Polygonum multiflorum may have a number of therapeutic effects. Some of these effects relate to effects that phytochemicals within the plant can have on brain and central nervous system tissue. The plant tissues of Polygonum multiflorum are high in antioxidants including flavonoids and stilbenes, and this may explain the anti-inflammatory effects of the plant. Inflammation is a key component in the development of mood disorders, and so this suggests that the plant may have mood elevating effects. Stress is able to trigger the release of inflammatory components in brain tissue, and this can disrupt normal cellular function and in turn modify normal neurotransmitter production and use. This can lead to aberrations in cognitive and mood functions. Antioxidants can reduce this process through inhibition of the free radicals that are generated through the inflammatory process, and this limits the cellular damage that occurs. The anti-inflammatory effects may explain the neuroprotective effects demonstrated in the herb.
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