Image for Costus spp.
Costus spp.

Synonyms/Common Names/Related Substances:

  • Costus afar, C. afer, C. albus, C. allenii, C. amazonicus, C. amazonicus subsp. Krukovii, C. anachiri, C. ananassae, C. anomocalyx, C. arabica, C. arabicus, C. arabicus 'Variegatus', C. araneosus, C. argenteus, C. asplundii, C. asteranthus, C. bakeri, C. barbatus (Red Velvet Ginger), C. beckii, C. bicolor, C. bingervillensis, C. bracteatus, C. brasiliensis, C. cava, C. cernuus, C. chartaceus, C. chinensis, C. chrysocephalus, C. ciliatus, C. claviger, C. clemensae, C. comosus, C. comosus var. bakeri, C. congestiflorus, C. congestus, C. conicus, C. cordatus, C. cupreifolius, C. curcumoides, C. curvibracteatus (Dwarf Orange Ginger), C. curvibracteatus 'Green Mountain' (Green Mountain Spiral Flag), C. cuspidatus (Spiral Ginger), C. cylindricus, C. deistelii, C. dendrophilus, C. dewevrei, C. dinklagei, C. dirzoi, C. discolor, C. dubius, C. dussii, C. edulis, C. elegans, C. engleranus, C. englerianus, C. eryterophyllus, C. erythrocoryne, C. erythrophyllus (Blood Red Spiral Costus), C. erythrothyrsus, C. fimbriatus, C. fissiligulatus, C. foliaceus, C. formosanus, C. formosus, C. fragilis, C. friedrichsenii, C. fusiformis, C. gabonensis, C. geothyrsus, C. giganteus, C. glaber, C. glabratus, C. glaucus, C. globosus, C. guanaiense, C. guanaiensis (Cana De India), C. guanaiensis Rusby var. macrostrobilus (K.Schum.) Maas (Cana De India), C. guanaiensis var. asplundii, C. guanaiensis var. macrostrobilus (Cana De India), C. guanaiensis var. tarmicus, C. guianensis, C. guianicus, C. hasseltii, C. hirsutus, C. 'Hot Lips', C. igneus, C. insularis, C. juruanus, C. kingii, C. lacerus, C. laevis, C. lanceolatus, C. lasius, C. lateriflorus, C. laterifolius, C. latifolius, C. laxus, C. ledermannii, C. letestui, C. le-testui, C. leucanthus, C. ligularis, C. lima, C. lima var. scabremarginatus, C. lima var. scabrimarginatus, C. littoralis, C. longebracteolatus, C. longibracteolatus, C. lucanusianus, C. lucanusianus 'Yellow Form', C. luteus, C. maboumiensis, C. macranthus, C. macrostrobilus, C. macrostrobilus var. macrostrobilus, C. maculates, C. malaccensis, C. malorticanus, C. malortieanus (Stepladder Plant), C. 'Maroon Chalice', C. maximus, C. megalobractea, C. megalobracteata, C. mexicanus, C. micranthus, C. microcephalus, C. montanus, C. mooreanus, C. mosaicus, C. nemotrichus, C. nepalensis, C. ngouniensis, C. nitidus, C. niveopurpureus, C. niveus, C. nov, C. nudicaulis, C. nutans, C. oblitterans, C. oblongus, C. oligophyllus, C. osae (Costus), C. paradoxus, C. pauciflorus, C. paucifolius, C. phaeotrichus, C. phlociflorus, C. phyllocephalus, C. pictus, C. pilgeri, C. pisonis, C. pistiifolius, C. plicatus, C. plowmanii, C. podocephalus, C. potierae, C. productus, C. productus var. strigosus, C. pterometra, C. pubescens, C. pulcherrimus, C. pulchriflorus, C. pulverulentus (Spiral Ginger), C. pulverulentus 'serena', C. pumilus, C. pungens, C. quasi-appendiculatus, C. radicans, C. ramosus, C. registrator, C. ricus, C. rubber, C. rumphianus, C. sanguineus, C. sarmentosus, C. scaber, C. scaberulus, C. schlechteri, C. sepacuitensis, C. sericeus, C. skutchii, C. speciosus (Spiral Ginger), C. speciosus 'Foster Variegated' (Variegated Spiral Ginger), C. speciosus 'Variegatus' (Cane Reed), C. speciosus tetraploid, C. spectabilis, C. spicatus (Spiked Spiral-Flag), C. spiralis (Spiral Ginger), C. spiralis (Jacq.) Roscoe var. spiralis, C. spiralis var. hirsutus, C. spiralis var. villosus, C. splendens, C. sprucei, C. steinbachii, C. stenophyllus, C. subbiflorus, C. subsessilis, C. talbotii, C. talbottii, C. tappenbeckianus, C. tarapotensis, C. tatei, C. tonkinensis, C. trachyphyllus, C. tumphiana, C. ubangiensis, C. ulei, C. uniflorus, C. unifolius, C. vargasii, C. varzearum, C. verschaffeltianus, C. villosissimus, C. vinosus, C. violaceus, C. viridis, C. warmingii, C. wilsonii, C. woodsonii (Dwarf French Kiss), C. zamoranus, C. zerumbet, C. zingiberoides, cana-do-brejo (Portuguese - Brazil), Christmas costus, Costaceae (Zingiberales) (family), costunolide, Costus acanthocephalus, Costus acaulis, Costus acreanus, Costus adolphi-friderici, Costus cuspidatus (Nees & Mart.) Maas, Costus fragilis Maas, Costus fusiformis Maas, Costus lucanusianus J.Braun (Costaceae), Costus potierae F.Muell., Costus speciosus (crape ginger), Costus speciosus (Koen.) Sm., Costus speciosus (Koen. ex. Retz.) Sm., Costus speciosus (Koenig) Sm., Costus speciosus Sim, Costus spicatus (spiked spiralflag ginger), Costus spicatus Swartz (Costaceae), crape ginger, giant ginger, insulin plant, insulina plant, spiral ginger, Zingiberaceae (related family).

Clinical Bottom Line/Effectiveness

Brief Background:

  • Costus is a genus of plants from the Costus family, Costaceae, which is a group of perennial tropical herbaceous plants. The Costaceae family is related to the Zingiberaceae family but is distinguished from plants in this family by its spiraling stems.
  • According to secondary sources, Costus is a source of diosgenin, a steroid sapogenin used for the commercial production of steroids such as progesterone. Costus is traditionally used in Guinean, Brazilian, and Trinidadian traditional medicine for various uses, as well as in the Dominican Republic and the United States for diabetes.
  • Although various Costus species have a long history of traditional use, human studies demonstrating safety or efficacy of Costus species in human trials is lacking.
  • Note: The focus of this monograph is Costus spp. and not the herb with the common name costus.

Dosing/Toxicology

  • Content available for subscribers only.

Precautions/Contraindications

  • Content available for subscribers only.

Interactions

Most herbs and supplements have not been thoroughly tested for interactions with other herbs, supplements, drugs, or foods. The interactions listed below are based on reports in scientific publications, laboratory experiments, or traditional use. You should always read product labels. If you have a medical condition, or are taking other drugs, herbs, or supplements, you should speak with a qualified healthcare provider before starting a new therapy.

  • Content available for subscribers only.

Mechanism of Action

  • Content available for subscribers only.

History

  • Content available for subscribers only.

Evidence Table

  • Content available for subscribers only.

Evidence Discussion

  • Content available for subscribers only.

Products Studied

  • Content available for subscribers only.

Author Information

  • Content available for subscribers only.

References

Natural Standard developed the above evidence-based information based on a thorough systematic review of the available scientific articles. For comprehensive information about alternative and complementary therapies on the professional level, go to www.naturalstandard.com. Selected references are listed below.

  • Content available for subscribers only.
The information in this monograph is intended for informational purposes only, and is meant to help users better understand health concerns. Information is based on review of scientific research data, historical practice patterns, and clinical experience. This information should not be interpreted as specific medical advice. Users should consult with a qualified healthcare provider for specific questions regarding therapies, diagnosis and/or health conditions, prior to making therapeutic decisions.