Echinacea (purple coneflower) are perennial herbs found in North America. There are about nine species but the most common used in medicine are the echinacea augustifolia, echinacea purpurea and echinacea pallida.
Echinacea posseses a number of medicinally active constituents including: polysaccharides, alkaylamides, flavonoids, essential oils, caffeic acid derivatives, polyacetylenes etc. All these work synergistically to help say, lower inflammation, lower blood sugar and boost the immune function.
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Health Benefits of Echinacea
Helps to Cure Cold
Echinacea is renowned for use in common cold. It’s immune system enhancing effect is demonstrated here. Common cold, influenza and other upper respiratory tract infections are kept in check.
Help Prevent Cancer
There are a number of constituents that promote immune enhancement. Through this process then a stimulation of the macrophages leads to the destruction of tumor cells.
Contains Natural Antibiotics
Echinacea constituents have been found to exert powerful antibacterial effects. Influenza, colds, upper respiratory tract infections, urogenital and other infections are impacted on by echinacea.
Echinacea boasts of a number of antioxidant vitamins and minerals. It also has a number of phytonutrients that exert antioxidant and anti-inflammatory effects.
Echinacea constituents also may help reverse the feelings of stress or even anxiety. These are the active constituents amongst many others: alkamides, rosmarinic acid and caffeic acid.
Echinacea has powerful antioxidant and anti-inflammatory compounds. These come useful in the case of rheumatoid arthritis alleviation.
Echinacea has been the favorite of alternative therapy practitioners when handling snakebites. It has been found that echinacea is capable of inhibiting hyaluronidase. This compound is a component of snake venom. Most snake venom permeate the body by aid of hyaluronidase.
Help Prevent Skin Problems
The skin is normally affected by free radical damage and bacterial infections. However, echinacea’s antioxidant and antimicrobial team play a major role in the protection of the skin tissues. The echinacoside and caffeic acid exert antibacterial effects.
Prevents Heart Disease
The antioxidants, vitamins and minerals play.a major role in neutralising free radical damage in the cardiovascular system. By preventing bad cholesterol deposition in the heart arteries, echinacea promotes good health.
Echinacea Side Effects
Side Effects from the use of echinacea are rare. Where they do occur they are generally minor. Some of the common signs are:
- Nausea and vomiting
- Swelling of the body
- One may develop hives
- Itchiness of the skin
- One may develop skin rashes
- Stomach pains may be observed
Most of these side effects may also occur on the individuals when they expose themselves to other flowers.
How to Use Echinacea
Echinacea is available in the market in many forms. We have them as tablets, capsules, tincture, herbal teas, ointment, softgels and even liquid extracts.
When you purchase the powder form you can even buy empty capsules and package them before use. The powder may also be bought packed in teabags and ready to be steeped in a cup of hot water before use.
The tincture form may be made using the powder and some alcoholic extracter to prepare a potent form. These may be consumed in drops utilising dropper bottles and diluted in glass of juice.
You can also take a measured amount of the powder and bring to simmer in a measured amount of water. Sieve then drink the recommended amount by your healthcare adviser.
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