Dandelion, (translates to lion’s tooth in French) is part of the Asteraceae family. It’s native to most of Europe, Asia and northern Africa, but can grow almost anywhere in the world.
This herb is known for providing health benefits to both our bodies and the environment it thrives in. When it comes to gardening, dandelion adds minerals and nitrogen to the soil. It releases ethylene gas, which helps fruit ripen, and attracts pollinating insects.
Medicinal use of dandelion dates back to ancient times, and is believed to have evolved 30 million years ago in Eurasia. Known for its cleansing and detoxifying properties, it’s been used all over the world in Chinese, Arabic, and Welsh medicine. Dandelion is rich in vitamins A, C, K, iron, and calcium and has a range of health benefits including antioxidant support, immunity and proper functioning of the liver, gallbladder, kidneys, and spleen.
Here are some other health benefits of dandelion root:
- Strengthens bones: High source of calcium helps with the growth and strength of bones; antioxidants vitamin C and luteolin protect bones from age-related damage
- Supports the liver: Stimulates bile production and bile flow; cleanses and detoxifies the liver
- Aids digestive and intestinal systems: Reduces inflammation, increases mineral absorption and gently moves food through the digestive tract. It also restores healthy bacteria in the intestines
- Improves skin: the stem is highly alkaline and contains germicidal, insecticidal and fungicidal properties which help fight skin infections
- Monitors blood sugar: Increases insulin production from pancreas which can lower blood sugar levels and removes excess sugar from the body
- Assists the urinary tract: Dandelion is a natural diuretic; it eliminates harmful substances from the kidneys and UT. The disinfectant properties also prevent microbial growth in the urinary system
- Purifies the blood: High levels of iron, protein and B vitamins help create hemoglobin, red blood cells and other components of blood. The high content of vitamin K prevents blood clots
- Helps with constipation: Dandelion’s fiber content stimulates healthy bowel movements and is soothing on the digestive tract
- Supports the menstrual cycle: Reduces bloating, balances hormones, alleviates cramps
- Regulates high blood pressure: Fiber and potassium lower blood pressure; the potassium replaces sodium and fiber helps balance cholesterol levels. Increased urination (being a diuretic) also lowers blood pressure
Dandelion can be consumed in many ways, whether it’s through tea, juice, capsules or just eating the herb itself. The leaves can be used in a salad, added to recipes and can be a substitute for greens. Dandelion root and leaf are used in teas—you can make your own, or you can shop either in-store or online for our dandelion teas. We also carry dandelion root capsules if you prefer a supplement.