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Cornsilk (Zea mays)

Definition: Cornsilk refers to the soft, hair-like growth which accompanies an ear of corn. This fine delicate silk is usually collected when the corn is in milk and is used when still green. Cornsilk compounds, which include maizenic acid, can act as a cardiac tonic and diuretic. Used by the ancient Incas as a treatment for urogenital infections, cornsilk was marketed by Parke-Davis in Europe in 1880. Cornsilk is considered part of a family of herbs which help soothe and heal the urinary system.

Applications: Albuminuria, bladder infections, edema, heart trouble, hepatitis, kidney disorders, prostatitis, urinary tract infections and water retention.

Scientific Updates: The maizenic acid contained in cornsilk has a stimulating diuretic effect. In addition, this compound also benefits the liver and intestines and is considered a cardiac solution for the heart. Clinical studies in China and Japan have demonstrated the remarkable diuretic properties of cornsilk. Cornsilk directly reduces painful symptoms and swelling due to several inflammatory conditions including cystitis, pyelitis, oliguria, hepatitis and all edematous conditions.5 In China it is also used for hypertension and diabetes.

Complementary Agents: Buchu, parsley, uva ursi, cranberry, juniper berries, marshmallow, vitamin C, bioflavonoids, proanthocyanidins, B-complex, vitamin E, magnesium, potassium, copper, and mineral and electrolyte supplements.

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