Saturday, February 18, 2012

The Wonders of Artichoke Leaf

The Artichoke is one of the oldest known cultivated vegetables. It originated in Ethiopia but Italy is the world's leading producer of this wonderful vegetable. In ancient times, the Greeks and Romans used Artichokes as a digestive aid. It was only available to the wealthy due to its lack of availability. Artichoke extract is one of the few herbal remedies that has been through clinical trials and experiments to yield favorable results. Artichoke has been proven to aid with everything from diabetes to curing a hangover. One of the most favorable benefits for many is the ability of Artichoke extract to aid with weight loss. The Artichoke leaf has been shown to improve liver function and help lower cholesterol levels, and prevent heart disease and diminish the risk of arteriosclerosis. It has been used traditionally and in alternative medicine for treating dyspepsia, indigestion, flatulence, nausea, as well as, gallbladder ailments, including jaundice and hepatitis. Artichoke extracts are said to be helpful for kidney and liver insufficiency, post-operative anemia, and in some countries an herbal aphrodisiac. Artichoke liquid extract is known to positively help gout, it also supports the treatment and improves gall secretions. It can slightly lower blood sugar, improve the appetite and digestion, is a natural diuretic and may help some migraine conditions, especially those that are caused by toxins in the blood. Artichoke can serve as a natural diuretic. The Artichoke liquid extract can help to prevent water retention as well as aid in kidney function. Natural diuretics can help you lose 5 to 10 pounds of water weight in just one week. As it helps the body rid itself of excess water and moves toxins, it has the added benefit of improving skin luminosity.

Artichoke leaf has been shown to be a natural remedy which improves various digestive health disorders. Traditional use, as well as recent clinical studies have shown the many benefits of the Artichoke Leaf extract including, lipid-lowering, antioxidant, as well as aiding dyspepsia, and abdominal pain where the stomach, gallbladder, liver and pancreas are primarily affected. Artichoke leaf tinctures are also believed to be an effective way to reduce the discomfort and symptoms associated with irritable bowel syndrome (IBS). Studies have proven that Artichoke herbal supplement may help significantly to improve heartburn, acid reflux, indigestion, bloating, flatulence, nausea, vomiting and constipation.

Research has been done and it was found that Artichoke liquid extract has anti-tumor and anti-inflammatory effects in those with skin cancer. This is in part the result of antioxidants in vitamin C that protect DNA and RNA molecules from free radical damage. Severe vitamin C deficiency is called scurvy, while low intake of the vitamin has been linked to cardiovascular disease, stroke and cancer.

The flavonoids from the artichoke have been shown to prevent LDL cholesterol oxidation, an effect that may reduce the risk of arteriosclerosis. These studies determined that when Artichoke leaf extract was administered to otherwise healthy adults with raised cholesterol, levels dropped 6 percent. Artichoke leaf extract has levels of luteolin, an antioxidant efficient at fighting free radicals and reinforcing the functions of the immune system. Additionally, the luteolin content has been shown to increase carbohydrate metabolism. This excellent source of potassium is also useful for reducing the chances of strokes.

A good source of magnesium, the extract of Artichoke provides this important mineral that is helpful in energy production, supports bone health and plays a role in nerve and cardiac function.

Studies are being carried out into the effectiveness of Artichoke leaf extract for diseases such as Alzheimer's disease, HIV and cancer due to its ability to remove toxins and support the immune system.

Artichoke's ability to process fats in the body can be beneficial for weight loss. Some of the qualities attributed to Artichoke use include hypoglycemic activity that may assist in lowering blood glucose levels. It has had traditional uses in the Americas and Spain for treating diabetes. It is also said to be useful in cases of post-operative anemia. According to The Essential Guide to Vitamins, Minerals and Herbal Supplements, Artichoke extract can serve as a natural diuretic. The extract can help prevent water retention as well as, aid in kidney function. Natural diuretics can help you lose five to ten pounds of water weight in just one week. Highly nutritious Artichoke is considered a diuretic, promoting the flow of urine and appears to be effective in improving kidney function. Artichoke is frequently used to eliminate peripheral edema.

The liver is the most complex of the body's organs and it is important for maintaining a healthy immune system. Artichoke herbal extract can help prevent liver damage and detoxify the body. When toxins build up in the liver it is unable to function adequately. Artichoke leaf extracts protect liver cells from oxidative stress and prevent liver disease. Signs that a liver needs cleansing include headaches, fatigue, dizziness, PMS, skin irritation, dry mouth and sluggish digestion. Because Artichoke Leaf extract stimulates the production of bile, this benefits the liver by helping it eliminate toxins. It also has apoptotic activity on the liver cancer cells. And there is even anecdotal evidence it may help a person recover from a hangover because of its positive effects on the liver.

Artichokes are a good source of folate, providing as much as 15 percent of what the average adult needs. Folate, also known as folic acid, is important in the production of red blood cells and the formation of the body's genetic material. Pregnant women need adequate folic acid to prevent birth defects. Folate decreases the likelihood of premature delivery and having a low birth weight infant.

The Artichoke leaf extract helps maintain the equilibrium of essential nutrients in the body which aid with healthy looking nails, lustrous hair and glowing skin.

Artichokes are a great source of magnesium and chromium, a trace mineral. The extract is a good source of vitamin C, folic acid, biotin and manganese. They are also sources of niacin, thiamin, riboflavin, vitamin A, and potassium.

Ingredients: Artichoke Leaf, Distilled Water, 20% Alcohol.

Instructions: Use 6-12 drops in juice or water, or under the tongue. May be taken 3 times daily. Shake well. Store in cool dark place. Keep out of reach of children.

Contraindications: Artichoke leaf is well tolerated and there are no known side effects or drug interactions. Not recommended for those who are allergic to Artichoke or other members of the compositae family (daisy) family. Those who have obstruction of the bile duct (gallstones) should not take Artichoke.

Disclaimer: The information presented herein by New Way Herbs is intended for educational purposes only. These statements have not been evaluated by the FDA and are not intended to diagnose, cure, treat or prevent disease. Individual results may vary, and before using any supplements, it is always advisable to consult with your own health care provider.