The Health Benefits of Artichoke


Over the last decade, it has become increasingly evident that artichoke has numerous health benefits, including its ability to aid the digestive system.

Artichoke, botanical name Cynara scolymus, is a perennial thistle native to the Mediterranean region best known for its heart, the bottom part of its spiky flower bud which some of us appreciate as a nutritious vegetable. Whilst we consume artichoke hearts, it is the artichoke leaves that have been scientifically studied and shown to be of great benefit.

Artichoke plant as a whole was used as a food and as a medicinal remedy as early as 400 BC. The Greeks, Romans and Egyptians consumed the vegetable for its nutritious value. The aristocracy of the Roman Empire used artichoke as a delicacy, appetiser and as a digestive aid however the vegetable appeared to fall into oblivion until the 1500’s when the medicinal use of artichoke was recorded for helping to treat jaundice and liver problems.

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Supplements at 50


Supplements at 50

  • I’ve never been big on supplements, but I hit 50 this year and worry that I’m not helping myself at all. What should I be taking?Well… if your family history reveals you could be in line for something or your doc has suggested you “keep an eye on” a future problem, expert pharmacist Shabir Daya says it might be worth thinking about…
    Super Strength Olive Leaf Extract

    BLOOD PRESSURE “If you have a history of blood pressure in your family or are simply worried about it I would recommend taking olive leaf extract,” says Shabir. “Studies indicate that taking olive leaf can reduce blood pressure reading by an average of 5%.” + His Pick? Super Strength Olive Leaf Extract by Swanson, £25 for 60 capsules.

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    Power of Krill

    HEART HEALTH Studies indicate that omega 3 essential fatty acids protect the heart in a number of ways. “Firstly, they prevent blood from coagulation and hence may prevent stokes. Secondly, they reduce triglycerides and hence cholesterol which plays a big part in heart disease. They’re also anti-inflammatory and inflammation in the body leads to heart disease.” + His Pick? Power of Krill by Life-Flo, £24.95 for 60 soft gels.

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    Bone Restore With Vitamin K2

    OSTEOPOROSIS Calcium is the first supplement that comes to mind but… “Most calcium supplements are ill-absorbed and can result in gastrointestinal problems,” says Shabir. He suggests we take a supplement that is highly absorbable. + His Pick? Bone Restore by Life Extension, £22.50 for 120 caps.

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    CHOLESTEROL If your level is rising, try red yeast rice which has been found to reduce cholesterol by an average of 30%. “Red yeast rice helps balance the good and bad cholesterol,” says Shabir. + His Pick? CholestSafe by Food Science of Vermont, £23 for 90 caps.

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    GlucoActive Cinnamon Extract

    DIABETES Bet your doc is monitoring your blood glucose and good thing too as high levels are linked to failing eyesight, ageing and cholesterol. “Cinnamon is a great spice for the prevention of blood sugar problems,” suggests Shabir. + His Pick? GlucoActive Cinnamon Extract by Futurebiotics, £24 for 60 caps.

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