It is a perennial, coarse-grained herb that develops purple rosettes (flowers), which are used both for beverages and for medicinal purposes. It originates from the Midwestern United States and southern Canada, but has been systematically cultivated in Europe in recent years. It’s main components are polysaccharides, glycosides (echinacin), flavonoids, alkamides and caffeic acid (echinacoside, cynarin). It also has many vitamins A, C and E, iron, potassium, essential oils and other secondary components such as polyethylenes, alkylamides, betaine, echinolone, humulene, copper, inulin, etc.
It’ s main feature is its content of phenols, which give it strong antioxidant, antifungal, antibacterial and antiviral activities.
It is widely used in blends with other herbs for the prevention and treatment of common colds, flu and infections of the upper respiratory system, in order to strengthen the immune system and consequently the body's defense against various diseases.