Under the Weather? Pick Some Dandelions!

I have always loved Dandelions. Yes, even when I was informed, at a young age, they were simply weeds. Surprise, surprise! Look what I recently found in the encyclopedia!

“All parts of the dandelion have culinary and medicinal value. It is best to harvest fresh young dandelion leaves in the spring.

dandelions-feat

The small, young leaves are less bitter, and may be eaten uncooked in salads. Larger leaves can be lightly steamed to reduce bitterness. Leaves gathered in the fall are naturally less bitter.

Dandelion is a nutritive herb rich in potassium , calicum, and lecithin , with iron, magnesium, niacin, phosphorus , proteins, silicon, boron , and zinc . Dandelion provides several B vitamins along with vitamins C and E as well as vitamin P.

Wait! There is more!

Chemical constituents in the leaf include bitter glycosides, carotenoids , terpenoids, choline, potassium salts, iron, and other minerals. The root also has bitter glycosides, tannins, triterpenes, sterols, volatile oil, choline, asparagin, and inulin.

Many herbalists regard the dandelion as an effective treatment for liver disease, useful even in such extreme cases as cirrhosis . It cleanses the bloodstream and increases bile production, and is a good remedy for gall bladder problems as well.

The herb is also an important boon to such other internal organs as the pancreas, kidneys, stomach, and spleen.

The dried leaf, taken as a tea, is used as a mild laxative to relieve constipation .

Dandelion leaf is also a good natural source of potassium, and will replenish any potassium that may be lost due to the herb’s diuretic action on the kidneys. This characteristic makes dandelion a safe diuretic in cases of water retention due to heart problems.

The herb is useful in cases of anemia and hepatitis , and may lower elevated blood pressure. Dandelion may also provide relief for rheumatism and arthritis.

Dandelion therapy, consisting of therapeutic doses of dandelion preparations taken over time, may help reduce stiffness and increase mobility in situations of chronic degenerative joint disease. The root, dried and minced, can used as a coffee substitute, sometimes combined with roasted acorns and rye.

Interesting facts:

The dandelion is the only flower that represents the 3 celestial bodies of the sun, moon and stars. The yellow flower resembles the sun, the puff ball resembles the moon and the dispersing seeds resemble the stars.

The dandelion flower opens to greet the morning and closes in the evening to go to sleep.  Every part of the dandelion is useful: root, leaves, flower. It can be used for food, medicine and dye for coloring.

Up until the 1800s people would pull grass out of their lawns to make room for dandelions and other useful “weeds”.

The average American recognizes thousands of logos for commercial products, yet recognizes fewer than five plants that grow in his/her area. Dandelions are most likely one of those familiar plants.

Dandelions have one of the longest flowering seasons of any plant.

The plants can reach 17 inches from the ground.

Dandelion seeds are often carried as many as 5 miles from their origin!

File this under God Wows!

Get a look at The Ultimate Dandelion Cookbook by Kristina Seleshanko!

 

Please note: I reserve the right to delete comments that are offensive or off-topic.