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Chanca Piedra (Phyllanthus niruri) FAQ

Phyllanthus niruri, also called Chanca Piedra, contains 100+ bioactive compounds. No other plant in the world offers as many health benefits. It’s our flagship product. We think it’s the best herbal tea in the world.

Curious about the kidney support, digestive health support, detox/cleanse support, and immune support that Phyllanthus niruri herbal tea and extract offer? Check out these resources and scroll down to find answers to common questions.

“The World’s Healthiest Herbal Tea and Extract”

Chance Piedra (Phyllanthus niruri) FAQ

Do you sell Phyllanthus niruri (Chanca Piedra)?

Yes! You can order Phyllanthus niruri (Chanca Piedra) looseleaf herbal tea and herbal extract from our online store.

What are some Phyllanthus health benefits?

Phyllanthus niruri (also called Chanca Piedra and Stone Breaker) herbal tea and herbal extract offer tremendous health benefits. Native to the Amazon rainforest, Chanca Piedra is a nootropic, an adaptogen, and an antioxidant. With 100+ identified bioactive compounds, no other plant in the world offers as many health benefits.

Phytochemically rich Chanca Piedra has the potential to help many body systems. It has been traditionally used to support the renal system, help the immune and lymphatic systems combat viruses and bacteria, support the digestive system, and reduce stress on the pancreatic system.

Phyllanthus niruri may offer significant immune support and relief of cold and flu symptoms. Studies show it has powerful antibacterial, antiviral, and biofilm-breaking qualities.

What does “Chanca Piedra” mean?

Chanca Piedra is Spanish for “Stone Breaker.” Phyllanthus niruri is best known as a kidney stone breaker. People throughout South America drink tea made from this marvelous plant.

Is Chanca Piedra the world’s healthiest tea?

We think Phyllanthus niruri may be the healthiest tea in the world. Members of our team drink it every day. It has 100+ bioactive compounds. It’s a powerful antioxidant and a nootropic. Best known for helping to eliminate kidney stones and gall stones, it is also traditionally used in South America and around the world to address a variety of chronic illnesses.

Phyllanthus niruri (Chanca Piedra) has been traditionally used to help the immune and lymphatic systems combat viruses and bacteria, support the digestive system and renal system, and reduce stress on the pancreatic system.

The important thing to remember is that the same actions that help with chronic illness can help your body stave off the flu or a cold. Phyllanthus niruri blocks the RNA and DNA transferase, slowing or even stopping bacteria and viruses from multiplying and allowing a more balanced immune system to handle the remaining invaders.

For these reasons, we’ve included Phyllanthus niruri as one of the six super-botanicals in our proprietary ShieldsUp! Immune Support Kit.

Can Chanca Piedra help me if I have kidney stones?

Phyllanthus niruri is known throughout South America as Chanca Piedra, which means stone breaker. Interestingly, Phyllanthus niruri doesn’t technically break the kidney stone. Instead, it stops the accretion of calcium in the kidney, smooths the stone’s spiky surface, stops spasms and eases pain while passing stones, and reduces the size of the stone so it can pass easily through your urine stream. Learn more here.

Can Phyllanthus niruri help someone with Lyme disease?

Linden Botanicals owner Michael Van der Linden had Lyme Disease for almost four years. He began drinking Chanca Piedra (Phyllanthus niruri) tea to help treat kidney stones. Over a three-month period, he ended up clearing Lyme disease from his body. You can learn more about how Chanca Piedra works to inhibit Helicobacter pylori (H. pylori) here. You can read more about how Chanca Piedra helped him rid his body of Lyme disease here and here.

Can Phyllanthus niruri help me deal with stress?

Phyllanthus niruri is a member of a rare and remarkable group of plants called adaptogens, which help the body adapt to physical, chemical, biological, emotional, and environmental stress. As the world’s best synergistic adaptogen, Phyllanthus can help the body deal with inflammation, hypertension, and oxidative stress, which is essential for a balanced immune system and good health.

Can Chanca Piedra support a liver detox or cleanse?

Everything you put in your body eventually goes through the liver’s security checkpoint. Rather than start a new fad diet, consider ways to support efficient liver filtration. A cup of Phyllanthus niruri herbal tea a day can go a long way toward protecting your liver and supporting digestive health.

What are its antioxidant and anti-aging properties?

Phyllanthus niruri is rich in antioxidants, which play a crucial role in combating oxidative stress and preventing cellular damage. In one study, the plant extract exhibited potent antioxidant activity, scavenging free radicals and protecting against oxidative damage. These antioxidant properties are exceptional health benefits of Phyllanthus niruri and may offer may contribute to the herb’s potential anti-aging effects and overall cellular health.

Does the tea have caffeine?

Some people feel an energy boost when they drink Phyllanthus niruri (Chanca Piedra). However, it does not contain stimulants. It has no caffeine and no cardiac glycosides. There are no reported adverse side effects of drinking the tea regularly. That said, everybody’s body chemistry is different. Trust what your body tells you.

If Phyllanthus niruri doesn’t have caffeine, why do I feel a “lift” when I drink it?

Here’s the short story: Drinking Phyllanthus niruri tea can give you something akin to an energy and mood boost — a stimulating effect like a coffee buzz, minus the jitters. Your body naturally produces a “bliss molecule” called anandamide, and Phyllanthus niruri makes more anandamide available to your body for longer periods of time. Read about Phyllanthus niruri and the bliss molecule to learn more.

Here’s the longer story: Anandamine (AEA), the bliss molecule, is an endogenous cannabinoid molecule involved in regulating the endocannabinoid system, which is possibly the most important physiologic system involved in establishing and maintaining human health. Cannabinoids promote homeostasis, or maintenance of a stable internal environment despite fluctuations in the external environment. As such, cannabinoids play a key role in helping the body regulate functions ranging from appetite, sleep, mood regulation, neuroprotection, and immune response.

AEA binds to both CB1 and CB2 receptors. High levels of anandamide are a catalyst for both mood enhancement and decreased fear and anxiety during times of perceived threat. Increased levels of anandamide have been found in the bloodstream of people who have just completed rigorous exercise, giving credence to the theory of a “runner’s high.” Research also confirms a link between oxytocin – dubbed the “love hormone” – and anandamide.

Phyllanthus niruri does not contain anandamide. It’s also not a precursor, meaning it’s not a compound that participates in a chemical reaction that produces another compound.

But here’s the thing, anandamide is a fragile molecule. It doesn’t stick around in the body for long because the endocannabinoid system recycles it very quickly via enzyme reduction. Said another way, the body makes anandamide, and the body also rapidly metabolizes it, or breaks it down. The interesting point here is that the effects of high levels of anandamide can be achieved by blocking the enzyme fatty acid amidohydrolase (FAAH), which metabolizes anandamide.

Phyllanthus niruri contains a molecule that works as an FAAH inhibitor to block the metabolism of anandamide. In other words, Phyllanthus niruri allows the effects of the anandamide bliss molecule to hang in your body for longer periods of time.

Does it matter where Chanca Piedra is sourced?

Yes! Our high-quality Chanca Piedra (Phyllanthus niruri) is sourced from the Amazon rainforest. It’s grown in its natural environment through a process of wildcrafting. We work with our supplier to ensure proper species identification. Members of our team have met with both the collectors and processors personally.

Since many plants look alike, it’s not uncommon for some suppliers to sell Phyllanthus urinaria, Phyllanthus amarus, and other plants, which they call Phyllanthus niruri. These different plants – sourced from China, India, and other parts of the world – do not share the same health benefits as Phyllanthus niruri. Terroir (geography, landscape, sun, seasons, and rain) matters.

Should Phyllanthus niruri be wild grown?

Wild grown Phyllanthus niruri is preferable. We sell only wild grown, nature-crafted Phyllanthus niruri. (If your Phyllanthus was cultivated, it’s probably not Phyllanthus niruri.)

How did you choose your supplier?

For each of the products we sell, members of our team do substantial research and then visit the source and meet with both the collectors and processors personally.

The collectors and processors of our Phyllanthus niruri know their plants and appreciate the difference between wild-grown herbs and greenhouse-cultivated crops. We back up our faith in our source and our processors with testing.

How can I find a reputable Phyllanthus niruri source?

Start by asking these questions:

  1. Have they themselves tried Phyllanthus niruri tea and extract?
  2. Are they sourcing their Phyllanthus niruri from the Amazon rainforest?
  3. Have they visited the Amazon rainforest and met in person with their supplier?
  4. Are they choosing Phyllanthus niruri plants grown in their natural environment through a process of wildcrafting?
  5. Are they managing cultivation and using organic farming methods to minimize environmental impacts and maximize health benefits?
  6. Are they ensuring proper species identification (especially since many plants look alike)? Phyllanthus niruri, for example, has tiny fruit capsules containing seeds (see the picture).

It’s easy for suppliers to cultivate and sell the wrong plant, even accidentally. So choose your Phyllanthus niruri source wisely.

What does Chanca Piedra tea taste like?

Phyllanthus niruri makes a pleasant-tasting loose tea. Some people have told us that they think it tastes like the Lipton sun tea they drank growing up.

Should I choose herbal looseleaf tea or herbal extract?

When you order Phyllanthus niruri, you have a choice of herbal looseleaf tea or herbal extract (concentrate). Why choose one over the other? Generally it comes down to lifestyle and how you want to ingest the nutrients. All three choices are potentially good ones depending on your needs and lifestyle.

Looseleaf is the whole plant cut to a loose “tea” cut. Looseleaf is the most traditional form, and it’s a great way to enjoy a full tea experience. Some ancient healing traditions (Ayurveda, for example) believe strongly in the whole experiential process of smelling and tasting the decoction as part of the healing. Science agrees with the concept that the nose can prime the immune system.

Phyllanthus niruri concentrate is an extract. Ours uses a dual-process extraction that gets the most nutritional value out of the plant. (Imagine a combination of a tincture and a tea that has been both professionally prepared and dried to a powder in a sealed system that doesn’t lose any beneficial components.) The concentrate is great if you’re adding Phyllanthus niruri to a smoothie or if you’re traveling and want to be able to make “instant” batches easily.

How do I make Phyllanthus tea (Chanca Piedra tea) from the extract?

Add 8-10oz of hot, filtered water to 1/2 teaspoon of extract. Stir until dissolved. Drink two to three glasses a day.

You can also put the extract in an immune support smoothie, a digestive health smoothie, a memory and focus smoothie, or a stress relief smoothie.

How much tea should I drink?

We like Phyllanthus as a tea. Technically, it’s a decoction, which for simplicity’s sake is a long-brewed tea. Normally, we suggest drinking three cups a day as a support and then drinking less when you reach the maintenance stage, which occurs when your symptoms are gone for a month or so. The rule of thumb in herbalism is that it will take one month of herbal support for every year your system has been imbalanced, stressed, or dealing with a chronic issue.

How do I brew Phyllanthus niruri looseleaf tea?

To make the brewing process easier, you may find it easiest to make all three cups in the morning and then drink the tea throughout the day. Measure 13 grams (about 2/3 of a cup) of plant to 30 ounces of water. For a single cup, the measure would be a heaping tablespoon of the loose-cut dried plant to 8 ounces of water.

If you have a decoction pot, set the temperature to 90c and the timer for 30 minutes. If you’re going low tech, simply bring the water to boil and then let it cool one minute before pouring over the plant material. You can also use a regular teapot or a French press. Using a French press allows you to keep an eye on the tea color. Watching for when all the plant matter has hydrated and sunk to the base of the press works as a great rough timer for when the decoction is ready.

If you use a teapot, let the mixture steep for about 35 minutes. If you brew it longer, you may find the taste more bitter. However, a longer brew won’t subtract anything from its beneficial value.

How can I make the perfect brew?

Perfection matters less than you may think. Perfection can be the enemy of the good, especially if your goal is to optimize your health.

Over the long haul, it won’t matter if a Chanca Piedra brew here or there is less than perfect. Continued usage is far more helpful than any single serving. Most of the herbal bioactives will build to a level in the body after which excess is excreted within a few daily servings.

The upshot: If the brewing process is too complicated, then people will stop brewing. Relax and drink a good cup of Phyllanthus niruri. Don’t stress about the perfect brew.

Can I brew Phyllanthus niruri and Cistus incanus together?

Yes, many people like to blend Phyllanthus niruri and Cistus incanus in a single pot. Doing so will result in an effective brew of both. We like a 50/50 (by weight) blend, but you might want to experiment with different ratios.

Some people are strong adherents of the three brew method for Cistus. In this case, would recommend separate brewing, but it would be perfectly fine to combine the final brews. The reason for separate brewing is that a triple brew of Phyllanthus would over-express the tannin content, which could make the tea overly bitter and unbalance the flavonoid ratio of the extraction.

Can I add sugar, lemon, or honey to my tea?

Yes, you can add a bit of lemon or honey to your Chanca Piedra tea. Doing so won’t diminish the benefits. If desired, you can also add a small amount of any herbal, such as oregano or mint. this is up to your personal preferences.

As a general rule, sugar is not a healthy supplement. “No added sugar” is probably the first recommendation for anyone trying to improve their health. Honey is sugar. However, if a small amount increases the likelihood of your drinking the tea, the benefits will outweigh the downside, particularly if it’s the only added sugar in your diet.

What if the flavor of the tea is too strong?

It’s possible that you’re making too strong a cup of tea. Brewing Phyllanthus niruri on the stronger side (either by increasing the brew time or increasing the material-to-water ratio) can make the tea tannic, which some people experience as bitter.

Can I make or warm my tea in the microwave?

Personally, we don’t like to make tea in a microwave. However, we run our company based on science, not on personal opinion. A survey of the scientific literature suggests that using a microwave will at worst present only a minimal loss of bioactive ingredients. If making or warming your tea a microwave is convenient for you, go ahead.

What is the best way to store the brewed tea?

Store your Chanca Piedra tea in a covered container in the refrigerator or on the counter.

Are Phyllanthus amarus and Phyllanthus urinaria the same as Phyllanthus niruri?

No. Phyllanthus niruri is a different plant with similar but different bioactive ingredients. Many suppliers call all Phyllanthus plants “Phyllanthus niruri.” Be sure you know what you’re getting.

Can I drink Chanca Piedra tea all day?

Yes, it is safe to drink Phyllanthus all day. You can keep drinking it for a month or more.

Can you advise me on my medical condition?

Every day, we hear personal stories about the unfortunate health struggles people face when dealing with Lyme disease and other chronic diseases and chronic illnesses. We hear how people have spent thousands of dollars chasing this cure or that and how they’ve received little help from doctors. Every day, these stories inspire us to want to do everything we can to help people optimize their health.

We have found that Phyllanthus niruri can be highly effective, and science helps to explain why. However, to be clear, we cannot offer medical advice or recommendations on treatment for any specific health issue. If you haven’t already done so, we recommend that you see an integrative health professional.

What if I have more questions about Chanca Piedra?

Contact us!