Echinacea, which is also called purple coneflower, is a very popular herb all over the world.Native Americans have used it to treat a wide range of illnesses for hundreds of years.Today, it is best known as a herb you can buy over the counter to treat a cold or flu. But it is also used to treat pain, swelling, migraines, and other health problems.
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- Echinacea is the name for a group of flowering plants that are related to the daisy family. They are native to North America, where they grow in prairies and open, wooded areas.
- This group has nine species, but only Echinacea purpurea, Echinacea angustifolia, and Echinacea pallida are used in herbal supplements. The tops and roots of the plant are used to make tablets, tinctures, extracts, and teas.
- Echinacea plants have a wide range of active chemicals, such as caffeic acid, alkamides, phenolic acids, rosmarinic acid, polyacetylenes, and many more.
Ancient use of Echinacea:
Before 1950, when antibiotics came out, echinacea was a highly regarded medicine. As the healthcare field changed, antibiotics became all the rage, and the once-popular herb lost a lot of its value.
Use of Echinacea in different countries:
In North America, though, it has become a popular plant to grow. The echinacea plant is also called Echinacea purpurea and is often called the pale purple coneflower. Gardeners and people who like butterflies love this plant. It is a pretty flower that looks like a daisy because it has rounded heads and rose, pink, or purple petals. It grows on strong stems that are far above the leaves.
Most people don't know that the chemicals in the plant's root are very different from those in the plant's leaves and stem. If we look at the purple coneflower's roots, we can see that they have a lot of volatile oils, while the parts that grow above the ground tend to have more polysaccharides, which are known to make the immune system work. Echinacea extract is mostly a tincture made from the plant's top part.
Many of the chemicals that make up echinacea are actually very strong immune system boosters and have a lot of therapeutic value. This is why the plant is often used to treat the common cold. Essential oils, flavonoids, inulin, polysaccharides, and vitamin C are just some of the things that make up echinacea.
On top of hearing that the plant's extracts are very healthy, we've learned that the best part of the plant is the part that grows above ground. In Germany, the government regulates dietary herbs, and the above-ground parts of the Echinacea purpurea plant are approved as natural treatments for urinary tract infections, upper respiratory tract infections, colds, and wounds that don't heal quickly.
Health benefits of Echinacea:
- Fights against cancer
The medicinal value of the phytochemicals in Echinacea is clear, and this suggests that these agents and other phytochemicals in herbs that haven't been found yet may be useful tools for fighting tumours. Researchers are now recommending that echinacea be used "alongside, or even instead of, conventional therapy" as an alternative way to treat cancer.
- Gives your immune system a boost
- Echinacea can make it 58% less likely that you will get a common cold.
- Taking echinacea cuts the length of a cold by almost 1.5 days.
- Helps with pain
The history of echinacea began when the Great Plains Indians used Echinacea purpurea as a painkiller. It works especially well for the following kinds of pain:
- Having pain in the guts
- Headaches can be very painful.
- HSV can cause a lot of pain (herpes)
- Pain that comes from gonorrhoea
- Pain from having measles
- Snake bites
- Throat Aches
- Stomach ache
Recent research suggests that Echinacea purpurea and angustifolia activate the endocannabinoid system, making it work better at relieving pain.
People often use echinacea products to relieve pain by drinking herbal echinacea tea or making a paste out of the dried herb and rubbing it directly on the painful area.
- It helps you go to the bathroom.
Like many herbs, echinacea is good for the stomach and the rest of the digestive system.
This works especially well when you drink herbal tea. One cup of tea a day can help loosen the bowels for long-term conditions. Two or three cups a day can help with sudden bouts.
But don't use this herb too much if you want to avoid side effects. To be safe, don't drink more than two cups of tea a day and follow the directions on the labels of any supplements you take.
- Helps to stop inflammation
Products with echinacea in them might even help with uveitis, which is inflammation of the eye. People with chronic inflammatory conditions like rheumatoid arthritis should drink the herbal tea regularly to reduce inflammation throughout the body.
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