Andrographis, called the “King of Bitters”, is probably best known in the West as a botanical that boosts your immune system’s ability to defend you from viruses and bacteria. It is commonly referred to as a multi-antimicrobial able of effectively treating bacterial, viral, and fungal infections, especially upper respiratory tract infections (URTI).
And no wonder: Andrographis helps you get over colds and flu faster and reduces the intensity of symptoms without causing side effects.
We have a great need for effective, immune boosting interventions that don’t leave you suffering from side effects. Plus – and just as crucially, we need alternative, effective ways of protecting ourselves other than antibiotics, which are quickly becoming ineffective after decades of overuse and may be obsolete due to bacteria resistance. While antibiotics may curb some bacterial infections, they do not have an effect on viral and fungal infections.
In a double-blind, placebo-controlled study, Andrographis relieved key symptoms in just two days, including fatigue, sore throat, runny nose, and sleeplessness. By the fourth day, the Andrographis group saw a significant decrease in all symptoms, including headache, earache, phlegm production, and coughing.
Another clinical study of individuals with upper respiratory tract infection showed similar results. In this case, 223 patients either received Andrographis or a placebo. By the third day, there was a dramatic difference in the Andrographis group in cough, headache, sore throat, and disturbed sleep.
Andrographis also stops dangerous bacteria like Staphylococcus aureus by preventing it from replicating. Considering how resistant bacterial infections have become as a result of antibiotic over-prescription, this botanical could be a much more effective form of treatment.
And, the abilities that Andrographis shows for strengthening the immune system have made it an increasingly popular herb for treating Lyme disease.
Transmitted by ticks, infection by the Borrelia burgdorferi bacteria first manifests itself in “bulls eye” pattern skin lesions, but can later progress to muscle dysfunction, arthritis, facial palsy, and more.
However, antibiotic treatment doesn’t address the need for the body to help heal itself. In fact, Polish researchers found that patients using antibiotics to treat the skin lesion phase of the disease, still had heavy, free-radical activity. Even though antibiotics in this case are standard medical procedure, the resulting oxidative damage simply weakens the system more, creating a greater opportunity for the disease to spread and do more damage.
Over the past several years, the use of Andrographis as part of a multi-herbal treatment for Lyme disease, or in conjunction with conventional methods, has grown.
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