Quercetin for the Common Cold, Allergies, & Lung Problems

Byron J. Richards, Board Certified Clinical Nutritionist

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Quercetin for the Common Cold, Allergies, & Lung Problems
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Last month the American Thoracic Society held its annual International Conference in New Orleans. There were four papers presented demonstrating the power of quercetin to combat the common cold, reduce airway allergic responses, and even benefit individuals with serious lung problems such as COPD (Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease).The common cold virus can wreak havoc and make just about anyone miserable. Not only does it rapidly replicate, it actively damages your sinus lining leading to inflammation, pain, congestion, and prolonged viral activity. One research group presented evidence that quercetin1 reduced the excessive inflammatory response of the common cold virus while actively blocking viral replication. The researchers concluded the lining of the sinus "quercetin may be beneficial in the treatment of viral infections, particularly in patients with underlying chronic lung disease." A related study confirmed that the common cold virus2 induces significant damage to the lining of the airways as part of the infection process and quercetin helps stop that problem.

In a third study that ability of quercetin to block allergic airway inflammation3 and airway hyperresponsiveness was tested. The study results showed that quercetin lowered airway hypersensitivity as well as reducing allergic-related immune cells and their inflammatory signals. This study supports the use of quercetin as an immune-stabilizing anti-allergy compound that is consistent with many earlier studies showing that it helps to stabilize the mast cells involved with histamine release.

The fourth study involved an animal model of COPD. COPD is the name given to the deterioration of lung function that is a growing problem associated with aging Americans. Once again quercetin demonstrated a high level of efficacy in terms of improving lung function4 - ameliorating many of the processes that are causing the deterioration of lung tissue. Interestingly, quercetin activated the SIRT1 gene in the lungs. This is the powerful anti-aging gene that is also activated by resveratrol.

In combination these four new studies highlight the power of a natural substance, quercetin, to offer significant support for a variety of respiratory issues that are commonly experienced by many people.

Referenced Studies

  1. ^ Quercetin and the Common Cold  American Thoracic Society May 2010 annual International Conference in New Orleans  S. Ganesan, PhD, S. Chattoraj, MS, A.N. Faris, Ph.D., A. Comstock, BS, U. Sajjan, PhD
  2. ^ Quercetin Reduces Oxidative Stress of Cold Virus  American Thoracic Society May 2010 annual International Conference in New Orleans.  A. Comstock, BS, A. Chattoraj, MS, S. Ganesan, PhD, S. Chattoraj, MS, M.B. Hershenson, MD, U. Sajjan, PhD
  3. ^ Quercetin Reduces Airway Allergy  American Thoracic Society May 2010 annual International Conference in New Orleans  E.A. Cruz, MS, S. Reuter, PhD, H. Martin, MS, N. Dehzad, MS, M.F. Muzitano, PhD, S.S. COSTA, PhD, B.R. Bergmann, PhD, R. Buhl, MD, C. Taube, MD
  4. ^ Quercetin Helps COPD  American Thoracic Society May 2010 annual International Conference in New Orleans  S. Ganesan, PhD, A. Comstock, BS, S. Chattoraj, MS, M.B. Hershenson, MD, U. Sajjan, PhD

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