Medicinal PlantsVegetables

Burdock Root

Burdock is the common name of the genus of a flowering perennial, Arctium (Burdock Genus). This plant can be recognized by small burrs that tend to get stuck on the clothes while walking in a forest. These hooking burrs from the burdock plant, as well as its leaves and stems, have a high medicinal value. The root of burdock is known to possess strong medicinal properties, which help in the management of several disorders.

Burdock Root is rich in fibers and essential vitamins, and minerals, which makes it an effective remedy for managing obesity. It can promote weight loss and help obese patients achieve a healthy weight in a safe manner.

It can also be used for treating cancer. It acts as a detoxifier and cleanses the body by eliminating harmful toxins. It also reduces inflammation and protects the body against the free radical damage.

Phytochemistry (Chemical Composition)

Burdock root contains a high amount of mucilage, polyacetylenes, sulfurous acetylene compounds, and guaianolide-type constituents.

Burdock Root Benefits and Uses

Burdock Root can be used for the management of obesity. It can help in reducing weight in a healthy manner. It can also be used for the treatment and prevention of cancer. It can help to relieve the symptoms of cancer and also prevent the progress of the disease. Regular use of this herb can help to improve the overall health and fitness of patients.

Burdock Root for obesity

Burdock Root is a natural remedy for reducing weight. It helps to promote weight loss by stimulating the metabolism of fats in the body.  It also supports lipolysis and allows the body to utilize the stored fats in an effective way. It works by stimulating the natural metabolic processes in the body.

How Does Burdock Root Work in obesity?

Burdock Root is a natural aid for weight loss. It possesses anti-obesity properties that help people to lose weight in a shorter duration of time. It has the ability to regulate the metabolism of lipids and enhance the fat burning processes in the body. This results in the faster utilization of calories and promotes weight loss.

When coupled with a low-calorie diet, Burdock Root can create a negative calorie balance in the body due to which it is forced to use the stored fats to meet its fuel requirements. This results in the conversion of fats to a usable source of energy in order to carry out different functions resulting in the loss of weight.

Burdock Root also causes activation of the lipid metabolism, which leads to a faster breakdown of fats from the food. It also prevents the deposition of fats in the abdominal region thereby preventing central obesity.

Research studies for the use of Burdock Root in obesity

The anti-obesity effect of Burdock Root has been proved during research. The aim of the study was to prove the ability of Burdock Root to cause activation of the AMP-activated protein kinase in the HepG2 cells.

To evaluate the efficacy of the bioactive compounds of Burdock Root, its extract was combined with ethanol (AL-1) and later fractionated with ethyl acetate (AL-3), water (AL-5), n-hexane (AL-2), and n-butanol (AL-4).

Among these fractions, AL-2 was found to contain the components having the most effective hypolipidemic activity in the human hepatoma HepG2 cells. It was also observed that AL-2 could decrease the expression of the fatty acid synthase. It also inhibited the effect of acetyl-coenzyme A carboxylase by causing stimulation of the AMP-activated protein kinase through the LKB1 pathway. These results suggested that Burdock Root could be useful for weight management in the obese patients. (1)

Burdock Root for Cancer

Burdock Root can be used as a natural anti-cancer agent. It is beneficial for the treatment and prevention of the cancer of colon, esophagus, stomach, pancreas, breasts, and uterus. It can help to prevent the proliferation of the abnormal cancer cells and prevent the spread and growth of cancer.

Patients diagnosed with cancer are advised to use Burdock Root in combination with the conventional therapies like surgery or chemotherapy to improve their chances of recovery. It can also be used by the patients having a high risk of cancer to prevent the development of cancerous changes in the healthy organs.

How Does Burdock Root Work in Cancer?

Burdock Root acts as an antiproliferative agent. It can inhibit the multiplication of cancer cells. This helps to limit the growth of cancer. Burdock Root also stimulates apoptosis and induces programmed cell death thus causing regression of the cancer mass.

It has the ability to prevent angiogenesis. This helps to block the process of formation of new blood vessels in the cancer mass. As a result, the cancer cells are deprived of the blood supply resulting in their death.

Research studies for the use of Burdock Root in Cancer

The anticancer potential of Burdock Root has been proved during research. During this study, the anti-carcinogenic efficacy of the dichloromethanic, aqueous, and ethanolic extracts of Burdock Root at different temperatures was assessed. The total aqueous and hydroethanolic extracts of Burdock Root were also investigated in terms of their free radical scavenging activity.

The results of this study showed that the hydroethanolic extract of Burdock Root possessed a higher free radical scavenging activity that could be beneficial in the prevention of cancer.

A higher phenolic content was found in the dichloromethane extract that was obtained by maceration and Soxhlet extraction as well as in the hydroethanolic extract. The dichloromethane extracts were found to exhibit an activity against the cancer cell lines including K562, 786-0, and MCF-7.

These findings have confirmed the usefulness of the hydroethanolic extracts of Burdock Root in the management of cancer. It has been shown to possess a strong antioxidant potential. This could help to protect the healthy cells against the damage caused by free radicals thus preventing cancerous changes in the organs.  Burdock Root was also proved to have a selective antiproliferative activity against certain human cancer cell lines. These properties of Burdock Root could help to prevent the growth of cancer. (2)

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