Echinacea

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Echinacea (purple coneflower)

Habitat

Echinacea can be found growing anywhere through North America, in prairies, plains and open woodlands.


Parts Used

Mostly the roots are used, but the leaves, stems and flowers are often used either fresh or dried, in teas and juice extracts.


Constituents

Echinacea contains essential oils, polysaccharides (inulin), polyacetylenes, betain, glycoside, sesquiterpenes and caryophylene. Also found in this herb; copper, iron, tannins, protein, fatty acids and vitamins A, C and E.


Actions

Echinacea is an anti-microbial, immunomodulator, anti-catarrhal, alterative, blood purifier and antibiotic.


Indications

Echinacea is most frequently used for boosting the immune system during the cold and flu season, as it's been known to decrease the frequency, duration and severity of colds and flu, also helpful with ear and sinus infections. It is a very popular remedy for helping the body rid itself of many microbial infections and bacterial or viral attacks.

The herb Echinacea is especially useful for infections of the upper respiratory tract, such as laryngitis and tonsillitis. Glycosides from the roots have mild activity against throat infections.

Echinacoside found in this herb is most active, with 6 parts equal to 1 unit of penicillin. It can reduce the rate of growth and reproduction of trichomonas vaginalis, also is effective in halting the recurrence of candida albicans infections. When combined with Yarrow or Bearberry, it will effectively stop the progression of cystitis.


Preparation & Dosage

Decoction: 1-2 teaspoons of root in 1 cup of water, bring to a boil, and simmer 10-15 minutes, drink 3x's per day. 1-4mls of herbal tincture chould be given three times daily.