Guarana (Paullinia cupana)


Guarana Overview:

Guarana is a shrub found growing in the amazon rainforest of South America. It's a member of the sapindaceae family of plants which includes such members as the maple tree, horsechestnut, and lychee.

The seeds of the guarana tree contain the highest known source of caffeine, which is te source of much of its actions medicinally.

Local indigenous populations in the region used guarana as a stimulant on long hunting trips, or in social settings. in the modern world, guarana is used as a tonic for the cardiovascular system, and as a stimulating adaptogen. it is popular amongst athletes and students for its ability to increase the threshold for mental and physical exhaustion.

+ Indications

  • General tonic for heart and kidneys
  • Atherosclerosis
  • Cardiovascular disease
  • Hypertension (see cautions)
  • Fatigue
  • Dysentery
  • Diarrhea
  • Lethargy
  • Sexual impotency
  • Migraines
  • Headaches
  • Neuralgia
  • Aphrodisiac
  • Altitude sickness
  • Chronic fatigue syndrome

+ Contraindications

  • Hypertension
  • Over stimulation

Herbal Actions:

  • Astringent
  • Adaptogen
  • CNS Stimulant
  • Cardioprotective
  • Antioxidant
  • Analgesic
  • Psychoactive
  • Nootropic

Main Uses:

Guarana contains a high amount of caffeine, and is therefore used in a similar way to coffee. It is a CNS stimulant useful for impriving energy, increasing mental work capacity, and can be used in the treatment of altitude sickness.

Guarana is also an adaptogen, stimulating as it may be. it is useful for mood and concentration, increasing the ability to resist stressful stimuli, treating cardiovascular conditions like atherosclerosis and hypertension, improves digestive tone, and is a popular weight loss supplement.


Daily Dosage

Liquid Extract

Ratio: 1:2

xxx mL

Weekly Dosage

Liquid Extract

Ratio: 1:2

xxx mL


Part Used


Family Name



South America (Amazon rainforest)

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Constituents of Interest

  • Caffeine
  • Theobromine
  • Catechins

Common Names

  • Guarana
  • Urana
  • Narana
  • Va ran

Botanical Info:

Guarana is a member of the Sapindaceae family of plants, which contains roughly 138 genera and 1858 species. Some other noteable members of this family includes maple, horsechestnut, lychee, longan, soapberry, and ackee.


Level Of Research:


Clinical Applications Of Guarana:

Guarana is useful as a stimulating adaptogen to improve conditions like chronic fatigue, hypothyroidism, and debilitating conditions that have not reached convalescence. It is useful as a source of caffeine for mental cognitive enhancement, in nootropic applications, and as a replacement for coffee.

Guarana is also useful for cardiovascular conditions if used long term. The initial spike in blood pressure and anxious side effects need to be overcome through adenosine receptor tolerance before these effects can be delivered. Therefore, guarana can be used as a cardioprotective against hypertension, angina, and atherosclerosis, but only in people that have not reached a high level of cardiovascualr degeneration. Guarana is not recommended in those with significantly high blood pressure or who are suffering from severe CHF, COPD, or Angina.



Avoid guarana if severe cardiovascular disease is present.


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For a list of references, visit the full guarana monograph