Echinacea is an herb. Several species of the Echinacea plant are used to make medicine from its leaves, flower, and root.
Echinacea is widely used to fight infections, especially the common cold and other upper respiratory infections. Some people take Echinacea at the first sign of a cold, hoping they will be able to keep the cold from developing. Other people take Echinacea after cold symptoms have started, hoping they can make symptoms less severe. The people who use Echinacea to treat symptoms have the right idea. Research to date shows that Echinacea modestly reduces cold symptoms, but it’s not clear whether it helps prevent colds from developing. Echinacea is also used against many other infections including the flu, urinary tract infections, yeast infections, genital herpes, bloodstream infections (septicaemia), gum disease, tonsillitis, streptococcus infections, syphilis, typhoid, malaria and diphtheria.
Echinacea species are native to North America and were used as traditional herbal remedies by the Great Plains Native tribes. Later, settlers followed the Natives’ example and began using Echinacea for medicinal purposes as well. However, use of Echinacea fell out of favour in North America with the discovery of antibiotics and due to the lack of scientific evidence supporting its use. People are now becoming interested in Echinacea again because some antibiotics don’t work as well as they used to against certain bacteria. Echinacea might change how the body breaks down some medications. Taking Echinacea along with some medications might increase the effects and side effects of some medications. According to medical research, Echinacea seems to activate chemicals in the body that decrease inflammation, which might reduce cold and flu symptoms. Echinacea is also known to contain chemicals that can attack yeast and other kinds of fungi directly. Before taking Echinacea, talk to your healthcare provider if you are taking any medications that are changed by the body.
There are concerns about the quality of some Echinacea products on the market. Echinacea products are frequently mislabelled, and some may not even contain Echinacea, despite label claims. Don’t be fooled by the term “standardized”, it doesn’t necessarily indicate accurate labeling. Also, some Echinacea products have been contaminated with selenium, arsenic, and lead. Buying health consumables from reputable sources is always a good idea, the cheaper/commercialized alternatives usually aren’t as beneficial as they may seem.
Give our Sweetfern Tonic a try, which is an amazing blend of Sweetfern, Red Clover, Raspberry leaves, Burdock root, Echinacea, Yellow dock, and Dandelion.
This native Canadian blend is used for detoxifying the blood, strengthening organs and immune systems, clearing skin, and easing rheumatism.