Ed Smith’s Response to the Recent Negative Study on Echinacea
If you’ve been watching national network news or reading any of the major newspapers around the country, you’re probably aware that a new study on Echinacea was published in the July 28, 2005 issue of the New England Journal of Medicine (NEJM) (Vol. 353, No. 4.). The study concludes that Echinacea does not prevent or help treat the negative health effects of a single type of rhinovirus inserted inside the nostrils of test subjects.
Here are a few thoughts on the study:
• It’s very difficult to impossible to draw accurate conclusion about an herb or drug based solely on one isolated scientific study. To accurately prove or disprove the medical efficacy of an herb or drug, you must review many different pharmacological and medical studies and trials.
• There have been many published scientific studies that demonstrate Echinacea’s positive effect on the body’s immune system, and several clinical trials that well demonstrate Echinacea’s ability to prevent, moderate or cure colds, flu and other infections in animals and humans.
• Tens of millions of people have experienced the positive health benefits of Echinacea over centuries and tens of thousands of practitioners have prescribed (and continue to prescribe) Echinacea with reported positive results. As such, there is every reason to remain confident in Echinacea’s ability to enhance the body’s immune function and to successfully prevent, moderate or cure colds, flu and other infections.
In addition to the above points, here are a few links that might be of use to you in sharing balanced summaries of Echinacea’s established benefit.