Now more than ever we need to focus on our health and well being to prevent getting sick. This means eating a well-balanced, nutritious diet, exercising, and getting enough sleep. But taking echinacea is also a great way to help boost immune health.
As worries regarding the COVID-19 outbreak continue to rise while we are still in the cold and flu season, it is important to make sure you are strengthening your immune system. This is especially for those who are high-risk including the elderly, those who are immune compromised, and children and babies.
The immune system is made up of cells that act in our army that defends the body against infections—both viral and bacterial. Studies suggest that taking echinacea while you are well may reduce your chances of falling ill.
Powerful Properties of the Plant
Echinacea helps boost immune health by stimulating the immune system more to fight off the germs or infection. It works by boosting phagocytes in your bloodstream to then help fight infections.
It is a herbaceous flowering plant that is used for years by the North American indigenous people for medicinal purposes, specifically cold prevention and upper respiratory infections. This includes symptoms like coughs, sore throat, headaches, and even pain. It then became widely popular after a Swiss herbal supplement maker learned of the plant and it became commonly used in the United States and Europe, especially after research in Germany in the 1920s.
Today echinacea is included in vitamin supplements like pills or chewables, in liquid extract form, dried herb and as a tea. Taking a vitamin supplement like Natural Dynamix Gummy Cuties supplement for immune boost is an ideal way for children to get a daily dosage of echinacea.
There are many different species of echinacea and different parts of the plant are used in different supplements including the root, flowers and extracts. The plant contains a mix of substances that has antimicrobial properties which is how it helps boost immune health.
This includes phenols, which are the substances that control the activity of enzymes and receptors in the cells. Phenols help protect the plant from infection and are known as being an antioxidant.
Most species also contain unsaturated fatty acid alkyl amides or alkamides, which plays a positive role in the immune system and building immunity. It also contains polysaccharides, T- cell antigen that also aid in boosting immune health.
Effectiveness And Safety
According to both herbalists and some researchers, echinacea does work.
Although there have been many limited studies on how echinacea helps fight off specific viruses, many experts believe that it can help in general boost immune system health. And the studies that are published are promising.
According to the meta-meta-analysis study published by the University of Connecticut that summarizes 14 academic research studies, echinacea cuts the chances of having the common cold by 58 percent.
It was also found that echinacea reduces the length of a cold by almost 60 percent of the days.
Some studies on echinacea found that it was not effective when it comes to boosting immune health. However, in some cases, researchers were extracting the entire plant, when the root has the active principle in it. This dilutes the herb thus effective its potency.
Regular echinacea use helps reduce inflammatory issues. This is why it is great to reduce upper respiratory illness symptoms. This includes asthma and other respiratory illnesses, which is why it is a great preventive herb for preventing COVID-19.
It also helps with mental health including anxiety and ADHD, and research found this is true for both adults and children.
It is safe to use for both adults and children. However, it’s important to read labels and make sure that those ingredients are clearly stated and it’s being sold by a brand you can trust like Natural Dynamix which has its echinacea supplement preservative-free with natural flavors and colors.
A common side effect of echinacea is stomach aches and nausea. Some people may develop an allergic reaction which includes a rash.
When To Take It
There was a misconception that it can only be taken for a short period of time and that it is ineffective for longer-term use. However, this was taken from a German study that was only held for three days. The translation revealed that echinacea was found to help during that period of the study.
That means it’s best to take during cold and flu season to prevent illness or when sick to shorten the length of the illness.
Echinacea is also ideal for those who tend to get sick with a change of season or when they know they get allergies or when about to travel to a new city or country. It is best to take when you feel a cold or flu coming on.
While echinacea does boost immune health, make sure to be conscious of diet and nutrition and overall well-being including exercise and proper sleep to ward off illness.
Sources: Hart A, Dey P (2009). "Echinacea for prevention of the common cold: an illustrative overview of how information from different systematic reviews is summarised on the internet". Preventive Medicine. 49 (2–3): 78–82.
Echinacea — Powerful Virus Fighter, Bottom Line Inc https://www.youtube.com/watch? v=p4rh7LGu0GE
Karsch-Völk M, Barrett B, Kiefer D, Bauer R, Ardjomand-Woelkart K, Linde K (February 2014). "Echinacea for preventing and treating the common cold". The Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews (Systematic review). 2 (2): CD000530. doi:10.1002/14651858.CD000530.pub3. PMC 4068831. PMID 24554461.
Stefan Raduner‡, Adriana Majewska‡, Jian-Zhong Chen§, Xiang-Qun Xie§, Jacques Hamon¶, Bernard Faller¶, Karl-Heinz Altmann‡ and Jürg Gertsch‡,1Alkylamides from Echinacea Are a New Class of Cannabimimetics , CANNABINOID TYPE 2 RECEPTOR-DEPENDENT AND -INDEPENDENT IMMUNOMODULATORY EFFECTS*, Journal of Biological Chemistry
Dr. Gus Landivar, 9 Benefits of Echinacea - From the Cold to Cancer, https://www.youtube.com/ watch?v=j8OD0PX7Fmw
National Center for Complementary and Integrative Health, Echinacea, https://nccih.nih.gov/ health/echinacea/ataglance.htm
Yvette Brazier, Beneits, uses and side effects of echinacea, Medical News Today, https:// www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/252684