SAW PALMETTO — Serenoa repens, S. serrulata

saw pal berriesFamily Arecaceae

Part used: dried berries

Herbal action: Anti-BPH, tonic, aphrodisiac, nutritive, diuretic, sedative, antiphlogistic.

Indications: Relaxation with copious catarrhal secretion; lack of development or wasting of testicles, ovaries, or mammary gland in the breast; prostatic irritation with painful urination, and dribbling of urine, especially in the aged; tenderness in the glands and other parts of the reproductive organs.

Medicinal uses: Even though saw palmetto is considered a male prostate herb for good reason; it does much more than that. It works as a female tonic and nutritive as well. It was known as the ‘plant catheter’ because of its tonic effect on the neck of the bladder and on the prostate. Saw palmetto has shown to be effective for functional infertility in women and to increase the supply of mother’s milk. It may be used to relieve painful periods associated with lack of tone of the reproductive organs. The berries have a toning and soothing influence on mucous membranes throughout the body as well as an expectorant property, making this a useful remedy for colds and catarrh, especially where chronic and congestive – the isolated oil is an effective inhalant. It has a traditional use for asthma and bronchitis.

Because it is a nutritive herb, we have adopted American herbalist David Winston’s opinion that saw palmetto is most suited to thin people with prostate issues. It is also indicated for nervous people with hyper-adrenalism. It can decrease atrophy and dryness by reducing heat and irritation. This same function makes it good irritation of the nose, throat and larynx.