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Rose Hips Description - Some Great Medicinal Uses and Benefits of Rose Hips

Taxonomic class

Rosaceae

Common Trade Names

Multi-ingredient preparations: Rose Hips, Vitamin C with Rose Hips Common forms

Available as capsules, cream, extracts, syrup, tablets, teas, and tincture in combination with vitamin preparations.

Source

The rose hip, or fruit of Rosa canina, is usually dried and processed before use. The plant grows widely in North America after having been naturalized from Europe and Asia. R. canina is the major source of rose hips, but other Rosaceae plants have also been used.

Chemical Components

Rose hips contain significant vitamin C, tannins, pectins, and carotene (carotenoids).

Actions

The R. canina flower petal extract containing anthocyans was shown to have a protective effect on radiation-induced cell damage in Chinese hamster cells . The roots of R. canina showed anti-inflammatory effects in vitro. This anti-inflammatory activity was also exhibited by several plant extracts used in Turkish traditional medicine when they exerted effects on either tumor necrosis factor or interleukin-1.

Although rose hips is claimed to have a diuretic effect, this effect was not seen in rats . An infusion of R. canina may have some benefit on calcium oxalate urolithiasis.

Reported Uses

A natural source of vitamin C rose hips has been claimed to be useful as a laxative, capillary strengthener, and boost to the immune system to prevent illness. Although vitamin C has been studied for these effects, studies on rose hips are lacking. Some herbal references claim that the leaves have been used as a poultice to heal wounds.

Dosage

No consensus exists.

Adverse Reactions

GI: diarrhea.

GU: renal dysfunction (poorly documented).

Skin: skin irritation (from topical applications).

Other: allergic reaction .

Interactions

Estrogens and oral contraceptives: Increased serum levels of these drugs. Monitor for adverse effects.

Iron: May enhance absorption of oral iron products. Monitor patient.

Warfarin: May antagonize effects of warfarin. Monitor concurrent therapy.

Contraindications and Precautions

Avoid using rose hips in pregnant or breast-feeding patients; effects are unknown. Use cautiously in patients with atopy or plant allergies. Vitamin C supplements typically should be avoided in people with a history of kidney stones because high doses of vitamin C may lead to increased urinary oxalate production and an increased risk of stone formation.

Special considerations

  • In diabetic patients, high doses of rose hips may cause false-negative urine glucose determinations (due to vitamin C content).

  • Advise the patient to take sources of vitamin C from reliable manufacturers; rose hips (after processing) may represent only a minor and variable Source of vitamin C.

  • Advise the patient with plant allergies to pursue other sources of vitamin C.

  • Large doses of rose hips may cause false-negative results on stool occult blood and urine glucose tests. Instruct the patient to discontinue ingestion of rose hips at least 48 hours before taking stool occult blood test.

Points of Interest

  • Rose hips contain more vitamin C per milligram than many citrus fruits and raw broccoli. However, much of the vitamin C contained in rose hips (more than 50%) may be destroyed during processing. More than 100 g of actual rose hips may be needed to obtain 1,200 mg of vitamin C. Thus, many products that contain rose hips are supplemented with synthetically prepared vitamin C.

  • Although a German monograph supported the use of rose hips for preventing colds and flu, the data seem questionable.

Commentary

Despite the herb's vitamin C content, large quantities of rose hips must be ingested to obtain commonly available amounts of vitamin C in tablet form.

   

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