Quercetin is phytochemical found primarily in plants of the allium family, which includes onions and garlic. It is one of the most significant members of the bioflavonoid family.
The benefits of quercetin have shown themselves to help against a wide variety of diseases. Quercetin is an important ingredient in many medicinal herbs, including ginkgo biloba.
Although quercetin is not one of the network antioxidants, it does interact with the network by regenerating vitamin C after it neutralizes a free radical, and help restore its antioxidant properties.
Quercetin has powerful antihistamine and anti-inflammatory properties. One of the primary benefits of quercetin is its actions as a powerful antioxidant that fights oxidative stress.
Quercetin is also a powerful antihistamine that improves lung function; it can help reduce the inflammation that results from hay fever, allergies, bronchitis, emphysema and asthma. It helps allergy symptoms by preventing the release of histamine into the bloodstream, which is what causes allergy symptoms such as runny nose, itchy eyes and wheezing.
Other benefits of quercetin include anti-inflammatory properties that may help to reduce pain from disorders such as arthritis, bursitis and gout. It also has powerful anti-viral properties that help diminish the effects of the herpes virus, the Epstein-Barr virus, and the polio virus.
Benefits of Quercetin: Prevention Against Cancer. Research suggests that quercetin may help to treat or even prevent prostate cancer by blocking male hormones that encourage the growth of prostate cancer cells. It has also been found to be active against many other types of cancer, including breast, colon, gastric, lung, skin, liver, ovarian, and cervical cancers.
Benefits of Quercetin: Prevention of Heart Disease. Quercetin strengthens the blood vessels, and is useful in treating atherosclerosis and high cholesterol levels by its ability to reduce the oxidation of LDL-cholesterol. Population studies have found that people with high intakes of foods containing this and other flavonoids tend to have lower rates of heart disease.
Other significant benefits of quercetin include:
Quercetin is useful in treating the following conditions:
Foods. The richest sources are found in plants of the allium family, including onions, scallions, chives, leeks, shallots and garlic. Onions are the richest source, which explains their use in folk medicine as a treatment for allergies and asthma — the quercetin slows or prevents allergic reactions and reduces swollen bronchial tubes.
Quercetin is also found in many fruits, including citrus fruits, apples, cherries, grapes, tomatoes and berries. Vegetable sources include spinach, celery, potatoes, lettuce, broccoli, parsley, kale, red cabbage and green beans. Other sources include olive oil, tea, red wine, capers and cocoa.
Quercetin Supplements. Studies indicate that the amounts of quercetin you need to get benefits such as heart disease and cancer prevention are fairly substantial. To get enough, you'll probably need to take supplements, anywhere from 500 to 1,000mg. a day. To learn more about quercetin supplements, see my page on quercetin supplements.
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