Friday, June 13, 2008

Unconfusing the Comfreys

Thanks to Susun Weed for elaborating on this troublesome mix up in this issue of the
Wise Woman's Ezine.


Kiva Rose said...

As much as I love Comfrey, and Susun Weed, there's some serious lack of critical thought in this article.

This from Henriette: "(And I don't really believe Symphytum x uplandicum to be PA free -- it's a hybrid of garden comfrey (Symphytum officinale) and prickly comfrey (Symphytum asperum), both of which contain livertoxic PAs.
Neither does Professor Roeder, who tested the plant: "4.1.12. Symphytum x uplandicum ... A total alkaloid content of ca. 0.2% was found in the dried aerial parts [90, 91, 139, 140]. Russian comfrey should no longer be used for medicinal purposes.")

Unfortunately, PAs are deadly in tiny amounts and show no symptoms of toxicity until you need a new liver.

I still use Comfrey internally at times, but not with children or nursing mothers, who are likely the most vulnerable in this case.

Love the plant and love its medicine but I don't quite buy the lack of logic in Susun's defense of it.

Yarrow said...

Thanks for Susun's website. I had it once and lost it. I tend to agree with her on comfrey, though I don't use it internally much, I would have no problem doing so if it was needed.