Astragalos is one of a handful of herbal medicines that have been proven effective in treating a range of ailments, from arthritis to depression to nausea and vomiting.
Astragonalus, an ancient Greek medicine, has been used to treat anxiety, insomnia and anxiety disorders since the 12th century.
In a recent study published in the journal BMC Medicine, Dr Astrago said that although the herb was not recommended for use in clinical trials, there was a lack of evidence for its potential use in a therapeutic context.
Dr Abragalus has been licensed for use for decades in the UK and the US, and in 2015 the Irish government announced plans to make it available in pharmacies.
The research team said it wanted to get the word out to health practitioners and patients about its potential medicinal properties.
Dr O’Brien said that if people in the public health system and health care system could be convinced that the herbal remedies are safe, effective and beneficial then they might feel more inclined to use them.
He said that even if the herbal medicines were not recommended as a treatment for a specific condition, it would be easier for patients to choose the option that was most appropriate for them.
“We would expect that in a given population there will be some who might have an allergic reaction to it,” he said.
“In that situation people would be more likely to go for the less harmful option, which might be the herbal supplement, which may be the only alternative.”
Astraginosa root and the ‘astragalidum’ family of herbs Source: Supplied The team also found that astragaluses were associated with a reduced risk of death from a range other diseases, including coronary heart disease, lung cancer and diabetes.
It also showed that astagaluses did not increase the risk of dying from other chronic diseases, such as hypertension and diabetes mellitus.
However, it was not clear how the compounds might affect the risk for death from the most common chronic diseases in Ireland, such a stroke.
Dr Ciarán Doolan, the study’s lead author, said that the research was the first to show that astrogaluses are effective at treating a broad range of chronic conditions, but added that it was also possible that they might be effective at other conditions such as cancer.
“It is not known how astragalos might be able to reduce the risk or decrease the severity of chronic disease, and we are very interested to see whether the compounds are more effective in those conditions,” Dr Doolen said.
Dr Doonan said that there had been limited evidence to date that astraGalus could be used as an effective treatment for cancer.
However he added that there was some evidence that astralgalus could prevent tumours, and that astray, an extract from the plant, may be useful in this regard.
The team noted that there were no data on the use of astra Galus in other chronic conditions.
It is also possible to make use of the herbal supplements, which are not currently licensed for clinical use in the US.
Dr Peeves said that astroturf campaigns have been used in other countries to promote herbal supplements.
“People are using this as an excuse to get their health claims out there and to promote it,” she said.