Hawthorn Health Benefits

Hawthorn Health benefits, Side Effects

What is Hawthorn is a popular herb used for the treatment of heart conditions.
Hawthorn Health Benefits Hawthorn has been traditionally used to improve blood flow to the heart and to provide relief for varieties of health diseases.

Hawthorn constituents. Hawthorn contains oligomeric procyandins (OPC) a known powerful antioxidant.

Hawthorn Side effects and warnings. Hawthorn is considered safe at recommended dosages. May cause side effects such as dizziness, headache and many others. May not be safe for pregnant women and children in high doses.

What is Hawthorn

Hawthorn flowersCommon Names: Hawthorn, English Hawthorn, harthorne, haw, Hawthorne; Hedgethorn

Scientific Name: Crataegus laevigata (also known as Crataegus oxyacantha), Crataegus monogyna

Hawthorn Plant Description:

Hawthorn is a thorny flowering shrub or a small tree in the rose family that grows around 2 meters tall that is native to Europe, North America and Asia. Hawthorn grows along hillsides and woodlands and can now be found all over the world. Hawthorn flowers bloom in May in small white, pink or red clusters with rose-like petals followed by bright red berries containing one or two large seeds. Hawthorn leaves are shiny and of variety shapes and sizes

Nutrients and Chemical Constituents of Hawthorn

Hawthorn contains many substances that provide health benefits for the body especially the heart. Among these beneficial substances include flavonoids called oligomeric procyandins (OPC) that is considered a strong antioxidant.

Other constituents found in Hawthorn include amines, amyddalin, bioflavanoids, coumarin, crataegin, glycosides, tannins, and triterpenoid saponins. According to laboratory studies about Hawthorn, the oligomeric procyandins (OPC) and quecetin are strong antioxidants that destroy free radicals which are responsible for cell damage and death which is the cause of ageing, cancer and varieties of diseases.

Traditional Health Benefits of Hawthorn

Hawthorn has been used in traditional medicine for nearly a millennia both in the East and West, Hawthorn is traditionally used to treat heart conditions, kidney problems and digestive disorders.

Traditional health benefits for the heart include recovery from heart failure, improvement of heart function and improve blood circulation through the arteries.. Other claimed Hawthorn health benefits include treatment for high blood pressure, chest pain and hardening of the arteries.

Scientific Studies of Hawthorn Health Benefits

The polyphenols found in Hawthorn has been found to possess anti inflammatory benefits and anti oxidant properties. These combined activities of Hawthorn benefit the body by fighting free radicals that damage the cells that is the cause of aging and many health problems.

Health Benefits of Hawthorn for Chronic Heart Failure.

In the American Journal of Medicine of June 2003, an article entitled “Hawthorn extract for treating chronic heart failure: meta-analysis of randomized trials” has reported that symptoms such as dyspnea and fatigue improved significantly with Hawthorn treatment as compared with placebo. Reported adverse events were infrequent, mild, and transient; they included nausea, dizziness, and cardiac and gastrointestinal complaints. It further suggests that there is a significant benefit from Hawthorn extract as an adjunctive treatment for chronic heart failure.

Hypotensive Health Benefits of Hawthorn for Diabetic Patients

In the British Journal of General Practice of June 2006, a report entitled “Hypotensive effects of Hawthorn for patients with diabetes taking prescription drugs: a randomised controlled trial” has investigated the effects of Hawthorn for hypertension in patients with type 2 diabetes taking prescribed drugs. Results of the study have demonstrated the hypotensive health benefits of Hawthorn in patients with diabetes taking medication although further studies were also suggested.

Health Benefits of Hawthorn for Chest Pain (Angina)

In earlier clinical studies involving 60 patients with pronounced angina, a group was administered with 180 mg per day of Hawthorn berry and leaf extract while a control group was given a placebo. The group taking Hawthorn extract exhibited improve blood flow to the heart and were able to exercise longer compared to the control group. These evidence suggests Hawthorn may help combat chest pain (angina), which is caused by low blood flow to the heart. However, the study recommended further studies to support the health benefits of Hawthorn for chest pains.

Hawthorn Availability and Preparation

Where to buy Hawthorn medicine

Hawthorn is available in non-standardized and standardized liquid extracts either with water or alcohol, Hawthorn is also available in tinctures and solid extracts such as capsules and tablets. Hawtorn tea can also be prepared from dried hawtorn leaves, flowers and berries.

Hawthorn is available in most drug stores and health stores and online stores such ebay and amazon such as Nature's Way Hawthorn Caps, 90 ct

Bear in mind that Hawthorn is considered as a medicine. In some cases manufacturing procedures are not closely regulated. Be aware that Hawthorn products are not always what they claim. The contents of products labeled as containing Hawthorn can vary greatly. To get the high quality Hawthorn medicines, always buy from a reputable source or brand. Look for the USP mark.

How to take Hawthorn medicine

Children : Not recommended for children.

Adults: Follow the directions given by your medical adviser..

Hawthorn Safe Dosage, Side Effects and Warnings

Hawthorn is considered safe for most adults when used for short periods of time. A dosage of 160 to 1600 mg per day taken for 6 to 24 weeks was found to be safe in test trials.

Hawthorn may cause unfavorable side effects for pregnant and breast feeding mothers and therefore not recommended.

Hawthorn’s side effects to children is undetermined and therefore not recommended.

In rare cases, Hawthorn may have the following side effects: headache, mild rash, sweating, sleepiness, agitation, upset stomach, dizziness and palpitations.

Hawthorn Interactions with other medicines

There are suggestions that Hawthorn may interact with vasodilating medications and may potentiate or inhibit the actions of drugs used for heart failure. Nonetheless, the data available is insufficient to determine the extent of interaction of Hawthorn to other medicines. It is recommended to seek the advice and supervision of a competent medical practitioner when taking Hawthorn especially for heart conditions. Heart disease is a serious condition that requires close medical attention.

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