Comfrey was highly valued by the Greeks as an herbal remedy. In medieval times, comfrey was used to mend fractured bones. Comfrey has many benefits, and can treat many ailments both internal and external. Comfrey has been used as an antibacterial and antifungal, to reduce inflammation, ease pain, stop swelling, and shrink blood vessels.
Comfrey grows in many areas of the world, from Newfoundland to Georgia to Louisiana, and is also found in Europe. It thrives in soft, wet ground and is usually found in meadows or valleys. Comfrey is a big plant and can be up to five feet tall. Its leaves are dark green, long, and oval-shaped, and they grow on the upright, branch at the top of the plant. It blooms from May to September and its flowers are soft, and bell-shaped, and are either purple or yellow. The root of the plant is dark, almost black, on the outside and pale and fleshy on the inside. The root secretes a thick liquid.
Medical Indications and Benefits
Comfrey is an effective remedy for a variety of conditions. It is a powerful antibacterial, antifungal, and to reduce swelling and inflammation. Comfrey is an anodyne, meaning that it relieves pain; it’s an astringents, meaning that it shrinks blood vessels; it expels mucous; it’s a haemostatic, meaning it can stimulated the clotting of blood; it’s a proliferant, meaning it stimulates cell growth; it’s a refrigerant and can be a mild sedative; and it expedite the healing process. Comfrey is often used to treat maladies like lung disorders, and it can help break up and build-up in the throat. Comfrey is a laxative. It contains a substance which will relieve diarrhea and assist food digestion. These properties make comfrey very valuable to people with bowel disorders like irritable bowel syndrome. Studies have also found that comfrey is beneficial in treating ulcers and diabetes. Mucilage, a gum-based thing that is produced by comfrey, keeps the bowel from emptying and represses the amounts of glucose and insulin that peak after meals. It also helps eliminate cholesterol, and the amount of nutrients in the comfrey leads to better general health.
Comfrey as a Food Supplement
Comfrey is an excellent tonic or dietary supplement because it contains many nutrients and beneficial chemicals, including protein, vitamins A and C. Comfrey is also one of only two plants that naturally contain vitamin B12 (alfalfa is the other one). Comfrey has many other B-complex vitamins as well. It also contains mucilaginous fiber, calcium, potassium, phosphorus, iron, magnesium, sulphur, copper, zinc, selenium, and germanium.