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Herb Information
Name: Poke
Biological Name: Phytolacca americana, Phytolacca decandra

Phytolaccaceae

Other Names: Poke, Pokeweed, red weed, red ink plant, garget, pigeon berry, scoke, coakum, Virginia polk, pocan bush, American nightshade, red ink berries
Parts Used: Root, leaves, berries
Active Compounds:
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Triterpenoid saponins; the phytolaccosides A, B, C, D & E. Based on the aglycones phytolaccagenin and phytolaccicacid.

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Lectins; mixture known as pokeweed mitogen, consisting of a series of glycoproteins

Remedies For

Anti-rheumatic, stimulant, anti-catarrhal, purgative, emetic, alterative, resolvent, deobstruent, detergent, antisyphilitic, antiscorbutic, cathartic.

CAUTION: DO NOT EAT THIS PLANT RAW OR INADEQUATELY COOKED. POKE ROOT SHOULD BE BOILED BEFORE EATING AND THE WATER DRAINED OFF AND DISCARDED; BOIL IT AGAIN IN FRESH WATER AND DRAIN OFF THE WATER AGAIN. IT MAY THEN BE EATEN.

Poke Root has a wide range of uses. Used as a remedy for use in infection of the upper respiratory tract, removing catarrh and aiding the cleansing of the lymphatic glands. Also for catarrh, tonsillitis, laryngitis, swollen glands, mumps. It will be found of value in lymphatic problems elsewhere in the body and especially for mastitis, where it can be used internally and as a poultice. Poke Root also has a use in rheumatism, especially where it is long standing. Care must be taken with this herb as in large dosage it is powerfully emetic and purgative. Externally as a lotion or ointment it may be used to rid the skin of scabies and other pests.

CAUTION: In large doses Poke Root is a powerful emetic and purgative. Combinations : For lymphatic problems it may be used with Cleavers or Blue Flag.

Dosage:

Decoction: only small amounts of this herb should be used. Put l/4 teaspoonful of the root in a cup of water, bring to a boil and simmer gently for l0-l5 minutes. This should be drunk three times a day.

Tincture: take l/4 ml of the tincture three times a day.

Safety: 

CAUTION: In large doses Poke Root is a powerful emetic and purgative. Do not exceed the dosages recommended.

THE SEEDS, WHICH ARE PRESENT IN THE BERRIES, ARE POISONOUS AND SHOULD NOT BE EATEN. SEE ALSO THE CAUTION ABOVE REGARDING COOKING.

No other information available. Some herbs are known to react with your medication. Please consult your physician before starting on any herb.

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