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Plants That Can Treat Alcoholism Naturally

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Alcoholism is the physical dependency of alcohol. It begins with alcohol abuse, as the individual drinks more alcohol their body develops a tolerance requiring more alcohol to achieve the desired effects. As the amount of alcohol ingested is increased and its use continues over a prolonged period of time the body begins to become dependent. If a person who is dependent on alcohol abruptly stops its use, they may experience uncomfortable, even painful symptoms of withdrawal that cause them to turn back to alcohol for comfort.

As the addiction grows, a person suffering from alcoholism will feel as if they need to drink in order to function and feel any sense of normalcy. Their health will begin to deteriorate, they may have trouble at home or work, their finances may become a mess and they may even face legal troubles as a result of their actions while intoxicated.

Treating Alcoholism

Many treatment centers will put an alcoholic on a strict program with detoxification and prescription drug therapy, along with a host of other therapies. While these options do work for many, with a prescription drug therapy they are simply replacing one addictive substance with another. Many Western and Asian herbalists have used medicinal plants to treat alcohol abuse and alcoholism for centuries.  Herbal therapy can be effective when used in conjunction with other traditional therapies. Today more and more treatment centers are offering their patients “Alternative Therapies” as a part of their treatment programs.

St. Johns Wort

St. John’s wort (Hypericum perforatum) is a perennial herb that is known for its antidepressant effects. It is useful in the treatment of withdrawal symptoms as well as deterring the desire for alcohol. People taking St. John’s wort find a decrease in cravings to drink alcohol, helping to keep them from relapsing while in the beginning stages of recovery.

Kudzu

Kudzu (Pueraria lobata) is a perennial vine, a popular herb in traditional Chinese medicine for treating alcohol hangovers. This herb contains daidzin, a plant estrogen and antioxidant, which inhibits an enzyme known as mitochondrial aldehyde dehydrogenase, or ALDH2, that has been linked to alcoholism. Kudzu root has an effect similar to the anti-alcoholism drug disulfiram, according to a study published in the 2009 issue of “The American Journal of Drug and Alcohol Abuse”. Kudzu is often used in the treatment of alcoholism and prevention of relapse in the beginning stages of recovery.

Iboga

Iboga (Tabernanthe iboga) is a perennial shrub, that contains the psychoactive alkaloid known as ibogaine. It works to treat addictions, including alcohol, cocaine, heroin and methamphetamine, by acting on the serotonin, dopamine and opioid receptors to reduce substance cravings. Iboga acts on the neurotransmitters that control drinking behavior, helping to reduce cravings and suppress excessive drinking.

Treating Alcoholism with Herbal Therapy

While herbal therapy can not alone treat alcoholism, when used in conjunction with other conventional treatment techniques it is very effective. Many men and women have been able to successfully overcome their addiction and move forward to live more fulfilling lives in sobriety with the help of treatment centers that offer herbal therapy as a part of their treatment programs for alcoholism.

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