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What is lomatium? What is it used
Lomatium is a small, greenish plant native to western North
America. In appearance, it is similar to parsley. In some
areas, it faces the possibility of extinction due to overharvesting.
The root is used in herbal preparations.
Lomatium has been used by Native Americans for centuries
to treat a wide range of infections, particularly those affecting
the lungs (such as bronchitis). During the influenza epidemic
of 1917, there are reports that lomatium was used with remarkably
positive results. In addition to influenza, studies have found
that lomatium also acts as an antibacterial to candida, salmonella,
staph aureaus, streptococcus and several other infectious
How much lomatium should I take?
There are several doses for lomatium. For respiratory infections,
most practitioners recommend 10-30 ml of a lomatium tincture
taken up to four times daily. As an alternative, some practitioners
recommend 2-3 ounces of a lomatium tea or infusion, also up
to four times daily.
What forms of lomatium are available?
Lomatium is available as either a tincture or extract. If
possible, be sure to purchase lomatium products that have
the resins removed (usually called lomatium isolates). This
lowers the chance of receiving an unwanted side-effect.
What can happen if I don't get enough
lomatium? What can happen if I take too much? Are there any
side-effects I should be aware of?
Lomatium extracts that contain the resin may, in some people,
cause a whole-body rash. The rash will disappear once use
of the extract is discontinued. In addition, substances called
coumarins found in lomatium may heighten the effect of other
blood-thinning agents. Patients on blood-thinning medication
should consult with a health care practitioner before taking
lomatium supplements. Because the safety of lomatium has not
been determined in women who are pregnant or lactating, it
should not be used by patients with these conditions.
Other Resources :
More You Know About Minerals
More You Know About Nutrition
- Alstat E. Lomatium dissectum and
fresh corn silk. NHAA International Conference 1995:116-125.
- Bergener P. Adverse effects anecdotes.
Medical Herbalism: A Clinical Newsletter for the Herbal
- McGuffin M, Hobbs C, Upton R, et al. (eds).
American Herbal Products Association's Botanical Safety
Handbook. Boca Raton, FL: CRC Press, 1997, p. 32.
- Moore M. Herbal Materia Medica.
Bisbee, AZ: Southwest School of Botanical Medicine, 1995,
- Vanwagenen BC, Cardellina JH. Native American
food and medicinal plants. 7. Antimicrobial tetronic acids
from lomatium dissectum. Tetrahedron 1986;42:1117.