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Echinacea Benefits You May Not Be Aware Of

Updated on February 21, 2013

The Health Benefits of Echinacea

What is Echinacea and does it really have health benefits? Echinacea, an herb native and grown in North America, was apparently used since pre-colonial times by the American Indians as a “cure-all” medicine, believed to cure any ailment from the common cold and flu to more life-threatening and serious diseases such as cancer.

Since it has hit the market and shelves of health food stores and drug stores, tests and studies show that although the medicinal plant Echinacea by itself does not actually eliminate the disease, it does increase the body’s immune system, which cannot be specified or explained. Making the body stronger, people have responded to the herb by getting sick less, having a faster recovery, and symptoms of diseases become milder. It comes in various forms of powder, capsules, tinctures, creams, ointment, and tablets. Here’s a list of some of its many wonders:

Blood Purification Benefits

Claimed to be a blood purifier and an effective antibiotic, the therapeutic herb fights off any disease faster, thereby claiming that Echinacea as an effective treatment on respiratory ailments such as the common cold, hay fever also known as allergic rhinitis, sinusitis, flu, nasal congestion or upper respiratory infections such as bronchitis and sore throat. The root or herb must be boiled into tea and consumed once after a meal daily for two weeks.

Wound Treatment

It has been discovered to be effective in treating boils, psoriasis, eczema and other skin infections and slow-treating wounds. One has the option of drinking the herbal tea or applying the topical cream or ointment

Ear Infection Treatment

Echinacea is also effective in treating ear infections. It also heals urinary tract infections and vaginal yeast fungal infections or candida infections, “athlete’s foot” plus nail and hair infections. The prickly root, greatly resembling a hedgehog, is also added to medications for haemorrhoid treatment.

Acne Treatment

For cosmetic purposes, once applied, this wild root, in form of a topical cream, can be used to treat acne. It also acts as sunblock and protects our skin from the harsh effects of the sun. It can be utilized for the treatment of sunburn and soothe its discomfort.


It is used as an antibiotic to treat the skin and prevent infections for ‘breaks’ on the skin – scratches, cuts, incisions, splinters and punctures.

Since it increases the body’s immune system, no wonder it is also being used in alternative medicine to support the immune system of those with cancer, yet must be taken cautiously with the advice of one’s oncologist, as it can react negatively with other cancer drugs and immunosuppressant drugs.

Immune System

There are also therapeutic claims that it has the ability to be used as treatment to improve or enhance the immune system of those with chronic fatigue syndrome and AIDS/HIV.

Research has supported the many wonders of this miracle plant. Dr. Sandra Miller, of McGill University in Montreal, Canada in has discovered in her 5 years of research tested on mice, not humans, that the span of the life of mice inflicted with leukaemia was extended.


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    • Kris Heeter profile image

      Kris Heeter 5 years ago from Indiana

      Thanks for sharing these additional benefits with us. I was aware of some but not all - especially the wound healing. Nicely done!

    • Mary Merriment profile image

      Mary Merriment 5 years ago from Boise area, Idaho

      You have a regular herbal encyclopedia developing on your page. Very awesome. I use echinacea often for immune system boosts and infections. But I must admit that recently, I learned how great it is in aiding with healing wounds. I tried it on my cat when she came home with a nasty dog bite. It was awful. But by making and using a completely herbal salve that included enchinacea, she healed up quite nicely and fairly quickly too.

    • Niteriter profile image

      Niteriter 5 years ago from Canada

      I was well into middle age before I learned about the benefits of echinacea. During that period of my life, I took advice from one of my drinking buddies and started taking it as a cure for hangovers. After about ten years of faithful echinacea ingestion, my hangovers stopped. Completely vanished! Cool, huh?

      I should add that about ten years after I started taking echinacea, I stopped drinking. Nonetheless, I continue my daily intake to this day, partly for the health benefits and partly as a safeguard in the event I start drinking again... Cheers!

    • Mhatter99 profile image

      Martin Kloess 5 years ago from San Francisco

      Thank you for sharing. You're right, I didn't know this.

    • Imogen French profile image

      Imogen French 5 years ago from Southwest England

      Very interesting to read about all the different uses for this plant, it certainly warrants further investigation. I always use echinacea drops at the first hint of a sniffle, and have found that I often feel better for it. I know it's hard to prove, maybe it's just my own body's immune system fighting off the bugs but I personally believe it helps. I have also used it for mouth infections and sore throats.

    • Pavlo Badovskyy profile image

      Pavlo Badovskyi 5 years ago from Kyiv, Ukraine

      We have this plant in our yard too. Good hub about amazing plant!

    • carol7777 profile image

      carol stanley 5 years ago from Arizona

      Sounds pretty wonderful. There are many natural sources for taking care of problems that prescriptions are used. This is a great hub and I like all that I have read. Voting up and sharing.

    • billybuc profile image

      Bill Holland 5 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Very interesting Elle! I had no idea it was a blood purifier! Very useful hub; well done!