Herbal medicine has been around for thousands of years and has been used throughout most of human history. In 2019, in the U.S. alone, retail sales of herbal supplements accounted for over USD $9 billion – an 8.6% increase on the previous year. Worldwide, the market share is expected to reach USD $411.2 billion by 2026. (1, 2)
In a 2011 report by The World Health Organisation, a significant percentage of the population in Africa, Asia, Latin America, and the Middle East – 70%-95% – still use traditional treatments such as herbal medicines as primary health care.
In the U.S. 42% of Americans used some form of alternative medicine, while in other industrialized nations such as Canada, France, Germany, and Italy, this rose to between 70% and 90%. (3)
Albizia – A Brief Description
Of the numerous medicinal herbs on the market, Albizia promotes many health benefits including feelings of calm, tranquility, and feelings of relaxation.
Albizia is derived from the Albizia Julibrissin tree, known as the Persian silk tree, or mimosa, a small deciduous tree native to southern and eastern Asia. Often referred to, or translated as, the ‘happiness herb’ or ‘happiness bark’, Albizia is said to possess many medicinal properties and has been used to treat various conditions. Growing to around 30ft tall, flowers are produced throughout the summer and are generally pink and white in color. The flowers and stem bark are used to make medicine, usually in powder or liquid form, and are among the most valuable Chinese botanicals used for relieving stress and anxiety. Other species within the Albizia genus (family – Mimosaceae) have also been shown to produce physical benefits, and extracts are used by the cosmetic industry to treat and promote healthy skin and hair. (4)
Of the many health-promoted advantages of using Albizia, some scientific studies have revealed promising results. These include:-
- Anxiety and Stress. Studies have shown that extracts from dried leaves of Albizia lebbeck may have anti-anxiety properties. (5)
- Elevates mood levels
- Insomnia. Albizia julibrissin exhibits some sedative and antidepressant effects and may protect memory against amnesia. (6)
- Improved memory (6)
- Fights against depression (6)
Research has also revealed the Albizia species to have many other health benefits and extracts are rich in antioxidants, inflammatory-reducing, antibacterial and anti-diabetic properties. (7)
One of the most popular products on the market is Be Serene Instant Relief.
Made with 100% natural ingredients including Albizia, along with other “anxiety-busting” herbs such as Mulungu, California Poppy, Gaba, and L-Theanine – Instant Relief is applied topically to the temples or wrists and helps reduce anxiety, worry, and bouts of panic.
It can also be used as an aid to sleep if taken shortly before bedtime, upon waking at night to help you fall back asleep quickly or taking a nap during the day.
Frequently Asked Questions
How often should I consume Albizia?
Albizia bark is very safe, and the dosage depends on different factors, such as the user’s age, health, and several other conditions. As general guidance for the average person, of a healthy and active disposition, a dosage of up to 15g daily (the typical dosage being 3g to 6g) when used as a powder, tea, or tincture is acceptable. This can also be in a tablet form, 2-3 caps twice daily, to be adequate to achieve a positive effect. If taken as a flower extract, one teaspoon of the extract three times daily and after a week, stepping it down to a half teaspoon is beneficial. (1, 2, 5)
A 5 to 1 liquid extract of albizia or 5 to 1 dried powdered extract, is commonly prescribed to many patients for depression, anxiety, and insomnia.
Your medical professional can guide you as to which consumable form is best for you, and how often.
Are there any contraindications for use?
Avoid during pregnancy as this herb has been shown to stimulate contractions of the uterus, and because of its blood-moving properties, it is contraindicated for the dosage to expectant mothers. Information regarding safety and efficacy in pregnancy and lactation is lacking, so it’s best to stay on the safe side and not consume when breastfeeding. Avoid use with any known allergies or hypersensitivity to any constituents. Albizia can affect the central nervous system, so it may increase the effects of anesthesia and other medications on the brain during and after surgery. It is recommended to stop taking 2 weeks before any surgeries. (3, 4)
Are there any side-effects?
Most literature reports no known side-effects from taking Albizia. However, because of its sedative properties, it is not recommended to be taken in conjunction with some pharmaceutical drugs. (4)
When taking natural products alongside other drugs dosages can be important. Be sure to consult both your pharmacist or physician and/or your naturopathic healthcare professional before using.
Can I Consume Albizia Long-Term?
Yes. There is no known toxicity of albizia if taken in moderate amounts. The interest has recently increased in the therapeutic potential of this medicinal plant, as an antioxidant in reducing free radical-induced tissue injury.
In teas, wines, fruits, vegetables, and spices, certain natural antioxidants can be found. Albizia has been shown to be safe in many studies. (6)
Is Albizia suitable for vegans vegetarians?
Yes. Albizia is 100% plant based and is suitable for vegans and vegetarians.
With all the information we have available to us nowadays on traditional healing and ancient home-based remedies, human metabolism, and even the power of plant-based foodstuffs, we can learn simple but powerful concepts of human nutrition, and apply them daily in our lives.
How lucky we are to be continually learning when it comes to our health and if the opportunity arises for us to try Albizia, whether it’s in a pill form, a tincture, a spray, or even a homemade ‘mimosa’, we should grab it.
Albizia is produced by mother nature: it is abundant, natural, inexpensive, and becoming popular again, as people become ever more curious about the power of roots, bark, flowers, and even whole trees!