When we talk about the artichoke, we refer to a vegetable that falls into the category of herbaceous plants that have a two-year life cycle which, according to various theories, owes its origin to a horticultural selection of the thistle.
This explains the reason why you cannot find the artichoke that grows spontaneously, but is the object of a large number of crops as a vegetable.
During the first year of life, the artichoke plant emits a rosette of leaves, the main characteristic of which is that it has a rather elongated and divided shape.
During the second year of life, it is the turn of the floral stem that grows from the center of the rosette of basal leaves and boasts the presence of decidedly smaller leaves: in its upper part there are the flower heads with a series of flowers with blue petals.
The basal leaves of the artichoke are characterized by having a length between 30 and 60 centimeters and a width between 5 and 10 centimeters.
When we talk about artichoke we mean a vegetable whose properties are often used also in the medicinal and herbal fields.
In particular, there is a substance called cynarine that is found inside the artichoke leaves, which is able to guarantee the carrying out of a large number of beneficial actions for the human body.
Cynarin can be found in rich quantities at the moment of maximum growth and expansion of the flower head.
The main properties that have been recognized to the leaves of this vegetable are essentially the cholagogue and choleretic: a large number of studies and scientific researches have in fact shown how the bile flow can be increased up to a value equal to almost 90% more in comparison. at the basic levels.
In particular, the beneficial effects of artichoke leaves they are extremely useful when it comes to treating specific problems such as dense bile, biliary sand or, again, stones inside the gallbladder.
The active ingredients that can be found inside the leaves of this vegetable also allow you to keep cholesterol and triglyceride levels under constant control, without forgetting how an excellent diuretic action is guaranteed.
Among the other beneficial effects due to the presence of active ingredients inside the artichoke leaves, we can also find a hepatoprotective and antitoxic function: for example, you can decrease the amount of alcohol (or even other toxic substances) present in the blood thanks to increased diuresis.
With artichoke leaves you can make a large number of preparations that can be extremely useful for the human body.
Artichoke leaves are useful for preparing a decoction, which allows you to treat hepatitis in the best possible way, but also all those problems that refer to the gallbladder.
In addition, the decoction based on artichoke leaves manages to perform a purifying and stimulating action on both appetite and kidneys, also allowing a better removal of toxins.
With fresh or dried artichoke leaves there is the possibility of macerating them in white wine, to make a diuretic drink, which is quite useful for fighting dropsy and belly traffic jams.
The sauce obtained by squeezing the leaves and stems can be used to resolve jaundice and dropsy.
Finally, artichoke leaves can be used for the preparation of tinctures, fluid extracts and syrups.
Artichoke leaves are characterized by being one of the best solutions to ensure a certain purification of the human body, especially at the digestive level.
In fact, for this very reason, herbal teas and purifying decoctions based on artichoke leaves are often used for this purpose.
The artichoke leaves have, among their main characteristics, that of carrying out a detoxifying activity on the liver, but also allow to guarantee a beneficial action against bile, reduce cholesterol and the level of triglycerides, as well as play a stimulating action on diuresis.
To make a purifying herbal tea based on artichoke leaves (which can usually be purchased in the main health food stores), about 30 grams of artichoke leaves, 30 grams of American chrysanthemum, 20 g of chicory root, 10 g of peppermint leaves and 10 g of lemon balm leaves.
Making the purifying herbal tea based on artichoke leaves is not difficult: in fact, it is sufficient to pour a tablespoon of this mixture prepared in herbal medicine into a tea cup and then insert 200 ml of boiling water.
We leave the mixture to infuse for at least a quarter of an hour, then we filter and pour on the table.
The purifying herbal tea based on artichoke leaves proves effective even when it must be associated with a diet to combat stomach swelling.