|Most Common Name:||Echinacea|
Name:||Echinacea Angustifolia, Echinacea Purpurea,
As (other names):||Echinacea, Coneflower, Purple
Echinacea, Black Sampson, Purple Coneflower, Rudbeckia,|
This herb is extracted from the root and rhizome of the Echinacea angustifolia
plant. Although limited success has been reported in the cultivation of the
plant most of the commercially available herb is harvested in its native
environment of the United States prairies. Unless we find a way of cultivating
this plant commercially we may find that supply of this herb often referred to
as "The Herb of Herbs" may dwindle.
For centuries Echinacea was
revered as a sacred herb by the Sioux (a Native American tribe) who used the
herb to combat infections and diseases.
Today the herb is used to boost
the immune system and has been accepted as a means to combat influenza
worldwide, and is also used to combat cancer, syphilis, gangrene, pleurisy,
pneumonia, septicaemia and typhoid. It can also be used externally to dress
wounds such as cuts, burns and boils.
In herbal terms Echinacea is both
alterative and boosting, meaning that it not only boosts the immune system but
alters the normal process with witch the body fights the disease to increase the
rate of recovery.
used for, or in treatment of:
(i.e. what has been reported to be in this herb):
Isobutylamides: Part of the Alkamides group Isobutylamides are
insecticidal and has a saliva flow stimulant effect on humans. Isobutalmides are
toxic to many insects including flies and mosquitos
Alkamides: Formed by amines combining with unsaturated fatty
acids Alkamides cause the stinging, peppery, sensation on the tongue associated
with peppers and chillies. Because of the taste Alkamides are easily detected on
Alkamides are carminative, stimulate the immune system,
sialagogue, spasmolytic, analgesic, anti-inflammatory, digestive and a circulatory
Inulin: Inulin contains 35 fructose residues.
Inulin is used to control blood sugar in hypoglycaemia, immune system
tonic and is a diuretic.
Fructans: Fructans are polymers of fructose
used by plants as a means of storing reserves instead of starches. Fructans are
water soluble. Fructans frequently contain glucose molecules.
Fructans are made up of fructosyl-fructose links, branched fructans occur mostly
in grasses and lilies while linear fructans are found in Asteracea.
Recent studies show indication that fructans are digested in the large intestine
and are a diuretic and stabilises blood sugar. Some evidence also suggests that
fructans may have a stimulating effect on the immune system.
Resins: Brittle, often transparent substances secreted by plants
in response to damage to the plant. Insoluble in water but soluble in
alcohol and non volatile oils, Resins are used in incense because of the high
amount of smoke accompanied when burning them. Unless the resin is broken up
further into various constituents it is difficult to asses the value or
properties of a particular resin.
Triterpenes: Phytosterols. Essential components of the cell
membrane, Phytosterols have a beneficial influence in the inhibition of tumour
growth and help regulate cholesterol in the blood by stimulating thyroid
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