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Greater burdock

Greater burdock

Biennial or perennial plant. It can grow to a height of up to two metres. Its leaves are alternate, cordiform, downy on the underside, with long petioles. It flowers during the months of July and August. Its purplish-coloured flowers are grouped into clusters of spherical capitula. They are surrounded by an involucre, formed of numerous bracts with curved tips forming hooks that facilitate their dissemination by animals (zoochory). The root of greater burdock is edible. It is a relatively long (up to 50 cm) fleshy taproot. The fruits are long, compressed achenes with a short pappus.

Latin name

Arctium lappa L.


Species originating in the temperate regions of the old world: Europe (from Scandinavia to the Mediterranean and the British Isles to Russia), Near East Asia to China and Japan, as well as the Indian subcontinent.

Used part

The root.

Active components

Phenolic acids (chlorogenic acid): have an antioxidant and detoxifying effect.

Lignans: contribute to the antioxidant and anti-inflammatory action.


In the Middle Ages, burdock root was eaten as a vegetable: the young roots were eaten raw, the older roots were cooked first. The plant was also used in medicine for skin diseases and upper respiratory tract infections. It was also used to purify the blood and as a hair tonic. Its traditional use to combat skin problems skin continues to this day. Thanks to its inflammatory action, it is beneficial to the skin's health. 1-7 Moreover, it supports the body's elimination systems. 6-9

Bibliographical references

The health claims that feature on our website in relation to the plants contained in our products are compliant with the list of health claims awaiting final assessment by the Community authorities (cf. website of the European Commission: http://ec.europa.eu/nuhclaims/). However, they may be subject to modification following their assessment by the national competent authorities.

The health claims relating to other nutrients or substances contained in our products that feature on our site are compliant with Regulation No. 432/2012 of the Commission of 16 May 2012 which establishes a list of authorised health claims authorised in relation to food products, other than those in reference to the reduction of the risk of disease as well as community-based development and child health (cf. website of the European Commission: http://ec.europa.eu/nuhclaims/).