Best Antiviral Herbs to Boost Immune System & Fight Infection
Antiviral herbs inhibit the development of viruses. Many of the best antiviral herbs boost the immune system, which allows the body to attack viral pathogens. This can be even better than attacking specific pathogens, which antiviral drugs are designed to do, because pathogens mutate over time and become less susceptible to treatment.
Not only do antiviral herbs fight viral infections, boost the immune system and work as flu natural remedies, but they have a number of other health benefits, such as cardiovascular, digestive and anti-inflammatory support.
Top Antiviral Herbs
Is one of the most powerful natural antivirals against human viruses. It contains a compound called echinacein that inhibits bacteria and viruses from penetrating healthy cells. This greatly reduces the chances of contracting any type of infection while consuming echinacea.
This antiviral herb has high amounts of flavonoids, which are plant-based antioxidants that protect cells from being damaged by free radicals; it also fights viruses, inflammation and bacteria.
According to the University of Maryland Medical Center, ear drops containing calendula are sometimes used to treat ear infections in children, and scientific studies have found no side effects.
Experiments have shown that garlic — or specific chemical compounds found in garlic — is highly effective at killing countless microorganisms responsible for some of the most common and rarest infections, including tuberculosis, pneumonia, thrush and herpes.
Not only is it one of the best antiviral herbs for herpes, but its properties also help to treat eye infections and it works as a natural ear infection remedy.
Some more raw garlic benefits include its ability to reduce the risk of cancer, control hypertension, boost cardiovascular health and fight hair loss.
Another powerful antiviral herb, has been used in traditional Chinese medicine for centuries, and its main use is to boost the body’s immune system. Scientific studies have shown that astragalus has antiviral properties and stimulates the immune system, suggesting that it may help remedy the common cold or flu.
It’s one of the most effective antiviral herbs for HSV. A 2004 study evaluated the effects of astragalus on herpes simplex virus type 1 and found that the herb has obvious inhibiting efficacy.
Another study published in the Chinese Medical Sciences Journal concluded that astragalus is able to inhibit the growth of coxsackie B virus in mice.
Not only does it work as a natural viral infection treatment, but astragalus also has antibacterial and anti-inflammatory properties, and it is used on the skin for wound care. It’s also one the adaptogen herbs to lower cortisol.
The bark and root of cat’s claw have been used by South Americans for centuries to treat health problems including fevers, stomach ulcers, digestive conditions and dysentery. Cat’s claw is used as a natural arthritis remedy and may treat ulcer symptoms as well.
Cat’s claw has antiviral properties, and it can help get rid of herpes. Early studies are researching its effects on HIV as well.
This powerful herb is also anti-inflammatory, antibacterial and antifungal. It’s used to treat digestive problems such as ulcers, irritable bowel syndrome, colitis and leaky gut syndrome.
Is emerging as a prominent player in the search for treatment and prevention for diseases like hepatitis C, HIV and influenza.
The Chinese Journal of Virology published a review that confirms the antiviral activity of licorice root due to its triterpenoid content. Another 2010 publication notes licorice’s antioxidant, free radical-scavenging and immunostimulating effects.
The olive leaf has antiviral properties, giving it the ability to treat the common cold and dangerous viruses, including candida symptoms, meningitis, pneumonia, chronic fatigue syndrome, hepatitis B, malaria, gonorrhea and tuberculosis; it also treats dental, ear and urinary tract infections and is a natural treatment for shingles.
Research shows that olive leaf extracts effectively fight against a number of disease-causing microbes, including some viruses that cause influenza and other respiratory infections. The powerful compounds found in olive leaves destroy invading organisms and don’t allow viruses to replicate and cause an infection.
In fact, the olive leaf is so beneficial to our health that treatment with olive leaf extracts reversed many HIV-1 infection-associated changes in a study done at the New York University School of Medicine.
Is a powerful antiviral agent. Medicinal grade oregano is distilled to extract the essential oil and preserve its healing compounds; in fact, it takes over 1,000 pounds of wild oregano to produce just 1 pound of oregano oil!
Oregano oil benefits are proving to be superior to some antibiotics, without the harmful side effects. That’s because oregano contains two powerful compounds, carvacrol and thymol, that have powerful antibacterial and antifungal properties.
It’s the carvacrol that reverses viral infections, as well as allergies, tumors, parasites and disease-causing inflammation.