There are several Huperzine-A benefits that you should know about before making a decision on whether to use this substance or not. Huperzine-A refers to a substance that comes from the plants of Salaginella, Lycopodiaceae and Huperziacea families. Although this substance is usually extracted from Huperziacea family plants, it can also be propagated in the other types of cell lines especially for an affordable, mass production. It is mostly purified from a Chinese plant known as the club moss. It has been used for various purposes which include treating Alzheimer’s disease, muscle control, free radicals’ protection and boosting neurotransmitters. However, it is important to note that although the production process of Huperzine-A starts with a simple plant, chemicals might be included in its purification and this causes laboratory manipulation.
Benefit of Huperzine-A over traditional medicine
The major advantage of Huperzine-A over traditional medicine is that it is effective, derived from naturally growing plants and without severe side effects. Despite being derived from a plant, this substance is a safe and effective treatment for various medical conditions.
Alzheimer’s disease treatment
A double-blind study that was conducted at the Zhejiang Medical University in China in 1995 showed that the use of Huperzine-A by people with Alzheimer’s disease helps in improving memory, behavioral and cognitive functions. Patients who received Huperzine-A improved by 36 percent when compared to those who did not receive the medication. Thus, Huperzine-A can be used in treating the symptoms of the Alzheimer’s disease. Its effectiveness is due to the fact that this compound works by enhancing memory. It functions like a cholinesterase inhibitor. This implies that it works like the FDA approved treatments for Alzheimer’s disease.
A study that was recently conducted at Peking Medical College Hospital in China showed that one of the major Huperzine-A benefits is helping with non-cognitive disorders that include muscle control. This study included 202 patients who all showed improvement in their daily activities due to improved muscle control. This is because this substance improves the overall brain functions. No adverse effects were reported except some patients who had mild insomnia as well as water retention which were transient effects.
Protection against free radials
A study conducted in 2009 and updated in 2015 at the Baylor College of Medicine showed that Huperzine-A protects the body against the free radicals that are caused by cell toxicity. This is because Huperzine-A is an antioxidant that protects the brain while helping it in the fight against oxidative stress that can degrade the brain cells causing health problems that are similar to those of Alzheimer’s. The aim of this study was to find out if Huperzine-A can be used in treating people who abuse cocaine. Such a benefit is important because there are several modern diseases that are caused by the damage that is caused by free radicals in the body.
Huperzine-A promotes acetylcholine production. Acetylcholine is a neurotransmitter that boosts sharp memory and healthy mood. According to an article by Dr. Glenn Smith that was published on Mayoclinic.com, Huperzine-A inhibits cholinesterase in the brain. This inhibition increases neurotransmitters’ levels in the brain. According to Dr. Smith, this can enhance memory. However, its use is not recommended by most doctors because there are similar medications with FDA’s approval in the market. It is vital to note that although there are many Huperzine-A benefits, this substance has side effects too.
Potential Side Effects
Some of the potential side effects of using Huperzine-A includes vomiting, diarrhea, nausea, blurred vision, sweating, restlessness, slurred speech, appetite loss, muscle fibers’ contraction and twitching, urinary inconsistence, cramping, reduced heart rate and high blood pressure. To avoid these side effects, Huperzine-A should be used safely as well as within the dosage range that doctors recommend. In most cases, the recommended dosage ranges between 50 and 200mcg per day.