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Garden cress (Lepidium sativum)

Synonyms/Common Names/Related Substances:

  • Alpha-linolenic acid (ALA), agrião (Portuguese), agrião-mouro (Portuguese, Galician), beatzecrexu (Basque), berro de jardín (Spanish), berro de tierra (Spanish), berro hortense (Spanish), benzyl isothiocyanate (BITC), Brassicaceae (family), bran, buminka (Basque), common cress, cress, docosahexaenoic acid (DHA), eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA), escobilla (Spanish), endosperm, fiber, garden cress seed oil (GCO), garden pepper grass, glucosinolates, glutamic acid, herba do esforzo (Portuguese, Galician), hurf (Arabic), indoles, isothiocyanates, kardamon (Greek), land cress, linoleic acid (LA), lectin, lepidio (Spanish), Lepidium sativium, Lepidium sativum, leucine, mastruco (Portuguese, Galician), mastruco do sul (Portuguese), mastuerzo (Spanish), mastuerzo hortense (Spanish), methanol, morrisá (Catalan), morritort (Catalan), nasturtium (Latin), nasum torcere (Latin), omega-3 fatty acid, pepper cress, pepper grass, pepperwort, sulforaphane, tuffa' (Arabic), turehtezuk (Persian), water cress, whole meal.
  • Combination product example: SulforaWhite (a liposomal preparation that contains Lepidium sativum sprout extract, glycerin, lecithin, phenoxyethanol, and water).

Clinical Bottom Line/Effectiveness

Brief Background:

  • Garden cress has been consumed as a vegetable and added to salads and sandwiches since ancient times (1). Many cultures, including western Asian, Mediterranean, and Indian cultures, have recognized the medicinal properties of garden cress. There is confusion in some languages between watercress (Nasturtium officinale) and garden cress (Lepidium sativum).
  • The therapeutic effects of garden cress may be due to its use as a source of vitamins (2). According to secondary sources, the seeds, roots, and leaves of garden cress exhibit various treatment properties. For example, the seeds may be abortifacient, applied as a poultice to pains and hurts, and used as a laxative. The acrid, bitter roots can be used for the treatment of secondary syphilis and tenesmus. The medicinal properties of the leaves are stimulant, diuretic, and antibacterial, and can be used in the treatment of scurvy and hepatopathy.
  • At this time, there is a lack of high-quality human trials supporting the efficacy of garden cress for any indication.

Dosing/Toxicology

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Precautions/Contraindications

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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.

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Mechanism of Action

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History

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Evidence Table

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Evidence Discussion

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Products Studied

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Author Information

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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.

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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.