What is Hawthorn Berry, and how can it be used?

The hawthorn Bush, also known by the names May-tree and Thornapple, are deciduous plants. It is a member of the rose family, Rosaceae, and belongs to the genus Crataegus. Hawthorn comes in many forms, including a thorny hawthorn shrub or a hawthorn trellis. Most hawthorn can be found growing on the side of sunny, wooded hills. There are several species of hawthorn. Some of these are native to North America.

A hawthorn flower has berries along with flowers that bloom in April. Hawthorn flowers can be red, white or pink. After the flowers have bluffed, the small hawthorn berries emerge. Although the hawthorn fruit berries mature fully, they will be reddish. These berries may be eaten. How do they smell? Most people describe hawthorns berries as a sweet-sour mix.

There are many health beneficial compounds in hawthorn. These compounds are beneficial for heart health. Hawthorn's antioxidant flavonoids, which protect against blood vessel injury and improve blood flow in the body, help dilate blood vessels.

Health Benefits

1. Major Heart Problems

Hawthorn berry is well-known for its beneficial effects on the heart. Hawthorn, known as a "cardiotonic herb", is incredibly helpful for many serious heart conditions. These include atherosclerosis and heart disease. According to a 2016 study, the powerful benefits of hawthorn for your heart are due in part to its high polyphenolic contents.

Research has proven that hawthorn is effective in reducing congestive hearts failure (CHF). Numerous studies have shown hawthorn supplementation to increase cardiac function. These parameters include blood pressure, heart rate, cardiac output, exercise tolerance, and heartbeat.

A trial that included 78 NYHA class II heart failure patients gave them commercial preparation hawthorn leaves, flowers and leaves. After two months, patients who received 200 milligrams each of hawthorn leaves and flowers three times daily had an increase in their working capacity and reduced symptoms. The hawthorn patients had lower systolic and diastolic blood pressures during physical activity. Another German study confirmed that a hawthorn extract (LI132Faros(r)) performed almost as well as a prescription heart disease drug (captopril). Hawthorn extract also had fewer side effects.

NYHA II is a cohort study in which 952 patients with severe heart failure were randomized to receive a Crataegus hawthorn extract. The extract could be taken either alone or in combination with other conventional treatments. After two years, fatigue and stress dyspnoea were all significantly lower in the group who had taken the hawthorn than the group who didn't.

2. Blood Pressure

Many herbal practitioners recommend natural blood pressure decreasers such as hawthorn leaves, flowers, and berries. The British Journal of General Practice published a 16-week scientific study where 79 type-2 diabetic patients received 1200mg of hawthorn extract daily. A total of 71 per cent of the participants took the hypotensive drug.

What did they discover? The hawthorns group experienced more significant diastolic reductions in blood pressure. However, there weren't any differences in the group's systolic levels. (11) There are likely to be more studies supporting hawthorn's effectiveness in lowering blood tension.

3. Heart Disease and Heart Disease:

Angina is chest pain due to decreased blood flow. It is sometimes confused with indigestion. True angina is a sign of coronary disease. Research so far has shown that angina can be prevented and treated with hawthorn.

According to a scientific paper published in the Journal of Herbal Medicine and Toxicology. Hawthorn's phytoflavonoids are believed to dilate the blood vessels of the peripheral and central regions. This can increase blood circulation to the heart and make hawthorn extremely useful for angina. Hawthorn proanthocyanidins may reduce tension in the blood vessel walls. This is an excellent way to avoid angina.

In one study, 80 subjects who had stable angina pectoris between 45 and 65 were randomly assigned to four groups. The first group consisted of aerobic exercise. The second group took hawthorn extract. The third group did aerobic exercises and also took a Hawthorn Extract. Finally, the fourth group was considered the control. The combination of exercise and hawthorn supplemental therapy was found to be "an effective complementary strategy to significantly lower your risk of atherosclerosis or other heart problems" after 12 weeks.

4. High Cholesterol

Animal studies show that hawthorn berry extract might be a natural remedy for reducing LDL ("bad") cholesterol in the body. China is the home of hawthorn. An ethanol extract from Zhongtianhawthorn, a wild Shan-Zha cultivar with larger hawthorns, was shown to have impressive health benefits.

This 2016 study demonstrated that the hawthorn-berry extract did lower overall cholesterol levels and significantly reduced LDL cholesterol, LDL cholesterol, and liver cholesterol.

5. Overall Health Enhancer

Scientific research from 2008 found that hawthorn berry extract can reduce inflammation. This is vital for our health since inflammation is the root cause of most diseases.

The research also shows the antioxidant properties of extracts from hawthorn berries. This is great news for human health. Free radicals can damage cells, including DNA, by taking electrons through oxidation.

A 2008 animal study confirmed that hawthorn berry extract could protect the gastrointestinal tract and kill various bacteria.

Interesting Facts

  • The medicinal properties of Hawthorn berries, leaves, flowers and roots can all be used to treat ailments.
  • Crataegus species that look like hawthorn come from temperate regions in North America and Europe.
  • Hawthorn flowers come in small pink, red and white clusters.
  • The crown made of thorns at the head of Jesus during his crucifixion is believed to be from the hawthorn.
  • Early records indicate the hawthorn tree as a symbol of love.
  • The hawthorn plant's sweet and tangy red fruit is used in making jams, jellies, wines, cordials, and other products.
  • Many hawthorn species are used in bonsai making.

How to Use?

How can hawthorn berries be incorporated into your life? There are several choices. There are many options. In many health food stores, loose hawthorn berries can be bought in bulk. You can also find a form of hawthorn supplement, such as a capsule.

For the past three to 24 days, safe hawthorn doses have been between 160 to 1,800mg/day. A six- to 12-week period may be required for noticeable improvement.

Drug Interactions & Side Effects

If you are breastfeeding or pregnant, you should avoid hawthorn. Avoid giving hawthorn products and supplements to children. Supplementing with hawthorn for short-term usage is recommended by professionals. If you feel that your symptoms worsen, stop using hawthorn and consult an emergency physician immediately.

Some people experience side effects like nausea, upset stomachs, fatigue, sweating or dizziness from using hawthorn.

While hawthorn can be good for your heart, it can also interact with prescription medications for heart diseases. Also, medicines that treat other issues such as high blood pressure or male sexual dysfunction can interact with hawthorn. Digoxin interacts negatively with several medications, including beta-blockers and calcium channel blockers (CCBs), nitrates. Phenylephrine and phosphodiesterase-5 inhibitions. Do not take hawthorn extracts or other hawthorn products if you have heart disease or another health condition.

Important to remember that heart disease is a severe condition. If you are diagnosed with this condition, it is best not to self treat with hawthorn products.