How To Prepare Echinacea For Medicinal Use

  • Put echinacea plant roots, blossoms, and leaves in a teacup.
  • After bringing water to a boil, let it sit for a moment to slightly lower the temperature.
  • 8 ounces of water should be poured on the plant portions.
  • Allow the tea to brew for however long you like.
  • Remove the blossoms, roots, and leaves by straining.

What portion of echinacea is used medicinally?

Echinacea, also known as E. angustifolia, E. purpurea, and E. pallida, is a plant related to ragweed and sunflowers. The root, flower, and leaf are all utilized medicinally.

Native to the United States, echinacea species are found east of the Rocky Mountains. It appears that echinacea stimulates bodily processes that reduce inflammation. It might also strengthen the immunological system of the body.

The most typical applications of echinacea are for the treatment of infections and the common cold, although most of these applications lack solid scientific backing. Echinacea use for COVID-19 is likewise not well supported by the available research.

Can you consume raw echinacea leaves?

Echinacea purpurea, also known as coneflowers, is a herb and an ornamental plant. It can be found growing in USDA plant hardiness zones 3 through 8. The vibrant purple blossoms bring brightness to gardens in the summer and fall. If they are let to mature, they will form lovely cone-shaped seed heads that draw birds and provide winter interest. Another essential component in several herbal tea blends comes from coneflowers. Even though the entire plant can be consumed, herbal tea is most frequently made with the leaves and flower buds.

How are the leaves of the fresh echinacea used?

Medications and Preparations It can be purchased in teas, tinctures, and capsules. 12 Additionally, you may get echinacea tea in bags or loose leaf form online and in many health food stores. How to make echinacea tea from loose leaf: Put the echinacea plant’s blossoms, leaves, and roots in a teacup.

How is echinacea herb harvested?

The Echinacea plant’s roots and aerial parts are both useful. The roots of the plant contain the most potent medication, although the aerial parts are most frequently utilized to make herbal drinks.

In the second year of growth, the aerial sections can be harvested. Simply cutting the stem above the lowest pair of leaves will allow you to harvest the aerial components. From the stem, remove the leaves and blossom buds, and lay them flat to dry. Anytime during the growth season is appropriate for this. You should do it when you are reducing the amount of echinacea.

A 2-3 year old plant’s roots should be harvested in the spring or the fall. While E. Purpurea has a taproot, E. Augustifolia has fibrous roots. Using a shovel or a garden fork, dig around the Echinacea plant and remove the roots out of the soil. I essentially dig up the entire plant’s root ball with a big shovel. You can now harvest the roots by taking fragments of the root from the root ball or by removing the entire plant. You can thin out your Echinacea patch by taking out the entire plant. You can replant the leftover roots in the ground if you only want to harvest a portion of the root ball.

How can echinacea be used?

One of the most widely used herbs in America right now is echinacea. Native Americans gave the medicinal herb echinacea its name because of the prickly scales that mimic the enraged hedgehog’s spines on its enormous conical seed head (echinos is Greek for hedgehog).

Native Americans may have used echinacea for more than 400 years to treat wounds and illnesses as well as a general “cure-all,” according to archaeologists who have discovered evidence of this. Echinacea has been used historically to treat blood poisoning, diphtheria, syphilis, malaria, and scarlet fever. Although this herb was widely used in the 18th and 19th centuries, its use started to diminish in the US once antibiotics were developed. In Germany, echinacea preparations gained popularity during the course of the 20th century. In actuality, Germany has been the site of the majority of echinacea scientific research.

Today, individuals take echinacea to lessen the severity of the common cold and flu and to lessen symptoms including fever, coughing, and sore throats (pharyngitis). Echinacea is another plant that many herbalists advise taking to help the body fight infections and strengthen the immune system.

General Uses

Echinacea may include active ingredients that improve immunological function, ease pain, lessen inflammation, and have hormonal, antiviral, and antioxidant effects, according to a number of laboratory and animal studies. Because of this, qualified herbalists may suggest echinacea as a treatment for slow-healing wounds, ear infections, athlete’s foot, sinusitis, vaginal yeast (Candida) infections, ear infections, otitis media, hay fever, and slow-healing wounds. Echinacea and cichoric acid may help suppress colon cancers, according to preliminary laboratory studies. According to one study, using echinacea extract before contracting the herpes simplex virus (HSVI) may have an antiviral effect on the recurrence of cold sores.

Common Cold

It is debatable if echinacea aids in the prevention or treatment of the common cold. According to certain research, the herb can hasten your recovery. Others claim that echinacea has no effect at all on a cold. According to several clinical studies, persons who take echinacea as soon as they start to feel unwell have milder colds and experience less symptoms than those who do not. In a study of 95 patients who had fever, runny nose, scratchy throat, and other early signs of the flu and cold, it was discovered that those who drank many cups of echinacea tea daily for five days felt well more quickly than those who drank tea without the herb.

Echinacea decreased cold risk by 58 percent and cold duration by 1 to 4 days, according to a study of 14 clinical trials. Some experts, however, contest these results, arguing the research had a number of flaws. Clinical trials have used a variety of echinacea formulations. It’s crucial to get a high-quality echinacea supplement and to start taking it as soon as a cold starts, numerous times each day for the first few days. For advice, consult your health care practitioner.

Brief overview

However, no studies utilizing Echinacea in the prevention or treatment of illnesses similar to COVID-19 have been found. Current research suggests that echinacea supplementation may reduce the duration and severity of acute respiratory tract infections. There were not many side events reported, indicating the relative safety of this herbal medication. Clinical studies have shown that Echinacea lowers levels of immunological molecules associated with cytokine storm, despite the fact that it might boost immune activity, which raises concerns that it can worsen over-activation of the immune system in cytokine storm.


When given at the earliest sign of infection, Echinacea supplements may help with the symptoms of acute respiratory infections (ARI) and the common cold. No trials employing Echinacea in the prevention or treatment of illnesses like COVID-19, however, have been found. When taken at the outset of symptoms, Echinacea may lessen the intensity and/or duration of ARI, according to earlier research. E. purpurea or a mixture of E. purpurea and E. angustifolia having standardized levels of active components were employed in trials claiming benefit.

Echinacea use hasn’t been associated with many side effects, which suggests that this herbal remedy is generally harmless. No human studies using echinacea for up to 4 months could be found that showed cytokine storm symptoms.

The results were largely consistent with a reduction in the pro-inflammatory cytokines that are involved in the progression of cytokine storm and Acute Respiratory Distress Syndrome (ARDS), factors that are highly significant in the death of COVID-19 patients when looking at all human trials that reported changes in cytokine levels in response to Echinacea supplementation. Even though there isn’t any research on the therapeutic benefits of echinacea in the treatment of cytokine storms right now, this evidence shows that more study is necessary.

What portion of the plant is utilized to produce echinacea tea?

Delicious herbal beverage derived from the echinacea plant is called echinacea tea, commonly referred to as purple coneflower tea. Echinacea purpurea, Echinacea angustifolia, and Echinacea pallida are just a few of the echinacea plants that can be used to make tea. The perennial bloom may be grown in temperate settings as long as the plants get at least some sunlight. It is native to eastern and central North America. The plants are now frequently planted in gardens throughout Asia and Europe.

The echinacea plant’s roots, leaves, blooms, and stems are just a few of the parts that can be used to make echinacea tea. The most popular ingredients in teas are the purple blossoms and roots.

Flavor Profile

Echinacea has a strong flowery smell and a harsh flavor akin to pine. It is frequently compared to meadowsweet and has a gentle body and a cool finish. To enhance the flavor, combine it with a touch of honey or add lemongrass or mint.

Is it safe to regularly consume echinacea tea?

When taken in moderation, echinacea tea has little adverse effects. Echinacea’s use as medicine has not received FDA approval. Before using a herbal tea as medicine, always speak with a medical expert. Before trying echinacea tea, bear the following in mind.


Avoid drinking echinacea tea if you have allergies to the echinacea plant or other members of the same family. Children under the age of 12 should pay particular attention to this. Many organizations in Europe, including some in Germany, advise against giving echinacea to young children. The issue is that children are more likely than adults to experience severe allergic reactions to echinacea.

Pregnant Women

The effects of echinacea on pregnancy are currently the subject of very little investigation. Echinacea tea and other herbal treatments shouldn’t be consumed by pregnant or nursing women without first seeing a doctor.

Digestive Issues

Echinacea has an overpowering scent that some people find nauseating. Echinacea tea’s chemical constituents may also irritate the stomach lining and result in cramps, pain, or irritation. To prevent adverse effects, keep echinacea tea consumption to one to three cups per day.

How are echinacea flowers dried for tea?

Our house always has echinacea tea on hand. I now prepare it for my family whenever someone is feeling under the weather after my mother used to make it for me. Since I was cultivating the echinacea myself, I never would have considered making it from scratch. Instead, I bought some purple coneflowers to serve as the main pollinators in my garden instead. They are absolutely intoxicating to bees and butterflies, attractive, tasty, and in abundance!

The only suggestion I’ve heard that can be a little difficult is to wait until the plants are at least two years old. Making echinacea tea at home is quite simple, though. I didn’t do that since I can’t wait more than two minutes for anything, much less two years. Therefore, this is the fundamental idea behind preparing your tea, collecting the flowers, and drying them.

echinacea tea brewed at home:

  • Harvesting your plant comes first. Echinacea is easy to harvest for tea. For maximum antioxidant potential, you can use the WHOLE echinacea plant because the roots store a lot of nutrients. If not, you can still benefit from the get-well effects by just harvesting the bloom and leaves.
  • Cut just below the first row of top leaves if you are only going to remove the blossom.
  • Cut right above the first set of leaves at the bottom if you are also harvesting leaves (so, leave one set of leaves near the soil).
  • You can either hang the entire plant to dry, OR you can remove the petals and leaves and lay them flat to dry in a cool, dark area.
  • Gather the petals and leaves when they have dried, then gently chop or smash them into little pieces.
  • When ready, combine in a tea infuser and add boiling water.

A word on brewing tea:

There must be a proper technique to prepare tea. A very gentle way is preferable whether the tea is white or green, like echinacea is (the leaves are green). Only just bring the water to a boil before allowing it to steep for three minutes.

The tea will grow more bitter the longer it is infused with boiling water and the hotter the water is. If brewed properly, tea should taste mild and light in the mouth and require little to no sweetness.

How is echinacea infused?

Since echinacea flowers and leaves come in a variety of sizes, it is impossible to suggest a specific number, but four or five petals and a few leaves should be a fine place to start.

By laying the flowers and leaves out over a fresh dishcloth or some paper towels for many days, you can dry them. Another option is to use a dehydrator set to about 95F. (35C). Place the petals and leaves in a little glass canning jar or other similar container once they have dried completely.

Although I often only use the flower petals and leaves, if a flowerhead is really little and I’m certain it has completely dried, I’ll also add the entire thing to the jar.

With your fingers, break up the leaves and petals, then pour the oil over the herbs, covering the plant material fully if necessary.

After leaving the oil to infuse for 4 to 6 weeks, drain it. Cover the jar with a lid.

Put the jar into a small saucepan with a few inches of water for a speedier infusion. For a few hours, heat over a low flame while watching carefully to make sure the water doesn’t evaporate. When cool enough to handle, remove from the heat and strain.

What results from daily echinacea use?

The United States and Canada are home to the blooming plant echinacea. Additionally known as coneflower. It belongs to the family of plants known as daisies. For many years, echinacea has been used as a herbal treatment. The viruses that cause colds, sore throats, and the flu are now frequently prevented or treated with it.

Most drug stores and health food stores carry echinacea products. It is available as teas, pills, liquid extracts, capsules, or dried plants. It is one of the most widely used herbs in the country.

Path to improved health

Echinacea is frequently used as a dietary supplement to treat infections like the common cold. They contend that it strengthens the immune system. This improves the body’s ability to combat the infection. As a result, the illness might not persist as long. When feeling well, some people use it to avoid getting sick.

Consult your primary care physician before using echinacea to treat a cold or the flu. Make sure to conduct your study as well. Before being sold, dietary supplements do not require FDA approval. The components in some supplements may not be what is listed on the label. Look for a business that quality tests their goods. You will then be certain that you are acting appropriately.

Pay close attention to the package label. Echinacea is available in a wide range of doses and strengths. Additionally, it may be combined with other nutrients. Observe the instructions on the packaging. Take only the prescribed amount. It can be hazardous to take more than is advised.

The majority of companies advise against eating echinacea on an empty stomach. They advise drinking a lot of water or eating before taking it. Echinacea shouldn’t be taken for more than a few weeks. Long-term safety has not been sufficiently investigated.

Before taking echinacea or any supplements, consult your doctor. If it will conflict with any other medications you take, he or she can let you know. They can also suggest the appropriate dosage for you.

Keep all herbal products out of young children’s sight and reach. To prevent them from losing their potency, keep them in a cool, dry area. Avoid keeping them in restrooms, which tend to get warm and muggy.

Does it work?

On the impact of echinacea on the common cold, numerous studies have been conducted. Researchers have not yet discovered concrete proof of its efficacy. They don’t think that taking it as soon as a cold hits will make it go away faster. Taking it when you are healthy may somewhat lower your risk of contracting a cold.

What are the side effects?

Minor adverse effects are possible with echinacea. These symptoms can include nausea, dizziness, and a queasy stomach. Allergic reactions such as redness, swelling, and breathing difficulties are considered serious adverse effects. It can also worsen asthma symptoms. Inform your doctor as soon as possible of any negative effects you have.

Daisy family plants can cause allergy reactions in some people. These could include chrysanthemums, marigolds, ragweed, daisies, or other flowers. This could increase your chance of experiencing an allergic reaction to echinacea.