The Forager's Path - School of Botanical Studies

Plant Profile: Rhodiola rosea

Common Name:
Golden Root
(Arctic) Rose Root

Botanical Name:
Rhodiola rosea (Crassulaceae)
Other Rhodiola species are included in neither traditional uses nor modern research.

Energy & Taste:
Cold, dry, astringent – The taste, energetics and actions of this herb are strong.

Traditional Uses:
Increase physical endurance & performance
Support longevity
Strengthen immune system
Increase mental clarity
Cardio Tonic
Reproductive Tonic
Shorten recovery time after exercise
Increase insulin sensitivity
Reduce inflammation

Quality & Cost:
Wild Russian Rhodiola rosea is chemically distinct from other Rhodiola species. An alcohol extract of this is the preferred product. Much of the Rhodiola in the mainstream herb market is mediocre.
Good quality root should have a soft rose-like aroma.
There are varying opinions on which plants should be included in the Rhodiola genus. This causes marketing confusion.

Method of Preparation:
Alcohol extract – up to 5 ml daily

Use with demulcents due to its strong astringent action
It is safest and most effective in a formula with other adaptogens – Rhodiola is usually 10-20 % of the overall formula.

Safety Issues:
In sensitive individuals or if taken to excess, Rhodiola has the potential to raise blood pressure, cause insomnia and make one jittery, agitated and over-stimulated.
If this happens, stop using the herb, reduce the dose and/or take before lunch time.


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