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Botanic Name: Cynara Scolymus

Artichoke leaf derives from the common globe artichoke, a widely consumed vegetable cultivated by both the early Greeks and Romans. One of the oldest cultivated plants, artichoke is native to Southern Europe, North Africa and the Canary Islands. 1 Artichoke is a large herbacious perennial which produces a "globe" of edible leaves and a fleshy edible heart. The leaves of artichoke contain a primary compound known as cynarin, which among its other properties improves liver and gall bladder function, and lowers serum cholesterol. Artichoke has long been used as a digestive.

Since antiquity artichoke has been employed as a bile stimulant and diuretic. As a traditional medicine, artichoke has been used primarily for enhancing liver function. Among traditional healers, artichoke has been used to treat chronic liver and gall bladder diseases, jaundice, hepatitis, arteriosclerosis and symptoms of diabetes.
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