Dandelion, the enemy of suburban lawns, happens to be a very nutritious food and has been used for medicinal purposes since the 10th century. The leaves contain substantial levels of vitamins A, C, D, and B complex as well as iron, magnesium, zinc potassium, manganese, copper, chlorine, calcium, boron, and silicon. The substances eudesmanolide and germacranolide are the active constituents in dandelion and are unique to this plant.Dandelion Uses
Dandelion leaves are commonly recommended as a food supplement for pregnant and postmenopausal women because of the numerous nutrients they contain. This plant produces a mild diuretic effect and reduces serum cholesterol levels. Dandelion root is used to improve appetite and minor digestive problems. Some modern naturopathic physicians believe that it can help detoxify the liver and gallbladder. It shows proven value as a diuretic, flushing excess water from the body. It is believed by many experts to promote the flow of bile and stimulates the appetite. Dandelion juice once was quite popular as a diuretic, laxative, and remedy for rheumatism.
Dandelion is considered a remedy for the following conditions:
Dandelion Nutritional Content
- Appetite loss
- Kidney and bladder stones
- Liver and gallbladder problems
- Urinary tract infections
Dandelion contains lactupicrine, a bitter principle, tannin, insulin, a latex-like substance, polysaccharides, and carotene.Side Effects/Interactions
Gastric discomfort may arise due to hyperacidity. There are no known drug interactions.Supporting LiteratureBradley PR. British Herbal Compendium, Vol 1. Bournemouth, Dorset, UK: British Herbal Medicine Association, 1992, 73-75.
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