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Cat's Claw Bark (Uncaria tomentosa)Latin Name: Uncaria tomentosa
Common Names: Cat's Claw Bark
Although Cat's Claw Bark, or uncaria tomentosa, is sold with organic herbs and is often classified with therapeutic herbs, it is in fact the skin of a tree which grows in much of Central America, where it is still known as vilacora in the Mayan language as well as South America. As the bark of the tropical liana tree, it is not an "herb" in the true sense, though like many organic herbs, Cat's Claw Bark may confer some health benefits.
Anthropologists and archaeologists have learned that this Native American herb, dried uncaria tomentosa, was once used by the Asháninka tribe of Peru for various gastro-intestinal disorders as well as a contraceptive. Some recent clinical research on Cat's Claw Bark, uncaria tomentosa, has anti-oxidant as well as anti-bacterial properties; ground Cat's Claw Bark may also have anti-inflammatory properties as well.
Like all herbs and spices in bulk, some caution should be exercised when using Cat's Claw Bark or any other natural herb. Pregnant women should avoid taking it until. Those who are allergic to coffee or gardenias may also experience negative effects from uncaria tomentosa.
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