Stephen Buhner calls this plant “a world-class invasive” and observes that many invasive species plants are useful for treating diseases. Japanese Knotweed (also called Bushy Knotweed) is a source of resveratrol and has a broad range of actions. It is especially anti-inflammatory, and because it crosses the blood-brain barrier, is useful for brain and CNS inflammation often associated with Lyme disease; it is a “very strong inhibitor of cytokine cascades” caused by the bartonella bacteria. Japanese Knotweed has been studied for use with other neurodegenerative conditions such as Alzheimer’s, Parkinson’s disease, MS and certain brain injuries. It protects the brain from microbial damage and oxidation.
The resveratrol is helpful for reducing symptoms of arthritis, although the whole plant is more useful in this case. [The Wild & Weedy Apothecary sells only root extract at this time.] Because of its synergistic action, Japanese Knotweed helps other herbs reach deep into the body tissue where the corkscrew-shaped “spirochete” bacteria like to hide. Did I mention that the bacteria that cause Lyme disease are like gladiators wearing suits of armor that are also invisibility cloaks that morph?
In China, Japan and other Asian countries, this plant has been used for at least 2000 years. The use of bushy knotweed in Traditional Chinese Medicine focuses on treating heat in the blood, liver inflammation, and opening and clearing.
Japanese Knotweed appears to be an “angiogenesis modulator” in that it encourages blood vessel formation to damaged tissue (burns in particular), but inhibits such development in inappropriate sites such as tumors. Additionally, it protects the endothelial cells lining the blood vessels.
Believe it or not there are dozens of US patents granted on Japanese Knotweed and its constituents. Have you ever heard of it?
This plant looks sort of like bamboo and spreads like a weed. That’s because it is.