Health benefits of Echinacea purpurea (conflower)
ECHINACEA PURPUREA FOR ACNE
Echinacea purpurea, a flower is commonly known as coneflower, has been widely known for many of its properties and health benefits, from the most commonly known as the treatment of common colds, to others not so popular as the use of Echinacea for the treatment of acne, to treat dizziness, snake bites and as an anti-infective agent until the advent of modern antibiotics.
The most common use of Echinacea has been as a prophylactic treatment for upper respiratory infection . Echinacea extracts possessed significant antiviral activity .
Many have been the treatments and remedies claimed to be effective against skin related problems as acne, a skin condition caused by inflammation that is mostly experienced during adolescence but that may also happen at later stages in life.
We have published some of these traditional herbal remedies in recent articles, however, it hasn't been until recently that we read about other possible traditional herbal remedies to fight acne, namely the use of Echinacea purpurea (Purple coneflower).
Common name: Eastern purple coneflower, Purple coneflower, red sunflower and rudbeckia.
BOTANICAL GENUS ECHINACEA
The botanical genus Echinacea is native to North America, where indigenous peoples used various echinacea preparations for many different illnesses .
Some of these uses benefited from active constituents and chemicals found in Echinacea that were absolutely unknown to the indigenous. Science has helped us to understand better which ones were those active constituents and the properties they exerted. Let's have a look at some of them.
ANTIVIRAL, ANTI-MICROBIAL AND ANTI-INFLAMMATORY PROPERTIES OF ECHINACEA PURPUREA
In order to understand some of the Echinacea purpurea properties we should mention that extracts of Echinacea purpurea (Purple coneflower) were recently discovered to exert powerful antiviral and anti-microbial activity , together with the anti-inflammatory properties demonstrated by Echinacea purpurea, this is probably one of the reasons why some herbal remedies mention it as part of their anti-acne remedies.
Among the most common types of Echinacea purpurea we can mention the Echinacea purpurea Magnus and Bravado, but others as the Echinacea purpurea white swan are also very beautiful and very characteristic. This last one resembles the very well known Matricaria recutita also known as German chamomile, for its white petals and shape.
An Echinacea preparation was tested for anti-inflammatory activity in cell culture models Echinacea extracts can inhibit the proliferation of these parasites and at least, one can reverse the pro-inflammatory activity of Leishmania donovani .
ECHINACEA PURPUREA EXTRACT FOR AVIAN FLU VIRUS H1N1
But vaccines and anti-virals are only some of the commercially available options to fight viral infections, other natural remedies as Echinacea purpurea (Eastern purple coneflower, Purple coneflower) exerting antiviral properties, have showed effectiveness in H1N1-type pandemic strains of swine origin (S-OIV), as the one appearing in April 2009.
Detailed studies on Echinacea purpurea extracts showed how the extract interferes with the viral entry into cells , in contrast with known anti-virals that produced resistant viruses upon infection and passaging.
ECHINACEA PURPUREA EXTRACT FOR COSMETIC USE
In another study, Echinacea purpurea extracts incorporated into cream and gel for the treatment of skin irritation, hydration level and wrinkle reduction, showed to be effective, decreasing the wrinkles, increasing hydration levels and all that without irritating the skin .
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