Comfrey: The Comforting Herb

| Modified on Jan 11, 2024
Posted by Brian (Wendouree/Ballarat, Victoria/Australia) on 08/27/2008

When 7 years old, I nearly died of nephritis [ kidney disease ]. At 39 year old, the pain in that area made me almost weep and it needed to be stopped. I felt something inside said to fast, take only lemon juice and eat "raw" comfrey - I did this from 4.00 pm friday until lunch time sunday and I have never had a pain there since and I am now 68years old. "I thank God for Comfrey" - since then I have spoke to people who have also been set free of disease in the kidneys through comfrey and its healing "alantoin". I only ate about 7 hand sized leaves over 3 days.

Bed Sores
Posted by Karen Z (Australia) on 10/31/2022

That is rubbish about it being toxic to the liver. I have many of the old books on comphrey/comfrey (Laurence Hills and Doubleday publishing and other authors) and they state unequivocally that comfrey was used internally and externally with NIL issues for both humans and animals. In fact, animals THRIVE on it.

The "science" denigrating comfrey is fake and like many herbs, the medico/pharma junta set out to discredit anything that they can't make money from (ie cheap and effective herbs).

Please DO some REAL research and find out the truth and stop being a mindless repeating station for bunkum that that Big Pharma want you to keep repeating and scare people off.

There are enough people, including myself who eat, drink and have in smoothies. I grow it and make comphrey oil and give it to people to injure themselves or have skin issues and it HEALS.

There is NO ISSUE with ingesting the stuff. If you want to be scared off, you will. If you want to do some actual research (and get behind the smokescreen they have generated - and I have discovered that also includes the "prestigious" Australian CSIRO (which has also a reputation for killing off Peter Andrews wonderful work on regenerating farmland so water is attracted to it)).

You have to really drill into the historical documents to find the truth. I believe the CSIRO scientist who did the research (finding "so many more alkalysing pyrroloids" than ever before) was put up to it, to kill people's faith in this remedy.

My advice: If you are sick, try it. It will NOT kill you. You are more likely to be cured more than anything else.

Yes I have Honours in Biochemistry, and I research until I get to the truth.

I suggest the people squarking about the "liver damage" danger, do likewise.

Go back to Lawrence Hills' well researched work. It isn't easy to find but there are pdf versions if you hunt them up.

Take it and get healed and avoid the medical/pharma juganaut that is NOT for your health. They just want to empty your bank account into theirs.

Poison Oak
Posted by Louis jordan (North Carolina) on 09/25/2022

Comfrey stops the itching after an hour. Just mush up the leaves with water. Apply to itchy area and keep it wet. It worked for me with full blown poison oak with blisters, even after it spread to between my fingers. Btw: I wonder if the whole flare up is a detox cycle cleansing out other toxins that were already there.

Comfrey and Calendula Oil
Posted by Mama to Many (TN ) on 06/03/2022

Dear Tanja,

It's almost certainly the leaf. It's rare to find the root. Even if it were the root, or a combination, it would still work well for your purpose. You just don't want to use the root internally.
I'm currently using a salve a friend made with root and leaf.

~Mama to Many~

Comfrey and Calendula Oil
Posted by Tanja (Munich) on 06/02/2022

Hello! I was interested in making an oil for inner adhesions with comfrey and calendula. In Germany here it is very difficult to get the dried comfrey leaf. I have found a supplier who offers comfrey "herb". Now I don`t know if this is the whole plant or what... anyway, would that also be ok to use for that oil or must it be the leaf?

Thank you very much!


Tanja from Munich

Gum Recession
Posted by KT (USA) on 04/29/2022

Did you try using Black Walnut to mineralize and strengthen the tooth or did you lose it?


Gum Recession
Posted by El (Walton, WV) on 04/28/2022

Thought I should share one my experiences with Comfrey - I have gum recession which caused a loose tooth - so I thought "comfrey causes skin to grow so maybe I could fatten up my gum around the loose tooth" - it worked but didn't secure the tooth - it just made the gum thicker in the area where I put it and because it wasn't normal, my attention kept being drawn there to this little mound as well as my tongue :-) It's been a year and has gone down about half.

Bed Sores
Posted by Mama to Many (TN) on 04/23/2022

Dear Radiance Swan,

As Paracelsus said, "The dose makes the poison."

There are quite a few controversial remedies discussed on this website that are difficult to find discussed in other places. Borax, for example. I am thankful that there is a place to discuss and learn about their uses even when various organizations might villainize or ban them.

In his tome, "Medical Herbalism, " David Hoffman, FNIMH, AHG says, "Long-term studies with rats have demonstrated that the pyrrolizidine alkaloids (PAs) in comfrey are hepatotoxic, carcinogenic, and mutagenic...The herb must therefore be recognized as a potentially genotoxic carcinogen in man. However, the risk of genetic damage from these PAs appears to be low...To minimize potential risk, lengthy internal use is to be discouraged." He does go on to describe ways to use it internally.

I have found that many herbalists seem to agree with this approach. Few seem to be inclined to completely ban internal use (except for the root, which is generally considered to be used only externally.)

Recently I used fresh comfrey leaves internally when I had a suspected ulcer (from a prescription I was taking.) I felt that the risk of using comfrey internally was probably less than the risk from another prescription. And all ulcer symptoms did resolve in short order.

I would hate to see the feedback about the internal uses erased from this site, as that would reduce our power as consumers to make our decisions about the remedies we use. And the article that mentions comfrey tea does state, "While comfrey is a folk remedy that is still commonly recommended by herbalists, some scientists are concerned about the safety of comfrey, believing it to be harmful to the liver. You should do your own research and use wisdom and common sense about the use of any herbs. A natural practitioner will be able to help you understand any specific concerns about comfrey use for your own situation."

Definitely everyone should do their own research about what works best for them. No one should use a remedy that they are uncomfortable with.

~Mama to Many~

Bed Sores
Posted by Michael (New Zealand) on 04/23/2022

Radiance (WA), I broadly concur regarding your comments concerning Comfrey!

It always worried me to read that people were advocating taking Comfrey internally, as I had often read that it had the POTENTIAL to possibly damage the liver. As my dearly beloved Aunt would say, "You Have Been Warned!! ".

It's not difficult to do the research on this one but I can see why people get confused! Both my (library) books on Herbs, Spices and Folk Remedies that date from a few decades ago(! ) see no problem with making a tea out of the leaves.

HOWEVER, Asa Hershoff N.D.and Andrea Rotelli N.D. in their more recent publication, "Herbal Remedies"(Avery: 2001), caution that prolonged use is contraindicated. They would also prefer that only the leaf of the American Comfrey variety be used rather than the roots and even suggest not utilizing external ointments for longer than one month. There are other cautions they mention - one really ought to do one's OWN research before diving into the deep end on this one!

Apparently, in most commercially produced preparations, the suspected, implicated alkaloids have been carefully removed but who knows?

I use Comfrey leaves in my compost heap, as, along with seaweed, it is supposed to be a beneficial activator for the workings of the compost heap and, as you folks already know: "The Answer lies in the Soil". I harvest the leaves before I cut the flowers off and this also serves to help stop it spreading, which it would otherwise have a strong tendency to do.

Cheers from Down Under

Bed Sores
Posted by Radiance (WA) on 04/22/2022

Please, please, for your safety and your readers, remove the comfrey tea! Comfrey, when taken internally damages the liver! It is only to be used topically. I have studied herbs and particularly Comfrey for over 55 years. I make my own comfrey salve every year from my home grown Comfrey plants. Last year, my Comfrey salve completely healed my stage 1 bedsore in one week! Please advise your readers --- don't take Comfrey internally. Do your own research also and let me know what you find out about taking it internally. I do love your website.
Thank You, Thank You, Radiance Swan

Comfrey Side Effects
Posted by Calvin (Alberta) on 03/09/2022

It has been banned here in Canada making me want to get it as our Government Ban anything that is good for you and would cut into Big Pharma poisoning us all.

Comfrey Toxicity
Posted by Idot 13 (Ireland) on 02/13/2022

It is about time someone standing up for the people s rights.

Broken Bones
Posted by HisJewel (New York) on 10/05/2021

O Mama,

I forgot to mention, My doctor had me up for hand surgery. I cancelled it because my wrist no longer feels detached from my hand, and I took note that my hand is regaining strength with the blessings that the Good Lord has provided for me to use.


Broken Bones
Posted by HisJewel (New York) on 10/05/2021

Yes Mama to Many,

Both comfrey extracts were root. I used Herb Pharm dried root extract and Dr. Christopher's original formula root extract.

Much Appreciation,


Broken Bones
Posted by Mama to Many (TN) on 10/04/2021

Dear Hisjewel,

Thank you for your thorough and helpful update! I will have to look into silica for my own hair!

I have used fresh comfrey in smoothies and even sauteed and made and used comfrey salve. But not the comfrey tincture. I need to make some! Would you happen to know if your comfrey extract was from comfrey leaf or root?


~Mama to Many~

Broken Bones
Posted by HisJewel (New York) on 10/04/2021

Greetings Mama to Many and EC,

Mama to Many you asked me to report back and post how well the bottled comfrey extract helped and here it is. This is an update on my fall in front of Penn Station in New York in early June. It is now four months later.

I used two different companies, one with alcohol and one without alcohol. I rubbed the wrist and hand with comfrey several times of day to hasten the healing my wrist which was complicated by my senior plus pre-diabetic physical conditions. I did the above lavishly for about a month until the pain began to subside.

The x-ray revealed that my bone was fractured in two places. The Comfrey Extract relieved the pain in the early healing process. As my wrist started to heal, I would forget it was sprained because of the lack of pain. Sometimes I put too heavy a load on that hand in the spur moment without thought.

One such moment I thought I smelled smoke in the middle of the night during a visit with my aunt. Quickly as I pushed up (my knees need help) I seemed to have stretched the ligaments in my wrist in that hand, the pain was so great. After that nothing helped to move the pain, however I continued to use the comfrey a while longer. Soon read about Silica and Horsetail to help in mending the bone. I have been taking the Silica and Horsetail supplements for about two months. My wrist no longer feels detached from my hand. And there is hardly any pain except if I over use my hand. I sometimes I put the comfrey extract on at night if I have over use pain.

A new problem seems to have developed in my hand now. I can feel a bump or cysts under the skin. If you have any Idea how I can dissolve them it would be a great blessing. I will continue rubbing on castor oil. I have tried holding taping to it twice. I do need to be more consistent.

EC I would also like to mention my progress with my hair and nails. It may take a while before I find my post regarding hairballs and strange horizontal looking lines across my fingernails.

I posted how my hair started growing while taking supplements to resist COVID in early 2020.

After a while I was convinced it was the Lecithin that had started my hair growing and smoothed my nails out in early 2020. Outside of the virus prevention supplements, I was also taking some other things like the Lecithin and Bamboo. Bamboo is a Silica supplement.

The hairballs which showed back up after I slowed down on the Covid supplements and other supplements have once again come to naught. No more hairballs! It's got to be the help of Silica.

Thank you very much,


Comfrey Root Extract
Posted by HisJewel (New York) on 06/15/2021

Oh wow, what an interesting happening! You have answered all my questions, it's good to know that I can use comfrey oil often throughout the day. You have also introduced me to something new, jewelweed. It makes me want to get to know plants, I also wonder if the Lord was telling you I called. Thank you for being there for us.


Comfrey Root Extract
Posted by Mama to Many (TN) on 06/14/2021

Dear Hisjewel,

I am so happy to hear you are already finding the comfrey root oil to be helpful! Using it frequently through the day is ideal.

When I was using comfrey root salve for a recovering joint I tried to use it every two hours. But when I was using it on my hip when it was bothering me, I really only got around to it a couple of times a day. Both were helpful.

I checked my favorite herb book, Practical Herbalism, by Philip Fritchie. Regarding topical use of comfrey, he says to use it "as often as needed." I think the point is, you really won't over do by using it very often.

If you were using a poultice, you would have basically continuous application. So, to maximize the benefit, I would be inclined to apply the oil as soon as it seems to have absorbed, even every hour or two during the day.

One reason that herbs sometimes don't seem to "work" is that in many cases they need to be used more frequently than over the counter medications. (Not always, but sometimes.)

Using herbs can be as much art as science.

I will share an herb story from today with you; it is definitely not a scientific story! :)

I had taken my children to a nearby swimming hole this afternoon and we got a flat tire on the way home. We pulled the car safely to the side of the road. My teens set to work on getting the flat tire off. I started to walk up the hill to try and get a cell signal to text my husband in case it turned out that we didn't have what all we needed to change the tire.

I texted him and he was on his way home and would stop by soon. I headed back to the car and my kids. I had noticed some jewelweed along the roadside. (I don't normally pick herbs from the roadside, but this is definitely a road less traveled - in all the time we were stopped on the side of the road only one vehicle passed by.) I collected a bunch of jewelweed. My husband arrived and he and the kids got the spare on. We headed home to make dinner and process my unexpected jewelweed treasure.

I chopped up the jewelweed and put the chopped stalks and leaves (no flowers yet, or I would have put them in as well) in the blender with water to cover and blended it it until just blended. I put all of that in a crock pot on "High" with the lid off. After several hours the water had reduced. I strained the liquid through a coffee filter into a jar. The "jewelweed tea" (never to be taken internally) I poured into ice cube trays. I will keep the ice cubes in a plastic bag in the freezer. It is a great poison ivy remedy. Just rub the poison ivy with the ice cube, very often through the day.

Hisjewel, please keep us posted on the progress you have with your hand!


~Mama to Many~

Comfrey Root Extract
Posted by HisJewel (New York) on 06/14/2021

Mama to Many,

When you have a little time, can you share how you might use Comfrey root Extract and how often during the day? I would greatly appreciate it. Thanks in advance.

I ordered some comfrey oil to help my sprained hand heal. While I was waiting for my order to arrive, I used the egg white and salt method mentioned on EC as much as I could guess. I stirred about ¼ teaspoon of salt in the egg whites from two eggs. One egg white would have been enough. I wetted my hand with the mixture several times for two days. I just let it dry. I did not cover it. I had no more swelling after two days. I thank God for EC.

After the swelling left, I began to focus on curing the sprain and the pain. I began rubbing on MSM cream and things. I started exercising my wrist. I also bought a hand wrap.

As I mentioned I have now received my comfrey extract but do not know if I am using it properly. I have been rubbing the comfrey oil on a few drops at a time in the areas of the pain a few times a day. I started using the comfrey yesterday and already I have much less pain.


Deep Wounds, Tennis Elbow
Posted by Madelyn (Idaho) on 02/05/2021

Was it comfrey leaf or comfrey root?

Deep Wounds, Tennis Elbow
Posted by Joy G. (VIC Australia ) on 02/04/2021

Many years ago, I think it was around 1972 my husband tried to break up our two dogs that had a disagreement and he accidently got bitten on the wrist ---the local DR stitched his wrist and after it healed he was in a lot of pain when he moved his hand ---the Dr wanted to operate on it because he thought he may have stitched the tendon ---I asked him to get a second opinion from my Dr [who was a surgeon] he told him what had happened was that crystals had formed and if it was re opened more crystals would again form. I had just done a herbal medicine course --for the home as I did not want to treat people and I asked him if he would try something out of my witches books [ as he called all my alternate medicine books ] and he said yes so I got some comfrey capsules [ which were available then] and some vitamin E capsules dosage was one in the morning and one at night --- after about 4-5 weeks it had completely healed up and no more pain.

Unfortunately, not long after you could no longer buy the Comfrey capsules.

I also used them for Tennis Elbow, which was also successful.


Skin Conditions
Posted by SJHersh (Catskills Comfrey) (Fleischmanns, NY ) on 02/03/2021

I am a comfrey immersive, ie, I use comfrey a lot, mostly in the form of comfrey-based topical ointments I create myself under my brand. A poultice is the most effective form of application but having fresh leaves is impractical for most folks.

I use comfrey for significantly impacting my Trigger Finger symptoms by applying the ointment fully to my hands 3-4x weekly just before I go to sleep.

I use comfrey to treat wasp stings, sunburn, rashes that arise on my body and, in conjunction with CBD, I apply it to my left knee which is beginning to present with pain: the comfrey+CBD mitigates the pain for several days. The topical ointment of fractionated coconut oil and Greek olive oil, along with the infused comfrey, makes an ideal foot 'softener'.

I use a poultice of dried comfrey (soaked in boiling water) on my eyes if they become sore or tired. I have AMD and get an eye injection every 8 weeks; occasionally this results in a bruised, sore eye. Bathing the eyes in a comfrey wash rapidly mitigates this soreness overnight, reducing the soreness from the usual several days to an overnight of discomfort.

Yes, I am prejudiced for comfrey - and for good reason.

Seth J Hersh

Comfrey Side Effects
Posted by Carol (WA) on 09/04/2019

For anyone with concerns about Comfrey - this explains the original results of testing of Comfrey.

Ankle Sprains
Posted by JoCarol (Idaho) on 03/21/2020

I'm sorry I did not see your post. We just put about a cup in a large kettle and make a tea and he soaked his foot in it. And would do that throughout the day with the same tea just rewarmed it up each time.

Ankle Sprains
Posted by Marchalle (Amsterdam) on 04/22/2019

Hi JoCarol, Thank you for your post. Can you please give more details. Was this remedy applied topically or taken as a tonic? I'm guessing a tonic, but can you please specify if internal tonic, how much was drunk and how often (1 cup every hour for example)? Thank you.

Ankle Sprains
Posted by JoCarol (United States) on 04/10/2019

I had an individual sprain his ankle really bad, it had a huge knot on the side of the ankle and was swelled up the side of the leg. I sent him home with some dried comfrey and told him to make a large kettle of comfrey tea and add some apple cider vinegar. By the end of the evening the swelling was almost all gone. And the next day the swelling was all gone and he could walk on it with no pain, as if nothing had happened.

Comfrey Toxicity
Posted by Yeahright (Nashville) on 04/25/2018

Comfrey has been removed from all of Dr. Christopher's ingestible products.

Comfrey Toxicity
Posted by Teena (Melbourne, Australia) on 04/25/2018 233 posts

Dr Christopher's comfrey ointment has written on it for external use only, much like most comfrey products sold here.

Comfrey Toxicity
Posted by Rj (Ct) on 04/24/2018

Dr. Christopher products no longer contain comfrey? As of when? I just purchased the comfrey ointment.

Comfrey Toxicity
Posted by Teena (Melbourne, Australia) on 04/23/2018 233 posts

Yes, yes, Yes!! I will take generations of people and livestock consuming comfrey over their lifetimes, thriving, flourishing and regaining health over anything the FDA or it's equivalent says. After reading some miraculous testimonies I planted four plants in my tiny garden. I have been consuming it daily, initially in salads, most recently in teas (best results for me). Here (Australia) it is not allowed to be sold for internal use. Unfortunately many people are not willing to open their mind (my personal experience) until bigpharma leave them in drastic ill health, and sometimes not even then.

Comfrey Toxicity
Posted by Yeahright (Nashville) on 04/22/2018

From a thread on Curezone regarding Comfrey:

"Water01 - Thank you for that great post AND for this opportunity to set the record straight about one of Nature's/God's GREATEST healing plants!

That 'warning letter' was sent to virtually every company that was selling herbs at that time (of which the FDA was aware). What is most frustratingly (to me) is that one of the LARGEST companies with the most money to fight the lies (Dr. Christopher's company, now run by his children), willingly chose to kowtow and remove the Comfrey from all their father's products, rather than fight the FDA. So, with one of the major players 'knocked out of the fight', the smaller players (armed with truth & integrity, but very little money), had to shoulder the burden of the battle. And battle they did, and they WON (even if the court costs for them were astronomical with no way to recoup them). Herbalists ARE still allowed to include comfrey in products for internal use legally.

The unneccesary "warning" (regarding comfrey only being safe for external use) is still widely in place...which is VERY frustrating. It is very rare to find someone familiar enough with herbs & natural health/healing that they are not 'scared away' by a "liver damage" & "cancer" likely millions of people that could benefit from the healing miracles of comfrey are deprived. :( And this is all very similar to the authorities manipulation of the public concept of the safety of natural Ephedra (not the varieties of sythetic kinds or the products that were mixed with other unsafe plants or chemical stimulants). The "scare" about Ephedra even 'got me' for a time. (Note - it's a true shame we don't have a legitimate organization that will test and oversee the marketing of herbal products. There were truly innocent people hurt very seriously by the use of Ephedra products that were adulterated with chemical toxins. And there have been cases of people having all kinds of abnormal reactions and problems from taking herbs that were grown with the usage of DDT and other incredibly toxic chemicals. Besides being a carcinogen, DDT is also a neurotoxin, so there have been people with neurological illnesses that have worsened after taking the very herbs that should help them heal. :(

When I was researching the FDA/Comfrey/Christopher situation, I found (what appears to be) the "final word on Comfrey" from the FDA's website. It is pasted below in it's entirely (as written), and then there's "my review" of the data AFTER running it through my "Spin Detector" (this document puts a theme park ride to shame with the velocity of spin it contains!).

Let's see how good YOUR "Spin Detector" is! Read the document below and discern what you determine & conclude after reading it. After you've finished, ask yourself: Does it provide factual evidence? Is it legitimate? After reading it, does the use of Comfrey concern you? What do you now know about Comfrey that you didn't know before?

Here it is, straight from the mouth of the FDA:

The use of comfrey in dietary supplements is a serious concern to FDA. These plants contain pyrrolizidine alkaloids, substances which are firmly established to be hepatotoxins in animals. Reports in the scientific literature clearly associate oral exposure of comfrey and pyrrolizidine alkaloids with the occurrence of veno-occlusive disease (VOD) in animals. Moreover, outbreaks of hepatic VOD have been reported in other countries over the years and the toxicity of these substances in humans is generally accepted. The use of products containing comfrey has also been implicated in serious adverse incidents over the years in the United States and elsewhere. However, while information is generally lacking to establish a cause-effect relationship between comfrey ingestion and observed adverse effects humans, the adverse effects that have been seen are entirely consistent with the known effects of comfrey ingestion that have been described in the scientific literature. The pyrrolizidine alkaloids that are present in comfrey, in addition to being potent hepatotoxins, have also been shown to be toxic to other tissues as well. There is also evidence that implicates these substances as carcinogens. Taken together, the clear evidence of an association between oral exposure to pyrrolizidine alkaloids and serious adverse health effects and the lack of any valid scientific data that would enable the agency to determine whether there is an exposure, if any, that would present no harm to consumers, indicates that this substance should not be used as an ingredient in dietary supplements.

So now, how ya feelin' about the internal use of Comfrey? Do you feel like you're heard and absorbed the truth? Before you read the "Sarcastic Spin Detector" version below, there's two things you need to know (or remember).

#1 There are pyrrolizzidine alkaloids present in MANY plants, and many are known to cause liver damage, but so far, there is absolutely zero factual evidence that the specific pyrrolizzidine alkaloids in Comfrey have ever caused liver damage or cancer. Here are a few of the plants with PAs that have caused damage:

The inset text below is from this FANTASTIC article of the safey & use of Comfrey:

Outbreaks of PA poisoning in humans, in the past, have usually been the result of accidental contamination of food crops, with the toxic seeds of other plants. One such instance was an outbreak of veno-occlusive disease in Afghanistan in 1974. This outbreak followed a severe drought and the people were suffering from acute malnutrition (an important factor). About 22% of the people showed evidence of liver disease when examined in 1975. The cause of the outbreak was traced to bread, contaminated by heliotropium seed (which grew extensively in the wheat fields). Samples of the wheat examined, were found to contain an average of 40 seeds (300 mg) per kg of wheat.

Cases of liver damage, due to people drinking bush teas of seneca and crotalaria, have been reported from a number of places. J. A. Pembery, B.Sc., advisor to the Henry Doubleday Research Association, Essex, U.K. says, in the book ‘The Safety of Comfrey', that there appear to be no cases, in medical history or veterinary records, of humans or animals, showing clinical symptoms, of pyrrolizidine alkaloid poisoning, from the consumption of comfrey. Lawrence D. Hills, in his forward in the book, mentions that the Commonwealth Bureau of Animal Health very kindly carried out a computer search through their records of 137,000 cases of stock poisoning by plants, since 1972, and found only one concerning case: a case of comfrey-nitrate poisoning in pigs from excessive use of fertilisers in Germany.

#2 At some time in school (likely a long time ago in a science class far, far, away), you probably heard the very valid statement that "correlation does not prove causation" (or "association does not prove causation"). This means, that's just because two things happen to be correlated or associated, it doesn't prove that one causes the other. For example, it may be true that almost always when you're trying to take a relaxing soak in the tub, the phone starts ringing or the kids go ballistic. (That's a correlation or an association). But running a bath full of hot water and getting in it does not CAUSE a phone to ring (or children to misbehave). Hence, correlation/association does not prove causation (although it's possible that when things are correlated or associated, one of them does cause another). But two events happening together does not PROVE one causes the other. One has to do more testing and studying to find out how the events are related.

So, here it is - The Comfrey Bomb (FDA in black - me in cool blue :)

The use of comfrey in dietary supplements is a serious concern to FDA.

Perhaps you, the FDA would care to be seriously concerned about the 50,000+ deaths from the drug you approved named Vioxx - or the fact that even without including that drug in the number, more than 100,000-150,000 people actually DIE each year from ingesting, as prescribed, the drugs that you've tested and approved. And before you start researching the dangers of a plant that have been proven to be safe for decades, perhaps you'd like to start dealing with the fact that you allow chemical additives in our food that have already been thoroughly tested and proved to cause cancer and other diseases.

These plants contain pyrrolizidine alkaloids, substances which are firmly established to be hepatotoxins in animals.

Yes, some of the various pyrrolizidine alkaloids in some plants have been shown to be hepatoxic in animals. But there has NEVER been a verified instance of anyone using Comfrey and developing liver disease because of it. So what you likely meant to say is: "Some plants contain pyrrolizidine alkaloids that are firmly established to be hepatotoxins in animals (and humans)...but that has never been established with Comfrey".

Reports in the scientific literature clearly associate oral exposure of comfrey and pyrrolizidine alkaloids with the occurrence of veno-occlusive disease (VOD) in animals.

Yes, there are reports that associate oral exposure to comfrey with VOD, but there are none that prove it...or you (the great and almighty FDA) woulddefinitely be mentioning it. And 'association' is a LONG way from causation...and barely worth mentioning to a critically thinking scientist without other evidence or conclusive studies. Do you HAVE any conclusive studies?

Moreover, outbreaks of hepatic VOD have been reported in other countries over the years...

Well, yes, VOD has many causes...what does that have to do with Comfrey?

...and the toxicity of these substances in humans is generally accepted.

There's absolutely no doubt that some pyrrolizidine alkaloids, and virtually all of those extracted/isolated and injected in large amounts, or synthesized pyrrolizidine alkaloids that are typically use for testing, are toxic at high levels. So yes, that is "generally accepted" as you say...but you still haven't proven that the specific pyrrolizidine alkaloids in Comfrey are hepatotoxic in any way (even though you continue to strongly imply that). And just because you're giving us a major "spin treatment" doesn't mean we're dull enough to fall for it.

The use of products containing comfrey has also been implicated in serious adverse incidents over the years in the United States and elsewhere.

Ahem, taking a bath daily and getting fresh air was implicated as the cause of many diseases and 'adverse incidents' throughout the world for centuries. The 'fact' that the earth was flat and the oceans had sea monsters was implicated in the 'adverse incidents' of ships for centuries. Those turned out to be incorrect implications.

Besides"implicated" is a far cry from "proven". And if you happen to have some "implication" other than heresay or gossip, we'd like to know. Please tell us what else was in those 'products that contained comfrey'; and were those products -and that comfrey in them- grown in third world countries and doused with DDT and other hepatotoxic pesticides? And forgive us for questioning you, but just because "you say" Comfrey has been 'implicated in serious adverse incidents', that doesn't make it true --unless you have evidence, of course. Do you have any evidence? Can we just stick to the facts please?

Drumroll please, from THE mouth of the FDA!
However, whileinformation is generally lacking to establish a cause-effect relationship between comfrey ingestion and observed adverse effects humans... well, gosh-golly-gee, you're the FDA, I'm sure you would know if there's any evidence to be found. And since you admit "information is lacking to establish a true cause-effect", then, uh, there's no information to establish one, eh?)

...the adverse effects that have been seen are entirely consistent with the known effects of comfrey ingestion that have been described in the scientific literature. HUH???? You just said there's no information to establish a cause-effect how can there even BE adverse effects with known comfrey ingestion, if there's no information to establish a cause-effect??? We're not quite as dumb as you think we are, are you're certainly not as "smooth" as you think you are! (Did you really just put two totally conflicting statements in the same sentence?)

The pyrrolizidine alkaloids that are present in comfrey, in addition to being potent hepatotoxins, have also been shown to be toxic to other tissues as well. No! No! No! You just said that information is generally lacking to establish a cause-effect with Comfrey and adverse effects in humans...and you've NEVER proven or referenced a study that proves Comfrey is a potent hepatotoxin. What you probably MEANT to say, is that some pyrrolizidine alkaloids from some plants are potent hepatotoxins...and you'd like to lump Comfrey in with those, but you'd don't have any evidence to do so. So you're lumping it all together anyway and hoping we'll fall for it.

There is also evidence that implicates these substances as carcinogens. Implicated? or PROVEN? And by 'these substances', do you mean synthetic or extracted/isolated pyrrolizidine alkaloids from the known toxic alkaloids/plants, or from the 'Comfrey substances' which you've already clearly admitted have no proven cause-effect relationship to adverse effects in humans?

Taken together, the clear evidence of an association between oral exposure to pyrrolizidine alkaloids and serious adverse health effects... Again, as we learned in science class: "association" or "correlation" does NOT prove "causation". And again-again :::sigh::: are we talking the PA's from the plants that are KNOWN to contain toxic PA's, or the PA's from Comfrey (that have NEVER been proven to cause ANY harm to man or beast)?

...and the lack of any valid scientific data that would enable the agency to determine whether there is an exposure, if any, that would present no harm to consumers, ... So far you've got "association" -which you're quite aware, means absolutely nothing unless you have valid scientific data that PROVES a correlation. AND you have "lack of any valid scientific data". So exactly what are you going to conclude?

...indicates that this substance should not be used as an ingredient in dietary supplements.

:::in my best Mr. Rodgers voice::: Okay folks, can you say "AGENDA"??? Sure, I knew you could.

Now then, it is any wonder, that after almost a century of this level of "spin & lies" being imbedded into the minds of society and physicians (AND alternative & natural healers), that we're all scared to death to eat plants to heal ourself? (Of course, this doesn't mean that we should be stupid and run out there and stuff our face with anything and everything just because it's "natural" and someone said it was good for us). But it is VERY important to know the the pharmaceutical industry-owned AMA (whose foundational mission is "to protect the legal & financial interest of it's members") and all it's greedy tentacles, have spent BILLIONS of dollars since the late 1890's,,,, hiring the TOP psychologists and advertising PR experts to propagandize & brainwash society and destroy the competition. And you just saw one little blurb that's part of the process. All of us (and all of those we ever try to help) are victims of this 'fear & quackery' campaign...and how deceitful, impactful, and health-destroying their incredible levels of "spin" really are.

Let truth and freedom REIGN!


"Those who know the least obey the best."--George Farquhar

Broken Bones
Posted by J (Jefferson, Texas) on 01/25/2018

Comfrey for the ankle. It's referred to as knit bone. It helped bone grow twice as fast after having hardware removed from my ankle. The Surgeon told me two weeks after surgery that the bone growth he saw in the x-rays was what he usually saw at one month. I took pain meds for one day after surgery, only. I started putting poultices on it the day of my surgery as soon as I returned home. Two weeks later I was cleared to ride my motorcycle. Comfrey is absolutely amazing!

Comfrey Smoothie for Women
Posted by Mama To Many (Tn) on 11/20/2017

Dear Mary in Arcadia,

Back when we were conversing about how much dried comfrey leaf equals a leaf, I cut a leaf and hung it up in my kitchen. It long since dried and today I finally crushed it up and measured how much dried leaf it made (without the stem.)

The leaf in the picture, (with a regular sized domino to compare) dried and crushed made just over a teaspoon of dried comfrey leaf. If I had powdered it, it would have been less than a teaspoon.

~Mama to Many~

Posted by Mary (Arcadia, Ca) on 10/08/2017

Dear Mama to Many;

Thank you so much for your reply I already started taking 1 1/2 tsp with my smoothie. I will add a little more later to see how I do. Thank you so much.

Many blessings,


Posted by Mama To Many (Tennessee) on 10/07/2017

Dear Mary,

I usually use a large comfrey leaf in my smoothie (the size of a large hand.) If it were dried it would perhaps make a tablespoon of dried comfrey leaf. (I will try and actually dry a leaf and let you know how much it is for sure.)

It may be better to start with a teaspoon and work up from that, though, to make sure it suits you.

~Mama to Many~

Posted by Mary (Arcadia, Ca) on 10/07/2017

How much dried Comfrey do I put in a smoothie. Cup or tablespoons?

Broken Bones
Posted by Mary (Arcadia, Ca) on 09/29/2017

Mama to Many;

Thank you so much for your recipe. I truly appreciate it.

Blessings always,

Mary Martinez

Broken Bones
Posted by Mama To Many (Tn) on 09/28/2017

Dear Mary,

Here is how I make Comfrey Salve:

I usually use dried comfrey leaf from Mountain Rose Herbs.

Sometimes I used dried fresh comfrey leaf. (I always should since I have a comfrey plant but I get lazy.)

Fresh leaves, if you have access to them, can be cleaned and dried in an oven on very low heat. You want them dry but not completely brittle.

I fill a mason jar 2/3 full of comfrey leaves. I then cover that with oil until jar is 3/4 full. It can be all olive oil or almond oil. But I usually add in some castor oil since it is good for pain. (No more than 1/3 of it should be castor. It is pretty greasy and not sure if it extracts the comfrey as well as olive or almond.)

The leaves should be completely submerged in oil.

I allow this to sit for 2 weeks in a cool dry place. OR I put the closed jar on a washcloth (to prevent cracking) in a crock pot and fill the crock pot with water to just below the lid (you don't want water to seep into the mixture.) I put the crock pot on warm or low for 3-4 days. (Low if I will be around enough to keep refilling the water. If it goes dry you may crack the jar.)

After you have infused the oil with one of the above methods, use a square of a clean t shirt or sheet that you can part with. Use this square to strain out the oil into another jar. Squeeze as much oil out as you can. Toss spent herbs or compost or feed to chickens.

Now you have comfrey infused oil. You can use this oil as is. Or you can melt in beeswax to make a salve. I have done both.

To melt in beeswax, first weigh your oil, then use a double boiler and reheat the infused oil. For every 4 ounces (by weight) of oil, add 1 T. beeswax pastilles. (Little granules.) Melt them in and then pour your mixture into a jar or tin. I usually test before pouring by putting a bit in the freezer for a couple of minutes. If it is too soft, add more beesax. If too firm, add a little more olive oil.

You can add vitamin e or essential oils to but I rarely do that anymore unless I have a specific purpose in mind. These infused oils last a good while and I like the simplicity.

Comfrey salve oil is also amazing for skin rashes, burns, hemorrhoids, and chapped lips.


~Mama to Many~

Broken Bones
Posted by Mary (Arcadia, Ca) on 09/27/2017

Dear Mama to Many,

Would love your recipe for your comfrey gel.

Thank you very much,

Blessings, Mary

Broken Bones
Posted by Faeqa ( Amman, Jordan) on 09/27/2017 66 posts

Hi Rita, the best thing that I ever tried for broken bone is taking internally Mummia, mumia, or mūmiyā (in old Arabic books, where I read about it).

May be it is the synonym of Asphaltum, (Shilajit in an Indian Sanskrit)

Broken Bones
Posted by Mama To Many (Tn) on 09/27/2017

Dear Rita

It would definitely be worth a try! I use comfrey all the time and absolutely love it.

You can guarantee a stronger ointment if you make it yourself. If you are interested in making it, I will share a recipe.

Bone broth would be a good addition to the diet to promote bone and joint healing as well.

~Mama to Many~

Broken Bones
Posted by Rita (Tampa, Florida) on 09/27/2017

My mother is 87 years old. About 3 months ago she broke her neck vertebrae C2. The doctors said she is too old to go through the surgery and that she would have to wear a neck brace the rest of her life. The only time she doesn't have the neck brace on is when she's showering . So she basically where's it 24/7 . In your opinion, do you think the comfrey ointment would heal my moms neck? I suppose it's worth a try, it surely can't hurt.

Posted by Mama To Many (Tn) on 07/27/2017

Dear Zark,

Thanks for checking!

I am happy to say I can't even tell which hen had the injury. The whole flock of them spend the day running around after bugs. (Hopefully they are eating a lot of ticks! )

~Mama to Many~

Posted by Zark (Emerald City) on 07/27/2017

How did it go? Hope your chicken bounced back :)

Cartilage Damage, Scars
Posted by Kitchen Witch (New York) on 07/05/2017

Comfrey leaf for cartilage repair

I have a lipoma and I heard comfrey leaf might help. I ordered some comfrey leaf plantain leaf tea from someone on etsy and comfrey leaf tablets and took them three times a day and drank a pot of tea daily. Well, it did nothing for my lipoma but I had an indented scar on the side tip of my nose that dug into my cartilage from a cancerous growth being removed. After two weeks it started filling in.

I've had this scar for four years, got injections used salves oils and creams and nothing a big hole in my nose. Now its almost filled in and I am shocked. Doctors said I would need an implant.

Comfrey Smoothie for Women
Posted by Mama To Many (Tennessee) on 04/06/2017

Well, my smoothie picture today doesn't have a sunny background. It is chilly and drizzly this morning. But I still made a smoothie this morning; it is one of my favorite breakfasts. My son with poison ivy is doing so much better, so I am back to making smoothie that has what I like and think I need in it (Thought I loved the Pina Colada Smoothie). Every day my smoothie is different but here is today's recipe (approximately.)

  • 2 medium sized comfrey leaves
  • 3/4 cup yogurt
  • 1 Tablespoon Chia Seeds
  • 1 Tablespoon Gelatin
  • 1/4 cup frozen blueberries
  • 1/4 cup almond milk (maybe a little more)

Blend all in a blender.

It wasn't very sweet; some honey could be added.

Benefits of this smoothie for women:

Comfrey is good for strong and flexible bones, healthy skin and good digestion. Herbalist Susun Weed says it contains special proteins for short term memory brain cells.

Susun Weed also recommends regular consumption of yogurt for menopausal women.

Blueberries are tasty antioxidants.

Chia seeds are good for digestion and give you Omega 3's.

Gelatin is good for the health of joints, skin, hair and nails.


~Mama to Many~

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