Phytoguard Extended: Immune support for the weary clinician

As the Wise Woman Herbals Bastyr Student Representative, I often get asked: What WWH product is my favorite?

My answer varies depending on time of year and although I do not have one single favorite product, right now I’m loving:

Phytoguard extended (formerly phytoguard II), it has personally provided me with some awesome long term immune support.  This is the very first winter that I have not yet caught a cold (knock on wood!), though that probably has something to do with all the cortisol (read: stress level).  It is especially great for those of us student clinicians working long hours in the clinic amidst studying for exams and keeping up with classes.

The deets:

Astragalus membranaceus (astragalus):  Immunomodulator; adaptogen; anti-viral.

Ligustrum lucidum (ligustrum):  Adaptogen; immnuomodulator; hepatoprotective.

Schisandra chinensis (wu wei zi or five flavor fruit): Adaptogen; known for its ability to reverse the effects of stress and improve endurance; influences phase I and II of liver metabolism:  hepatoprotective, hepatoregenerative; immunomodulator; anxiolytic; antioxidant (particularly to the liver and brain).

Glycyrrhiza glabra (licorice):  Immunomodulator; adaptogen; inflammation modulator; hepatoprotective; demulcent; stimulating expectorant; phytoestrogen.

Eleutherococcus senticosus (eleuthero/Siberian ginseng):  Adaptogen; immunomodulator; insulin sensitizer.

Codonopsis pilosula (dang shen): Immunomodulator; it said to work on the lung and spleen channels, thus providing nourishment to the blood and tonification to the lungs.

Atractylodes macrocephela (bai zhu):  tonifies spleen and drys dampness.  (Please note these last two herbs listed are specifically chinese herbs, of which I have not studied in depth.)



Chronic large doses of licorice can mimic aldosteronism (pseudoaldosteronism)  Avoid using with pre-existing high blood pressure.  Licorice inhibits the catabolism of cortisol.  As always this applies.  Talk to your doctor first.



Kingsbury, Sheila, ND.  Herbal Monographs (2005) and class notes (2010-2012). Bastyr University.  Department of Botanical Medicine.

Yarnell, Eric, ND.  Herbal Monographs.   Bastyr University.  Department of Botanical Medicine.

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If you would like a reference to any specific above mentioned claim, please specify in the comments section below and I will gladly provide you with one or more.