Artichoke Cynara cardunculus L. subsp. scolymus (L.) Hayek
, (formerly Cynara scolymus L.
) is a botanical of the Asteraceae family native to the Mediterranean basin, which was previously cultivated dating back to Antiquity by the Egyptians. The floral receptacle of the artichoke as well as part of its stalk constitute the edible parts of the vegetable.
Widely used in traditional medicine as a natural remedy, the artichoke helps fight abdominal pain, digestive discomfort, cholesterol, and maintain a healthy liver. In European herbal medicine, artichoke leaves are used to stimulate bile secretion, kidney activity and treat liver disorders. This botanical is used in the composition of many pharmaceutical preparations to improve digestion but also in the preparation of aperitif drinks.
The artichoke is naturally rich in various nutrients, vitamins (B9, B, K and C), minerals and trace elementsand contains a non-indigestible or prebiotic sugar: inulin (1). Particularly low in calories, inulin is absorbed by the intestinal flora. The artichoke is thus the healthy vegetable of the Mediterranean diet and digestive health; it acts on dyspepsia, blood circulation, cholesterol and liver function.
The artichoke also contains a large number of soluble and insoluble fibres. Its leaves have antioxidant and antimicrobial properties (2). Indeed, they contain bioactive compounds, essentially caffeoylquinic acids and their derivatives (chlorogenic acid and cynarin) as well as flavonoids (luteolin 7-O-glucoside) (3). These biological components, attributed mainly to polyphenols, exert a hypolipidemic and hypocholesterolemic effect and help fight against loss of appetite while promoting glycemic control and weight loss (4).
See all our references below:
(1) LATTANZIO, Vincenzo, KROON, Paul A., LINSALATA, Vito, et al. Globe artichoke: A functional food and source of nutraceutical ingredients. Journal of functional foods, 2009, vol. 1, no 2, p. 131-144.
(2) F. Fratianni, M. Tucci, M. De Palma, R. Pepe and F. Nazzaro. Polyphenolic composition in different parts of some cultivars of globe artichoke (Cynara cardunculus L. var. scolymus L. Fiori). J. Food chem. Vol. 104. (2007). pp. 1282-1286.
A. Skiredj, H. Elattir, L.D. Walali et A. Elfadl. Fiches techniques VII. L’artichaut, le cardon, le maïs doux, l’asperge, le poireau, Bulletin mensuel d’information et de liaison du PNTTA. Maroc. (2003). pp. 4.
N. Mulinacci, D. Prucher, M. Peruzzi, A. Romani, P. Pinelli, C. Giaccherini and F.F. Vincieri. Commercial and laboratory extracts from artichoke leaves: estimation of caffeoyl esters and flavonoidic compound content. J. Pharm. and Biomed. Anal. Vol. 34. (2004). pp. 349-357
(3) A. Gil-Izquierdo, M. I. Gil, M. A. Conesa and F. Ferreres. The effect of storage temperatures on vitamin C and phenolics content of artichoke (Cynara scolymus L.) heads. J. Innov. Food Sci. & Emerg. Tech. Vol. 2. (2001). 199-202.
(4) MAHMOUDI, Souhila, KHALI, Mustapha, et MAHMOUDI, Nacéra. Etude de l'extraction des composés phénoliques de différentes parties de la fleur d'artichaut (Cynara scolymus L.). Nature & Technology, 2013, no 9, p. 35.