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Andrographis paniculata

Andrographis paniculata is an herb frequently used in traditional medicines to treat the common cold.

Our evidence-based analysis on andrographis paniculata features 78 unique references to scientific papers.

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Summary of Andrographis paniculata

Primary information, health benefits, side effects, usage, and other important details

Andrographis paniculata, commonly known as ‘king of bitters,’ is an herb traditionally used in Ayurveda and Traditional Chinese Medicine.

Andrographis paniculata is used to treat the common cold. It is fairly effective when taken for three to five days after the symptoms first appear. However, there is limited human evidence for the effects of this herb, since research tends to focus on the combination therapy of Andrographis paniculata and Eleutherococcus senticosus, also known as Siberian ginseng, and not on Andrographis paniculata by itself.

Andrographis paniculata has also been studied for its anti-cancer effects. In vitro (outside the body) testing and animal research suggest that Andrographis paniculata has an anti-proliferative effect, meaning it is able to slow the spread of cancer cells. The herb does not appear to be able to induce cancer cell death, however.

The bioactive ingredients of Andrographis paniculata can be traced back to a single diterpene molecule called andrographolide.

Some studies have found that prolonged high-dosage Andrographis paniculata can cause toxicity in the testicles and liver. Further research is needed to confirm these effects, since some follow-up studies, using the same methods, failed to replicate the results. Andrographis paniculata is a promising supplement, though currently it is used most often to alleviate the symptoms of the common cold.

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How to Take

Medical Disclaimer

Recommended dosage, active amounts, other details

The standard dose of Andrographis paniculata basic root extract is 2,000 – 6,000 mg.

Andrographis paniculata root extract tends to have 1-2% andrographolide content, by weight, though up to 4% has been reported.

Concentrated root extracts can have an andrographolide content of up to 30%. The standard dose for a concentrated extract is 200mg.

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Human Effect Matrix

Unlocked for Examine members

The Human Effect Matrix summarizes human studies to tell you what effects Andrographis paniculata has on your body, how much evidence there is, and how strong these effects are.

Full details are available to Examine members.
Grade Level of Evidence
Robust research conducted with repeated double-blind clinical trials
Multiple studies where at least two are double-blind and placebo controlled
Single double-blind study or multiple cohort studies
Uncontrolled or observational studies only
Level of Evidence
? The amount of high quality evidence. The more evidence, the more we can trust the results.
Outcome Magnitude of effect
? The direction and size of the supplement's impact on each outcome. Some supplements can have an increasing effect, others have a decreasing effect, and others have no effect.
Consistency of research results
? Scientific research does not always agree. HIGH or VERY HIGH means that most of the scientific research agrees.
Notes
grade-c Notable - See study
Seems to be one of the few compounds able to reduce the length of sickness when taken at the first signs of sickness. The lack of a reference drug to compare Andrographis limits the strength of the evidence
grade-c Notable - See study
Seems to have more efficacy against nasal, ear, and throat symptoms of sickness. Lack of evidence and comparisons to reference drugs limits strong evidence
grade-c Notable - See study
Potency of andrographis in this regard was comparable to Tylenol, the reference drug.
grade-c Notable Very High See 2 studies
Appears to be quite effective based on preliminary evidence, with one study being comparable to sustained release mesalazine in potency.
grade-c Minor - See study
Reductions in joint pain and swelling were somewhat minimal in magnitude
grade-c Minor - See study
Appears to be better than placebo, although it is difficult to assess potency.
grade-d Minor - See study
Study was in persons with HIV, although the magnitude was of concern it needs to be replicated.
grade-d - - See 2 studies
Unclear effects on CD4+ lymphocytes at this moment in time
grade-d - - See study
Insufficient evidence to support antiviral effects in HIV

Studies Excluded from Consideration

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Things to Note

Primary Function:

Also Known As

Chiretta, King of Bitters, Kalmegh, Creat, Chuanxinlian, Yijianxi, Lanhelian, Indian Echinacea

Goes Well With

  • Siberian Ginseng (Eleutherococcus senticosus)

  • P-Glycoprotein inhibitors (increase absorption when Andrographis is taken at high doses)

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Click here to see all 78 references.