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Burdock (Arctium lappa)

In traditional herbal texts, Burdock Root is described as a “blood purifier” or “alterative,” and was believed to clear the bloodstream of toxins. During the Industrial Revolution, Burdock was used as a medicine to help people cope with the increasing environmental pollution. In Hawaii, the roots of this herb are sometimes given as a "gag" wedding gift because of their aphrodisiac powers. In traditional Chinese medicine, Burdock Root, in combination with other herbs, is used to treat sore throats, tonsillitis, colds, and even measles. It is eaten as a vegetable in Japan and elsewhere.

Burdock Root is one of the foremost cleansing herbs, providing nourishing support for the blood, the liver, and the natural defense system. It is rich in Vitamins B-1, B-6, B-12, and E, plus manganese, copper, iron, zinc, sulfur, inulin, essential oil and more.

The herb contains polyacetylenes that have both anti-bacterial and anti-fungal properties. By improving the functioning of many organs of elimination (liver, kidneys, bowels), many health conditions can be improved.

Burdock Root contains high amounts of inulin and mucilage. This may explain its soothing effects on the gastrointestinal tract. Bitter constituents in the root may also explain the traditional use of Burdock to improve digestion.

The polyacetylene and inulin constituents have also been shown to have anti-microbial activity. Burdock Root (and the fruit) also has the ability to mildly reduce glycemic load and stabilize blood sugar levels.

Burdock Root also aids in the elimination of uric acid, acts as a diuretic, stimulating cellular regeneration, is useful in cleansing and treatment of Crohn's disease, aids in alleviating distress related to Chronic Fatigue Syndrome and promotes bone and joint health.


No known contraindications or side effects. Usually consumed as tea. It is listed as a GRAS food (generally recognized as safe) in the U.S. and Canada.

 

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