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I’m sure we all know what a dandelion is, but we’ve been tricked into thinking it is just a lowly little weed. Would it surprise you to know that dandelion is actually an extremely powerful healing herb? I know I was a bit skeptical when I first heard about dandelion’s healing powers. I mean, we used to tear them out of the ground as kids and destroy them because they were “just weeds”. Too bad we didn’t know enough to just start eating them back then!
From Herbal Legacy:
“There are so many uses claimed for the plant that it takes place among the herbal cure-alls. Its most frequent use, however, is an herb to heal the liver. In Europe, many scientific experiments have been undertaken which prove the traditional belief that the herb truly does cure hepatic ailments (Lucas: Herbal: 33). The herb acts in two ways for these conditions: it promotes the formation of bile and removes excess water from the body in edematous conditions resulting from liver congestion (Lust: 171). ”
Dandelion can help heal cancer, infections, hepatitis, and its main purpose is to help cleanse the body. It can be helpful for hypoglycemia, UTIs, blood pressure regulation, acne, weight loss, anemia, jaundice, constipation, and more. Dandelion cleans toxicities from the blood, lymph system, kidneys, liver and urinary system. Since dandelion is a bitter herb, it is amazing for digestion.
Dandelion’s most common use is for liver health. This herb is especially amazing for the liver since it not only protects the liver, it also helps rebuild it. Dandelion helps stimulate bile flow in the liver, which is an important factor for people trying to regain their health and detox effectively. One source that it actually quadruples bile flow! Read more on liver healing and gallbladder health.
Apparently there have been several studies done on dandelion and how it can heal hepatitis in a short amount of time because of the cleansing and healing effects it has on the liver.
Dandelion is high in vitamin C, potassium, magnesium, phosphorus, beta carotene, and B vitamins. Dandelion is especially praised for its potassium content- it is a diuretic, but it doesn’t deplete potassium like other diuretics.
How to Use Dandelion
The most common way to enjoy dandelion is in a tea. I personally love Traditional Medicinals. I make a giant cup everyday with 2 tea bags and a tablespoon of blackstrap molasses (plus a splash of Grass Milk if I have it!). There is also a coffee replacement coffee replacement that is dandelion based.
Or you can make infusions, tinctures, cordials, or even wine with the loose root.
My new favorite way to enjoy dandelion is in a decoction.
Decoctions are made by adding dandelion root (raw or roasted) to boiling water and simmering on low for at least 20 minutes or longer. Strain the root out before drinking the liquid. I like to add 2 tablespoons of black-strap molasses to the hot liquid, and just enough whole, grass-fed milk to lighten the color a little bit. Voila, you have a dandelion latte 🙂
For major liver support, use 4-5 Tablespoons of dandelion root per quart of water. Use 2 tablespoons for a more mild detox effect. You can have up to a quart a day for about 3 months.
You can also eat dandelion leaves in salads or sauté them.
Just like any new food or supplement, start slow when adding in dandelion. It can cause a detox reaction- but I have found that the more consistent you are with it, the more it continues to help make detox easier.
You Can read more about Dandelion here: