Burdock root is one of the most recommended herb as an acne remedy. It is native to North America as well as in some places in Asia. The burdock belongs to the Asteraceae family of plants. Its stems and leaves are used as flavoring for numerous dishes while its roots are valued for their cleansing actions both internally and externally.
Both the Chinese and western herbal medicine practices value the burdock root for its potent detoxifying ability in the body. It is called niu bang zi in China. Its reputation as a remedy for acne, abscesses and boils have long been established together with its blood purifying and antioxidant effects.
What Is a Burdock Root?
Arctium lappa, more commonly known as burdock root, grows in most gardens and yards in Asia, Europe and North America. This plant has a long history of promoting better bodily functions, cleansing the body of harmful substances and getting rid of skin conditions. It is harvested during the winter and fall season when it has bright green leaves. It was considered by many as a weed and its flowers catch on furs and clothing as it ages. The burdock root is consumed as a food and used as an herbal remedy in Asia. Its roots can be made into tinctures, teas and dietary capsules. Although it is very effective, it cannot be eaten or consumed raw. It must be crushed and boiled to convert into a topical application or tea for internal consumption. It can be used against many different health problems especially skin diseases and surface wounds.
Burdock Root and Its Effects on the Skin
The burdock root contains many properties and actions that are beneficial, not only to the skin, but also to the whole body. It has cleansing and antiseptic properties which help the skin, liver and blood. It also has antifungal and antibacterial actions which are responsible for getting rid of skin conditions caused by fungi and bacteria, particularly acne. The toxins are eliminated from the body as they are responsible for numerous health complications. The active ingredients present in the burdock root help in promoting healthier skin and eliminating the causes of acne. These ingredients include arcigen, chlorogenic acid, lactone, taraxosterols, flavonoids, quercetin, luteolin, polyacetylenes and inulin. These help in getting rid of harmful substances such as free radicals. The effects can be seen in clear and acne-free skin.
How to Use Burdock Root
Since the burdock root cannot be ingested in its raw form, it must be made into topical applications or tea for consumption. The root must be crushed before using as it increases the overall effect of the herb. The help of a dermatologist or a physician must be sought before using any herbal remedy to avoid complications. These are the two ways of using burdock root:
- Burdock Root Tea – boil water on a saucepan and add the crushed roots. Allow the water to seep in and extract the active ingredients present in the roots. Let it cool down and sip immediately once it reaches a lukewarm temperature. Consume the tea thrice a day and heat minimally before consuming.
- Anti-Acne Mask – combine oatmeal and the crushed roots. Add 1 tbsp. of lemon juice and mix until it reaches a pasty consistency. Apply directly on the sites of acne or all over the face for better results.