Arjuna (Terminalia arjuna) stem bark is the friend your heart needs, with its tannins that relax blood vessels, flavonoids that balance the cholesterol levels, and glycosides that help regularize the contractions of the heart muscle. Plus, arjunolic acid helps control inflammation by striking a balance between pro-inflammatory and anti-inflammatory signaling chemicals. It is aided by flavonoids that reinforce the body’s antioxidant defense against inflammation-causing free radicals.
The stem bark of the arjuna tree is a medicinal treasure chest. It houses a complex concoction of triterpenoids (volatile liquids), glycosides (carbohydrate compounds), flavonoids (heavy-duty antioxidants), tannins (also antioxidants), and minerals – all of which have nothing but your best interests at heart.
Why It’s So Great
1. Promotes Heart Health
You don’t need to go out of your way to take care of your heart. Basic good habits and a good diet can ensure it. For a little extra, add heart-healthy herbs like arjuna. Here’s what it does.
- It manages blood pressure: The tannins in arjuna help relax blood vessels by making sure there is enough nitric oxide (vasodilator) to go around. When you’re under stress, a hormone-like chemical called norepinephrine can contract the arteries. Arjuna tannins also loosen up these tense regions of arteries. When blood vessels are relaxed, your blood pressure is lower.
- It manages cholesterol levels: Cholesterol is a necessity for your body but in the right amount. Flavonoids in arjuna can help your body maintain the optimum lipid profile.
- It increases blood flow to the heart: Arjuna helps direct more blood and oxygen to your heart, ensuring it receives nutrition and can protect itself from damage.
- It reduces inflammation: As we grow older, some LDL cholesterol interacts with highly reactive molecules called free radicals to form plaque on our artery walls. In small amounts, this is quite natural and does not necessarily obstruct blood flow to the heart majorly. But the immune system can fail to recognize the plaque as part of a healthy blood vessel and can attack it, setting off a cycle of inflammation and patching up and eventually blocking blood flow.
Arjuna flavonoids help keep inflammation in check by reducing certain inflammatory signaling molecules called cytokines, such as hsCRP, IL-18, IL-6, and TNF-α. Arjunolic acid offers support by re-establishing a balance between pro- and anti-inflammatory cytokines.
- Decreases oxidative stress: Arjuna flavonoids function as antioxidants and remove free radicals from your system. Arjungenin ensures antioxidant enzymes like catalase and glutathione peroxidase bring their A-game as well.
- Regulates heart muscle contractions: Arjuna glycosides can change the force and speed of heart muscle contractions, making them more regular. The controls lie in an intracellular machine called the sarcoplasmic reticulum.
2. Helps Heal Fractures Quicker
How arjuna may help heal fractured bones is quite direct. It simply encourages osteoblasts or bone-forming cells to do their job.
Have about 1 to 2 gm of the arjuna stem bark powder every day. There are a few mild side effects to watch out for like a headache, mild gastritis, and constipation.