Leaves, Shoots, Rhizomes, Roots. Young shoots in spring - cooked. They can be used as an asparagus substitute. They have an acid flavour and can also be used as a rhubarb substitute in pies, fruit soups, jams etc. Older stems and shoot tips - cooked. They taste like a mild version of rhubarb. Seed - raw or cooked. It is rather small and fiddly to utilize. The seed can also be ground into a powder and used as a flavouring and thickener in soups etc, or can be mixed with cereals when making bread, cakes etc. The root is sometimes eaten.
Possibly may have similar properties to other knotweeds where the root can be anti-inflammatory, depurative, diuretic, emmenagogue, emollient, fever reducing, stomachic and vulnerary. It is also used in the treatment of women's complaints. A decoction is used in the treatment of burn injuries, boils and abscesses, poisonous snakebites, acute hepatitis, appendicitis, traumatic injuries and menstrual irregularities. The leaves can be crushed and applied externally as a poultice to abscesses, cuts etc, whilst the dried roots can be ground into a powder and applied externally. Extracts of the plant have shown anti-tumor activity.