Centaury Herb – Uses And Side Effects


What is centaury?

Herbalists claims for centaury stem from its traditional use as a bitter tonic to stimulate the appetite. Active components are extracted from the leaves, stems, and flowers of Centaurium erythraea, C. umbellatum, and C. minus. These annual or biennial herbs belong to the Gentian family (Gentianaceae). Vermouth and soma nonalcoholic beverages contain trace amounts of centaury.

Common doses of centaury

Centaury is available as the crude herb. For most uses, experts recommend the following dose:

  • 2 to 4 milliliters of a liquid extract (1:1 in 25% alcohol) or infusion taken three times a day.

Some German experts suggest I to 2 grams of the crude herb daily.

Why people use centaury herb

  • As an astringent in cosmetics
  • Kidney stones

Side effects of centaury

Call your health care practitioner if you experience unusual symptoms when using centaury.


Combining herbs with certain drugs may alter their action or produce unwanted side effects. Tell your health care practitioner about any prescription or nonprescription drugs you’re taking.

Important points to remember

  • Avoid centaury if you’re pregnant or breast-feeding.
  • Be aware that medical experts know little about this herb’s effectiveness.
  • Avoid chronic centaury use because long-term effects aren’t known.
  • Know that some people refer to C. erythraea as Erythraea centaurium.

What the research shows

Medical experts caution against using centaury for any medical condition because they know nothing about its safety or effectiveness. No information from human clinical trials is available.

Other names for centaury : –

Other names for centaury include bitter herb, Centaurea, common centaury, European centaury, lesser centaury, and minor centaury.

No known products containing centaury are available commercially.

Useful References

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