Who am I?
Echinacea belongs to species of herbaceous flowering plants in the daisy family, which originated in Central and North America. This is a perennial plant with purple or pink flowers that contain seeds in their center. Its leaves are hairy with a rough texture.
This plant is considered very adaptable. Today it grows almost all over the world. Since it is easy to care for echinacea and to cultivate it, it is very common to come across.
Medical history of Echinacea
Echinacea was used for medicinal purpose hundreds of years ago by the natives of North America, who called this
plant the “snake root” because of its snake-like shape. They used this plant’s extract as topical treatment of snake
and insect bites. Later, in the 19th century, the plant was imported to Europe and used to treat many medical problems, from acne to infections, pain relief and intestinal problems.
In the 20th century, the plant was studied more seriously and in-depth, and in 1988, the German researcher Wagner, one of the most prominent researchers of echinacea throughout history, succeeded in proving that this plant can activate and strengthen the immune system of mice.
Today, naturopathy attributes to Echinacea a variety of properties that help treat and prevent different diseases.
Medicinal properties of Echinacea
In order to understand more about this plant’s medicinal properties, we need to dive into the chemistry and components of Echinacea.
For example, many professional scientific publications state the fact that substances in this plant activate and affect the immune system. After Wagner’s experiment in 1988, other experiments were conducted on Echinacea and discovered dozens of its active ingredients, while each of these active ingredients helps treat a specific problem.
For example, there are reports that taking Echinacea extract helped treat and recover from colds and respiratory infections. The substances in the plant activate the immune system by increasing the absorption ability of the immune system’s cells called phagocytes.
These special properties of Echinacea, as well as the ease of its cultivation make it a highly popular herb among dietary supplement consumers.