Traditional Indications

Yellow dock is alterative, antiscorbutic, astringent, antimutagenic, cholagogue, depurative, laxative, poultice, salve and tonic. Yellow dock has a long history of domestic herbal use. It is a gentle and safe laxative. The plant has valuable cleansing properties and is useful for treating a wide range of skin problems. The root is used internally in the treatment of constipation, diarrhoea, piles, bleeding of the lungs, various blood complaints and also chronic skin diseases. Externally, the root can be mashed and used as a poultice and salve, or dried and used as a dusting powder, on sores, ulcers, wounds and various other skin problems. (1)


A study evaluating Rumex crispus extract for its antioxidant potential and found that Yellow dock lowered Lipid peroxidation (LPx) and increasing glutathione (GSH). (2)

A study found that Rumex crispus extract prevents bone loss by inhibiting osteoclastogenesis and inducing osteoblast mineralisation. The study concluded that Rumex crispus extract could protect against osteoporosis and suggested that the possible mechanism might be related to increased osteoblast differentiation by activating Runx2 signaling and inhibition of osteoclast differentiation by suppression of RANKL signaling. (3)

Receptor activator of nuclear factor kappa-Β ligand (RANKL), also known as tumor necrosis factor ligand superfamily member 11 (TNFSF11), TNF-related activation-induced cytokine (TRANCE), osteoprotegerin ligand (OPGL), and osteoclast differentiation factor (ODF), is a protein that in humans. RANKL is expressed in several tissues and organs including: skeletal muscle, thymus, liver, colon, small intestine, adrenal gland, osteoblast, mammary gland epithelial cells, prostate and pancreas. Variation in concentration levels of RANKL throughout several organs reconfirms the importance of RANKL in tissue growth (particularly bone growth) and immune functions within the body. (4)

1. PFAF. Rumex crispus 2018.
2. Maksimović Z, Kovačević N, Lakušić B, Ćebović T. Antioxidant activity of yellow dock (Rumex crispus L., Polygonaceae) fruit extract. 2011;25(1):101-5.
3. Shim K-S, Lee B, Ma JY. Water extract of Rumex crispus prevents bone loss by inhibiting osteoclastogenesis and inducing osteoblast mineralization. BMC complementary and alternative medicine. 2017;17(1):483-.
4. Wikipedia. RANKL. Wikipedia2018.