Cistanche benefits include support for issues with fatigue, depression, concentration, memory, kidney deficiency, impotence, and female infertility.
What Is Cistanche?
Cistanche (Rou Cong Rong in Chinese) is the dried succulent stems of Cistanche deserticola and Cistanche tubulosa. Well-known traditional Chinese medicine (TCM), it’s used to provide support for issues with lack of energy, concentration, physical debility associated with chronic illness, kidney deficiency, impotence, and female infertility. This impressive herb is also showing promise as support for depressive symptoms through its ability to help restore the homeostasis of gut microbiota.
Summary of Cistanche Benefits
Cistanche was originally recorded in the Classic of Herbal Medicine, a well-known book on medicinal plants written between about 200 and 250 AD, as an herb that can regulate “five (viscera) strains and seven (overeating, anger, moisture, cold, worry, wind and rain, and fear) impairments.”
Today, Cistanche is widely accepted as an herbal support for general debility, including pain, fatigue, cachexia and physical disability from chronic illness, as well as deficits in attention, concentration, memory, development, or learning. It supports energy, awareness, memory, healthy immune response, endocrine health, brain health and sexual health. The extract may also provide support for the treatment of Alzheimer’s disease. New evidence suggests that it may possess antidepressant-like qualities.
Cistanche Anti-Depressant-like Effects
A recent article in Frontiers in Pharmacology addresses lesser-known Cistanche benefits, including the antidepressant-like effects of Cistanche tubulosa extract through restoration of gut microbiota homeostasis.
As the authors note, “Growing evidence shows that neuropsychiatric disorders, such as depression, are linked with gut microbiome through the gut–brain axis. Cistanches Herba is well known for the treatment of “kidney-yang” deficiency in traditional Chinese medicine (TCM), and has been used for treatment of neurodegenerative diseases in recent years. … [T]hese results identify [Cistanche] as a potential treatment for depressive symptoms by restoring homeostasis of gut microbiota for microbiota–gut–brain axis disorders, opening new avenues in the field of neuropsychopharmacology.”
Chemical Constituents of Cistanche
Phytochemicals in Cistanche include phenylethanoid glycosides (PhGs), iridoids and iridoid glycosides, lignans, alditols, oligosaccharides, and polysaccharides.
Cistanche shows a broad range of neuroprotective, immunomodulatory, anti-inflammatory, and hepatoprotective activities. Phenylethanoid glycosides (PhGs), the main active components of Cistanche, possess a broad range of pharmacological activities, such as neuroprotective, immunomodulatory, anti-inflammatory, hepatoprotective, and anti-oxidative.
Learn More About Cistanche Benefits
We sell Cistanche extract in small, 100 gram boxes as OOMPH Energy Support. We also sell Cistanche in larger 200-1,000 gram sizes. Before you buy, however, get the facts. We suggest you start with the Cistanche FAQ.