Information on Saw Palmetto

Latin NameSerenoa repens
Other NamesSabal
Part UsedFruit
Herb FormsStandardized extract in capsule, tincture.
AffectsReproductive system, Urinary system
CautionsNone noted, although a few rare cases of stomach problems are reported.
Botanical InfoA small scrubby palm with fan-shaped leaves and purple berries.
DescriptionSaw palmetto is a male tonifying herb, especially beneficial to the prostate gland and urinary tract. Several studies have proven it effective in reducing the frequency of nocturnal urination and as a remedy for benign prostatic hypertrophy with symptoms such as burning or incomplete urination and reduced flow. It has also been used for chronic congestive conditions. It is often considered a good tonic for the sexual and urinary systems of both men and women.
The most effective kind of extract of saw palmetto may be what is called a supercritical C02 extract. This uses C02 as a solvent to extract the active fatty acid fraction, preserving freshness because it is a cold process. These extracts do not contain the solvent hexane, as other types of extracts may. A tincture might also be effective.

Saw Palmetto has a taste of PUNGENT, SWEET and a temperature of WARM.


Decoction1 cup 2-3 x daily
Extractup to twice what is stated on the label

Ailments Treated by Saw Palmetto

AilmentTreatment SupportApplication
Orchitisanti-inflammatorytablet, capsule, tincture
Prostate imbalancestonic, anti-inflammatorytincture, tablet, capsule
Urine retentionanti-inflammatorytincture, capsule, tablet
Bladder, irritatedurinary antisepticextract in capsule


Newall, C. et al.. 1996. Herbal Medicines: A Guide for Health-care Professionals. London: The Pharmaceutical Press.
McGuffin, M. et al. 1997. Botanical Safety Handbook. Boca Raton: CRC Press.
Weiss, R. 1988. Herbal Medicine. Beaconsfield, England: Beaconsfield Publishers.
Wren, R.C. 1988. Potter's New Cyclopaedia of Botanical Drugs. Essex: C.W. Daniel Co. Ltd.
Hobbs, C. & S. Brown. 1997. Saw Palmetto, The Herb for Prostate Health. Loveland, CO: Interweave Press.