Hydrastis Canadensis

Common names:

Golden seal, Orange root, Ground raspberry


  • Isoquinoline alkaloids: hydrastine, berberine, canadine
  • Fatty acids
  • Resin
  • Phenylpropanoids
  • Volatile oils


  • Tonic (this guy’s known as the “King of the Mucous Membranes�? and he is fantastic at making your respiratory system feel better!)
  • Spasmolytic (thanks to the berberine and hydrastine)
  • Uterotonic (a grand thanks to the berberine again!)
  • Astringent & Anticatarrhal (bye-bye mucus-filled nose!)
  • Antimicrobial (berberine and hydrastine once again! See ya later microbes in my respiratory system!!)

Side Effects:

Some people find the bitter action of the herb to irritate their stomach.


  • Upper respiratory tract infections (with lots of mucus present!)
  • Loss of appetite (the bitters stimulate your appetite)
  • Diseases that affect or are near the mucous lining of your gastrointestinal tract (diverticulitis, irritable bowel syndrome)


  • Pregnancy and lactation (do not use, considered a teratogenic substance!)
  • Caution with use if you have hypertension, gastritis, or peptic ulcers
  • With gastritis or peptic ulcer you can actually irritate the inflamed membranes…however, a naturopath can prescribe herbs that have a soothing, protective effect if Hydrastis is an herb that you need to take