Goldenseal, Hydrastis canadensis, is a native American plant introduced to early settlers by the Cherokee Indians. This understory plant once covered the floor of the eastern forests, but it has been severely over-harvested. While many herbalists use only the root, scientific studies have shown that the leaf has similar properties.
Commonly identified by its knotty, yellow root, and purple stem, goldenseal has been used in traditional and folk medicine for thousands of years. Native Americans greatly valued goldenseal herb, using not only the root but the leaves and flowers as well to help with skin diseases and wounds. They also used goldenseal root as a strong yellow dye for clothing.
Goldenseal contains the chemical berberine which has antibacterial, antifungal, and anti-inflammatory properties. These properties make it useful in the treatment of skin disorders such as eczema, diaper rash, athlete's foot, and ringworm. It may even help eliminate dandruff. Some studies suggest that berberine may also help fight the bacterium responsible for acne.
Due to the excessive harvesting of wild plants, goldenseal is now an endangered species. Our goldenseal is purchased from companies who grow it organically, it is not wild-harvested.