Mountain Rose Herbs

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Goldenseal Root

Hydrastis canadensis Origin: USA

Goldenseal Root


Also known as

Hydrastis canadensis, Yellow Root, and Yellow Puccoon.
Plant Family: Ranunculaceae


Goldenseal root has a long history of medicinal use among Native American tribes of the northeast, its native habitat. The Cherokee were known to use it for treatment of general debility, as well as mixing it with bear grease to make an insect repellant. The plant was first described to the outside world in the 1700’s.

Goldenseal came into prominence among North American settlers in the 1800’s, displacing its cousin goldthread as the popular herbal remedy of the time. By 1910 it was nearly harvested to extinction in the wild, and is still a rare plant in some regions due to over-harvesting. As such, we highly recommend that goldenseal be purchased and used consciously and with concern to its environmental vulnerability.


Hydrastine, Berberine, berberastine, canadine, candaline, and hydrastinine, fatty acids, resin, polyphenolic acids, meconin, chlorogenic acid, phytosterins and a small amount of volatile oil

Parts Used


Typical Preparations

In tea as an infusion or decoction, in capsules, as a poultice and in liquid extract form.


The active constituents of goldenseal have proven to in vitro to show antimicrobial activity, but human data is currently lacking. Goldenseal is traditionally used to support healthy digestion and in maintaining a healthy mucus membrane. It should be noted, however, that these uses are purely traditional and have not been verified by clinical human data.


Medical Herbalism by D.Hoffmann pg. 558

WHO Monograph Volume 3


Because berberine can stimulate contractions, goldenseal root should not be used by pregnant women. Goldenseal may raise blood pressure and should not be used for extended periods of time by those with heart conditions.

For educational purposes only This information has not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration.

This information is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease.