Antiviral Herbs for HPV

Echinacea flower
Pink echinacea flowers growing in the plains. (Image: picture_garden/iStock/Getty Images)

Human papilloma virus is responsible for common warts that manifest on the hands, feet and genitals. HPV can be transmitted through sexual contact, and a few types are associated with cervical cancer. Although there is no pharmaceutical cure for HPV, certain herbs with antiviral properties can mitigate symptoms and possibly reduce virulence.

Echinacea Root

Echinacea is a purple coneflower that grows in the prairies of the midwestern United States. Native Americans have used this herb for generations for medicinal purposes, most notably for enhancing the immune system. According to “Medical Herbalism: The Science and Practice of Herbal Medicine,” echinacea simulates the production of white blood cells and lymphocytes, which have the ability to attack pathogenic micro-organisms such as HPV.

Goldenseal Root

Goldenseal is a perennial herb in the buttercup family and also used medicinally by Native Americans. Goldenseal root was traditionally used to clean wounds, treat inflammation and heal skin afflictions, although its antibiotic and antiviral properties are now better understood. Goldenseal can be taken internally or applied externally to the genital warts, where it is effective at killing viruses. Goldenseal is often used to boost the medicinal effects of other herbs it is combined with.

Chaparral Leaf

Chaparral is a long-living evergreen shrub with yellow flowers that grows in Mexico and the southwestern United States. Natives of the Southwest used chaparral leaves as a treatment for many viral diseases, including sexually transmitted diseases, tuberculosis and chicken pox. Contemporary use of chaparral has proven to have strong antiviral, antibacterial, antifungal and anti-tumor properties, as cited in “Medical Herbalism.” Chaparral is also a good anti-inflammatory and increases vitamin C levels in the adrenal glands.

Olive Leaf Extract

Olive Leaf extract has been used medicinally for countless generations in the Mediterranean and Middle East where olive trees commonly grow. Olive leaf extract is rich in phytochemicals and has been used for fighting common colds and influenzas. Timesonline.co.uk reports that research in 2005 at Southern Cross University in Australia proves olive leaf extract has antibacterial, antifungal and anti-inflammatory properties. Fresh olive leaf extract was shown to have an antioxidant capacity almost double that of green tea extract and 400 percent higher than vitamin C.

Astragalus

Astragalus is a Chinese medicinal herb used since ancient times. Astragalus has antioxidant, antimicrobial and anti-inflammatory properties, which enhance the immune system and improve the body’s ability to fight off viral infections, such as HPV.

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