Senna Leaf is commonly known as senna or Alexandrian senna, and its scientific name is Cassia angustifolia. Senna has been used since the 9th century by Arabian physicians as a laxative and has been known as the "cleansing herb." "Only the leaves and the pods of the herb are therapeutically useful," states Herbs 2000. Senna is often taken as a tea, capsule, tablet or liquid extract. Senna leaf acts on the intestinal walls, causing contractions that lead to bowel movements. In this regard, it can be used to effectively relieve even the most severe cases of constipation. Because of its glycoside content, which helps transport electrolytes, it helps to cleanse the colon creating a bowel movement that usually occurs within six to 12 hours after it is taken. According to Traditional Chinese Medicine, or TCM, senna leaf, also called Fan Xie Ye, helps to clear away heat accumulated in the large intestine, helping rid the body of stagnant food that has accumulated in the organs. Considered sweet, bitter, and cold in nature, it is not to be used during pregnancy or menstruation or by nursing mothers.