- Phenoic acids (rosmarinic acid)
- Pyrrolizidine alkaloids
- Heals wounds and bones
A European plant, comfrey now grows in all temperate regions of the world. It thrives in moist marshy soils. It can be grown from seed in spring or by root division in autumn. The leaves and flowering tops are harvested in summer and dried for use. The root is pulled in autumn.
Comfrey contains allantoin, which helps repair damaged tissue. The herb has a significant anti-inflammatory action due to the rosmarinic acid. Research shows the pyrrolizidine alkaloids are highly toxic to the liver particularly when taken internally. It is still unclear whether the whole plant is toxic or just the roots. Samples from dried aerial parts have been shown to be completely absent of the alkaloids. The highest concentration is in the roots.