Willow bark - HIGHLY DOSED
article no: 2034
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Base price: 20,17 € each 100 g
Willow bark HIGHLY DOSED - 120 Capsules
World-wide known painkiller
One natural active substance that can look back on a healing tradition of thousands of years and that became the ancestor for a painkiller that now enjoys worldwide familiarity is acetylsalicylic acid, or ASA for short - more commonly known under the trade name Aspirin.
As is evidenced by archaeological finds, the healing effects of the bark of the willow tree were already known to the Egyptians in the 4th millennium BC. From the 16th century BC, they recorded their pharmacological knowledge on papyri. “For inflammation, pain or snake bites, take bark of the willow tree and boil it to form a decoction, which then drink. Pains of every kind will vanish at once.” Recipes of this kind can be found in the Egyptian Ebers Papyrus from the 16th century BC.
The knowledge of the Egyptians concerning the soothing effects of the willow and other medicinal plants was passed down, ultimately finding its way to Europe. In Ancient Greece, writing around 400 BC, Hippocrates of Kos described the pain-relieving effects of an extract made from the bark of the willow tree (in Latin: “salix”) for rheumatism, back pain and headaches. Hildegard of Bingen (1098 to 1179), the abbess and natural scholar, also recommended use of the extract, particularly for rheumatism sufferers.
The ‘herb women’ or folk healers of mediaeval times boiled willow bark to produce a bitter brew that was able to relieve pain of all kinds and get rid of inflammation. However, the efficacy of this natural remedy was forgotten when picking parts of the willow tree was made a criminal offence, as the trees were urgently needed as the source of material for making baskets.
Later, in 1763, the healing powers of the willow were rediscovered by the Reverend Edmund Stone of Chipping-Norton, Oxfordshire, who drew the attention of the British Royal Society of Medicine to the pain-relieving effects of an essence made from the bark of the white willow. “There is a bark of a tree which I have found by experience to be a powerful astringent, and very efficacious in curing agues and intermitting disorders,” he wrote to the “Right Honourable George, Earl of Macclesfield, President of the Royal Society in London”.
However, it then took almost another 100 years before Hermann Kolbe, professor of chemistry in Marburg, Germany, succeeded in 1859 in isolating the actual active substance of the willow: salicylic acid. Finally, in 1897, Felix Hoffmann, a chemist at the firm of Bayer, managed to produce this active substance synthetically as a pain killer (acetylsalicylic acid). The name given to the product was Aspirin!
Today, this miracle substance is - literally - in everyone’s mouths. Billions of people know and appreciate the effects of ASA (the abbreviation for acetylsalicylic acid). Over 40,000 tonnes of it are taken every year throughout the world in the form of hundreds of products. And that has to do with the versatility of the active substance. Incidentally: For explaining its molecular mechanism, the British pharmacologist John Robert Vane was awarded the Nobel Prize in 1982
Synthetic salicylic acid, however, has one drawback: It can cause problems for sensitive stomachs. As the natural salicin from willow bark is not converted into the active substance salicylic acid until it reaches the liver, the natural form is considerably more stomach-friendly. The synthetic form also influences the thrombocyte function. However, the natural salicylic acid from the bark of the willow tree does not cause any delay in the blood clotting process, so for this reason it can also be used for pain relief purposes after operations.
The salicylic acid contained in the bark (Salix cortex) of the willow tree is so versatile in its possible uses that both “Commission E”, a committee of experts of the former German Federal Health Agency, and the European Scientific Cooperative on Phytotherapy (ESCOP) have given the use of willow bark a positive rating. Such unanimity between these bodies is relatively rare.
A further reason for this shared positive assessment can certainly also be seen in the fact that in a number of placebo-controlled randomized double-blind studies, the willow bark has been shown to be efficacious both for patients with back pain and those with osteoarthritis. In the studies with osteoarthritis patients, a significant improvement as compared to placebo was found in the WOMAC osteoarthritis pain index, in joint stiffness and in movement restrictions (17, 24, 25).
In the clinical studies with patients suffering from back pain, the phytopharmaceutical produced a significant improvement compared to placebo when measured by the Arhus back pain score and the proportion of pain-free patients (5, 7). The score takes in the symptoms of pain, disability and mobility restrictions in back pain patients. In a double-blind study of 210 patients suffering from acutely exacerbated back pain, the four-week therapy with willow bark extract in a dose equivalent to 120 mg or 240 mg of salicin resulted in freedom from pain and a significant improvement in the Arhus score (5) in a significantly higher percentage of patients as compared to placebo. In the final week of therapy, 39 and 21 percent of the patients were pain free in the two verum groups, compared to only 7 percent in the placebo group (p < 0.001). The improvement in the Arhus score was significantly greater with verum than with placebo (p < 0.001). Moreover, in the 120 and 240 mg salicin groups, significantly fewer patients additionally needed tramadol (4 and 14 percent) than in the placebo group (47 percent; p < 0.001).
Additionally, in a reference-controlled study of 228 patients suffering from acutely exacerbated chronic back pain, willow bark extract in a dosage equivalent to 240 mg salicin per day relieved back pain just as effectively as the COX-2 inhibitor rofecoxib (12.5 mg per day) (6, 7). Both medications improved the Arhus index (by 21 to 22 percent) and a global pain score (by 34 to 35 percent) to the same degree. In both treatment groups, more than two-thirds of the patients responded with a more than 30 percent improvement in the overall pain index.
Most recently, the efficacy of willow bark extract has been confirmed in an application study involving 333 patients with lumbar and cervical spine syndrome or gonarthrosis. The efficacy in the case of two-thirds of the patients was equivalent to that of ibuprofen or diclofenac (22).
Altogether, there are approximately three hundred different species of willows (salix) that grow either as trees or shrubs. Most of them have elongated, lanceolate leaves with finely serrated edges. The bark is smooth, brownish-grey to greenish-yellow in colour, and glossy. Male and female flowers are located on different trees. Female catkins look greenish, male ones yellow.
The effective substances are frequently obtained from two types: the white willow (Salix alba) and the purple willow (Salix purpurea). The former is a tree with silvery, hairy leaves. The latter, on the other hand, is a shrub growing to a height of around six metres, with reddish catkins. Both species are members of the willow family (Salicaeae) and flower from March to May. Willows are native to Europe and Asia and grow on river banks, in damp meadows and riparian woodlands that are occasionally flooded.
To offer you this versatile plant in the best quality, we use only high-quality concentrated willow bark extract for our capsules – and not, as is so often the case, the powder only. Additionally, as already mentioned in the results of the studies, the dosage plays an important role. For this reason, we offer you our capsules in a high dosage, with a recommended dose of 1200 mg per day!
Our tip: If you have challenges with your joints, we recommend you to take our Willow Bark Capsules with Flexi-Bel complete or to combine them with our Sacra Incense Gold product. You will be thrilled!
2 capsules contain: Willow bark extract – 1,200 mg, containing Salicin – 90 mg, Vitamin C – 80 mg = 100*.
* = % of the reference quantity (NRV) as per the Food Information Regulation.
Recommended consumption: Take 1 capsule with ample water with your morning and evening meal - i.e. altogether 2 capsules per day.
Information for diabetics: 2 capsules contain 0.04 bread exchange unit.
Note: Food supplements should not be used as a substitute for a balanced and varied diet and a healthy lifestyle.