Artichoke leaf extract, made from artichokes found in grocery stores, is thought by some to offer numerous health benefits, including lowering cholesterol in the blood. 1 Some say it may “clear” the liver, alleviate acid reflux, prevent hangovers, and lose weight. These claims lack evidence.
Artichoke leaf extracts are usually supplied as capsules or gelcaps. Concentrated liquid forms are dropper-able. Artichoke leaf extract is utilized in anti-aging face lotions.
This article discusses artichoke leaf extract’s health benefits, focusing on high cholesterol treatment. It describes the over-the-counter supplement’s use and hazards.
Farmer’s Market Artichoke Baskets, Spring Vegetables
Artichoke leaf extract health claims are unsubstantiated. However, encouraging results warrant additional study.
Some medical research findings:
Anti-aging: Artichoke extract cream decreases inflammation and enhances skin blood circulation, which may minimize sagging and roughness, according to a 2018 Molecule review.
Fatty liver disease: A 2016 International Journal of Hepatology study found that 2,700 mg of artichoke extract daily lowered liver enzymes in 30 persons with advanced non-alcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD) compared to 30 adults given a placebo (sham drug).
High blood pressure: According to a 2021 Complementary Therapies in Medicine analysis of eight human trials, artichoke leaf extract may lower hypertension patients’ blood pressure by 2 to 3 mmHg (high blood pressure).
Kidney illness: A 2016 Pakistan Journal of Pharmacological Science study found that injecting artichoke extract improved kidney function in drug-induced kidney disease animals.
Humans have not shown these impacts.
In obese rats fed a high-fat diet, artichoke leaf extract reversed metabolic syndrome signs like waist circumference and excessive blood sugar, according to a 2018 Nutrients study.
Humans have not displayed this.
Artichoke leaf extract has not been shown to cure these ailments.
High Cholesterol Artichokes
Artichokes’ cholesterol-lowering potential is unknown. Research has been mixed.
However, artichoke leaf extract may work like statins to treat hypercholesterolemia (high cholesterol). Statins impede cholesterol-producing HMG-CoA reductase. 3
In a 2013 study, 46 overweight persons given 250 mg of artichoke leaf extract daily had lower LDL cholesterol and higher HDL cholesterol than those given a placebo.
This shows that artichoke leaf extract may play role in the management of moderate hypercholesterolemia.
Artichokes also contain plant-based substances called flavonoids that may help prevent the oxidation of LDL, a process that contributes to atherosclerosis (hardening of the arteries) and heart disease.
Ways You Can Prevent Atherosclerosis
Artichokes are safe when eaten as food. Artichoke supplements may be safe for 23 months, according to research. 4
Minor side effects may include:
- Gas or bloating
- metallic flavor
Marigold, daisy, and other plant allergies can react to artichoke supplementation. The allergic reaction tends to be modest, involving minor upset stomach and loose stools. 9
Dosage and Preparation
Artichoke leaf extract has no dosage. Research uses 250–2,700 mg per day. As a general guideline, never exceed the dosage specified on the product level.
A 2018 article in Current Drug Safety revealed that an older adult on medication for diabetes and high blood pressure drank 1.5 liters (approximately six cups) of artichoke infusion and was hospitalized with serious anemia and liver toxicity.
Due to the lack of safety study, artichoke leaf extract should not be taken in minors, persons who are pregnant or breastfeeding, or those with chronic medical disorders. If you decide to use it, discuss with your healthcare practitioner so that you can be checked for side effects.
Artichoke leaf extract can be purchased online or in pharmacies that sell herbal extracts and nutritional supplements.
Nutritional supplements are not tightly regulated in the United States, and the quality can vary from one manufacturer to the next. To assure purity, only acquire supplements that have been voluntarily submitted for examination by an independent certifying authority like U.S. Pharmacopeia (USP), NSF International, or ConsumerLab.
Certification does not mean that a supplement works or is intrinsically safe. It merely implies that it includes the substances specified on the product label in the exact amounts and that no contaminants have been identified.
Summary Artichoke leaf extract’s cholesterol-lowering claims are unproven. The evidence supporting related claims is likewise inadequate, including the use of artichoke leaf extract for weight loss, high blood pressure, liver illness, or kidney disease.
With that stated, artichoke leaf extract is typically considered safe with little negative effects. If you use the supplement, tell your doctor and don’t exceed the amount.