Argyreia Nervosa Seeds Quote

The below except was taken from the “definitive” reference on Argyreia nervosa seeds; “Handbook of Medicinal Herbs”:

“For a while, Hawaii shipped the rose-like capsules to the U.S. and Europe. Since so many other Americans, in addition to poor Hawaiians, were abusing the seeds as an hallucinogen, an embargo was placed on continued shipment of the wood rose. [54] Still, they are frequently sold for use in dry flower arrangements. [51] Possibly more important to the counterculture as a herbal high, [51] induced, according to an anonymous writer, by 4 to 8 grams seed, chewed or taken in capsules: “At first you will feel weak and lethargic. If you have a sensitive stomach, you may get nauseated for about fifteen minutes. If so sip a little warm water or mint tea and allow yourself to vomit if necessary. Dramamine . . . may also help. After this has passed you will feel very relaxed and peaceful yet very aware. This state of bliss lasts for about three or four hours and is followed by a gradual descent to normality except that you will probably feel unusually relaxed and mellow for several days.” [51] Sounds too good to be true!

Reported to be anodyne (pain relieving) [33] in Haiti, rubefacient and vesicant in the Philippines. [6] Immature seeds contain lysergic acid amides, and, according to one anonymous author, innocuously small quantities of strychnine and other alkaloids. [51] Various species of Argyreia contain amides of lysergic acid, e.g., chanoclavine, ergine, ergonovine, and isoergine. [54] It is classed as a narcotic hallucinogen, packing a miserable hangover with blurred vision, constipation, nausea, physical inertia, and vertigo.[54]”

This is EXACTLY the kind of information that frustrates us. This author wrote an authoritative book on Medicinal Herbs, yet included an incorrect and inaccurate reference about strychnine from an unpublished pamphlet created by an anonymous author. Sickness from ingesting Hawaiian Baby Woodrose seeds if often blamed on everything from strychnine to cyanide, but this is most definitely a myth.

The amount of strychnine that could fit on or in a seed would not be enough to have any effect. Laboratory tests have shown that the seed coat is no more or less toxic than any other part of the seed as well. The sickness from seeds that were consumed before it was illegal to do so, came from the the essential oils contained within the seeds. (See the section below for a more detailed discussion.) Essential oils are fats, so soaking the seeds in a fat-absorbing solvent such as Naptha (Zippo lighter fluid) for thirty minutes, then throwing the solvent away, then drying the remaining seed mass would remove these oils. (THIS IS VERY ILLEGAL TO DO, THOUGH, SO PLEASE DO NOT ATTEMPT THIS!) LSA is water-soluable, not fat soluable, so the Naptha would carry away the essential oil poisons, leaving behind the toxic D-Lysergic Acid Amide in the Hawaiian Baby Woodrose seeds of the Morning Glory seeds instead.