Burdock Root – (Arctium)

Burdock root has been used for centuries in holistic medicine to treat a variety of different conditions. Traditionally, it was most commonly used as a diuretic and a digestive aid.

Burdock is cultivated in China, Japan, Vietnam, Indonesia, Philippines, New Zealand, the United States, Canada and in various countries in Europe.  It is considered an all-purpose herb/root that has been used continually for more than one thousand years.  The root, leaves, and seed are used in natural medicine.

In some countries, the root is eaten fresh or cooked, while young tender leaves are stewed, sauteed, or mixed with other cooking greens. The stalks have a taste somewhat like asparagus and can be eaten raw in a salad or steamed.

In traditional Chinese medicine, burdock root is known to balance internal heat, is specifically helpful for supporting skin health, and is associated with lung and stomach meridians. It is considered energetically cold and having a slippery consistency that soothes mucus membranes.

The root is full of powerful antioxidants, including quercetin, luteolin, and phenolic acids.  It is used to cleanse the blood of toxins and there may be indications that it inhibits certain types of cancer.  It is a natural diuretic.

Multiple warnings are known for Burdock Root, including not to use during pregnancy and not for small children.  If you’re allergic to chrysanthemums or daisies, you may be at an increased risk of having an allergic reaction to burdock root and should avoid it.

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