Instant Expert: Globe Artichoke

Melissa Shedden
November 7, 2016

Newsflash: This bud has better benefits than even your “just friends” mate.

Meet globe artichoke – a good-looking member of the thistle family, thanks to its lush green (and edible!) flower heads and leaves.


Bonus points for the ancient delicacy – it contains a number of phytonutrients, like apigenin, cynarin, silymarin and luteolin, which have diuretic properties, detoxifying the liver, boosting gall bladder function and improving bile flow (your fat-absorbing friend).

Here’s everything you need to know about the flower bud.

  • Have a habit of choosing the battered fish and chips over the squid salad? Globe artichoke is for fatty food and alcohol over-indulgers like you, helping with metabolism and digestion.
  • Cynara scolymus (it’s fancy Latin name) is high in vitamin C and dietary fibre – the stuff that keeps you regular.
  • The Mediterranean plant could post a mean #ThrowbackThursday selfie. It’s been traditionally used in Western Herbal Medicine to help relieve symptoms like flatulence (the PC word for gas), abdominal bloating and discomfort. That’s 75 years plus of having your back in awkward situations.
  • Globe artichoke goes way back as a vegetable delicacy and medicinal agent, with its cultivation dating back to ancient Greece and Rome.
  • Its delicacy status means supermarkets class them as "exotic" – code for "expensive" – so expect to pay $5 or more each for the privilege.