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BLAST AWAY SICKNESS THE NATURAL WAY: ECHINACEA

 

Looking for a way to prevent or blast away a case of the sniffles? Echinacea might just be the natural remedy you’ve been looking for!

Our approach to sickness is often to reach for a bottle of antibiotics, or to head to the drug store for something pumped with caffeine to help us get through the day–I am of course not discrediting the importance of antibiotics in treating infections. However, in times of sickness, we shouldn’t discredit the healing power of natural remedies like Echinacea, which are often much gentler on the body.

Echinacea is a member of the daisy family, and has a sweet and simple purple flower. Different parts of the plant, meaning the flowers, leaves, and roots of Echinacea, all perform different functions in natural remedies. People take Echinacea as a supplement, as a tincture, or as a tea, typically as a preventative measure to boost immunity, or as a treatment when they are sick with a cold or flu to speed up recovery.

What are the benefits of Echinacea?

Modern research seems to be divided on the use of Echinacea as a natural remedy, but many people swear by it to protect against colds or speed up recovery when ill.

Immune Support

A study done at the University of Connecticut showed that Echinacea reduced the likelihood of getting a common cold by over half, and reduced the duration of common colds by over a day on average.

Cancer

This study suggests that Echinacea may be helpful to those fighting cancer; however, there is still a significant amount of research needed on this.

This suggests that Echinacea can help encourage the immune system to recover more quickly from illness.

Uses for Echinacea

  • Useful for acute viral and bacterial infections such as:
    • Colds
    • Flus
    • Bronchitis
    • Septicemia
    • Tonsillitis
    • Laryngitis
    • Sinus Infections
  • Can be used topically for stings and bites

Echinacea Cautions

If you have an autoimmune disease, do not take Echinacea or consult with your doctor before doing so. Echinacea should also not be used by pregnant women and children without the consultation of a doctor first.

As with any treatment or remedy, we would advise you to consult with a doctor before taking any treatment!  Remember, herbal remedies may have risks, just like any drug. They can cause side effects and could affect how other medications work.

Other natural remedies that people use to fight cold and flu:

  • Eucalyptus
  • Garlic
  • Honey
  • Lemon
  • Menthol
  • Vitamin C
  • Zinc

Cold and flu season is approaching and we want you to stay healthy! Though there are a ton of remedies that boast health results, but don’t forget that the best remedy for a healthy lifestyle is to eat lots of whole, fresh foods and lead an active lifestyle. Happy winter, everyone!

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