artichoke with purple flowers
[Cynara scolymus]

Artichoke: vegetable that can do more

Artichoke is considered one of the great remedies for liver and gall bladder. It has been cultivated in Europe since around the birth of Christ and has thus become part of the cuisine and medicinal treasure trove. The spread of artichoke in Europe was massively promoted only in the time of Catherine de Medici. In this period it conquered the palace gardens, as it was considered very noble and distinguished. Due to the work of Catherine de Medici, the medicinal plant has a firm place in French cuisine to this day and is eaten there with pleasure. In naturopathy, it has earned a reputation as appetizing, digestive and cholesterol-lowering.

Facts about the artichoke

Did you know that...

...the Mafia secured the trade monopoly in the USA when the medicinal plant was introduced at the beginning of the 19th century, which eventually ended with the Artichoke Wars?

...the Italian digestive Cynar is made from artichokes?

...the artichoke is also a thistle species?

What is the artichoke?

The artichoke is a species of thistle from the composite family. This bush-like growing plant, which grows up to 2 meters high, originally comes from the Arabian countries and arrived in the Mediterranean region around the birth of Christ. Its thorny foliage leaves are bipinnate to tripinnate, with gray-felted hairs on the underside, and grow between 40cm and 80cm long. The basket-like inflorescences are the part of the plant that is harvested and eaten as a delicacy. The petals are hard and leathery, but become flesh, tender and tasty towards the base of the inflorescence. Harvested this part should be before the plant begins to bloom. However, the purple, large flower of the medicinal plant is also a real splendor and very decorative for the plant and the garden.

General and healing properties of the artichoke

Basic knowledge

Cholesterol lowering

Artichoke is cholesterol lowering. The medicinal plant stimulates the formation of bile. For this purpose, cholesterol is consumed by the body, so that blood cholesterol levels decrease. This reduces the risk of arteriosclerosis and the risk of strokes and heart attacks.


Artichoke is digestive. The active ingredients stimulate the activity of the liver, which now digests better and has a higher metabolic performance. Due to the fact that more bile is formed, the intestine has more fluid available for fat digestion and bowel movements are more harmonious.

Metabolism activating

Artichoke is metabolism activating. Through their unique effect, they activate the mitochondria, the power plants of our cells and stimulate the cells that more mitochondria are formed. Thus, cellular respiration runs better and the metabolism ramps up.

Cynara scolymus: Ingredients

You can find the following ingredients in the artichoke:

  • Flavonoids

Artichoke: effect for body and mind

The artichoke is one of the great liver healing plants that we have in the repertoire of naturopathy. It is the specialist for fat digestion and metabolism and relieves the strained intestine. With this medicinal plant it is important to use it repeatedly, but with some breaks. It has received special attention in recent years because of its cholesterol-lowering effect, which plays an important role for patients with cardiovascular risk. Here it can play an important natural role in reducing the risks. By stimulating the liver and relieving digestion, it can also be seen as an important remedy for people whose digestion costs them so much energy that they suffer from chronic fatigue. So it also has a strength-giving and relieving aspect in itself, which the digestive weak quickly learns to love.

Properties of the artichoke:

  • Cholesterol-lowering
  • Liver stimulating
  • Metabolism-promoting
  • Improving fat digestion
  • antiarteriosclerotic
  • Appetizing

Fields of application in naturopathy

[Cynara scolymus]
The artichoke is a digestive specialist and also has its therapeutic priorities in this area.

Artichoke stimulates the function of the liver & gall bladder

Cynara scolymus contains, among other things, the bitter substance cynarin. Bitters are generally held responsible for improving digestion. The effect begins in the mouth. The bitter taste is recognized by the brain and stimulates the glands to produce more digestive juices. As a result, our mouths water. But the glands include not only the oral salivary glands, but also the pancreas and the liver.

Cynara scolymus to promote digestion

Artichoke has been used for centuries to improve digestion. Especially with fatty foods, you quickly notice that it helps to digest them better. The tendency to constipation after heavy, fatty food decreases and these foods can be better overcome by the body.

Artichoke lowers blood lipid levels

According to the latest studies, Cynara scolymus has the potential to reduce blood lipid levels by up to 15% when consumed regularly. Since blood lipid levels are directly linked to the development of arteriosclerosis and its fatal consequences, lowering blood lipid levels is the best prophylaxis against cardiovascular sequelae such as heart attacks and strokes.

Cynara scolymus for gastrointestinal disorders

Many gastrointestinal problems have to do with an overload of the digestive glands and the digestive system. Since artichoke activates the digestive glands, improves fat digestion and thus relieves the intestines, it is one of the remedies of choice for gastrointestinal complaints.

Artichoke lowers cholesterol level

The cholesterol belongs to the so-called blood fat values. In recent years, Cynara scolymus has proven in various studies that it sustainably reduces blood lipid levels. Thus, the artichoke is one of the few plants that demonstrably reduces the risk of arteriosclerotic processes in the vessels and thus prevents secondary diseases.

Cynara scolymus improves fat digestion

The artichoke contains substances that stimulate the liver cells to produce more bile. The bile emulsifies fats in the intestine and helps to break them down together with the lipases from the pancreas. Fats that are ingested with food can thus be digested better, the intestines are not so heavily loaded and constipation is prevented.

Notes on the use of artichoke

The artichoke should be eaten or used as fresh juice. There are also good dry capsule preparations that are suitable for long-term intake. Here, care should always be taken that it is taken a few minutes before the next meal.

Artichoke during pregnancy & lactation

Cynara scolymus can also be eaten and taken during pregnancy.

Artichoke for a daisy allergy

Caution is advised in the case of an existing allergy to daisies. In case of doubt, the artichoke should be avoided.

Cynara scolymus for inflammation of the bile ducts

In case of inflammation of the bile ducts or an existing post- or intrahepatic icterus, Cynara scolymus should be avoided!

Artichoke for liver inflammation

Since the artichoke stimulates the liver, it should not be used in case of inflammation. Overload may occur. to do without the artichoke!

Discover our recipes

With natural methods such as the individual spagyric sprays from Zimply Natural, complaints can be treated and sustainably alleviated.

Use healing power of Cynara scolymus

Use the healing power of the artichoke and our other 100 medicinal plants for the natural relief of your ailments. Improve your well-being and support your body, mind and soul! Use our configurator to put together your personal spagyric spray, which is tailored to your needs and accompanies you on your natural path to the improvement of body, mind and soul.


Flower of an artichoke in purple / pink



Botanical name

Cynara scolymus

Plant family


Other designations

Jockeles, earth shock


From August

Harvest time

June till August


full sun



Flower color


Flower shape


Leaf color


Leaf shape

pinnately lobed leaves

Sheet properties

thorny, felty hairy

Soil type

much humus

Soil moisture

moderately dry to moderately moist


slightly acidic to slightly alkaline

Lime compatibility

lime tolerant

Nutrient requirements




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