Alfalfa (Medicago sativa)

Monograph: alfalfa
I. Botanical Nomenclature:
Name: Medicago sativa
Family: Fabaceae
Common: alfalfa
II. Definition of drug: leaf (not sprout)
IV. Taste/Odor/Energetics: neutral
V. Summary of physiological actions:
Gentle alterative; rich in vitamin K (so potential co with cumadin); vitamin K helps with clottingSome cholesterol elimination although need a high quantity (5-10 grams TID)as a digestive tonifying agent that strengthens and invigorates and appetite stimulantin the treatment of dyspepsia and/or indigestion or upset stomach and for the relief of pain from arthritisto promote the appetite and weight gain
VI. Key constituents: enzymes, phytoestrogens, flavonoids, saponins
VII. Pharmacology:
Some hypoglycemic benefit (so good for blood lipids)
IX. Specific indications:
nourishes the liver and the bloodhelps tone the digestive “qi’ and promotes absorption of foodpromotes detoxification of kidneyshelps to relive depression and reduce pain
XI. Preparation and Dosage:
dried herb: 5 g to 10 g, 3 times per day fluid extract: 5 g to 10 g dried equivalent, 3 times per day (1:1, 25% ethanol)
XII. Safety:
potentially estrogenic; can bring on a period if taken in concentrated form

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