Dandelion Health Benefits – Garden Weed or Powerful Remedy?

dandelion health benefits – garden weed or powerful remedy

 

For many people, dandelions are just garden weed. For those who discovered their nutritional value and health benefits, dandelions are inevitable in almost every cuisine and necessary remedy. Before you jump to conclusions, the best is to find out all the information about it.

Once you do, I am sure you will change your mind.

Thirty million years ago, dandelions appeared in Eurasia. The very first collected documents about the earliest human societies, its culture and social life, mentioned the usage of dandelion both as a remedy and as food.

Around 1000 A.D., the Persian scientist and philosopher Ibn Sina wrote a book chapter on Taraxacum, the Latin name of the genus of flowering plants in the family Asteraceae, that is dandelion.

The name itself is derived from the French dent de lion, which means “lion’s tooth.” The plant is also known as milk witch, Irish daisy, monks-head, priest’s crown, doon-head-clock and yellow-gowan. With its recognizable yellow flowers, this plant has secrets waiting to be discovered.

 

Why Should You Use Dandelion?

Dandelion as powerful remedy

 

Dandelions are high in calcium and rich in iron

One cup of chopped dandelions greens has 103 milligrams of calcium.
One cup of dandelions has 1.7 milligrams of iron.

 

Dandelions are an excellent antioxidant

Fresh dandelion provides about 33 % of the daily recommended intake of vitamin A; in particular, it has 10161 IU of vitamin A per 100 grams.  On the other hand, dandelion provides 58% of the daily intake of vitamin C.

 

Dandelions are rich with vitamins

Besides beta-carotene and vitamin C, dandelion greens are an excellent source of vitamin B1 (9% RDA), B2 (11% RDA) and B6 (11% RDA). There is also vitamin E (13% RDA) in dandelion. Dandelion is the richest source of vitamin K. This herb provides about 650% of DRI.

 

Dandelions are a rich source of minerals

Apart from calcium and iron, other important minerals are cooper (10% RDA), phosphorus (5% RDA), magnesium (5% RDA), potassium (5% RDA) and manganese (8% RDA).

 

Dandelions are food low in calories and powerful protein food

One cup of dandelion greens has 25 calories. Dandelions are a good source of dietary fiber, 100 grams of dandelion greens have about 9% of RDA.
Dandelion greens contain 14% of protein, more than spinach.

 

Dandelion root is therapeutic

Contains taraxacin, taraxacerin, inulin and levulin.  Due to these compounds, dandelion has excellent therapeutic properties.

 

Dandelion is a good source of folic acid, riboflavin, pyridoxine and niacin

Having all these important components, dandelion has diuretic, laxative, and anti-inflammatory activities. Besides, dandelion is an excellent detoxification food and immunity system booster.

 

What Can Dandelion Treat?

Dandelion as powerful remedy

 

Dandelion – Liver Protection Food

First help one can gain from dandelion is related to liver protection. Vitamin C and luteolin, as antioxidants, protect the liver from aging, while other components help to treat bleeding in the liver. Dandelion, in general, stimulates the liver and promotes digestion.

 

Dandelion – Insulin Production Herb

In particular, dandelion juice helps with stimulating the production of insulin, thus lowers the blood sugar level, or keeps it low. As a natural diuretic, it helps with regular urination, therefore remove the extra sugar from the body. Moreover, due to these properties, dandelion removes the sugar deposition in the kidneys through urine. Because of its bitter taste, dandelion juice lowers the sugar level in the blood, as all sour food.

 

Dandelion – Food for Detoxification

Dandelion cleans deposits of toxic substances in the kidneys and the urinary system. At the same time, the disinfectant properties of dandelion help inhibit microbial growth in the urinary system.

 

Dandelion – Remedy for High Blood Pressure

High blood pressure lowers by urinating; thus, being a powerful diuretic, dandelion is an effective remedy for controlling blood pressure. On the other hand, the fiber present in dandelion is additional help for reducing cholesterol. At last, there is potassium that is very good for lowering blood pressure as well.

 

Dandelion – Food for Healthy Diet

The great benefit of dandelion related to weight loss is due to its diuretic properties. The fact that our urine contains up to 4 percentages of fats, any food that can help with regular urination and effective detoxification can help with weight loss. Thus, the more we urinate, more fats, as well as water, are lost from the body. The healthy diet with dandelion included is safe, and without side effects.

 

Dandelion – Skin Protective Plant

We are all aware that some of the skin diseases are caused due to microbial and fungal infections. Dandelion is a natural antioxidant with strong anti-inflammatory and antifungal properties. Dandelion milk, or also known as dandelion sap, is high in alkaline level, and have germicidal and insecticidal properties. When applying dandelion milk, one should avoid contact with eyes. This milk is beneficial for itches, ringworms, and eczema.

 

Dandelion – Natural Remedy for Acne

The juice made from dandelion leaves and the root is an excellent stimulant, detoxifier, and antioxidant. Given the fact that hormonal changes cause acne, dandelion juice helps regulate proper secretion of hormones and increases sweating. Moreover, the juice can widen up the pores, thus able to remove the toxins through sweating and urine.

 

Dandelion – Plant for Bone Health

Due to the rich content of calcium, the mineral essential for growth and strength of the bones, dandelion protects bones from damages caused by aging, weakening, and density loss.

 

Dandelion – Help for Anemia

Very rich in iron, and vitamin B, dandelion is an excellent food for anemic people. Iron is an integral part of hemoglobin in the blood, while vitamin B is essential for the formation of red blood cells.

If you had any doubt whether dandelion was a garden weed or a powerful remedy, these facts mentioned above should shed some light on this plant’s importance in our everyday life.

 
Reference:

Brickell, C. (1996). RHS A-Z Encyclopedia of Garden Plants. Dorling Kindersley Publishers Ltd
Taraxacum, Flora of North America
Gladstar, R. (1993). Herbal Healing for Women. Touchstone.
González-Castejón M, Visioli F, Rodriguez-Casado A. Diverse biological activities of dandelion. http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/22946853
Goldstein, M.C. & Goldstein M.A. (2012). Healthy Herbs: Fact versus Fiction. Greenwood.
Green, J. (2000). The Herbal Medicine-Maker’s Handbook: A Home Manual. Crossing Press.
Ody, P. (1993). The Complete Medicinal Herbal: A Practical Guide to the Healing Properties of Herbs, with More Than 250 Remedies for Common Ailments. DK Adult.
Tierra, M. (1998). The Way of Herbs. Pocket Books.
Tilgner, S.M. (2009). Herbal Medicine from the Heart of the Earth. Wise Acress LLC.

 
Image credit: GetStencil.com

 
Last article update: 9/1/2019