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Lilyturf plant Lobelia

Ophiopogon japonicus Lobelia inflata

Lycopodium serratum (see Chinese club moss) Maca Lepidium meyenii

Madagascar periwinkle Catharanthus roseus

Magnolia vine Schisandra chinensis

Ma huang (see Ephedra)

Maitake mushrooms Grifola frondosa

Malabar kino Mandrake

Mangosteen Manroot

Marginal fern




Pterocarpus marsupium Mandragora officinarum

Garcinia mangostana Marah spp.

Dryopteris marginalis

Cannabis sativa

Podophyllum peltatum

Passiflora incarnata

Melia Melia toosendan

Membranous milk vetch Astragalus membranaceus

Mesquite Mexican yam

Milk thistle

Prosopis glandulosa Dioscorea floribunda

Silybum marianum

Root extracts said to aid in diluting thick mucous secretions in the lungs Drug lobeline sulfate obtained from dried leaves; drug used in preparations to aid in cessation of smoking and in treatment of respiratory disorders (Caution: Has effects similar to those of nicotine; more than 10 grams (one-third ounce) of driedplant can produce a coma)

Root extracts said to elevate testosterone levels and improve sexual performance in men

A semisynthetic extract (vinpocetine) derived from vincamine produced by this plant said to be a significant memory enhancer Plant extracts contain a powerful antioxidant that appears to protect healthy tissues (liver in particular) from damage caused by higher than normal blood sugar levels. Synergistic effect when combined with ginseng

A substance (beta-glucan) produced by these mushrooms evidently stimulates the production of cells that aid in the inhibition of cancer cells

Leaf extracts contain epicatechin, which promotes oxygen uptake and better processing of sugar by body tissues

Extracts of plant used in folk medicine as a painkiller (drugs hyoscyamine, podophyllin, and mandragorin have been isolated;

podophyllin used experimentally in treatment of paralysis)

Fruit acid is believed to aid in weight reduction

Native Americans used oil from seeds to treat scalp problems and the crushed roots for relief from saddle sores

Rhizomes contain oleoresin used in expulsion of tapeworms from the intestinal tract

Tetrahydrocannabinol obtained from resinous hairs in inflorescences; ancient medicinal drug of China

Podophyllin obtained from rhizomes used experimentally in treatment of paralysis; dried rhizome powder used on warts (Caution: Plant is poisonous, and extracts are very irritating to the skin) Dried leaves used as sedative; Native Americans used juice as treatment for sore eyes

Used in traditional Chinese medicine to relieve joint pain Extracts strengthen the immune system, especially that of the upper respiratory tract; promote interferon production and repair of damaged bronchial tubes; there is evidence it can counter bone loss (osteoporosis) resulting from extended use of corticosteroids (Caution: Some other Astragalus spp. also known as milk vetch are toxic) Native Americans mixed dried leaf powder with water and used liquid to treat sore eyes

Tuberous roots produce up to 10% diosgenin, a precursor of progesterone and cortisone, and are a source of DHEA (dihydroepiandrosterone), a complex hormone naturally produced by humans; DHEA levels decline with aging; there is some evidence that controlled DHEA supplementation in older persons retards some aspects of aging Silymarin extracted from plants has antioxidant properties that appear to be especially beneficial to the liver

Milk vetch (see Astragalus)

Useful and Poisonous Plants, Fungi, an d A! gae

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