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# N4668

Using Eyebright for Allergies

Eyebright is well known for its ability to cure many problems associated with your eyes, such as ophthalmia, conjunctivitis, styes and blepharitis. However, its anti-inflammatory properties also render it of use in treating inflammatory conditions such as allergies. The physical symptoms of allergies arise as a result of an over-reaction of your immune system's inflammatory response to allergens, resulting in swelling, redness and pain. Although these symptoms can be treated, it is more effective to tackle the inflammation at its root cause: the immune system chemicals that lead to the inflammation symptoms.

The flavonoids and other anti-inflammatories in eyebright do this, and effectively prevent the immune system from continuing to generate the cytokines and other chemicals that lead to the visible symptoms of inflammation: the swelling, itching, fluid, pain, heat and redness that can cause so much misery. Eyebright is effective both as an eyewash, skin cleanser and in capsule form. It is often combined with extracts of nettle or echinacea to boost the immune system and resolve the problem naturally and gently - particularly with extracts designed for children suffering allergies.

The Phytochemical Components of Eyebright

Some of the constituents of eyebright can explain its effect on inflammatory conditions of the eye, although its effects on cataracts and vision that is failing with age are less easy to explain, since very little work has been carried out on this aspect of the herb. Nevertheless, anecdotal evidence is high, and the lack of definitive scientific proof should not be taken negatively. The iridoid glycosides and flavonoids, including quercetin, are known to possess anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties, as do the vitamins C and E and the antioxidant mineral, selenium. The aglycone of the iridoid glycoside aucubin possesses known antibacterial properties, which would help to treat any bacterial cause for styes and other eye infections that lead to inflammation.

Beta carotene is known to be beneficial to eyesight, so while the work carried out on eyebright to prove its effects on eye problems is limited, the phytochemicals it contains supports the anecdotal evidence for these effects. It is frequently the case that unproven claims for herbal remedies are later substantiated when tests on human subjects are carried out. Other components of eyebright are caffeic and ferulic acids, tannins and the minerals potassium, zinc, phosphorus, manganese, chromium, calcium and iron.

In general, the known properties of the chemical constituents of eyebright tend to support the claims made for it with respect to its use it treating certain conditions of the eye, even if scientific proof has yet to be obtained.

Nutrition Info
  Amount Per Serving % Daily Value
Total Carbohydrate  650 mg   <1%* 
Eyebright Herb (Euphrasia officinalis) (leaves and stems)  940 mg   † 
* Percent Daily Values are based on 2,000 calorie diet.
† Daily Value not established.



Serving Size: 2 capsules

Servings per container: 50

Suggested Use: As a dietary supplement, take 2 capsules 3 times a day.

Free of: sugar, salt, yeast, wheat, corn, soy, milk

Other Ingredients: stearic acid

Warnings: None

Eyebright is a popular European herb that has been used since the middle ages. This herb is wildcrafted in Europe.

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