Rhodiola integrifolia - Entire-Leaved Roseroot

"The genus Rhodiola consists ofapproximately 100 species occurring mainly in Asia and Europe. Many of the new species have been excluded from the genus Sedum L. (Index Kewensis 1895-1974)." [Bajaj MAPS 8] "There is, as usual, confusion among those with advanced degrees in plant science as to just how many species of rhodiola there are: 36, or maybe 60, probably 90.... Studies on 14 other species in the genus have found the same constituents in them as in R. rosea. They can all be used medicinally, they all do pretty much the same things, they all work identically to the usual commercial variety R. rosea " [Buhner Antivirals]

Status: Native [E-flora]

Food Use

S. integrifolium, commonly called "king's crown" has a terminal cluster of dark rose-purple flowers. We have eaten the young shoots often, sometimes cutting them into small pieces and mixing them with lettuce for a salad. It also makes a good potherb, but like queen's crown the older leaves take on a rather bitter taste and become fibrous. [????]

Use of Related Sp

Rhodiola rosea - Rose Root


"Rhodiola does not appear to affect the pharmacokinetics of theophylline or warfarin. The concurrent use of pepper may diminish the antidepressant effects of rhodiola." (Based on experimental studies with rats) [HMI Stockey] "Golden root is stated to be safe; however, some individuals might experience an increase in irritability and insomnia within several days." [Capasso PQR]

Foods Use

Other Uses

Medicial Use


" The extract is used in medical practice as an adaptogenic and stimulating agent.... The active components of the extract were mentioned as salidroside and tyrosol (salidroside aglicone)" [Bajaj MAPS 8]

"Rhodiola, like the stronger preparations of eleutherococcus (another Russian-developed herb), is considered to be not just adaptogenic but an adaptogenic stimulant — part of the reason it can cause jitteriness and wakefulness in some....
A few of my obscure herb reference sources reveal that rhodiola was used in traditional Russian folk medicine to increase physical endurance, work productivity, longevity, resistance to altitude sickness, fatigue, depression, anemia, impotence, GI tract ailments, infections, and nervous afflictions. But they seem to be the only people who used it regularly" [Buhner Antivirals]

"It contains the glycoside Salidroside, which has a centrally stimulating effect. It has the ability to bind ATP, which is useful in counteracting stress and mental exhaustion." [Sandberg NR]

"In addition, their antianoxic, antifatigue, antiradiation, and cytotoxic effects on experimental animals and cultured tumor cells have been described (Yu-ying Zong et al. 1991)." [Bajaj MAPS 8]

"Tonifying qi and activating blood, clearing away the lung heat, and eliminating stasis to subdue swelling. Treat for leucorrhea, cough due to pneumonia, hematemesis, hemoptysis, traumatic injury, burn and scald for external application, deficiency of spleen qi, deficiency of lung yin and cough due to lung heat, neurosis, chest stuffiness, cardiodynia, hemiplegia, and altitude stress (State Administration of Traditional Chinese Medicine 1999)." [Grosso HMD]

Used "...as a folk custom to ensure fertility. Effects on regulation of the menstrual cycle and the successful treatment of 25 of 40 women who had stopped having menses altogether support its use in matters related to hormones and sexual function.205" 100-300mg daily[Hudson WENM]


"Quantitative analysis using semi-quantitative thin-Iayer chromatography shows that the salidroside content in R. rosea and R. quadrifida roots accounts for 1.2%. For R. rosea roots typical chemical compounds are glycosides of cinnamic alcohol (rosine, rosarine, rosavine) which have not been found in other Rhodiola species." [Bajaj MAPS 8]

"Chemically, these plants biosynthesize many compounds which belong to different chemical groups such as: flavolignans (rhodioline), flavonoides (rhodionine), phenolic compounds (salidroside, tyrosol), phenylpropanoides (cinnamic alcohol and its glycosides - rosine, rosavine, rosarine), coumarins, sterols, monoterpenes, and lactones (Kurkin and Zapesohnaya 1986; Dubichev et al. 1991)." [Bajaj MAPS 8]

"According to Kurkin et al. (1988), the contents ofthe main components in a R. rosea population originating in the Altai mountains are as follows: rosine 0.1%, rosavine 0.6%, rosarine 0.05%, rosiridine 1.0%, and salidroside 0.2%. Kiryanov et al. (1988) found that the contents ofrosavine, in relation to the plant distribution and age, varied from 1.3 to 3.3%; a higher rosavine content may be found in plants which are 5 or 6 years old. The same authors observed that the content ofsalidroside in the rhizomes ofplants cultured for 4 years was 2.8% and in 7-year-old plants it was 3.6% (Kiryanov et al. 1989)." [Bajaj MAPS 8]

"Rhodiola also contains flavonoids such as kaempferol and its glycoside derivatives, sterols (β-sitosterol), tannins, and rhodiolosides or salidrosides (a series of hydroxylated, methoxylated and methylated octadienyl and octenyl glucosides). There is also a small amount of essential oil (about 0.05%)." [HMI Stockey]

"... all the Rhodiola rosea plants, irrespective of where they grow or in what country, have nearly identical chemistry. They are all perfectly usable as medicine." Other factors such as time and location of harvest will show a difference in the chemical variability. [Buhner Antiviral]

"There are, of course, a great many other compounds in the root, at least 85 essential oils and another 50 water-soluble nonvolatiles. Many of the usual plant compounds are present." [Buhner Antivirals]

"The roots and rhizomes of Rhodiola rosea L. contain essential oils (the main classes: monoterpene hydrocarbons (25.40 %), monoterpene alcohols (23.61 %), and straight-chain aliphatic alcohols (37.54 %), e.g, n-decanol (30.38 %), geraniol (12.49 %) and 1,4-p-menthadien-7-ol (5.10 %), rosiridol, rosiridin, etc.), glycosides (alcoholic glycosides (rhodiolosides -A, -B, -C, -D, -E), cyanogenic glycosides (rhodiocyanoside A, lotaustralin), etc.), organic acids (oxalic, citric, malic, gallic, succinic acids), flavonoids (gossypetin, kaempferol, quercetin, herbacetin, etc.), others (phenylethanoids, phenylpropanoids, aryl glycosides, proanthocyanidins, and other gallic acid derivatives, fats, waxes, sterols, tannins and proteins, etc.) (Panossian et al. 2010; Petsalo et al. 2006)." [Grosso HMD]

Human Studies

"In another open study, 21 physicians and doctors took rhodiola before embarking on intense intellectual work. In all cases, the amount and quality of work increased and fatigue diminished.102 At a relatively high dose (300 mg/day), rhodiola improved the accuracy of proofreaders although it did not increase the number of errors caught.103 A lower dose (170 mg/day) improved the functioning of 56 physicians on prolonged night duty during a two- week period but was not as effective during the last two weeks of a six- week duty.104" [CBMed]

"A recent study reported that rhodiola did not affect muscle recovery time or time to exhaustion in 12 resistance- trained men taking 1500 mg rhodiola/day for four days.108 Of course, this study looked at a relatively high dose given for a very short period of time and does not shed much light on how the herb is used in practice. Finally, a small study found that rhodiola reduced levels of C-reactive protein and creatinine kinase in healthy untrained volunteers after exhaustive exercise.109" [CBMed]

Cultivation & Propagation

"Rhodiola rosea plants can be propagated by seeds or vegetatively by rhizome and root cuttings, or small buds in part with rhizomes. When buds are used, 1.25 kg of fresh small roots was obtained from 1 m2 field after 1 year. Plants propagated by seeds gave a smaller yield; after 3 years ofcultivation from a 1 m2 field 1.3 kg ofroots was harvested (Krysiuk 1988)." [Bajaj MAPS 8]

"If you find the plant in your area, harvest the roots in the fall after seeding or in the spring just as it is coming up. The roots will be bigger and, in my opinion, more potent in the spring. Slice the bigger roots; the interior of the root will change from white to a brown or reddish color as it begins to dry." [Buhner Antivirals]

"The yields are low, only about 3 tons per hectare, and they are labor intensive. Since the roots are taken, and only after 5 years, agricultural production of the plant demands a minimum of five fields, planted in rotation so they can be harvested in successive years in order to keep up continual production.... The plant takes a minimum of 3 years to mature but the roots should not be harvested for 5 years." [Buhner Antivirals]

Use of Related Sp.

"Analysis of 19 samples of dried rhizome from 10 Rhodiola species other than R. rosea, obtained in the east of Qinghai province in China, found that all species contained salidroside, although only five species had a content greater than 0.3%.(12) Five species also contained lotaustralin, a cyanoglucoside which is toxic to humans following oral administration." [HerbalMed3]

Further Reading


Page last modified on Tuesday, March 19, 2019 10:56 PM