26 Echinacea Health Benefits
Echinacea is a flowering plant that can be used for a number of home remedies and treats a number of different ailments. It’s particularly useful as every part of the plant can be used for medicinal purposes. Learn all about Echinacea health benefits and how to use the plant by reading this article!
Echinacea Health Benefits
Fights the Flu
The flu is a virus which can vary in degrees of seriousness. It can be a minor inconvenience for some, whilst it can also be potentially life-threatening for those with a weaker immune system. Therefore, preventing and being able to fight the flu is crucial.
Echinacea tea can help to decrease the chances of contracting the flu and can make sure you suffer for a shorter period of time if you do pick up the virus. It is thought that it could also help to increase the effectiveness of the flu vaccine.
Control Blood Sugar
Echinacea has astounding antioxidant properties which help to prevent your blood sugar spiking, this is highly important if you suffer from diabetes. It also prevents your blood sugar levels dropping the other way too, meaning your blood sugar is healthily maintained.
Healthy Cell Growth
Thanks to its antioxidant properties, echinacea can also help to repair any damaged cells. It also helps to protect your cells from damage by free radicals and other toxins. You can drink echinacea tea or take an Echinacea supplement in order to benefit from these effects.
Reduced Risk of Cancer
Because echinacea works as an antioxidant it can also help to reduce your risk of cancer. This is because it protects your cells from the damage caused by free radicals. This, in turn, reduces the risk of them replicating uncontrollably as your DNA remains undamaged.
Not only that but if you’re undergoing cancer treatment, echinacea could help reduce many of the side effects by boosting your immune system. Furthermore, studies have shown that echinacea can block the spread of cancer by slowing down the growth of malevolent tumors.
One famous Echinacea health benefit is its use as an anti-anxiety medication. It is often used by people with anxiety to help calm their symptoms. This is because it helps to regulate the communication between the brain and the body, limiting the physical effects of anxiety.
Lowers Blood Pressure
Some studies have also suggested that Echinacea can help to lower high blood pressure. This is likely to be because of its anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties.
Because of its clinically proven anti-inflammatory properties, Echinacea is often suggested as a home remedy for a number of conditions including arthritis, Crohn’s Disease, and ulcers.
Boosts the Immune System
One of the great, all-around health benefits of Echinacea is that it promotes better overall immune function. It does this by reducing inflammation and blocking infectious diseases. It also helps to increase your body’s production of white blood cells which means your immune system is more primed to fight any potential infections.
Taking an echinacea supplement or drinking tea containing the herb can help to fight viral infections by inhibiting inflammatory molecules.
Echinacea has a rich history of being used as a natural painkiller. It is particularly effective against the following:
The best way to reap the benefits of echinacea is to drink an herbal tea made from the herb. You could also try making a paste with the herb and applying it directly to the painful area.
Functions as a Laxative
If you’re struggling with constipation, echinacea could help! Like many herbs, it’s a natural laxative which helps to loosen the bowels and help you pass stools more easily.
Treat Bug Bites and Stings
Echinacea has many health benefits for the skin. Grind the herb with some water to make a paste and apply this to the bite or sting. This should relieve some of the pain and reduce the swelling and redness.
An echinacea paste can also be used to soothe an eczema rash. This is again thanks to its anti-inflammatory properties.
A further health benefit of the anti-inflammatory qualities of echinacea is that it can improve an existing psoriasis condition. By soothing the irritated skin, echinacea helps to relieve some of the pain and itchiness that psoriasis can cause.
Soothe Cuts and Grazes
When used as a paste or cream, echinacea makes a great disinfectant for small cuts and grazes. This is thanks to the polysaccharides in echinacea. These polysaccharides can also speed up the healing process as they help to encourage cell regeneration.
Because it’s both immune-boosting and anti-inflammatory echinacea is often recommended to help asthma sufferers manage their symptoms. By reducing inflammation in the respiratory system, echinacea helps to relieve some of the swellings of the condition, making it much easier to breathe. and reducing the risk of an asthma attack.
By reducing inflammation inside the airways and sinuses, echinacea also helps to relieve some of the swelling and discomfort caused by sinusitis.
Fight Genital Herpes
Drinking echinacea tea or using a cream containing the herb is often recommended to fight genital herpes symptoms. This is thanks to the immunity boosting properties of the herb.
Urinary Tract Infection
Drinking echinacea tea can help flush out bacteria in the urinary tract and improve the ability of your body to fight infections. As a result, a cup of echinacea tea each day could help to lower your risk of a urinary tract infection.
Vaginal Yeast Infections
Using an echinacea cream or drinking a daily cup of echinacea tea has could lower the risk of recurring vaginal yeast infections by as much as sixteen percent.
Reduce Symptoms of the Common Cold
Not only can echinacea help you fight infections, but it could also help to reduce the symptoms of the common cold. Its anti-inflammatory properties could help relieve swollen sinuses and headaches that can often come with the common cold. It can also help to relieve the soreness of a sore throat. Not only that, but it’ll also give your immune system a boost so your cold shouldn’t last for too long.
It’s an Antioxidant
Echinacea is a potent antioxidant which significantly reduces the impact of free radicals on the cells in your body. In doing so, the herb helps prevent damage to your cells, improving their health and preventing a range of different conditions including cancer and Alzheimer’s.
Help with Depression
Echinacea isn’t just a benefit to your physical health, it can also help to improve your mental health. In fact, it is often recommended as an herbal remedy for depression. This is because it stimulates the transformation of L-DOPA into dopamine – a neurotransmitter that helps to lift your mood.
Facilitates Oxygen Transport
Some studies have suggested that a health benefit of echinacea may be its ability to improve oxygen levels in the blood. This is because echinacea helps to increase the production of erythropoietin in the bone marrow. This then promotes the production of red blood cells – the cells responsible for transporting oxygen around the body.
Supports Oral Health
Echinacea has been found to help reduce the smell of bad breath as it helps to neutralize many of the bacteria responsible for bad breath. Drinking a cup of echinacea tea each day should be enough to keep smelly breath at bay.
Supports Normal Aging
Some studies have shown that echinacea could help slow down the physical signs of aging. It may help by reducing the appearance of wrinkles and keeping your cells healthier for longer.
Some organic acne creams contain echinacea extracts, suggesting that it might be potent in the fight against acne. You could try grinding it with some water to make a paste and applying this to your acne. The anti-inflammatory properties of the herb should help reduce the inflammation of acne and reduce the size and pain of your zits. It may also help to fight off the bacteria that would otherwise cause further breakouts.
Do these health benefits encourage you to use echinacea more often? Comment below!
Psorasis picture Credit: www.paul-hat-schuppenflechte.de