Hydrangea: The health benefits & how to take it
Hydrangea is a plant that you’re likely familiar with, commonly found in gardens and on Pinterest boards.
But did you know, this plant isn’t just beautiful to look at; the root can also make medicine.
We’ll be delving into the benefits of Hydrangea medicine and what science has to say!
What is a Hydrangea?
There are several varieties of Hydrangea. In the US, the most common are Big Leaf, Lace Cap, Mountain, Panicle, and Smooth. The plant blooms in a variety of colors, including pink, blue, purple, and white.
The root of the plant is where it gets interesting and originates back to ancient Chinese medicine.
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What are the benefits of Hydrangea medicine?
Originally used to treat Malaria, the Hydrangea root is best known for being part of the ‘Stone Breaker’ family. Stonebreakers are known for their benefits in helping with urinary tract problems such as kidney stones.
Studies also suggest that Hydrangea can help autoimmune diseases.
Let’s explore these three possible health benefits a little further!
Hydrangea, UTIs and kidney stones
The Hydrangea plant is considered a urologic (urinary tract system) herb and part of the Stone Breaker family.
A Stonebreaker works by increasing the urine flow to flush out infection and help prevent further kidney stone formation. The stone breakers don’t help kidney stones decrease in size; instead, the increase of urine flow reduces the stones’ tendency to gain size, making them difficult to pass.
Hydrangea and malaria
The Hydrangea is one of hundreds of plants studied for possible antimalarial activity.
One study induced mice with malaria and used Hydrangea leaf extract to treat them over three days. After three days, the parasites disappeared; however, they did reappear a couple of days later. The study was beneficial in understanding that the Hydrangea leaf extract does have an anti-malarial substance that can be taken orally.
Further studies are required to confirm if Hydrangea extract can successfully treat malaria.
Hydrangea and autoimmune diseases
Autoimmune disease is the general term for several medical issues, including rheumatoid arthritis, multiple sclerosis, inflammatory bowel disease, type 1 diabetes, eczema, and psoriasis.
One study looked into the effect Hydrangea root extract has on a specific immune system cell called TH17. Th17 cells are genetically different from CD4+ T cells that are important to the immune system, and can cause harm when they overreact.
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The study identified that an extract from the hydrangea root could stop the creation of Th17 cells, without affecting CD4+ T cells. These results suggest that taking hydrangea root extract could suppress the immune system from over-producing inflammatory Th17 cell responses.
How do I take Hydrangea medicine?
Hydrangea medicine is available as a capsule, extract or dried root.
How much Hydrangea medicine should I take?
There isn’t one recommended dosage for Hydrangea medicine. Instead, it depends on the individual. You should consult a medical healthcare professional beforehand to get an idea of a suitable dosage for you and the length of time to take medicine.
Does Hydrangea medicine have any side effects?
There has not been enough research to confirm that Hydrangea medicine is safe for an extended period of time. Potential side effects include nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, and dizziness.
If you are a pregnant or breastfeeding woman, it is best to avoid Hydrangea medicine.
Again, if you are concerned or experience side effects, be sure to consult a medical healthcare professional.
More studies are necessary to understand the impact Hydrangea medicine can have on various illnesses. However, the studies that have taken place conclude that Hydrangea medicine can help treat urinary tract problems, malaria, and autoimmune diseases.