What is Chanca Piedra?
Chanca Piedra is also known as Phyllanthus niruri. In Spanish chanca piedra means “stone breaker” or “stone crusher”. It is an indigenous plant found in the Amazon rainforest. It is also a widespread tropical plant, found in coastal areas. They are known by interesting common names such as “gale of the wind”, “stonebreaker” or “seed-under leaf” herb. Researchers from Germany, Brazil, and India have found chanca piedra to be effective for kidney treatment. Other health concerns on which it has proven effective include gallstones, pancreatic stones, liver, high blood pressure and diabetes. Chanca Piedra is used in health supplement products. It is available in the form of tea extracts, soft capsules, and tablets.
TRADITIONAL IMPORTANCE OF CHANCA PIEDRA
This herb is also called Nalla usiri. In the history of traditional Ayurvedic medicines, chanca piedra is considered to be a natural remedy for kidney stones. It is known as bhumyamalaki in Ayurveda. It is also important in treating issues of the genitourinary system, stomach, and spleen, in the Ayurvedic system of medicine. In Tagalog, it is known by the name sampa-sampalukan. In Portuguese, it is called quebra-pedra. Traditionally, chanca piedra helps to detoxify the harmful substances that can affect the liver.
BRIEF NOTE ON KIDNEY STONES
Are you aware? In the United States, more than one million people have kidney and gallstones. Statistically, more than 10 % of the American population have gallstones. They add to the population of those who have kidney stones. Every year, more than 300,000 cases of kidney stone issues end up in the emergency rooms of hospitals.
Kidney stones are actually hard solid deposits of acid salts and minerals. These get bound or stuck together in urine which is concentrated. The stones passing through the urinary tract can be very painful, but usually, it doesn’t cause any permanent damage. Common treatments include drinking lots of water to give easy passage to the stones and pain relievers. Medicinal processes usually aim to crush down or smoothen larger kidney stones.
Types- There are mainly four types of kidney stones:
- Calcium Stones- This is a common type of kidney stone. These kidney stones are made up of calcium oxalate or calcium phosphate. Oxalate is natural substance found in many foods.
- Cystine Stones or Cystinuria- Cystinuria is a rare type of kidney stone. It is more of a genetic and persistent cause of kidney stones. One in 7000 births, on an average, have this genetic disorder of kidney stones. Cystinuria involves defective “transepithelial transport” of dibasic amino acids and cysteine in the kidneys and intestine. Though this type of kidney stones are difficult to treat if not taken seriously can cause fatal damage to the kidneys and the neighboring organs. It may cause death. What makes cystinuria dangerous is that it is asymptomatic when no stones are formed. When a stone is formed and is persistent then there might be symptoms. The signs to be taken note of are nausea, dull “colicky” ache, hematuria, hydronephrosis(an obstructive syndrome), pyelonephritis(an infective syndrome) and chronic pain in one or two kidneys.
- Struvite or Infection Stones- Women, especially have more chances of having this kidney stone because they are more prone to have urinary tract infections. When the infection changes the chemical balance of the urine, it forms stones made up of phosphate(struvite), magnesium and ammonium. Struvite stones can grow rapidly and become quite big in no time.
- Uric Acid Stones- Uric acid is a waste product which usually passes out of the body through urine. As the name suggests these stones are composed of uric acid. People who don’t drink a proper quantity of water or those who consume high protein diet are likely to have uric acid stones. People having inflammatory bowel or have gout may also have this kind of kidney stone.
All the above kinds of kidney stones have different chemical compositions. But they can be broken down by rightly combining herbs in one single formula like chanca piedra. In Brazil and Peru, it is used as a remedy for urinary tract infection and kidney stones. From the plant’s leaves to its stem and roots work actively to dissolve kidney stones.
HOW DOES CHANCA PIEDRA REDUCE KIDNEY STONE PAIN?
- Chanca Piedra is known to lessen the quantity of stone-producing substances.
- It reduces the risk of stone-creating substances getting bound together.
- It helps to smoothen the texture and structure of the kidney stones.
- It serves to relax the ureter so the stone can pass out with the urine easily.
BENEFITS OF CHANCA PIEDRA
- As an Antioxidant- According to the nutritional consultant Phyllis Balch, in her book ‘Prescription for Natural Healing’, wrote that chanca piedra has phytochemicals which work as antioxidants. These phytochemicals include rutin, limonene, lupeol, quercitrin, and others. While the herb is known as the best cure for kidney and gallstones, it is also useful for treating asthma, indigestion, diarrhea, cold, fever, bronchitis, and muscle spasms. It also works as a pain reliever. It has anti-inflammatory properties and can fight bacterial and viral infections.
- Can Treat Gallstones- Gallstones are solid deposits of digestive fluid that forms in the gallbladder.Chanca piedra is also cultivated in the Bahamas, southern India, and China. Physicians in South America have used it not only to treat kidney stones but also gallstones.
- Can Treat Diabetes and High Blood Pressure- Scientists at the Toyama University of Japan have isolated a compound from chanca piedra that has proven beneficial for treating high blood pressure and diabetes?
- Improves Liver Function- Traditional Chinese medicine believes chanca piedra to be beneficial for liver health. At Bose Institute in India, the Department of Chemistry has conducted a test on animals. They found that it protects the liver from acetaminophen toxicity. A protein in the herb protects tissues of the liver from oxidative stress.
STUDY AND RESEARCH
About 100 people were given chanca piedra to treat kidney stones. After this Wolfram Wiemann, a German physicist found that about 94% of kidney stones got eliminated within two weeks. The herb caused no side effects according to this research. Other studies conducted in Brazil found that chanca piedra can inhibit calcium oxalate and calcium oxalate from entering the kidneys. A 2002 study showed that the herb serves as a stimulant for bile secretion in the liver. Increased rate of bile secretion helps in digestion and increases appetite. The herbs liver improving properties have made researchers find out whether it can help to treat Hepatitis B virus(HBV). It is considered to be a non-toxic remedy for HBV.
WARNINGS AND PRECAUTION on Chance Piedra
People who have bleeding disorder should avoid taking chanca piedra. It might slow down blood clotting. Pregnant women should not take this herb without the advice of the doctor. It may cause blockage and may increase the chances of birth defects. People who suffer from low blood sugar should avoid taking Chanca Piedra as it affects blood sugar level.
OVERALL VERDICT on Chanca Piedra
Chanca Piedra “Kidney stone Crusher” is a supplement product made in the USA. The capsules are soft and easy to swallow. It’s devoid of binders, fillers, and artificial ingredients. In Amazon, there is 100% money back guarantee and 90-day guarantee. It is available at a considerable price of $23.74 to $24.99.
Alexa Bauer has a Master’s degree in nutrition from the University of Maryland and works as a full-time researcher at Swol Headquarters. Alexa Bauer spends her spare time blogging about cardiovascular health and nutrition. She’s specialized in weight loss.