Burdock Arctium lappa
This Old World tenacious weed can be found world wide! You will probably recognize Burdock by their notorious large burs that adhere onto any one passing by. They are an essential pollen source for honey bees in August as well!
Burdock is an awesome source of Calcium, Magnesium, Phosphorus, Iron, Chromium, Inulin, Sesquiterpenes, bitter glycosides, Flavonoids, and volatile oils. (1 & 2)
It’s a wonderful cooling herb for red irritated skin conditions (acne, boils, eczema, psoriasis, early stage measles, ect.), urinary inflammation (UTIs, Kidney infections, even blood in the urine), Burdock has also been used for reducing muscle/joint pain and inflammation (sciatica, lumbago, arthritis, and acute inflammation and injury too!), swollen inflamed lymph nodes (soar, itchy throat), and constipation, in addition to short tempered anger (>_<) (stagnation of the emotions, nervousness, stress, red face, red eyes, headache, explosive anger). Wow that’s a powerful herb!
Chinese Medicine terms for Burdock:
- Dispel Wind Heat, ease the throat
- Resolve Toxicity, Vent Rashes
- Moisten the Intestines, Constipation (3)
For example: When mom or dad gets home after a long day of work just to step on your lego…. Ooops! Time for a burdock tea 😉
One of the four ingredients in the Native American Essiac formula still used today. Great for moving lymph stagnation or congestion, like swollen lymph nodes, which is the highway for the immune system. By drinking 3-4 cups of burdock teat/day for 2 days your swollen lymph glands should be gone! (1)
Use root internally in teas and meals, and the seeds/leaves for poultices and salves. In Japan Chinese Burdock is called Gobo and is eaten like a carrot for Lv Qi Stag (nervousness, frustration). (2)
Written by Fauve
- Medicinal Herbs: A Beginners Guide, Rosemary Gladstar, pg107-111
- The Way of Herbs, Michael Tierra L.Ac, OMD. Pg 105-106.
- Handbook of Oriental Medicine: 5th Edition, H.B. Kim L.Ac. pg. 365