Do you know that Hawthorn Berry has a number of health benefits?
Hawthorn berries are tiny fruits that grow on trees and shrubs belonging to the Crataegus genus.
The genus includes hundreds of species that are found in Europe, North America, and Asia.
Moreover, you can use these nutrient-rich berries in your tart, which have a tangy taste, and mild sweetness.
they also range in color from yellow to dark red.
For hundreds of years, people have used Hawthorn Berry as an herbal remedy for a number of issues.
These include digestive problems, heart issues, and high blood pressure.
Interestingly, this berry has been a key part of much traditional Chinese medicine since at least 659 A.D.
Let’s learn more about the health benefits of Hawthorn Beery in detail.
1# Treat Heart Failure
One of the best advantages of using Hawthorn Berry is that it is popular for use in traditional contexts in treating heart failure.
Heart failure is a condition in which your heart is unable to pump blood properly.
Different studies indicate that hawthorn berries can have beneficial effects without severe adverse effects if you have heart failure.
Moreover, studies indicate improvements in heart function and heart-failure symptoms like shortness of breath, and fatigue.
Researchers suggest that compounds called Flavonoids in this berry may be behind these beneficial effects.
However, some evidence suggests that hawthorn berry may be harmful in certain cases.
One study suggests that taking it along with conventional treatments can increase the risk of heart failure that would progress.
Thus, further research is required.
2# May Reduce Anxiety
For years, scientists have been investigating hawthorn as a potential novel therapy for anxiety disorders.
In a study of 264 participants with anxiety, a combination of hawthorn extract, magnesium, and Californi poppy flower, significantly helped to reduce anxiety levels.
This was in comparison to a placebo.
However, the role of hawthorn is unclear.
Moreover, hawthorn berry appears to have fewer side effects than traditional anti-anxiety medications.
That is one reason many scientists continue to research it as a potential treatment for central nervous system disorders.
These disorders include anxiety and depression.
However, it is important to note that these studies included different hawthorn products, not necessarily the berry.
If you want hawthorn berry to manage your anxiety, do not stop using your current medications.
Furthermore, be sure to discuss it with a healthcare provider beforehand to make sure it is safe to use.
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3# Anti-Aging Properties
Hawthorn berries can help to prevent premature skin aging that occurs due to collagen degradation.
This often happens due to excessive sun or ultraviolet light exposure.
According to a study, a mixture of hawthorn and ginseng extract can help prevent signs of aging.
It does so by inhibiting wrinkles formation and increasing the son moisture.
Moreover, research suggests that this effect may be due to the antioxidant content found in Hawthorn berry.
But research in this area is limited and more study is required.
4# Aids in Digestion
For centuries, people have used hawthorn berry and its extract to treat digestive issues.
This particularly includes indigestion and stomach pain.
These berries contain fiber, which helps to aid digestion by reducing constipation and acting as prebiotics.
Prebiotics are foods that nourish and promote healthy gut bacteria that are crucial to maintaining healthy digestion.
According to a study, people with slow digestion, when adding an additional gram of dietary fiber is associated with a 30-minutes decrease in the time between bowel movements.
In other words, the more fiber to consume, the more frequently you will poop.
Additionally, a rat study indicates that hawthorn extract dramatically reduces the gut transit time of food in the digestive system.
This reduction in gut transit time means that foods move more quickly through the digestive system, which may alleviate indigestion.
Moreover, research in rodents suggests that compounds found in hawthorn berries can help to have the production and activity of enzymes.
These are some of them that they need for the digestion of fatty and protein-rich foods.
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5# Reduce Blood Cholesterol Levels
Some studies indicate that hawthorn extract can help to improve blood cholesterol levels.
This is due to compounds i.e. flavonoid and pectin content.
Pectin is a type of fiber that helps in cholesterol metabolism.
Imbalance in cholesterol levels, especially high triglycerides, and low HDL or good cholesterol play a role in atherosclerosis or plaque buildup in your blood vessels.
Moreover, if plaque continues to build up, it can completely block a blood vessel, leading to a heart attack or stroke.
Moreover, in another animal study, mice that receive two doses of hawthorn extract can help to lower total and LDL, the bad cholesterol.
It also helps to decrease about 28 to 47% of triglycerides levels, than those who do not receive the extract.
Furthermore, another study of atherosclerosis patients found that taking hawthorn extract at a dose of 2.3 mg per pound or 5mg per kg of body weight significantly reduces the thickness of harmful plaque build-up in the carotid artery.
Although the results are promising, however, more research can help to assess the effects on blood cholesterol.
6# Lower Blood Pressure
In traditional Chinese medicine, hawthorn berry is one of the most common foods that help to treat high blood pressure.
Animal studies indicate that hawthorn can act as a vasodilator, that can relax constricted blood vessels, thus, lowering blood pressure.
Moreover, another study indicates that hawthorn extract can help to reduce diastolic blood pressure.
This one is the bottom number of blood pressure readings.
Another study found that those who take 1200 mg of hawthorn extract with type 2 diabetes and high blood pressure experiences improvement in blood pressure.
This is in comparison to the placebo group.
However, it is important to note that using hawthorn extract is not the same as eating berries.
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7# Have Anti-inflammatory Properties
Hawthorn berry may have anti-inflammatory properties that can help to improve your health.
Research indicates that chronic inflammation is linked with different diseases like type 2 diabetes, asthma, and certain cancers.
Moreover, in a study in mice with liver disease, hawthorn berry extract helps to lower levels of inflammatory compounds.
Thus leading to a reduction in liver inflammation and injury.
In another study, vitexin, a compound found in hawthorn leaves decreases the production of molecules that trigger inflammation.
Furthermore, it helps to reduce the response of white blood cells to inflammation.
These results are promising and suggest that hawthorn supplements may offer anti-inflammatory benefits.
However, more research is required.
8# Loaded with Antioxidants
Hawthorn berry is a rich source of polyphenols which are powerful antioxidant compounds found in plants.
Antioxidants help to neutralize unstable molecules, .i.e. free radicals that can harm your body when they are present at high levels
Moreover, free radicals are present in certain foods.
You can also have high levels of them as a result of exposure to environmental toxins like air pollution and smoking.
Polyphenols are associated with a number of health benefits.
This is due to their antioxidant activity, including a lower risk of following, according to studies:
- some types of cancer
- type 2 diabetes
- heart problems
- premature skin aging
Although the initial research is promising, however, more human studies can help to assess the effects of hawthorn berries.
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9# Easy to Add in Diet
You can easily add hawthorn berry to your diet.
However, they can be difficult to find at your local grocery store.
On the other hand, you might find them at farmer’s markets and specialty health food stores.
You can add them to your diet in the following ways:
Raw berries have a tart, slightly sweet taste and make a great on-the-go snack.
However, try not to eat the seeds as they contain toxic cyanide.
You can buy its tea or make your own using dried berries, flowers, and leaves.
Jams and Desserts
In the Southeastern United States, a lot of people use these berries in the jam, pie fillings, and syrup.
Moreover, you can also take hawthorn berry supplements in a convenient powder, pill, or liquid form.
It is important to note that hawthorn berry supplements contain the berry along with the leaves, and flowers.
Though some of the supplements only include leaves and flowers.
Different brands and forms have varying dosage recommendations.
However, FDA, the Food and Drug Administration regulates supplements like Hawthory under a less strict set of regulations than over-the-counter or prescription medications.
Therefore, make sure to buy them from reputable sources.
Look for products that have a seal from independent organizations that assess supplement effectiveness and quality.
These are United States Pharmacopeia, USP, NSF International, or ConsumerLab.
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Side Effects and Precautions
There are not many side effects of taking hawthorn barriers, and those that exist range from mild to moderate.
The most frequent ones are sweating, headaches, sleepiness, palpitations, mild rash, agitation, and gastrointestinal effects.
While these are not life-threatening, make sure to talk with a healthcare professional if you experience any of the above symptoms.
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Using medicinal herbs as alternative treatments for several diseases is becoming popular.
This is because of their advantages ad reduction in side effects and reduced costs than standard modern therapies.
However, using these herbs increases the risk of herb-drug interactions, which can alter the effects of standard drugs.
Moreover, it can lead to negative health effects by increasing, decreasing, or changing the effects of your existing medications.
Research on possible interactions between hawthorn berry and standard medications suggests a potentially harmful effect.
This is when you consume them along with heart medications.
Furthermore, hawthorn berries can potentially increase the effect of blood thinners, blood pressure-lowering drugs, and medications for heart failure.
Additionally, they may also increase the digitalis, a medication that treats congestive heart failure and arrhythmia, or heart rhythm issues.
This may increase the risk of toxicity and heart arrhythmia.
Therefore, if you are taking medications for your heart, consult your healthcare professional before using hawthorn berry supplements.
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Because of its antioxidant content, hawthorn berry has a number of health benefits, especially for your health. Moreover, studies indicate that it can help lower blood pressure, and blood cholesterol levels.
Furthermore, it may even help heart failure and reduce inflammation, signs of aging, and aid digestion.
However, it is important to note that it can negatively interact with heart medications, thus, make sure to speak with a healthcare professional before taking its supplement.