Composition of Gentian Root
The bitter principles of gentian root are secoiridoid glycosides amarogentin and gentiopicrin. The former is one of the most bitter natural compounds knownand is used as a scientific basis for measuring bitterness.
Gentian, one of the “bitter” herbs, has been used by herbalists for over 2,000 years to help stimulate liver function. Traditional folk healers believe that gentian root can improve the digestive process by stimulating the flow of saliva, bile, and stomach acids.
Health benefits of Gentian Root
Gentian root supports liver function as well as being a fungicide. Gentian root extract is a fungicide, an immune booster, and possesses anti-inflammatory properties. Its bitter principles stimulate the secretion of both gastric juices and bile.
It is beneficial for people who have been exposed to environmental toxins, are in the habit of consuming alcohol, eat a large amount of meat, have high cholesterol levels or a “fatty liver.”
Traditional Chinese Medicine traditional Chinese medicine In both Chinese and Korean, the terms for gentian can be translated literally as “dragon gallbladder herb.” This attests to gentian’s ability to treat fiery inflammations of the gallbladder that cause intense discomfort.
History of Gentian Root
The name is a tribute to Gentius, an Illyrian king who was thought to have found out that the herb had tonic properties.
Gentian Root is remarkable for the intense bitterness of the root and every part of the herbage. Before the introduction of hops, gentian was used occasionally in brewing.
The botanical name Gentiana is derived from Gentius, king of ancient Illyria (modern day Bosnia) (180-167 B.C.E.), who discovered its therapeutic values.The herb has been used in European herbal medicine throughout the 2200 years since its discovery.