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Codonopsis is an herb. People use the root to make medicine.
Codonopsis is used to treat HIV infection and to protect cancer patients against side effects of radiation treatment. It is also to boost the immune system; and to treat weakness, loss of appetite (anorexia), chronic diarrhea, shortness of breath, noticeable heartbeat (palpitations), asthma, cough, thirst, and diabetes.
Although codonopsis is sometimes used as a substitute for ginseng in general tonic formulas, none of the chemicals called saponins that are responsible for some of the effects of ginseng have been found in codonopsis.
Codonopsis seems to stimulate the central nervous system. It also seems to promote weight gain and increase endurance, as well as increase red and white blood cells counts and promote blood circulation.