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FIGHT OFF VIRUSES WITH HERBS! (Evidence Based)

Well we almost made it through cold and flu season unharmed, but now with coronavirus popping up in the US, I figured we should double up on antiviral herbs in our household. We already take my organic homemade elderberry syrup on a regular basis, but there are so many incredible anti-viral herbs out there, I’m definitely going to try to incorporate more into our lifestyle and I highly recommend you do the same!


Here are seven powerful anti-viral herbs!


1) This wouldn’t be a list of natural anti-viral substances without Elder tree on the list! Both elderberries & flowers contain powerful anti-viral properties. Elderberry has been proven to contain compounds that directly inhibit the flu virus’s entry and replication in human cells and can help strengthen a person's immune response to the virus [1] Elderberry can be made into a tea, syrup, tincture and more! I personally make and sell organic, plant based elderberry syrup here.



2) Echinacea is such a beautiful plant, and has powerful anti-viral properties. Echinacea has been used for centuries to treat symptoms of colds, influenza, and other illnesses. Studies on Echinacea extracts have shown that some of them possess multiple beneficial actions in the treatment of viral respiratory infections. A combination of these beneficial activities could reduce the amount of prevailing viable virus, and their transmission, and also lead to amelioration of the virus-induced symptoms. [2]



3) A commonly used plant with anti-viral properties is green tea! Green tea contains catechins, which have been shown to demonstrate a variety of antimicrobial properties. Consumption of green tea has been shown to distribute these compounds and/or their metabolites throughout the body, which allows for not only the possibility of treatment of infections but also the prevention of infections. [3] In this review, Green Tea was found to have antiviral properties against Hepatitis B, Hepatitis C, HIV, Bovine Coronavirus, Influenza Virus and more! [4]



4) This next anti-viral herb is one I’m blessed to have an abundance of growing in my backyard (may need to harvest and share some of that abundance with you all soon!) Olive leaf has powerful and well documented medicinal properties that can be contributed to its oleuropein content. European researchers determined this compound to have strong bactericidal, antiviral and antifungal capabilities. According to Dr. Ron Hoffman, “From research and clinical experience to date, we can say that supplemental olive leaf may be beneficial in the treatment for conditions caused by, or associated with, a virus, retrovirus, bacterium or protozoan. Among those treatable conditions are: influenza, the common cold, candida infections, meningitis, Epstein-Barr virus (EBV), encephalitis, herpes I and II, human herpes virus 6 and 7, shingles (Herpes zoster), HIV/ARC/AIDS, chronic fatigue, hepatitis B, pneumonia, tuberculosis, gonorrhea, malaria, dengue, severe diarrhea, and dental, ear, urinary tract and surgical infections” [5]



5) I recently ordered this herb to try for its mental wellness benefits but little did I know at the time it also has anti-viral properties! St. John’s Wort is well known as a remedy for depression and is used as the basis for the pharmaceutical Prozac. It also has broad-spectrum antiviral properties against HIV and influenza, and antimicrobial properties against Staph, Strep and E. coli. How does St. John’s Wort help to inhibit viruses? Well, studies indicate that hypericin, one of the active components of St. John’s wort, inhibits the capability of the offspring of certain viruses to replicate. Additionally, it was found that hypericin also appeared to directly inactivate the replication process of certain viruses that previously had the capability. [6]



6) Licorice root has been used in Chinese medicine for centuries. It two triterpenes, GL and GA have been reported to have antiviral effects. They can weaken virus activities by inhibiting virus gene expression and replication, reducing adhesion force and stress, and reducing HMGB1 binding to DNA. [7] In fact, glycyrrhizin (GL) has been administered by intravenous injection for over 20 years to treat hepatitis C in Japan, and studies have found few side effects and marked reduction in progression toward cirrhosis and hepatocarcinoma [8]



7) Last on this list, this plant’s bright orange flowers set it apart, Calendula has been used for its medicinal properties for centuries. Plant pharmacological studies have suggested that Calendula extracts have antiviral, anti-genotoxic properties [9] Specifically it has been shown to have the ability to inhibit HIV1 & Epstein Barr Virus activation. [10]



All of these herbs can be made into simple teas drank regularly to help the body fight viral infections! Hope this list helps you to stay calm and keep your family healthy in the midst of all the panic surrounding coronavirus.


SOURCES:


1. https://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2019/04/190423133644.htm

2. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4058675/

3. https://www.hindawi.com/journals/bmri/2018/9105261/

4.https://www.researchgate.net/profile/Raul_Vinet/publication/298802541_Antiviral_effects_of_green_tea_Camellia_sinensis_against_pathogenic_viruses_in_human_and_animals_a_mini-review/links/5a8c1b0e458515b8af97220a/Antiviral-effects-of-green-tea-Camellia-sinensis-against-pathogenic-viruses-in-human-and-animals-a-mini-review.pdf?origin=publication_detail

5. https://drhoffman.com/article/olive-leaf-extract-2/?print=pdf

6. https://aphios.com/shop/xantol-ds/pharmacology-of-st-johns-wort/antiviral-and-antibacterial-properties-of-st-johns-wort/

7. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4629407/#s0045title

8. https://www.botanicalmedicine.org/licorice-root-antiviral-antimicrobial-antifungal/

9. https://medcraveonline.com/PPIJ/therapeutic-potential-of-calendula-officinalis.html

10. https://www.sigmaaldrich.com/life-science/nutrition-research/learning-center/plant-profiler/calendula-officinalis.html

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