Burdock root health benefits

Arctium lappa

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. Now, researchers have discovered numerous potential uses and health benefits for burdock root. These benefits may be extensive enough to warrant using burdock root as a complementary treatment for certain conditions.

Burdock plant picture

It’s a powerhouse of antioxidants

Research from 2010 has shown that burdock root contains multiple types of powerful antioxidants, including quercetin, luteolin, and phenolic acids. Antioxidants protect cells in the body from damage due to free radicals. They can help treat and prevent a number of different health conditions. The antioxidant action helps reduce inflammation. One 2014 study found that burdock root reduced inflammatory markers in the blood for patients with osteoarthritis.

It removes toxins from the blood

One of the most common traditional uses for burdock root has been to purify the blood. Recent evidence has found that burdock root

can remove toxins from the bloodstream. A 2011 study found that burdock root effectively detoxified blood and promoted increased


It may inhibit some types of cancer

Burdock root, as it turns out, may not only purify the blood. It may also inhibit certain types of cancer.

The 2011 study also found that burdock seeds had “potent inhibitory effects” on the growth of tumors caused by cancers like

pancreatic carcinoma. Another 2016 study found burdock root significantly interfered with cancer cell growth. While more research

is needed to determine the full effects of burdock seeds on different types of cancers and tumors, this is still a significant finding.

It may be an aphrodisiac

Another traditional use of burdock root is as an aphrodisiac. A 2012 study on male rats found that the extract of burdock root had an

aphrodisiac effect. The extract enhanced sexual function and increased the amount of sexual behavior in the male rats.

More research is needed on humans, but anecdotal evidence supports this claim.

It can help treat skin issues

 One of the most common side effects of constipation, high toxicity in the blood, or poor dietary habits is skin inflammation,

manifesting as spots, pimples, acne, rashes or discoloration. Burdock root has long been used to treat skin conditions like acne, psoriasis,

and eczema. The anti-inflammatory and antibacterial properties of the root can help resolve skin issues when it’s applied topically to the skin.

One study from 2014 Trusted Source even found evidence that burdock root may help treat topical burns.

Regulates Blood Pressure:

One of the aspects of Burdock that doesn’t receive enough attention is its impressive ability to lower blood pressure. The plant’s high concentration of potassium, a vasodilator, helps relieve tension within the cardiovascular system by relaxing the blood vessels and arteries, thereby helping to prevent atherosclerosis, heart attack and stroke.

Aids in Digestion:

The most well-known use of Burdock is as a digestive aid for many reasons. Firstly, the high concentration of fiber in it helps stimulate the digestive system and moves food smoothly through the bowels, thereby relieving constipation and preventing bloating, cramping, and ulcers. Inulin, a particular type of fiber found in  Burdock Root, can reduce inflammation in the gut and eliminates many types of harmful bacteria that can cause diarrhea and gastrointestinal problems.

Controls Diabetes:

Although all types of fiber can regulate the balance of insulin and glucose in the body, inulin is particularly effective and has been directly connected to reducing the  development and severity of diabetes and diabetes-related symptoms. The significant levels of Inulin in Burdock Root can also lower overall blood cholesterol by eliminating it from the body, thereby protecting your cardiovascular system.

Detoxifies the Liver:

The chemicals that give Burdock its bitter taste, also stimulate bile production and digestive juices in the gut, which helps the liver to rapidly process toxins and flush them from the system. Clearing toxins from the blood is one of the main purposes of the liver, and Burdock’s organic compounds and components have been directly linked to improving this function.

There’s limited or no research available on the pediatric uses of burdock root, and its safety hasn’t been studied in children. Because of this, you should never give your child burdock root unless under the supervision of a doctor.

Some potential risks of burdock include the following:

  • Burdock is considered to be safe to eat, but you should only buy it from reputable sellers and should never collect it in the wild. The Burdock plant resembles belladonna nightshade plants, which are highly toxic. They often grow together.
  • If you’re taking burdock supplements, take small doses only in moderation. More research is needed to determine the safety of the supplement.
  • Burdock root is a natural diuretic, so you shouldn’t take it if you’re dehydrated. You also shouldn’t take it if you’re also taking other diuretics or water pills, as it can increase dehydration.
  • 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.
  • Pregnant women or women trying to become pregnant shouldn’t take burdock root or supplements.

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