a plant best known for its medicinal properties. It comprises of dianthrone glycosides (compounds consisting of sugar molecules bound to other molecules), as well as mucilage (a thick, gluey substance), tannins and flavonoids.
In addition to its use as a safe and effective laxative, senna also has many other health benefits. One of the glycosides present in senna, emodin has many therapeutic benefits including as an anti-inflammatory, antispasmodic, and the ability to inhibit or destroy viruses. These compounds have also shown to be effective in stimulating cellular regeneration, and detoxifying and cleansing.
Senna is the active ingredient in many commercial laxatives. However, these laxatives also contain artificial sweeteners and should therefore be avoided. More natural, undiluted forms of senna are available at some health-food stores and it is also available in supplements and liquid extract form.
However, senna should not be used for prolonged periods of time as studies indicate that this can cause toxicity and increase the risk of colon cancer. Other negative effects include laxative dependency, and inflammation of the gastrointestinal tract. Chronic or prolonged constipation should be treated by dietary changes such as increasing fiber in the diet.
References for further reading
Share or Bookmark this page: You will need to have an account with the selected service in order to post links or bookmark this page.