Various species of yucca plant were used as food by Native Americans and early California settlers. Yucca contains high levels of soapy compounds known as saponins that also made it a useful natural shampoo and soap.
What Is Yucca Used for Today?
test tube studies
suggest that various yucca extracts may have antiviral, antifungal, antiprotozoal (e.g., Giardia) and antibacterial effects,
but no human trials have been reported for potential uses based on these actions.
Yucca extracts are also widely used to enhance the foaming effect of carbonated beverages.
The standard dosage is 2 to 4 tablets of concentrated yucca saponins daily.
Yucca is generally accepted as safe based on its long history of use as a food. However, it sometimes causes diarrhea if taken to excess. Safety in young children, pregnant or nursing women, or those with severe liver or kidney disease has not been established. Yucca may have slight estrogen-like actions,
and for this reason should not be taken by women who have had breast cancer.
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Hayashi K, Nishino H, Niwayama S, et al. Yucca leaf protein (YLP) stops the protein synthesis in HSV-infected cells and inhibits virus replication.