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Compilation by Armando Gonzalez Stuart, PhD

Scientific Name:


Other Common Name:

Canchalahua, canchalagua*, cachenlahuen, canchanlahue, cachen, cachinlagua, tlanchalagua

*The common name canchalagua can be confusing, as it is also applied in Peru and Mexico, to other very different plant species that belong to the sunflower botanical family (Schkuhria spp. and Pectis spp.).

Common names in Spanish:


Where is it found?

This plant is native to Chile and is considered to be one of the most important medical plants by the Mapuche indigenous people of that nation. The plant is also found in southern Argentina.

Parts of the plant used:

The whole plant, especially the stalks and leaves.

How is it used?

The plant is boiled in water (decoction) and taken as a tea.

What is it used for?

Cachanlahue is a bitter-tasting tea used in traditional medicine for various ailments including the following:

  • Diabetes
  • Circulatory problems (especially hypertension)
  • Anorexia (loss of appetite)
  • Fever
  • Jaundice,
  • Stomach pain
  • Liver problems
  • Gastrointestinal ailments
  • To induce sweating
  • For the treatment of blood disorders
  • Rheumatism
  • Externally, the plant decoction is used as a hair wash for the treatment of hair loss.
  • Recently, the tea has been touted as a treatment for weight loss, although there are no known scientific studies to confirm this.

Cachanlahue flowers

Photo: / Google images
Cachanlahue flowers


Safety / Precautions


  • The safety of using cachanlahue during pregnancy and lactation has not been established.
  • People taking medications to treat diabetes or high blood pressure should consult with their healthcare provider before taking this herb.

Before you decide to take any medicinal herb or herbal supplement, be sure to consult with your health care professional first. Avoid self-diagnosis and self-medication: Always be on the safe side!



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