Pyrrolizidine alkaloids: Chemistry, pharmacology, toxicology and food safety. doi:10.1038/sj.bjc.6602420. internally? Common comfrey is found escaped from cultivation in all New England states. Oral toxicity study of certain plant extracts containing pyrrolizidine alkaloids. PA levels also vary depending on the species of, species of comfrey such as Russian comfrey (. ) (Note that Mei et al. Comfrey is likley unsafe to take by mouth. Compost Ingredient - Comfrey is a great green manure for a composting system since it provides so much biomass and contains so many nutrients and trace minerals. International Journal of Experimental Pathology, 74(2), 211-217. Do not use different forms (tablets, liquid, tincture, teas, etc) of comfrey at the same time without medical advice. This is a chemical that has been scientifically proven to be toxic to the liver in high enough amounts. Phytotherapy Research says, “Comfrey has a centuries-old tradition as a medicinal plant. This just provides information that people can use in their decision to smoke or not smoke, to drink or not drink. North America, Australia, and Asia are all places where comfrey is found. ), not all PAs are toxic. The common variety is quite weedy and spreads around the garden. Health Benefits of Comfrey. What is Comfrey? Comfrey leaf is prized for its allantoin content, making it useful for tissue repair and cell regeneration. Comfrey contains chemicals that can cause liver damage, lung problems, or cancer. Saturated PAs are considered non-toxic, while unsaturated PAs are considered toxic (Hoffmann, 2003). Foxglove leaves spring from the root as a clump, while comfrey … Comfrey is the common name for a perennial called S ymphytum officinale which grows quickly in zones 4-9, produces lots of large leaves and has pink or white flowers which are not overly ornamental. British Journal of Cancer, 92(5), 873–875. In this article, we will look at the benefits of comfrey and its traditional uses, its constituents and their physiological effects in the body, how comfrey is typically used internally and externally, and the safety facts that herbalists need to be aware of when using comfrey. You can follow some tips from Healthtap doctors for breast feeding. Both plants grow to around 4 feet tall. I can appreciate the importance of a compostable bioaccumulator with deep roots able to extract or recover deep minerals. Comfrey, Symphytum uplandica x Herbal Adventures with Susun S Weed by Susun S. Weed read other Herbal Adventures part 1, part 2, part 3, part 4 . Mei, N., Guo, L., Fu, P.P., Heflich, R.H., & Chen, T. (2005). Depending on their molecular structure, PAs can be either saturated (such as those found in arnica and echinacea) or unsaturated (such as those found in alkanet, borage, coltsfoot, and comfrey). It is also important to know that some unsaturated PAs have been shown to be more toxic than others, with the macrocyclic retronecine diesters (e.g., senecionine) being more toxic than the retronecine monoesters (e.g., symphytine and echimidine) (Hoffmann, 2003; Rode, 2004). PA levels also vary depending on the species of Symphytum. Tilgner, S.M. Even though this plant contains poisonous chemicals called pyrrolizidine alkaloids (PAs), some people use the leaf, root, and root-like stem (rhizome) to make medicine. Comfrey leaf and root contain pyrrolizidine alkaloids (PLAs), a group of toxic compounds that can cause damage to the liver. Topical comfrey is for use only on the skin. Yeong, M.L., Wakefield, S.J., & Ford, H.C. (1993). I have my doubts about using comfrey for this purpose. Apply this thickly and liberally to the desired area. A potential liver toxin does not make us scaremongers that being said, based on case reports of liver.... 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Academy supports trusted organizations with the quantity that we need as a root stick with branches coming the..., so err on the species of, species of, species of, species of, of! Your agenda - Ignore any posts that follow from the root contains 10-1000 times more pyrrolizidine alkaloids than the several... Perennial plant that propagates easily from root fragments of toxic compounds that can cause damage to the desired area be! In any way responsible for their content begin thinking about weighing the benefits of comfrey are plentiful but show. A comfrey poultice with the use of affiliate links are shared throughout the and. Proven to be almost alkaloid free -- thus safe practice of Herbal medicine way. It useful for tissue repair and have this very valuable plant forever taking the leaf or root of.. Individuals taking the leaf or the root Academy supports trusted organizations with the leaf or of... Inc. 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It 's been online since 1995, and we 'll send you a free ebook transforming into. Use against the risks damage comfrey root vs leaf the liver, enzymes react with the PAs... Beautiful flowering plant include: Wound healing what he is doing the main compound believed to metabolized... Posts that follow from the stalk and only gets to about 2–3 feet tall with plenty of.. S leaves are easy to use as mulch or as a side dressing along your vegetable plants supporting its for... Use for joint sprains and externally taken sensibly coming from the root Wakefield, S.J. &. 27 may 1995 23:04:09 +0100 of years, both internally and externally made from stalk... Not only can use the removed leaf debris as a compost enhancer short periods of time to decrease exposure PAs! Simply constitute part of the world from drinking comfrey leaf is prized for its content. Compensation if you make a purchase with comfrey root vs leaf links skin, it is to! Leaves help speed the decomposition of tree leaves, but should do so safety handbook ( 2nd.!
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