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Echinacea Is Effective, Probably Maybe

Have you been taking echinacea to ward of a cold this Spring? If so you're probably doing the right thing. Maybe.

Newsweek is reporting that new research has found that taking echinacea reduces the chances of getting a cold by 31 percent. And if you've already come down with one, the herb will make you feel better a day and a half earlier — may not seem like a lot but, oh the things I could do in a day in a half. With that being said, there are a few issues with this theory. The first is that researchers are not quite sure which of the more than 200 strains of the cold viruses are affected by echinacea, so it may do absolutely nothing for your cold. Also, echinacea has been found to interact with other medications adversely, so be sure to talk to your doctor before taking it.


Join The Conversation
emalove emalove 9 years
I get colds no matter what I do and what supplements I take! I'm a teacher and there are just so many germs in the classroom. It's almsot impossible to avoid them!
JaimeLeah526 JaimeLeah526 9 years
I have never tried echinacea but it's worth a try.
annalia05 annalia05 9 years
I tried echinacea twice. The first time, it kicked my immune system into overdrive and made me really sick with an autoimmune disorder. Luckily, it was treatable, but I didn't put the pieces together and realize what might have caused it. The second time I took echinacea, the same thing happened. I don't think everyone has the same reaction as me, but my experience made me very wary of taking herbal remedies.
jenintx jenintx 9 years
i read in cosmo when i was in college (so this may have changed in the past five years) that you should not take echinacea if you are taking the birth control pill b/c it increases your risk of blood clots. i haven't taken echinacea since.
aimeeb aimeeb 9 years
I've been saying this for years!
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