Medicinal Herbs and ADHD


Scientific Name: Berberis aquifolium/vulgaris


  • Isoquinoline alkaloids (berberine, berbamine, palmatine, and others)
  • Flavonoids
  • Tannins
  • Phytosterols
  • Resins & Lignan
  • Volatile oil

Medicinal actions:

  • Alterative
  • Anti-inflammatory
  • Antimicrobial
  • Anti-neoplastic
  • Astringent
  • Bitter
  • Hepatic stimulant (cholagogue & choleretic) & Hepatoprotective
  • Laxative (mild)

Mechanism of Action & Pharmacology:

  • Alkaloids are regarded as the major constituents and perhaps responsible for most of the properties, with berberine being the most widely distributed.
  • Isoquinoline alkaloids (berberine & berbamine) are antimicrobial, inhibit platelet aggregation and adhesion, stimulate intestinal contraction, cholagogue, hepatoprotective, immuno-stimulant and cytotoxic.
  • Berberine displaces albumin from bilirubin, thus this herb may be harmful during later stages of pregnancy.


  • Decoction
  • Tincture
  • Dried bark
  • Topical as cream, lotion or compress

Safety & Toxicity Concerns:

  • Theoretically could cause intestinal or vaginal dysbiosis by using extreme doses of standardized extracts.
  • Avoid during pregnancy and lactation.
  • Limit long-term use (absolute max. 2 months consecutive).


  • Increases gut motility, thus may decrease absorption of many drugs if taken simultaneously (theoretical).
  • May potentiate effect of drugs on displacing bilirubin (theoretical)

Scientifically driven. Education focused. Healing Inspired.

Subscribe to Insights

Receive clinically driven nutrition insights you can trust.

Animated Newsletter WM

Join Our Community to Read Further

This is a premium article created for our Healthcare Practitioner readers. Create a free account to continue reading and gain full access.



WholisticMatters offers health care practitioners and nutrition enthusiasts alike the opportunity to create a free profile for access to site features like bookmarking. Enjoying an article you are reading or a video you are watching? Save it to come back to later! Sign up in seconds for continuous access to all that WholisticMatters has to offer.

WholisticMatters also offers health care practitioners who create a free user profile access to exclusive content and tools to utilize in clinical practice. Articles, tools, and downloads created specifically for practitioners to use in their office for better patient education in clinical nutrition and health. Sign up today with your email and credentials so we can confirm you as a health care practitioner, and you are free to peruse the resources unique to you and your colleagues in health.


Create Your Account:

show-pass Please use 8 or more characters with a mix of letters, numbers & symbols

Create a free account to use our great bookmarking tool

Once your account is created, you'll be able to save and organize what matters to you!

Already have an Account? Login Here

Click 'Sign Up' above to accept Wholistic Matters's Terms of Service & Privacy Policy.

Are you a Healthcare Professional? Sign Up For Free Access!

We'll verify your credentials and get you access to our great interactive tools.

Already have an Account? Login Here

Click 'Sign Up' above to accept Wholistic Matters's Terms of Service & Privacy Policy.