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Cancer Bush

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Botanical name: Lessertia frutescens (Sutherlandia frutescens)

Common names: Cancer Bush (Eng,) kankerbos, gansies, Jantjie Berend, klappers, kalkoentjiebos, keurtjies (Afr.)

Family: Fabacaea

Lessertia frutescens  is a much-respected and long-used medicinal plant, and an attractive, small, soft-wooded shrublet, 0.5 to 1 m in height. The unique aspects of this plant is the pinnate compound, leaflets, grey-green in colour, giving the bush a silvery appearance. The flowers are orange-red, up to 35 mm long, at the tips of the branches in spring to mid-summer.

Cancer Bush has a very bitter taste initially and uniquely sweet as an after-taste.  

Uses: 

The traditional and reported uses of Cancer Bush ranges from internal and external treatment for some cancers, as a blood purifier, for diabetes, rheumatism and gynaecological ailments. 

Preparations:

The leaves and branch tips are used as an infusion internally and externally for washes, ointments and creams. 

Precautions:

Do not use during pregnancy.The use of excessive amounts of this herb are reputed to cause vomiting. Side effects of moderate use include sweating.

View SANBI medicinal monograph

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