The healing power of Scots pine – pine needles and pine shoots

The healing power of pine needles and shoots

The needles of a pine contain true power, no less than the shoots of this tree. They are a source of vitamin C, thanks to which they will prove useful in the fight against the lack of immunity. Scots pine (Pinus sylvestris L.) – a species of an evergreen tree from the pine family (Pinaceae). It is commonly found in the areas of Northern and Central Europe (also mountainous) and Eastern Siberia.

Pine needle tea was known centuries ago. In Siberia, it was used to treat all diseases related to the upper respiratory tract. The Russians drank it to relieve sinus pain, and minimize a runny nose and cough. Pine needles have also been found to enhance memory. Also, Native Americans protected themselves against scurvy in this way. Pine needles are rich in vitamin C, one of the most important vitamins that supports the body’s resistance to viruses.  

A cup of tea a day can provide more vitamin C than a glass of orange juice. What’s more – 50 g of pine needles cover 100 percent. the daily requirement for this vitamin. So let’s drink to our health.  
Infusions, decoctions, tinctures and pine syrups have been used in natural medicine for centuries as expectorants (they stimulate the cilia of the mucosa epithelium), diuretic, disinfectant, antiseptic and bactericidal in diseases of the throat and mouth. They are recommended in light catarrh of the upper respiratory tract, stomach, intestines and urinary tract. Pine oil, in turn, has a bactericidal, expectorant and antispasmodic effect, hence it is used as an aerosol in infections of the throat, larynx and bronchi.  

The properties of pine are also appreciated by people suffering from chronic fatigue – pine oils or infusions stimulate, energize and even prevent fatigue to some extent. The use of pine infusions and oils, however, will not be suitable for everyone. People who are allergic to pine, as well as pregnant and breastfeeding women, should beware of them. It is also not advisable to give tea to children under 7 without consulting a doctor.  

Premium Rosa Pine Needles Syrup Pine Shoots Syrup

Scots pine - characteristics

The medicinal raw materials obtained from pine are real bombs of valuable nutrients. Its shoots contain valuable essential oil, tannins, resinous and bitter substances, carotene and vitamin C. The bark extract, in turn, contains mainly procyanidin (70%) as well as polyphenols and flavonoids (including lignans) with strong antioxidant, antibacterial, antiviral and anti-cancer properties. , anti-inflammatory and antiallergic.  


Support for immunity

Due to the rich and diverse composition shown in the research, it is believed that the raw materials obtained from Scots pine may prevent some chronic diseases related to the aging process (*1).  
Perhaps it is this systemic effect that makes pine so willingly used in colds and diseases accompanied by cough, inflammation or irritation of mucous membranes. Indeed, studies show that the oil has a stimulating effect on the immune system and can be found on the labels of preparations used in the prevention and treatment of respiratory diseases, bile secretion disorders, contractile conditions of the bile ducts or indigestion (*2)  


Anti-inflammatory properties

Although currently pine extracts are less often added to ointments or creams used in inflammation, research confirms that they can soothe this type of ailments (e.g. rheumatism, neuralgia, muscle strain). It turns out that pine bark contains compounds that inhibit the production of inflammatory mediators (*3).


Antifungal and antibacterial properties

Pine oil is often used as a natural disinfectant and disinfectant, neutralizing bacteria, viruses and fungi. It can be effective, among others in the case of Candida albicans, Enterobacter aerogenes, Escherichia coli, Klebsiella pneumoniae or Staphylococcus aureus fungi and bacteria (*4).
In one study, it was found that Scots pine needle extract on cancer cells in the case of breast cancer, and an even stronger effect was shown by essential oil – both in the case of HER2-positive and HER2-negative tumors. According to the authors, this is the strongest cytotoxic effect of all the extracts from various pine species measured so far, and Scots pine needle extract and essential oil have potential as chemopreventive or chemotherapeutic agents for mammary gland tumors that do not respond to endocrine treatment (*5).  


  • 1* Nutr Cancer. 2006; 56 (2): 162-71
  • 2* Post Fitoter 2012; (4): 211-215
  • 3* J. Agric. Food Chem 2004; 52 (25): 7532- 7540
  • 4* J Ethnopharmacology 2002; 83 (1-2): 73-77; Rev Ital EPPOS 1991; 4:37-49; Int J Aromather 2004; 14:192-7; Pharm Weekbl Sci 1986; 8: 289-92
  • 5* Pharmacogn Mag. 2015; 11 (Suppl 2): S290-S29
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