There are a number of benefits of comfrey herb. The botanical name for the comfrey is symphytum officinale which means “to heal.” The comfrey herb is available in many forms and can be made into a tea to help aid internal ailments such as stomach problems, indigestion, or even bowel troubles.
The comfrey tea can also be used externally along with comfrey oil and comfrey ointment to ease excessive bleeding or on open wounds to help them heal.
The herb is a mild sedative, so comfrey salve made using comfrey oil can be used for slight pain relief on fractures, and, as its other well-known name of “knit bone” suggests, it can aid fractured and broken bones to heal quicker.
This was a very popular choice for the ancient Greeks and Romans, who would boil a paste of comfrey, soak some cloth into it, wrap the soaked cloth around the broken limb, and allow it to set. This was an early form of the plaster cast we know today.
The benefits of comfrey ointment also extend to relieving swollen and bruised sprains.
Comfrey roots can be used to help with bronchial problems, and in some parts of the world it is popular herbal remedy for circulation issues as well.
Comfrey is high in proteins and vitamin A and C and, as such, has many antioxidant properties which help to protect the body from damaging free radicals, helps to cut the risk of heart disease, and helps to stimulate bone growth and development.
Vitamin B12 is needed by the body to form red blood cells and helps the development of nerve cells, and comfrey is one of the herbs that contain this important nutrient.
Comfrey tea is also known to help reduce cholesterol and aid with the symptoms faced by diabetes sufferers. Comfrey and has been known to be eaten fresh as part of a green salad and is high in calcium and phosphorus and is therefore extremely good for healthy bones and teeth.
Benefits of comfrey also extend to animals. Farmers have been known to feed this herb to livestock to aid with ailments suffered and also given to the animals as a tonic in spring to help ward off any damaging effects of the winter.
This herb also decomposes very quickly, breaking down into a black mush. Due to the abundance of vitamins and minerals found in this herb, it can be used as compost for plants and flowers and often a layer of it is placed in the soil before planting begins.
Side Effects of Comfrey
Although this herb has a great many benefits and when used relieves any number of ailments, recent studies have shown that the comfrey herb may have some negative side effects.
Comfrey contains a compound that practitioners believe may possibly be linked to liver failure, so internal consumption of this herb is no longer favored.
That said, there are no known negative side effects from this herb when used externally as an ointment or oil or internally as tea, and tests on external use have only shown positive results.