According to EMBRAPA, the Brazilian Agricultural Research Corporation, there is a wide variety of species known as cat’s claw, but the two that stand out for their medicinal properties belong to the Uncaria genus . They are: the climbing cat’s claw (U. tomentosa) and the creeping cat’s claw (U. guianensis ).
The main characteristic of these species are the thorns that look a lot like feline claws, which is why the plant got its popular name. Also called herinha, the cat’s claw is native to the Amazon , but it is also widely cultivated in other parts of South America, with great popularity in Peru.
Some studies on the plant show the presence of alkaloids, which stimulate the body against tumors, inflammation, viruses and ulcers. For this reason, cat’s claw has been increasingly used as a natural treatment option, mainly in the form of tea.
Do you know what a cat’s tea is for?
Among the main properties of cat’s claw tea, we can highlight its anti-inflammatory and diuretic action, in addition to its ability to strengthen the immune system.
Therefore, the use of the plant can be beneficial in cases of viruses and infections, such as asthma, sinusitis, tonsillitis, arthritis, rheumatism, ulcers, gastritis , among others.
Cat’s claw can even be associated with the treatment of AIDS patients, precisely because of its power to stimulate the body’s defenses. In addition, it also works to prevent some degenerative diseases and can also help treat diabetes.
The plant also has antioxidant properties that contribute to the action of free radicals, preventing controlling cell aging and improving skin health.
According to a scientific article by the chemical engineer and professor at the Institute of Chemistry at UFRJ, Ligia Maria Marino Valente , the cat’s claw also has abilities to clean the intestinal tract . Therefore, it can be indicated for the treatment of various diseases such as: Crohn’s disease, diverticulitis, irritable bowel syndrome, colitis, hemorrhoids, fistulas and worms.
It does not stop there. A survey developed by the Brazilian Institute of Cancer Control in partnership with the ABC Medical School, in São Paulo, revealed that the cat’s claw can also provide a great improvement in the quality of life of patients at an advanced stage of cancer, reducing the fatigue caused by the disease.
The results showed that the anti-inflammatory effects of the plant contributed to alleviate the wear and tear on muscles, bones and joints of the patients who participated in the tests. Furthermore, the disease stabilized for more than eight months in some participants. The plant is also efficient to reduce the side effects of chemotherapy and radiotherapy.
See also: Tea from the cat’s nail plant
If you want to know if cat’s claw tea makes you slim, know that there are still no studies that prove the slimming effect of this plant. However, its antioxidant and diuretic properties can help eliminate fat and prevent fluid retention , reducing body swelling.
In addition, this tea also helps improve digestion, which can contribute to a better use of nutrients and vitamins from food.
But, remember that the consumption of cat’s claw tea should be part of a routine with healthy habits. Maintaining a balanced diet and exercising regularly is the best way to lose weight.
Does it serve to get pregnant?
You’ve probably heard that the cat’s claw plant helps you get pregnant. However, the truth is that there is still a lack of studies to prove this theory. Anyway, there are many reports of women who managed to get pregnant after using this herb tea, especially when mixed with yellow uxi.
Yellow uxi is an herb widely used in the treatment of cysts and fibroids and therefore it can help women who suffer from this problem and are unable to get pregnant because of it. Cat’s claw, as we have already seen, is a powerful natural anti-inflammatory, strengthens the immune system and can also be used to treat tumors.
Is it beneficial for hair?
We have already seen that the cat’s claw plant is very good for the skin, helping to purify it and preventing premature aging. But, there are those who say that it also brings benefits to the hair, reducing or even eliminating gray hairs.
In this case, there are also no scientific studies that prove the fact. However, in any case, people who used cat’s claw for this purpose claim that the herb should be consumed in the form of manipulated capsules and not in the form of tea.
Furthermore, if the use of the capsules is discontinued, the white hairs soon reappear.
The consumption of cat’s claw tea is not suitable for pregnant women, nursing mothers and people with allergies to the plant. The drink is also usually contraindicated for people who have autoimmune diseases, multiple sclerosis, leukemia and tuberculosis.
Transplant patients or those recovering from surgery should also be careful. In addition, the excessive use of tea can generate unwanted reactions, such as: nausea, diarrhea, dizziness, headache and, in some cases, it can cause kidney failure.
If there is continued use of any type of medication, it is important to check with a doctor about the possibility of interaction between the medication in question and the cat’s claw.
For more details on the frequency of consumption and correct doses of tea, consult a nutritionist and/or a specialist in herbal medicine.
See also : Teas to end fatigue
How to make cat’s claw tea?
Now that you know what cat’s claw tea is for, how about learning how to make the recipe? Thus, it is possible to take advantage of the benefits of cat’s claw for all the indications mentioned above, to try to get pregnant or, simply, for health in general.
One of the ways to make tea is through decoction. Use 15 to 20 g of crushed cat’s claw leaves or husks to 1 liter of water . Mix the ingredients in a saucepan, bring to the heat and simmer for 15 to 20 minutes. Then let it sit for about 10 minutes, strain and drink.