Botanical name

Inula helenium

Common Names



Compositae (Asteraceae)


Common in Britain, this plant is used in Switzerland and France to manufacture absinthe.

Part supplied

The chopped root.

Food Use


Use 1 teaspoon of dried herb to one cup of boiling water to make a tasty tea. Infuse for 5-10 minutes. Sweeten with honey or lemon to taste.

Alternatively add half a teaspoon (2.5 ml) of tincture to a cup of warm water for a quick alternative to tea.

The herb can be added as a flavouring to gin, vodka and other infusions.

Medicinal Use

An expectorant, anti-tussive and diaphoretic. Use for bronchial problems, asthma and catarrhal complaints.

Key actions: Antibacterial, diaphoretic, expectorant, spasmolytic, bronchospasmolytic. 

In clinic: Herbalists use this herb to treat tracheal and bronchial catarrh. 

If you are interested in the medicinal use of this herb please consult a herbalist. Herbs are generally used at medicinal strength, in blends, prescribed for each unique patient's condition.


Decoction: About 1 to 2 teaspoons of herb (1.5 to 4 g) to a cup of cold water, bring to the boil and leave to sit for 15 minutes. Or steep 1 teaspoon bark in cold water overnight. Flavour with lemon, ginger or honey if desired. Drink 3 times a day unless otherwise told by a medical herbalist.

Tincture: Take 3 to 5 ml (1:5 tincture), 3 times a day or as directed by a practitioner.

Fluid extract: 1:1 Take 1.5 to 4 ml, 3 times a day or as directed by a practitioner.

Dried Herb: Maximum of 12 g per day may be taken as a powder or capsules.

Other Uses

Cosmetic Use

None known.

Other Uses

None known.



There is a known sensitivity to Elecampane. 

This herb is considered safe in food amounts. Do not take if you are allergic to this plant or other members of this plant's family (Compositae). Not all herbs are suitable in pregnancy, breastfeeding or for young children. If in doubt, please ask us or your medical herbalist.

Side effects

Allergic contact dermatitis is a side effect, though it is an fairly infrequent occurrence. It is caused by the sesquiterpene lactone content. Plant extracts cause few side effects when taken correctly but if a side effect is experienced please contact us.

Interactions with drugs

None known. 

Herbal remedies and supplements can interact with medicines. If you are taking medication please check with your medical practitioner, or call us, before taking herbs, supplements and medication together.

More Information


There are currently no articles related to this herb.


Look in our recipes section for more uses of this herb.


Read the latest PubMed research on this herb.

Add to BagInula helenium Elecampane root 100g £7.00
Add to BagInula helenium Elecampane root 500g £20.99
Add to BagInula helenium Elecampane root tincture 100ml £7.99
Add to BagInula helenium Elecampane root tincture 500ml £17.99
Add to BagInula helenium Elecampane root tincture 1L £34.99

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