Amargo is a deciduous tree that can reach up to hundred feet, but normally grows to about twenty feet. This shrubby tree produces smooth, gray bark, compound leaves, small red flowers, and pea-sized black fruits. It grows in forests near water, and is cultivated for its medicinal use. The bark is harvested throughout the year.Quassia bark was first introduced into Europe in 1756 and named after Quassia, a native healer, who introduced Europeans to its therapeutic value.
- It is used for digestive problems including ulcers, dyspepsia, intestinal gas and bloating, sluggish digestion and anorexia.
- It is used as a liver/gallbladder aid to increase bile and eliminate toxins and stones.
- Some of the quassinoids have cytotoxic action, that is, they have a destructive effect on leukemia cells.
- It is commonly used to stimulate a weakened appetite, especially in the treatment of anorexia.
- The herb’s bitterness has also led to its being used as a treatment for malaria and other fevers.
- In Mexico and Brazil, amargo is made into a decoction to be used for dyspepsia and treatment of intestinal parasites.
- It is used to treat lice and skin parasites.
HOW TO USE IT
- Digestive Aid
Take 1/2 teaspoon of wood powder infused in one cup of boiling water. Take 10-15 minutes before or with meals.
- Internal Parasite Cleanse
1g tablets or capsules should be taken in an empty stomach 2 – 3 times daily.2 teaspoons of wood powder or chips to be soaked in 1 cup of cold water overnight (a cold maceration) and drunk in the morning.
- Bug spray / Flea spray for animals
2 teaspoons of wood powder or chips to be soaked in 1 cup of cold water overnight (a cold maceration) and applied topically to repel bugs.
- Head lice / Fleas
2 teaspoons of wood powder or chips to be soaked in 1 cup of cold water for 24 hours. Strain and pour through the hair or apply directly to the skin. It can be washed off in an hour (or simply left on the dog).For lice, repeat every 3 days and for fleas, apply once a month.
- Kill Mosquito Larvae
A handful of amargo wood chips can be placed in backyard ponds/fountains/bird baths to kill mosquito larvae without harming fish or birds.
- Contraindicated in pregnancy.
- Amargo has shown to have an antifertility effect in studies with male rats. Men undergoing fertility treatment or those wishing to have children should avoid using Amargo.
- Large amounts of Amargo can irritate the mucous membrane of the stomach and can lead to nausea and vomiting. Do not exceed recommended dosages.
Family Name: Simaroubaceae
Common Name(s): Amargo ; Bitter Wood; Jamaica Quassia; Surinam Quasia; Japanese Quassia; Bitter Ash
Part(s) Used: Wood of the trunk and branches
Habitat: The plant grows in Jamaica
Properties: analgesic, anthelmintic, anticancerous, antileukemic, antimalarial, antiparasitic, antitumorous, antiulcerosos, antiviral, insecticide, pediculicide (kills lice), sedative
Tags: analgesic, anthelmintic, anticancerous, antileukemic, antimalarial, antiparasitic, antitumorous, antiulcerosos, antiviral, insecticide, pediculicide (kills lice), sedative