Asparagus plant - Asparagus Officinalis (Liliaceae)

Medicinal Use of Asparagus – Asparagus Officinalis (Liliaceae)


Slender-stemmed perennial growing to 6½ ft (2 m). Has long fronds of delicate needle-like leaves and bell-shaped yellow-green flowers that produce small bright red berries.

Habitat & Cultivation

Native to temperate regions in Europe, North Africa, and Asia, asparagus is cultivated worldwide as a vegetable. The shoots grow into tender green (and, if sheltered from sunlight, white) stems in spring. The root is gathered after the shoots have been cut.

Parts Used

Root, shoots.


Asparagus contains steroidal glycosides (asparagosides), bitter glycosides, asparagine, and flavonoids. Asparagine is a strong diuretic.

History & Folklore

To judge from ancient Egyptian tomb drawings, asparagus was cultivated as long ago as 4000 BCE. In the 1st century CE, the Greek physician Dioscorides recommended a decoction of asparagus root to improve urine flow and to treat kidney problems, jaundice, and sciatica.

Medicinal Actions & Uses

Asparagus is a strong diuretic that is useful for a variety of urinary problems, including cystitis. It is also useful for rheumatic conditions, helping to “flush” waste products accumulated in the joints out of the body in the urine. Asparagus is also bitter, mildly laxative, and sedative.


Do not take if you suffer from kidney disease.