Burdock root is a vegetable native to Northern Asia and Europe that is now grown all over the United States. The root comes from burdock, which is a genus of weeds that are covered in spurs and can grow over 4 feet tall. The roots of the plant are also believed to be the most beneficial part.
It is characterized by its large, dark heart-shaped leaves and purple flowers that bloom in the Springtime and is known for its incredibly nutty flavor. It is related to sunflowers and is part of the daisy family. Burdock root has been a big part of traditional Chinese medicine for hundreds of years and has more recently been studied in clinical trials for its health benefits. We now know that Burdock root is both food and medicine.
How To Consume It
Burdock root is extremely versatile and can be consumed in many different ways. It can be steeped into a powerful superfood herbal tea, crushed into a pill form for supplements, and cooked into delicious recipes, such as stir fry. Burdock root has been used for centuries for a reason. It has been known to detoxify the body, purify the blood, and inhibit cancer and diabetes, among other benefits. If you haven’t tried cooking with burdock yet, definitely give these recipes a try and let us know what you think!
1. Kinpira Gobo: Japanese Sautéed Burdock Root
If you’re looking to create an authentic Japanese dinner, consider including this traditional side dish of Kinpira Gobo: Japanese Sautéed Burdock Root by Anita Jacobson. Burdock is a root that when shaved, has a pleasantly crunchy texture with a sweet flavor and floral scent.
2. Macrobiotic Sweet and Sour Tempeh
This Macrobiotic Sweet and Sour Tempeh by The One Peaceful World Cookbook: Over 150 Vegan, Macrobiotic Recipes for Vibrant Health and Happiness blends tastes, flavors, and textures in delicious, uplifting harmony. Tempeh, carrots, burdock, and lotus root are combined with a sweet, tangy sauce that pairs perfectly with brown rice.
3. Tofu Yasai Don: Japanese Tofu Rice Bowl
This Tofu Yasai Don: Japanese Tofu Rice Bowl by Rachael Hutchings takes some chopping, but once the prep is done it comes together quickly and easily. Tofu, burdock root, Shiitake mushrooms, Japanese sweet potato, and more are simmered in a sweet, umami sauce and served over a generous bed of rice. Simple, but delicious! Just be sure to start about three days in advance prepping the tofu so it is ready when you need it.
Check out what Burdock Root has to offer:
Purifies The Blood
Burdock root is most well known for removing toxins from the blood. Evidence has shown that it can do this due to the active ingredients in its root system. Studies have also shown that this root can detoxify heavy metals from the blood, promoting increased circulation on the surface of the skin, and improving skin health.
Drinking Burdock in tea form has been shown to speed up digestion and allow for better absorption of nutrients in your gut. Not only does it do a great job at soothing the digestive system, but it can also protect your body against disease. Burdock tea may also help prevent ulcers and bloating.
Burdock may improve symptoms of diabetes. In a 2019 study, there was evidence to show that the polysaccharides in burdock help regulate blood fats. It has also been shown to help regulate glucose homeostasis and improve oxidative stress.
Burdock root is known to be a powerhouse of antioxidants. Some of these include quercetin, luteolin, and phenolic acids. The root of the plant also contains flavonoids or phytochemicals. Antioxidants protect cells in the body from damage due to free radicals and can help treat and prevent several different health conditions. Antioxidants are also known for their ability to benefit the skin and improve signs of aging.
In one clinical trial of 36 people with knee osteoarthritis, drinking three cups of burdock root tea per day significantly reduced inflammation. Similarly, arctiin, a burdock polyphenol, decreased levels of inflammatory substances (TNF-alpha, IL-1beta, and IL-6) in mice. While this is exciting news, more clinical trials on larger populations still need to be conducted for a stronger correlation.
Inhibits Some Cancers
Not only does Burdock Root purify the blood, but evidence has shown that it may also inhibit certain types of cancer. In some studies, burdock root was shown to stop the growth of bacteria and fungi. Researchers from China found that a constituent in Burdock known as Arctigenin can slow and even put a stop to the growth of cancer cells, and prevent it from spreading to other parts of the body.
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Learn How to Cook Plant-Based Meals at Home!
Reducing your meat intake and eating more plant-based foods is known to help with chronic inflammation, heart health, mental wellbeing, fitness goals, nutritional needs, allergies, gut health, and more! Dairy consumption also has been linked to many health problems, including acne, hormonal imbalance, cancer, and prostate cancer, and has many side effects.
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