Cardoon Health Benefits: excellent for diabetic and liver patients

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The few Cardoon health benefits are essential; however, let us first learn a little more about this vegetable. Although the cardoon is a Mediterranean vegetable, it is much valued in Germanic countries, where it is considered an exotic food. Although it appears somewhat like celery, its favor is closer to the artichoke, a plant of the same botanical genus.

Cardoon Health Benefits
Cardoon health benefits: Boiled cardoon

Cardoon Health Benefits

Its composition is also similar to an artichoke. The significant differences are:

Carbohydrates (3.29 percent), formed primarily from inulin. This carbohydrate is formed from fructose molecules and is well tolerated by people with diabetes.

Minerals – Cardoon is very rich in calcium, magnesium, and iron. It also contains small amounts of trace elements zinc, copper, and manganese.

Cynarin – This non-nutritive substance is also found in artichoke. It significantly affects the liver: It increases bile secretion, decongests the liver, and facilitates detoxification. Since the bile is more fluid, the gallbladder empties more efficiently, lowering the risk of calculus formation.

Cardoon is suggested particularly in these cases:

Chronic or degenerative liver disease (hepatitis, cirrhosis, etc.).

Cholelithiasis and disorders of the gallbladder.


Cardoon Scientific Facts

  1. Scientific name – Cynara cardunculus L.
  2. Other names – Spanish cardoon, Red-stemmed cardoon, Cardi, Cardoni.
  3. French – Chardon.
  4. Spanish – Cardo, alcaucil silvestre.
  5. German – Kardonenartischocke.
  6. Description – The stalks of the cardoon, a herbaceous plant of the botanical family Compositae. Each stalk is formed by a petiole (leafstalk), which continues with the central nerve of the leaf. They may reach more than a meter in length. The stalks join at the base of the plant and can be whitish or reddish.
  7. Environment – Cardoon is grown in prepared fields in Mediterranean countries and South America.

How to use and Prepare Cardoon

  1. RAW – The young, tender stalks may be eaten raw in a salad.
  2. COOKED – Boiled or roasted with Béchamel sauce and slivered almonds, cardoon is a typical Christmas dish in Mediterranean countries.


George D. Pamplona-Roger, M.D. “Encyclopedia of Foods and Their Healing Power.” George D. Pamplona-Roger, M.D. Encyclopedia of Foods and Their Healing Power. Trans. Annette Melgosa. Vol. 2. Chai Wan: Editorial Safeliz, 2005. 177. Print. [cardoon health benefits]

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