Osha root review Ligusticum porteri
January 20 2016 by
Ray Sahelian, M.D.

Osha Root (Ligusticum porteri) is a Native American herb from the parsley family. It inhabits in the southern Rocky Mountains. Osha Root has been used to soothe sore throats. Boiling the root into a tea may help loosen phlegm and is used for the common cold.

Ulcer treatment
J Ethnopharmacol. 2015. Gastroprotective effect of diligustilide isolated from roots of Ligusticum porteri coulter & rose on ethanol-induced lesions in rats. The rhizome of osha root has been traditionally used by the ethnic group Raramuri in the North of México for treatment of diabetes, tuberculosis, stomachaches, diarrhea and ritual healing ceremonies. It is use as antiulcer remedy has been extended to all Mexico. To evaluate the gastroprotective activity of LP organic extracts and the major natural product diligustilide, using as experimental model the inhibition of the ethanol-induced lesions in rats. The gastroprotective activity demonstrated in this study tends to support the ethnomedical use of osha roots roots. Diligustilide, isolated as major compound of this medicinal plant has a clear gastroprotective effect on the ethanol-induced gastric lesions. The results suggest that the antiulcer activity of diligustilide depends on the participation of the endogenous non-protein -SH groups and prostaglandins.

Pharmacological aspects of selected herbs employed in Hispanic folk medicine in the San Luis Valley of Colorado, USA: I. Ligusticum porteri (osha) and Matricaria chamomilla (manzanilla).
J Ethnopharmacology 1985.
Interviews with Hispanic families in the San Luis Valley of Colorado delineated several medicinal herbs that are popular in Hispanic folk medicine, including Ligusticum porteri (osha) and Matricaria chamomilla (manzanilla). A search of the scientific literature reveals that related species of Ligusticum and Matricaria chamomilla contain compounds that possess significant pharmacologic activity. This combined information is now being used as a basis for further investigation at the University of Colorado School of Pharmacy in an effort to detect pharmacologic activity in osha and manzanilla preparations.

Nat Prod Res. 2011. Phthalides and other constituents from Ligusticum porteri; sedative and spasmolytic activities of some natural products and derivatives. The chemical constituents of the organic extracts from the rhizomes of Ligusticum porteri were isolated, characterised and identified as Z-ligustilide, Z-butylidenephthalide, diligustilide, tokinolide B, riligustilide, senkyunolides F and I, ferulic acid, among other known compounds. The preparation of 4,5-dehydrotokinolide B from tokinolide B is reported, and its structure confirmed by X-ray analysis. The sedative and spasmolytic activities of some of these natural products and derivatives were evaluated by applying them to in vivo and in vitro models. Several of these dimeric phthalides displayed sedative and spasmolytic properties that may correlate with some popular uses of L. porteri.

I have been told by a Natural Health store in NC that Osha Root is helpful for asthma. Has any of your staff researched this product for asthma? I have printed your information on asthma and didn't see Osha Root mentioned.
   We have not come across any research regarding the relationship of osha root and asthma.

I am a 56 yr old male Native American and Caucasion mix and I have been familiar with Osha Root or Bear Root since i was a teen. It is my understanding from talking to Medicine men and herbologists as well as using osha root myself, that it dilates the bronchial tubes and lungs and allows the blood to carry more oxygen. It is also slightly camphorous aiding dislodging phlegm so you can expel it. It is also used by people who have a chronic allergy or sinus condition that leads to infections, which is my problem. Osha root almost completely keeps that at bay. If i run out and have to wait for any lengthy time like 30 days, I have the problem start back up. You can cut a small piece and chew it and hold it in your mouth for a long long time till all the good is used up or make a tincture and take about 20 or so drops (when made at 1:8 ratio) in a little juice or other liquid or make a tea out of the shavings and drink a few cups in a days time but make it kind of weak if you drink or take regularly. Also I use it every few days not every day and take a week or 2 off of it every other month. About 1 teaspoon per 2 maybe 3 cups water. These are native recipes but tried and true. Indians have been using it for centuries. Don't know if that helps any one or not but wanted throw my nickel in the jar. Denny Hall - Snow Panther - Cherokee.

You may be familiar with the bite of the recluse spider and the poison she leaves on her bite. The poison eats the flesh while at the same time forming a cyst that grows gradually but rapidly. Then starts oozing causing extreme pain. One of my friends got bitten by one and I applied OSHA root in concentrated liquid form on a gauze directly on the bite. I taped another clean one on top and send her to work. She had ball about the size of a cherry maybe a bit bigger. I changed the gauze twice a day for almost a week. Right before my eyes, each day I was able to see the ball of poison getting smaller till one day there was nothing there. Toward the end I only changed the gauze once a day. All the poison was absorbed, she never needed to go to emergency and have it surgically removed. Right now, I am doing a little experiment with the OSHA again. I have what is called Bartholdi's Gland condition every 4 years more or less and just like with the spider bite I always end up going to the hospital to have it cut and drain. At least one doctor suggested to extract the gland but i don't want to do that. Looking at the similarities of the development of the gland and the spider bite I thought about applying the OSHA root on the gland. I will let you know as soon as I am done with my experiment.  I hope this helps others on its use for infections. Thank you for taking the time to read my email. You are doing a wonderful job. Keep up the good work Doctor.