What Does Hawthorn Berries Help In

What Does Hawthorn Berries Help In – Hawthorn berries, also known as “haw,” are a popular ingredient in desserts and wine, and have been a major medicinal herb for thousands of years. In ancient Rome, it was used to relieve diarrhea. It is a key herb in traditional Chinese medicine. In the Middle Ages, Europeans used it to keep their hearts healthy.

There are hundreds of species of hawthorn worldwide. Although they’re small, hawthorn berries pack a punch in serious health benefits, especially for your heart. They can improve your exercise performance (x).

What Does Hawthorn Berries Help In

Cardiovascular disease is the most common cause of physician visits, hospitalizations, and death in the United States. Heart disease kills more than 600,000 people every year (x).

Ways Hawthorn Berry Improves Heart Health

Hawthorn berries contain phytonutrients including anthocyanidins and proanthocyanidins—antioxidants that strengthen blood vessel walls. They can also reduce symptoms of congestive heart failure, irregular heartbeats, arrhythmias, low blood pressure, angina, atherosclerosis and high cholesterol (x).

Research suggests that hawthorn berry extract significantly benefits heart health compared to a placebo (x). In one study, researchers gave 78 patients with heart failure 200 mg of hawthorn three times a day for two months. At the end of the trial, patients experienced an improvement in heart function and a reduction in their heart disease symptoms (x). In fact, hawthorn berries were just as effective as prescription heart medication in reducing these symptoms — and had fewer side effects (x).

Hawthorn can also keep your heart healthy by lowering blood pressure. In one study, scientists gave 79 patients with type 2 diabetes 1,200 milligrams of hawthorn extract or a placebo daily. At the end of the 16-week study, participants who took hawthorn had a greater reduction in blood pressure (x) than those who did not.

Often confused with indigestion, heartburn is the technical term for chest pain. It is caused by reduced blood flow to the heart and is often a sign of heart disease.

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Studies suggest that the bioflavonoids (plant compounds) in hawthorn can reduce angina by dilating and relaxing blood vessels, which promotes healthy circulation. They improve blood flow to the heart and reduce stress on the walls of your blood vessels, which helps prevent chest pain (x).

People have been using hawthorn berry extract to treat gastrointestinal problems such as diarrhea and indigestion since the first century (x). Today, studies indicate that hawthorn improves digestion by promoting gastrointestinal motility—the muscle contractions that move food through your digestive system (x). Hawthorn may also support the production of enzymes that ensure you are properly absorbing nutrients for optimal health (x).

People have used hawthorn berry extract topically to treat itching, sores, blisters, ulcers, and frostbite. However, there are not enough studies to confirm these claims (x).

Hawthorn can be effective when used in combination with various other supplements. Coenzyme Q10 when combined with hawthorn may reduce the incidence of early heart disease. Ginkgo biloba can be used with hawthorn to improve blood circulation and get enough oxygen to the brain. Garlic (Allium sativum) and arnica (Arnica montana) can help treat cases of angina and poor circulation. Lemon balm (Melissa officinalis) and St. John’s wort are also used in combination with hawthorn to calm the nerves and induce sleep for insomnia.

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Hawthorn is considered a safe supplement for adults. However, there are rare side effects including stomach upset, headache or dizziness (x, x).

Additionally, hawthorn berry extract may interact with prescription medications. If you are taking any medications that affect and treat the heart, consult your doctor before taking this supplement. Also, if you have high blood pressure, are taking beta-blockers and calcium blockers, male enhancement drugs that dilate blood vessels, or any drugs that increase blood flow to the heart, you should consult your doctor before taking this supplement. Hawthorn is also contraindicated for people taking digoxin (X). Women who are pregnant should avoid using hawthorn berry as it can reduce uterine tone (x).

As a supplement, it’s best to take 1,200 milligrams, or half a teaspoon, once or twice a day or as directed by your doctor (x). Also, you can safely take hawthorn berry extract for 16 weeks (x).

Hawthorn berry extract is known as a heart health herb. Research has shown that it contributes to the overall health of the cardiovascular system. This is especially true for those with angina, congestive heart failure, high or low blood pressure, and other heart-related health problems. European doctors have been prescribing hawthorn for use under medical supervision for many years, although not so much among American doctors. Overall, this little red berry is a helpful ally for heart health, and it’s a good idea to include this supplement in your regular diet. Written by Ariane Lang, BSc, MBA and Savannah Shoemaker, MS, RDN, LD — Clinically reviewed by Cathy W. Warwick, R.D., CDE, Nutrition — Updated December 13, 2021

Hawthorn: A Little Known Super Fruit

This nutrient-rich berry has a tangy, tangy flavor and mild sweetness. Their color ranges from yellow to dark red (

For hundreds of years, people have used hawthorn berries as an herbal remedy for digestive problems, heart problems, and high blood pressure. In fact, the berry has been an important part of traditional Chinese medicine since at least 659 AD (

Antioxidants help neutralize unstable molecules called free radicals that can harm your body when present in high levels.

Free radicals can come from certain foods. Air pollution and cigarette smoke (

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Polyphenols are associated with numerous health benefits due to their antioxidant activity, including reduced risk (

Although initial research in animals and cells is promising, more human studies are needed to assess the effects of hawthorn berries on disease risk.

Summary Hawthorn berries contain plant polyphenols, which have antioxidant properties that have been linked to numerous health benefits.

Research has found that chronic inflammation is linked to many diseases, including type 2 diabetes, asthma, and some cancers (

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In a study of mice with liver disease, hawthorn berry extract significantly reduced levels of inflammatory compounds, which reduced liver inflammation and injury (

In one study, researchers administered vitexin—a compound found in hawthorn leaves—to rats with respiratory conditions. This treatment reduced the production of pro-inflammatory molecules and reduced the inflammatory response of white blood cells (

These promising results from animal and test-tube studies suggest that the supplement may offer anti-inflammatory benefits for humans. However, more research is needed.

Summary Hawthorn berry extract has shown anti-inflammatory potential in test-tube and animal studies. However, research in humans is needed.

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In traditional Chinese medicine, hawthorn berry is one of the most commonly recommended foods to help treat high blood pressure (

Animal studies have shown that hawthorn can act as a vasodilator, meaning it can relax narrowed blood vessels, ultimately lowering blood pressure (

A 10-week study found that taking hawthorn extract mildly increased blood pressure in 36 people.

Researchers found that people who took 500 mg of the extract daily had lower diastolic blood pressure—the lower number of blood pressure readings (

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In a 2006 study, researchers gave 79 people with type 2 diabetes and high blood pressure 1,200 milligrams of hawthorn extract daily for 16 weeks. People who took this extract experienced greater blood pressure improvements than those in the placebo group (

However, more studies are needed to back up these findings. It is also important to note that consuming the extract is not the same as eating the berries.

Summary Some research suggests that hawthorn berries may lower blood pressure by helping to dilate blood vessels. However, further studies are needed.

Some studies have indicated that hawthorn extract may improve blood cholesterol levels due to its flavonoid and pectin content. Pectin is a type of fiber that is involved in the metabolism of cholesterol (

Hawthorn Berry Recipes

Imbalanced blood cholesterol levels — especially high triglycerides and low HDL (good) cholesterol — play a role in atherosclerosis, or the buildup of plaque in your arteries (

If plaque continues to build up, it can completely block a blood vessel, leading to a heart attack or stroke.

In one animal study, rats that received two doses of hawthorn extract had lower total and LDL (bad) cholesterol, as well as 28-47% lower liver triglyceride levels, compared to rats that did not receive the extract (

Similarly, a 6-week study in mice showed that when mice were given hawthorn berry supplements, they significantly reduced fasting triglycerides and LDL (bad) cholesterol levels.

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Finally, a 6-month study in 64 people with atherosclerosis found that taking hawthorn extract at a dose of 2.3 mg per pound (5 mg per kg) of body weight significantly reduced the thickness of harmful plaque formation in the carotid artery (carotid artery).

Although this research is promising, more human studies are needed to evaluate the effects of hawthorn extract on blood cholesterol.

Summary Research in animals and humans suggests that taking hawthorn extract may help lower cholesterol and triglyceride levels. However, there is more human research