Ratanhia extract


Krameria Triandra Root Extract Where does ratanhia extract come from?

The ratanhia, a shrub with a growth height of up to 100 centimetres, comes from Peru and the Andes of Bolivia. Botanically, it is a real rarity, as it is the only specimen within the plant family Krameriaceae. In South America, it has been very important as a traditional medicinal plant for a very long time, but here in Europe it is largely unknown, although it first came to Germany in 1819. Years later, in 1927, ratanhia was even officially listed as a medicinal plant in the Prussian Pharmacopoeia. But then it was forgotten for a long time. This is a pity, because ratanhia extract in particular has extremely positive properties.

Ancient Inca writings show that the extract of the ratanhia root was the most commonly used remedy for tooth and gum problems for centuries. Even today, only the root of the plant is used. It basically consists of a main root, which is about ten centimetres long, and countless smaller branched secondary roots. If the brown-red roots are rubbed over paper, they leave clearly visible traces of colour: the so-called ratanhia-red.

The taste is bitter and strongly astringent, this is mainly due to the extraordinarily high tannin content. The proportion of catechin tannins is up to 15 percent, other ingredients are substances from the group of lignans (neolignans) as well as proanthocyanidins. By far the largest part of the ingredients is found in the bark of the root. The scientific name of the root is Radix Ratanhiae. It is obtained exclusively from wild sources.


The medicinal effect of ratanhia extract

Whether it is a sore throat, inflammation of the oral mucosa or pharyngitis, ratanhia extract is an extremely helpful remedy for all minor inflammations of the oral and pharyngeal mucosa. Its effectiveness has already been proven in studies. The tannins contained in ratanhia extract have an anti-inflammatory effect and have very good protective properties against various pathogens. On contact with (inflamed) mucous membranes, the tannins combine with proteins and thus change their consistency, i.e., they are then able to form a protective film that is very difficult for pathogens to penetrate. Ultimately, the pathogens then die because they cannot find a breeding ground. The inflamed mucous membrane can now use its self-healing powers so that the complaints quickly subside.


Local effect of ratanhia extract

When ratanhia extract is applied locally, the tannins cause the tongue and mouth to feel slightly furry. However, this is perfectly normal and immediately noticeable proof that the tannins do indeed have a healing effect. Allergic reactions have only very rarely been observed with the use of ratanhia extract. When used internally (as a tea), slight digestive problems may occur in individual cases, especially after excessive consumption. In general, however, internal use of ratanhia extract is relatively rare and, if at all, is only common for diseases of the female reproductive organs, diarrhoea and urinary tract complaints.

Used preventively, ratanhia extract strengthens the gums and the oral mucosa in the long term, so that irritations can be prevented.

In addition, ratanhia extract is used in folk medicine to treat chilblains and minor burns.

For medicinal use, the extract is usually administered as a decoction, tincture, rinse, gargle solution or infusion.


Ratanhia extract in cosmetics: protection against wrinkles and DNA damage

The negative effects of the ultraviolet radiation component of our sunlight are undisputed. The photo-induced formation of aggressive molecules and free radicals, which ultimately leads to cell damage, is the main cause. In the long run, the body’s natural repair mechanisms cannot sufficiently compensate for this enormous burden.

Sooner or later, oxidative stress leads to premature skin ageing, loss of elasticity, wrinkling and, as the worst consequence, to massive DNA damage, which can even be responsible for skin cancer. It is therefore all the more important that skin care products have a protective filter, so to speak, that can at least significantly mitigate the harmful effects of UV rays. For a comprehensive study, numerous lipophilic plant extracts were screened, which showed that ratanhia extract has a particularly good UV absorption.

The extract is an orange-brown, viscous liquid that is soluble in oil and alcohol and has a faint, pleasant odour of its own. Ratanhia extract can be easily incorporated into the oil phase of cosmetic preparations without any problems.

It convinces with a very high photo- and thermostability and enables a long-lasting and reliable protection thanks to its lipophilic character. Due to its additional caring properties, ratanhia extract is perfectly suited for sun protection preparations and care products for daily use. It effectively supports the self-healing powers of our tissue and is an optimal and completely natural protection against accelerated skin ageing caused by free radicals.


Fact Sheet Ratanhia Extract  

INCI: Krameria Triandra Root Extract

CAS number: 84775-95-1

Plant of origin: Krameria lappacea (Peru- or Payta-Ratanhia, Red Ratanhia)

Constituents: Catechin tannins, phlobaphenes, flavonols, neolignans, norneolignans

Healing properties: astringent, anti-inflammatory, antimicrobial, antibacterial, anti-bacterial


We like to use the following active ingredients based on Ratanhia:

NameSupplierINCI NameRemarks
Rhatany Glycolic ExtractGreentechAqua , Propylene Glycol , Krameria Triandra Root Extract
PHYTELENE EG 488 RhatanyGreentechPropylene Glycol , Aqua , Krameria Triandra Root Extract
Rhatany Root Extract, Oil SolubleCrodaromSesamum Indicum (Sesame) Seed Oil , Krameria Triandra Root Extract
Rhatany Root CO2-TO Extract Standardised - 159.005Flavex Naturextrakte GmbHKrameria Triandra Root Extract , Olea Europaea (Olive) Fruit Oil
Melscreen® Red EX 3RChemyunionAqua , Glycerin , Decyl Glucoside , Krameria Triandra Root Extract , Lycopene
Melscreen® Black EX 3RChemyunionAqua , Glycerin , Krameria Triandra Root Extract , Sarothamnus Scoparius Extract , Juglans Regia (Walnut) Leaf Extract



Ratanhia extract, the natural protection against skin ageing.

What the Incas already knew still holds true today: Ratanhia extract has excellent healing powers and is not only suitable for mouthwashes, gargles, and tinctures, but is also an effective and completely natural protection against the dreaded premature ageing of the skin. Since allergic reactions are extremely rare when used externally, there is no reason why it should not be used in cosmetic formulations. Please feel free to ask us if we may develop high-quality and effective cosmetics with ratanhia extract for you.




Anticancer efficacies of Krameria lappacea extracts against human breast cancer cell line (MCF-7): Role of oxidative stress and ROS generation.

Al-Oqail MM.Saudi Pharm J. 2021 Mar;29(3):244-251

Chemical Profile and Biological Effects of an Herbal Mixture for the Development of an Oil-in-Water Cream.

Safta DA, Ielciu I, Șuștic R, Hanganu D, Niculae M, Cenariu M, Pall E, Moldovan ML, Achim M, Bogdan C, Tomuță I.Plants (Basel). 2023 Jan 5;12(2):248