phytochemicals Phytochemicals

More plants with phytochemicals



Echinacea purpurea

What is echinacea?

Echinacea is a perennial, native to North America. The 5 to 6 inch daisy-like flowers have florets around a prominent centre. The branches are 2 to 5 ft tall with long and the eaves are dark green leaves. The colours of the flowers range from white to purple. They flower the whole summer.

Parts used

Mainly the root is used as extract, but the leaves, flowers and seeds are also used. The roots are harvested in the autumn and dried for later use.


These are typical phytochemicals found in echinacea: betain, sesquiterpenes, caryophylene, polyacetylene, rosmarinic acid, glycosides, echinacoside, chicoric acid.

Benefits of echinacea

Echinacea stimulates the immune system against bacterial and viral infections. Echinacea protects against many pathogenic infections by stimulating phagocytosis and T-cell formation. Echinacea prevents the production of an enzyme, which destroys the barrier between healthy tissue and pathogenic microorganisms. The Sioux Indians used fresh scraped root for rabies (hydrophobia), snakebites, and septicemia. Echinacea's antibacterial properties can stimulate wound healing and are of benefit to skin conditions such as burns, insect bites, ulcers, psoriasis, acne and eczema. Its anti-inflammatory properties may relieve arthritis and lymphatic swelling. Many studies have showed that Echinacea can improve the migration of white blood cells to attack foreign microorganisms and toxins in the blood. Echinacea should be taken frequently, every few hours when the inflammation is still acute and 2 times daily afterwards. Echinacea is also used as homeopathy treatments of chronic fatigue syndrome, indigestion and weight loss.

Other names

Black Sampson, Black Sampson Coneflower, Blacksamson, Coneflower, Black Sampson, Kansas Snakeroot, Kansas Snakeroot, Narrowleaf Coneflower, Narrowleaved Coneflower, Purple Coneflower, Roter Sonnenhut, Rudbeckia, Snakeroot, Kansas, Zonnehoed

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