Greater celandine is famous for its healing benefits on the liver, gallbladder and the digestive system, as well as its powerful immune boosting properties, wound healing and soothing anxiety and sleep disorders. Additionally, it may help with cancer treatment.

Greater celandine is a plant long used in traditional Chinese medicine and well known in Roman times. It was often used for health problems relating liver and gallbladder, but today it is known that is has a wide range of health benefits:

Digestive system

Liver and gallbladder health

Skin and wounds

Immunity booster


Healthy bones

Anxiety and sleep disorders

Digestive system

The most famous benefit of Greater celandine lies in its helpful and soothing effects on the digestive system.
It helps the body to produce more bile and other digestive enzymes responsible for effective digestion and can even be used to naturally deal with stomach ulcers.

In folk medicine, people often use celandine to improve digestion and get rid of unpleasant symptoms such as bloating, nausea, cramps, stomach pain and passing gas. Additionally, in can be of great help with Irritable bowel syndrome (IBS), which can be highly uncomfortable and painful.

To ease your digestion and help your body break down the food, drink a cup of celandine tea or some tincture before meals, as people have been doing for centuries!

Liver and Gallbladder Health

Due to its depurative properties, Greater celandine can be used to purify and cleanse the liver. It can be used as an effective part of a detoxification program because of its ability to eliminate waste and toxins out of your system. It has natural liver protective properties which not only help to support proper liver health and function but also protect the liver from cellular damage.

It also helps to encourage the gallbladder and keep the organ working properly.The gallbladder stores the bile acids produced in the liver and releases them into the small intestine, playing a vital role in fat digestion and metabolism.

Problems with the gallbladder are known to cause numerous other issues like indigestion. Greater celandine is known to help stimulate the gallbladder functions which in turn helps prevent inflammation, infection and diseases like hepatitis.

Skin and wounds

When used topically, greater celandine is a wonderful microbe zapper. This is one of major reasons why the herb has been used traditionally - for disinfecting minor wounds and burns for so many years.Killing off bacteria and protecting your skin in the presence of a wound is important for keeping an infection from complicating the natural healing process.

Immunity booster

Greater celandine is capable of fighting off bacteria, viruses and fungi; it can be used to help defend the body against those invading disease-causing microbes. In other words, greater celandine may be used to help strengthen a person’s immune system.


The potential of celandine to fight cancer and other diseases partly comes from its immune-boosting effects.

Greater celandine is one of many plants that have been investigated for their anti-cancer potential and early signs are promising. There is some proof that when greater celandine is introduced into patients with several types of cancer that it can improve survival rates. Several researches have showed that taking greater celandine orally may have an anti-tumor effect on patients as it can:

-Stimulate the immune response-Increase the number of cells in bone marrow, spleen, and blood-Induce the production of cancer-fighting and recovery proteins

However, it should be stated here that the studies have come under criticism because of their poor design. While the results have been promising, until more rigorous testing is conducted, we will not know for sure how effective the plant may be against cancer.

Healthy bones

In osteoporosis, bones become weak and fragile. When women enter menopause and lose the protective effects of estrogen, osteoporosis and fractures become their No. 1 health threat.

In two researches (1, 2) done on the effects of celandine on menopause and bone loss problems, it was found that it:-Increased levels of estrogen-Prevented bone mineral loss-Stimulated bone formation

It is of great importance to keep our bones healthy and strong as we age, so that we can enjoy our golden years in top shape!

Anxiety and Sleeping Problems

Greater celandine can be used as a mild sedative and anti-anxiety treatment.
It has narcotic properties and thus should not be taken in large doses.
In smaller doses, it can be used to ease anxiety and tension and because of its analgesic ability, might help relieve pain.
A combination of these properties means that it can help you rest and relax, if you are troubled by interrupted sleep patterns or a overly active mind. Take some celandine in your preferred way before bed and relax into a comfortable evening and a restful night.

Dosage and preparation:
Tea - Pour a cup of boiled water over 1 to 2 teaspoons of Greater celandine tea. Let it steep for 5-10 minutes. Drink 3 times a day.
Tincture - 20 drops, 3 times a day.

Precaution: The herb is contraindicated for children, pregnant and lactating women. If the herb is used on its own, do not use it for more than two weeks , in combination with other medicinal plants or herbs it may possibly be used for longer periods.

Consult your healthcare provider prior to using greater celandine (especially if you have a history of liver problems). It's important to note that self-treating a chronic condition with greater celandine and avoiding or delaying standard care may have serious health consequences.

Disclaimer: Information on this website is based on research from the internet, books, articles and studies and/or companies selling herbs online. Statements in this website have not necessarily been evaluated and should not be considered as medical advice. These products are not intended to diagnose, treat, cure or prevent any illness or disease. for diagnosis or treatment consult your physician.Use herbs in moderation and watch for allergic reactions.If you are taking any other medication, are pregnant, breast feeding or suffering from a medical condition and/or are at all concerned about any of the advice or ingredients consult your doctor before taking the herbs.Remember that diet, exercise and relaxation are equally important to your health..

Chelidonium majus, or greater celandine, has a long history of use in many European countries and it also dates back to Ancient Greece, where the physician and botanist Dioscorides first described its detox potential. From Pliny the Elder (a famous Roman naturalist) to modern herbalists such as Maurice Mességué, traditional remedies with greater celandine have a rich history.

Its use also extends to traditional Chinese medicine, and it’s become an important part of western phytotherapy. Extracts of greater celandine have exhibited a broad spectrum of toxicity to harmful organisms as well as liver protecting activity. This has led to the inclusion of greater celandine in liver and gallbladder cleansing and support protocols.
Chinese traditional medicine uses “bai-qu-cai” (greater celandine) to boost circulation, combat cramps and menstrual pain, treat jaundice, and much more. Russians call it “chistotel bolshoi,” which translates to “strong cleansing

Greater celandine, also known as nipplewort or swallowwort, belongs to the family of herbs called poppies (Papaveraceae). Although native to Europe and western Asia, this perennial herb grows worldwide.

Its Latin name – Chelidonium – actually comes from Ancient Greek (chelidon) and means “swallow”. Anecdotally, blooming of celandine flowers would announce the return of swallow birds from the south.

Greater celandine has tender leaves and blooms tiny yellow flowers. When injured, the stem releases distinct yellow-orange sap known as “devil’s milk.”
The milky latex was used externally to remove warts, soften corns and detach bad teeth.

Greater Celandine is an herbaceous perennial plant growing about 30 to 120 cm tall. The plant is found growing in rubble, damp ground, banks, hedgerows, waste places, thickets, roadsides, dry woods and nearly always close to human habitations. It is often grown for its beautiful yellow flowers. If you are wild harvesting it, be careful of the yellow sap - it can cause uncomfortable burns on the skin.

The plant is native to Europe and western Asia and introduced widely in North America.

Common Names: Swallow Wort, celandine poppy, wartwort, yellow spit, Jacob’s ladder, garden calendine, calendine poppy, felonwort, svaleurt (Norwegian), celidonia (Spanish), eclaire, chélidoine (French), Schöllkraut (German), svölujurt (Icelandic), keltamo (Finnish).