The medicinal parts are the ripe, dried pods and the beans.
Flower and Fruit
The white, pink and lilac flowers are in lightly blossomed, peduncled racemes, which are shorter than their leaves. The calyx is bilabiate. The carina, stamens, and style are twisted in a spiral. The fruit is a straight, smooth, hanging pod with a number of reniform seeds.
Leaves, Stem, and Root
The annual plant grows from 30 to 60 cm high. It is heavily branched but not twining. The leaves are trifoliate, the leaflets are broad ovate and acuminate. The terminal leaflet is rhomboid.
The plant is indigenous to America and is cultivated worldwide today.
The seed-free pods of Phaseolus vulgaris are collected during the harvest season.
Common Bean, Green Bean, Kidney Bean, Navy Bean, Pinto Bean, Snap Bean, String Bean, Wax Bean
Actions & Pharmacology
Lectins: complex termed phytomitogen (tetrameric glycoproteins)
A weak diuretic action has been demonstrated in animal and human experiments. Chromium salts present in the Bean Pod may produce an antidiabetic effect. The starch from garden beans reduced overall cholesterol levels in rats. The polyphenols it contains exhibited antimutagenic effect in vitro.
Indications & Usage
Approved by Commission E:
- Infections of the urinary tract
- Kidney and bladder stones
Bean Pod is used as a supportive treatment for inability to urinate. In folk medicine, it is used as a diuretic and antidiabetic.
Precautions & Adverse Reactions
No health hazards or side effects are known in conjunction with the proper administration of designated therapeutic dosages, in the form of heated infusions.
Poisonings following the intake of large quantities of fresh green bean husks (or of raw green beans) are not to be entirely ruled out, due to the lectins content, which varies greatly among the individual species. Symptoms include vomiting, diarrhea, and gastroenteritis. The lectins are destroyed in the process of cooking.
Mode of Administration
As a comminuted herb for decoctions and other galenic preparations for internal use. The drug is a component of various kidney and bladder teas and of standardized preparations of natural diuretics and antidiabetics.
To make an infusion, pour boiling water over 2.5 g drug and strain after 10 to 15 minutes while still covered (1 teaspoonful = 1.5 g drug).
The recommended daily dosage is 5 to 15 g of herb.