A standardized kudzu extract NPI-031 reduces alcohol consumption in nontreatment-seeking male heavy drinkers Psychopharmacology

No side effects or changes in vital signs, blood, renal or liver function were recorded. In addition, it did not disrupt sleep, as usually occurs with other hangover cures. However, kudzu extract significantly reduced the number of drinks consumed each week by 34-57%. Regardless of the mechanism of action, the present finding that a modest, single dose of kudzu extract reduces binge drinking has profound implications as it offers a unique opportunity for early intervention for problem drinkers. As an herbal plant extract, kudzu can be made available without a prescription. While it does not completely eliminate drinking, it is clearly effective in significantly reducing intake, which offers individuals an opportunity to engage in more responsible drinking patterns.

kudzu to stop drinking

Although there is no specific medicine to combat alcoholism or tobacco addition, through herbal medicine such as kudzu root extract, phytotherapy seeks to offer remedies for the problems caused by society’s excesses. Extracts of kudzu root have been used in Asia since around 600 AD to curb addiction and to improve the body’s overall wellbeing. Various studies have used single, one-time doses or daily doses for a week without reported adverse effects. Another study found that people who took puerarin, an isoflavone extract from the kudzu plant, prior to drinking took longer to consume alcoholic beverages (3). Lukas and Lee hold a patent for kudzu extract to treat alcohol abuse and dependence.

Kudzu for Alcohol Cravings & Reducing Alcohol Consumption—Final Thoughts

Purified puerarin another ingredient in Kudzu root was also shown to suppress alcohol intake in the short term as well reducing withdrawal reactions in high ethanol preferring rats. Herbal products are also made from the root of another related Asian species of kudzu, called Pueraria thomsonii. The main compounds found kudzu to stop drinking in the root of the kudzu are the isoflavones, like the compound daidzein, also included are the isoflavone glycosides, like daidzin and the compound called puerarin. In any batch of kudzu roots, the total content of isoflavone often varies widely from 1.77%–12.0% depending on the growing conditions of the herb.

  • Its name in Chinese, loosely translated, means “drunkenness dispeller.” The tea is often used to try to sober up after drinking and to relieve hangovers.
  • In our most recent study (Penetar et al., 2011) we provided evidence that kudzu extract may alter blood ethanol levels after an acute drinking episode.
  • Since consuming alcohol while taking kudzu extract is not aversive, another explanation is necessary to account for the extremely fast onset of action observed in the present study.
  • Kudzu, whose scientific name is Pueraria mirfica, is a vine used in Chinese medicine for a variety of health promoting purposes.
  • Second, one goal of this study was to measure behavior and craving while participants went about their daily lives, and use of the wrist actigraphy device allowed this assessment to take place in the participants’ home environments.

Curiously, kudzu appears to have this effect AND prevent people from becoming intoxicated with alcohol or nicotine more quickly. This aspect also requires more research into its use as a supplement, as the fact that symptoms of intoxication emerge faster offers an effective way of controlling alcohol and nicotine consumption. McLean Hospital has just negotiated a licensing agreement for kudzu root extract with Natural Pharmacia International, Inc., Burlington, MA. No competing financial interest exists for Bethany K. Bracken, David M. Penetar, R. Ross Maclean, or Scott E. Lukas. It’s best to speak with your healthcare provider to determine whether kudzu root could interact with any medications you’re taking. It’s important to note that this is a case study, so it can’t prove kudzu root caused this liver injury.

Planting the Seed for Blood Pressure Control: The Role of Plant-Based Nutrition in the Management of Hypertension

It is important to talk to a healthcare professional before taking kudzu, especially if you have liver disease or are taking prescription medication. Until the effects of kudzu can be quantified properly in a larger study, then, and a standardised product is available on the market with the THR mark, it’s not something we can recommend you take. Two hours before the first visit, we gave both sub-groups a pill – neither group knew whether they were getting the supplement or the placebo. When they visited the bar, beer, spirits and white wine were freely available. The amount of alcohol consumed was calculated for each group (1 unit per drink of beer or spirits, 1.6 units per glass of wine).

  • The NIAAA and NCCAM had no further role in the study design; in the collection, analysis and interpretation of data; in the writing of the report; or in the decision to submit the paper for publication.
  • One reason that people feel it helps with hangovers is because it may influence the metabolism of alcohol.
  • For professional medical information on natural medicines, see Natural Medicines Comprehensive Database Professional Version.
  • The present study was conducted in nontreatment-seeking heavy drinkers to assess the safety and efficacy of 4 weeks of kudzu extract in an outpatient setting.
  • Participants were instructed to always keep the beer glass on the table except when taking a sip.

Finally, kudzu root extract did not affect sleep quantity as measured by the number of sleep episodes, the time asleep per episode, and the time spent immobile (Fig. 3). Along with morning and evening doses of medication or placebo, participants took 25 mg of riboflavin (vitamin B2), which causes https://ecosoberhouse.com/ fluorescence of urine when it is exposed to UV light. Medication compliance was determined by repeated monitoring of urinary fluorescence20 as well as daily diary reports of pill taking. The participants reported their desire for and consumption of alcohol for the duration of the study.

Has anyone tried kudzu supplements to control alcohol cravings.

For this mechanism to be plausible, the more rapid penetration of alcohol into the brain would have to trigger a satiety mechanism rather quickly such that the desire for the next drink is delayed—thus interrupting a binge episode. This is precisely what was observed in the present study as kudzu’s effects were evident after a single dose within a few hours of administration. Of course, it is entirely possible that any of the above mechanisms may also develop with repeated administration and complement the immediate altered absorption effect that likely explains kudzu’s rapid onset of action. The number of participants who drank each available beer during the 1.5 hour drinking session following administration of placebo or kudzu. Studies on the effectiveness of kudzu for alcoholism have shown mixed results.

Of course, it’s up to the individual to ensure that he or she doesn’t use this as an excuse to fall off the wagon. However, if you want to cut down on drinking or detoxify your body during alcohol withdrawal, this plant may be able to help. Kudzu can be taken in conjunction with other medications for alcoholism, but it is important to consult with a healthcare professional before combining treatments. Kudzu may interact with certain medications, such as benzodiazepines, and can cause adverse effects. Research has found that kudzu can help reduce hot flashes and night sweats, as well as improve sleep quality. This may be due to the isoflavones in kudzu, which can help regulate hormone levels.

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