Dandelion: The Beneficial Weed

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“What I need is the dandelion in the spring. The bright yellow that means rebirth instead of destruction.The promise that life could go on, no matter how bad our losses. That it can be good again.”

Suzanne Collins, Mockingjay

Maybe you are wondering why the quote above is in this post. What does it have to do with the medical qualities of dandelion? Nothing. But it could be counted as one of those small things that make our lives more beautiful or it could be perceived as hope. Fortunately, the dandelion’s attributes don’t stop at its beauty.

Dandelions (family Asteraceae, genus Taraxacum) have been known as medicinal herbs since Antiquity. It is a marvel plant indeed. When consumed they can provide calcium, potassium, manganese, iron, magnesium, phosphorus, sodium, zinc and vitamins such as C, E, K, B1, B2, B3, B5, B6, B9 and other nutrients (source: USDA Nutrient Database).

They are said to have diuretic properties and are also effective in case of constipation or gallbladder issues. Its high content in nutritive salts are effective against acids in the blood and it can soothe irritated stomachs and promote better food appetite and proper digestion. I guess there’s no need to enumerate more properties of this yellowish happy weed. So far, you have figured out it is healthy and nutritious, which is more of a reason to start consuming it. You could consider one of the following:

  1. Dandelion tea (also known as dandelion coffee): It is a herbal tea made from dandelion roots but it is not literally coffee as the alternative name suggests, but it resembles it. Can be used as a tonic for the liver or a successful laxative. The raw Taraxacum officinale roots contain sesquiterpene lactones, carotenoids, flavonoids, coumarins, phenolic acids among others.
  1. Salad made from dandelion leaves
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