Echinacea is a plant native to North America, and its extract is commonly used as a natural remedy for boosting the immune system and preventing colds and flu. Echinacea extract is made from the root, flower, and leaves of the plant and is rich in antioxidants and phytochemicals, including polysaccharides, alkamides, and caffeic acid derivatives. The extract has been shown to stimulate the immune system by increasing the production of white blood cells and improving the body's ability to fight off infections. Additionally, research suggests that Echinacea extract can reduce inflammation and symptoms of upper respiratory tract infections, such as sore throat and runny nose. It is important to note that not all studies have shown the effectiveness of Echinacea, and more research is needed to fully understand its potential benefits. Echinacea extract is available in various forms, including capsules, tinctures, and teas, and it is generally considered safe for short-term use. However, it is always best to consult with a healthcare provider before using any new supplement.
"Echinacea purpurea for preventing and treating the common cold." A systematic review and meta-analysis published in the journal "The Cochrane Library" in 2014, which found that Echinacea may have a modest effect in reducing the incidence of the common cold.
"The effectiveness of echinacea in preventing respiratory tract infections: a meta-analysis of randomized controlled trials." A study published in the "Journal of Family Practice" in 2009, which concluded that Echinacea has a small but statistically significant effect in reducing the incidence of respiratory tract infections.
"Echinacea purpurea for treating upper respiratory tract infections." A systematic review and meta-analysis published in the "Journal of Alternative and Complementary Medicine" in 2011, which concluded that Echinacea extract may be effective in reducing symptoms of upper respiratory tract infections.
"Echinacea for preventing and treating the common cold: a systematic review." A study published in the "Annals of Internal Medicine" in 2007, which found that Echinacea extract may have a small beneficial effect in reducing the duration and severity of cold symptoms.
These studies suggest that Echinacea extract may have some potential benefits for preventing and treating upper respiratory tract infections, but more research is needed to fully understand its effects.