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In Ayurvedic tradition, Andrographis, commonly known as Kalmegh or “King of Bitters” has long been used as a bitter tonic, to promote digestion and appetite and to promote regularity. In traditional Chinese medicine Andrographis is considered bitter and cold and is used to clear heat.


Andrographis has been primarily studied to support immune system health at onset by supporting healthy levels of immune cells in the blood.* A number of studies have been done around the globe to explore use of this botanical. A randomized double-blind study on 152 individuals found 6g per day of Andrographis for a week to stimulate the immune system. Investigations from the Sichuan Traditional Medicine Research Institution showed Andrographis provided acute support for the immune system, particularly in maintaining a normal body temperature.*

Uses of Andrographis


This information in our Herbal Reference Guide is intended only as a general reference for further exploration, and is not a replacement for professional health advice. This content does not provide dosage information, format recommendations, toxicity levels, or possible interactions with prescription drugs. Accordingly, this information should be used only under the direct supervision of a qualified health practitioner such as a naturopathic physician.

Active Constituents

Andrographis contains diterpenoid lactones, collectively referred to as andrographoloides. It also contains numerous flavonoids.

Parts Used

  • leaf

Important precautions

Because Andrographis has demonstrated immune stimulating properties in various research studies, it is advised that individuals with autoimmune disease not use this product long term.

Additional Resources

Thamlikitkul V, Dechatiwongese T, Theerapong S, et al. J Med Assoc Thai 1991; 74 (10): 437-442.

Pharmacology Department, Sichan, 1975, cited in Melchior J, Palm S, Wikman G. Phtyomed 1996/7; 3 (4): 315-318.

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