0844590072 or 0834098309 sales@essentialherbs.co.za Monday to Friday: 8.00am to 5.00pm in Durban North or Pinetown; Saturday: 6.30-12.30am at Shongweni Farmers Market Stall H11; Sunday and Public holidays: Closed

Hawthorn…Happy heart…Happy blood pressure…

Our heart, that amazing muscular organ that keeps our life blood circulating throughout our body. The organ that keeps us alive. I take my heart for granted and just expect it to the job it’s meant to do. I think that most of us are like this, until something happens and our heart reminds us that we are abusing it and expecting it to function under extreme conditions.

Hawthorn (Crataegus laevigata) is historically used for various heart conditions. In the late 19th Century an Irish doctor (Green) became well known for his secret remedy for heart disease. After his death in 1894, the doctor’s daughter disclosed that the remedy was a hawthorn berry tincture. Hawthorn then became a popular remedy for heart and cardiovascular ailments.

Hawthorn is believed to strengthen the heart muscle and taken over a long period of time, to lower blood pressure.

In traditional Chinese medicine, Hawthorn has a history of use for a thousand years. It was given as a treatment for indigestion as well as to improve digestion in both adults and children.

As a heart remedy, Hawthorn exhibits vasodilatory action and lowers peripheral resistance to blood flow. It is a herb that is used in herbal medicine for prevention of diseases such as  angina pectoris and congestive heart failure. Preliminary tests in china have shown that preparations of hawthorn berries may prevent and treat hardening of the arteries.

Hawthorn may increase the action of some heart medicines and decrease their side effects. (please speak to your doctor about this if you are on heart medication and wish to use hawthorn as well).

In people with angina, hawthorn dilates coronary arteries, thus increasing blood supply to the heart. It improves energy producing processes in the heart, including oxygenation and energy metabolism, and it decreases lactic acid.

Hawthorn also helps to strengthen artery walls. It’s an antioxidant and anti-inflammatory and it reduces cholesterol.

In people with high blood pressure, hawthorn lowers blood pressure by relaxing and dilating artery walls. Since hawthorn can take weeks or even months to work, it should not be used by itself for significantly high blood pressure. It is the ideal herb to use in the early stages of high blood pressure.

EHP have the berries in powdered form and in glycerite (non-alcoholic) form.

The powders can be taken as a tea: place 1tsp powdered berries per ½cup cold water. Let it stand for 7-8 hours and then boil and strain. Take 1 cup a day, a mouthful at a time.

The glycerite: Take 30-40 drops twice a day. Either in a little water or directly in the mouth. Remember to drink a glass of water after doing this.

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