Echinacea a safe substance for consumption and is not contraindicated in cases of infections, including COVID-19
Jakarta (ANTARA) - Deputy Secretary-General of the Indonesian Pharmacist Association (IAI) Lusy Noviani here, Thursday, gave a thumbs-up to the intake of immune-boosting products amid the new Coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak, calling the practice safe.

Noviani made the statement to put to rest recent rumors circulating that immune-boosting products can trigger an immune response that can be harmful to the consumer's body.

Immunomodulators, substances that affect the functioning of the immune system, including those containing Echinacea, are safe for consumption and not contraindicated in infection cases, including the COVID-19 infection, Noviani expounded.

"Echinacea a safe substance for consumption and is not contraindicated in cases of infections, including COVID-19," she emphasized.

Noviani further expounded that Echinacea products, distributed since long across Indonesia, had undergone clinical tests and were registered with the Indonesian Food and Drug Monitoring Agency (BPOM). Hence, the substance is safe if used accordingly.

Echinacea is a genus or group of herbaceous flowering plants in the Daisy Family. The genus Echinacea has 10 species, which are commonly called coneflowers. They are found only in eastern and central North America, where they grow in moist to dry prairies and open wooded areas. It has been used in herbal medicines since centuries.

Several studies show that Echinacea extracts have a positive effect on the immune system since they can boost the count of white blood cells in the body that help to ward off infections.

However, some research showed that Echinacea extracts may have undesirable side-effects on some people. It may trigger allergic reactions, such as rash, exacerbate symptoms of asthma, and set off an anaphylactic reaction among people allergic to the substance. Abdominal pain is the most common side-effect of Echinacea.

A person allergic to plants belonging to the Daisy Family -- such as Ragweed, Chrysanit, and Marigold -- may be at a higher risk of experiencing an allergic reaction if he/she consumes products containing Echinacea. Related news: Jambi psychologists provide counseling amid COVID-19 spread

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Translator: Lia Santosa, Yuni Arisandy
Editor: Fardah Assegaf
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