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Groomwell root, also known as lithospermum root or zicao (Lithospermum erythrorhizon), is an herb that is commonly used in traditional medicine, particularly in traditional Chinese medicine (TCM) and Korean traditional medicine. The root of the plant is used as an herbal remedy, and is believed to have a variety of health benefits.

Groomwell root is often used to promote healthy skin, treat skin conditions, and support the liver. It is also believed to have anti-inflammatory, antioxidant, and antimicrobial properties. The herb contains several beneficial compounds, including shikonin and its derivatives, which are believed to be responsible for many of its therapeutic effects.



  • Skin health: Groomwell root is often used to promote healthy skin and treat skin conditions such as rashes, eczema, and psoriasis. The herb is believed to have anti-inflammatory and antimicrobial properties that can help to reduce inflammation and prevent infection. Groomwell root may also help to improve skin health by promoting healthy circulation and nutrient absorption.

  • Liver support: Groomwell root is believed to have a tonifying effect on the liver and may help to support healthy liver function. The herb is often used in traditional Chinese medicine to treat liver disorders and promote liver detoxification.

  • Anti-inflammatory activity: Groomwell root is believed to have anti-inflammatory properties that can help to reduce inflammation in the body. The herb may be beneficial for treating conditions that are characterized by chronic inflammation, such as rheumatoid arthritis and inflammatory bowel disease.



  • Groomwell root may cause allergic reactions in some people, particularly those who are sensitive to other plants in the same family.

  • Groomwell root should not be used by pregnant or breastfeeding women, as it may have harmful effects on the developing fetus or infant.

  • Groomwell root can interact with certain medications, including blood thinners and medications for high blood pressure, and should not be used by people taking these medications without first consulting a healthcare provider.

  • The safety of using groomwell root in children has not been fully studied, and it is best to consult with a healthcare provider before using it in children.

  • Groomwell root may cause gastrointestinal symptoms, such as nausea, vomiting, or abdominal discomfort, in some people.


Tastes Like:

Groomwell root (Lithospermum erythrorhizon) has a slightly bitter and earthy taste, with a hint of sweetness. The flavor of the herb is generally considered to be mild, and it is often combined with other herbs to balance its flavor and enhance its therapeutic effects.



  • Tea: Groomwell root is commonly used to make a tea or infusion. To make groomwell root tea, simmer 1-2 teaspoons of dried root in a cup of water for 10-15 minutes. Strain the liquid and drink the tea warm or chilled. You can add honey or lemon to taste if desired.

  • Ointment: Groomwell root can be prepared as an ointment or salve for external use. To make an ointment, simmer the dried root in oil (such as coconut or olive oil) for several hours to extract the active compounds. Strain the oil and mix it with beeswax to create a thick, creamy consistency. Apply the ointment topically to the affected area as needed.

  • Powder: Groomwell root is also available in powder form. The powder can be mixed with water or other beverages and consumed as a drink. The powder can also be used to make a paste that can be applied topically to the skin.

Groomwell Root (Zi Cao)

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