Echinacea improves erythropoietin levels. - GreenMedInfo Summary
The effect of 4 wk of oral echinacea supplementation on serum erythropoietin and indices of erythropoietic status.
Int J Sport Nutr Exerc Metab. 2007 Aug;17(4):378-90. PMID: 17962712
Department of Health and Human Performance, Northwestern State University, Natchitoches, LA 71497, USA.
The purpose of this investigation was to determine whether echinacea supplementation results in alterations of erythroid growth factors and erythropoietic status. Twenty-four men age 24.9 +/- 4.2 y, height 1.7 +/- 0.8 m, weight 87.9 +/- 14.6 kg, and 19.3% +/- 6.5% body fat were grouped using a double-blind design and self- administered an 8000-mg/d dose of either echinacea (ECH) or placebo (PLA) in 5 x 400 mg x 4 times/d for 28 d. Blood samples were collected and analyzed for red blood cells (RBCs), hematocrit (Hct), hemoglobin (Hb), mean corpuscular volume, mean corpuscular hemoglobin content, prostaglandin E2, ferritin, erythropoietin (EPO), interleukin 3 (IL-3), and granulocyte-macrophage-colony-stimulating factor using automated flow cytometry and ELISA. ANOVA was used to determine significant differences (P ? 0.05). EPO was greater (P<0.001) in ECH at Days 7, 14, and 21 and reflected a 44%, 63%, and 36% increase, respectively. IL-3 was greater (P = 0.011) in ECH at Days 14 and 21, which indicated a 65% and 73% increase, respectively. These data indicate that ECH supplementation resulted in an increase in EPO and IL-3 but did not significantly alter RBCs, Hb, or Hct.