This plant is native to Eastern Japan, China and Korea. In the United States it is considered an invasive species as it is in most other countries. It is considered on of the worst invasive species in the world. The plant grows rapidly and displaces native species quickly with its large size and is difficult to eradicate due to the way it is able to propagate through it’s root system. Luckily the plant has some redeeming qualities, which should make it very desirable to harvest. It is known as a rich source of the antioxidant Resveratrol.
In addition to the popular antioxidant Resveratrol, Japanese knotweed also contains a chemical known as emodin. Emodin has the ability to regulate bowel motility among other things. The Japanese used an alcohol extract of this plant as a natural laxative. Modern preparations from Japanese knotweed concentrated to maximize the resveratrol do not contain emodin. The phytochemical resveratrol has garnered considerable scientific attention for its potential to support healthy blood vessel function and promote heart health. A recent search for studies on Resveratrol through the national library of medicines database; PubMed, yielded over two thousand results.
Uses of Japanese Knotweed
This information in our Herbal Reference Guide is intended only as a general reference for further exploration, and is not a replacement for professional health advice. This content does not provide dosage information, format recommendations, toxicity levels, or possible interactions with prescription drugs. Accordingly, this information should be used only under the direct supervision of a qualified health practitioner such as a naturopathic physician.