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Dandelion quick review
Botanical description: a common meadow herb of the Asteraceae or sunflower family. Dandelion is a hardy, variable perennial that can grow to a height of nearly 12 inches.
Active constituents: bitter glycosides, carotenoids, terpenoids, choline, potassium salts, vitamin A, vitamin D, vitamin C, various B vitamins, iron, silicon, magnesium, zinc, and manganese.
Health benefits : a natural diuretic that increases urine production by promoting the excretion of salts and water from the kidney, stimulates stomach secretions, aids in digestion, relieves constipation and control diarrhea.

Side effects : increases the flow of bile, increases the blood levels of herbs processed by the liver.
 
Dandelion by Natures Sunshine
Dandelion is a member of the sunflower family. Its name is a corruption of the French dents de lion, meaning "teeth of the lion." Herbalists consider this plant one of the most nutrient-rich in the plant kingdom. Dandelion supports digestion and nourishes the liver. The whole plant is edible°™the flowers, the leaves and the roots. The herb is a source of many important minerals and vitamins. Click here for more information.
 

Dandelion


Dandelion (taraxacum officinale) is a common meadow herb of the Asteraceae or sunflower family. Hundreds of species of dandelion grow in the temperate regions of Europe, Asia, and North America. The Dandelion is primarily found on rangeland, pastures, meadows, lawns, and waste places in all soil types. Dandelion is a hardy, variable perennial that can grow to a height of nearly 12 inches. The leaves are simple and basal, entire or lobed, forming a rosette above a central taproot. In spring the young tender leaves are much used for table greens. The grooved leaves funnel the flow of rainfall into the root. The dark brown roots are fleshy and brittle and are filled with a white milky substance that is bitter and slightly odorous. The young leaves are picked in the spring for tonic salads and later for use as a medicine, while the roots are unearthed in autumn from two-year-old plants. Dandelion flowers are sensitive to light, so they open with the sun in the morning and close in the evening or during gloomy weather. Each flower head consists of hundreds of tiny ray flowers. Reflexed bracts grow under each flower. The flower head can change into the familiar, white, globular seed head overnight. Each seed has a tiny parachute, to spread far and wide in the wind. The flower heads are utilized for dandelion wine and are good forage for bees.
 

Active constituents of dandelion


Dandelion is also a rich source of vitamins and minerals. Dandelion is a nutritive herb rich in potassium, calicum, and lecithin, with iron, magnesium, niacin, phosphorus, proteins, silicon, boron, and zinc. Active constituents of dandelion leaf include bitter glycosides, carotenoids, terpenoids, choline, potassium salts, vitamin A, vitamin D, vitamin C, various B vitamins, iron, silicon, magnesium, zinc, and manganese. The root also has bitter glycosides, tannins, triterpenes, sterols, volatile oil, choline, asparagine, and inulin. The primary constituents responsible for dandelion's action on the digestive system and liver are the bitter sunstances which is called taraxacin. The bitter principles are sesquiterpene lactones of the eudesmanolide and germacranolide type, and are unique to dandelion.
 

Medicinal uses and health benefits of dandelion


Dandelion is extremely versatile, as the whole plant can be used for medicinal purposes as well as for culinary uses. As a medicinal plant, dandelion has been considered to be an aperient, diuretic, stimulant, stomachic, tonic, and detoxicant. Dandelion leaves are unique as a diuretic. Dandelion leaves contain significant amounts of potassium, a mineral generally lost when using conventional medications. It is an ideal diuretic for heart problems and hypertension (high blood pressure). Dandelion is a natural diuretic that increases urine production by promoting the excretion of salts and water from the kidney. Dandelion tea has been used against fever, insomnia, jaundice, rheumatism, eczema and other skin diseases, and constipation.

The dandelion sap, leaves, and root extracts are ingested for its diuretic properties. They're used to stimulate stomach secretions and aid in digestion, to relieve constipation and control diarrhea, to stimulate bile production, to treat liver disorders, to prevent or lower high blood pressure, to relieve the pain of endometriosis, and to inhibit plaque buildup on teeth. Leaves are also used to treat high blood pressure because of their ability to reduce the volume of fluid in the body. Fresh or dried dandelion herbs are also used as a mild appetite stimulant and to improve upset stomach. Dandelion cleanses the bloodstream and increases bile production, and is a good remedy for gall bladder problems. Dandelion root encourages steady elimination of toxins. It works on the liver, the kidneys and the gallbladder to accelerate the removal of toxins from the body. Dandelion also treats arthritic conditions, which include osteoarthritis and gout.

 

Side effects, precautions, interactions


Dandelion is generally considered safe. Dandelion increases the flow of bile. People with an obstruction of the bile ducts should not take dandelion. It should not be used by persons with closure of the biliary ducts and other biliary ailments. Some people may develop an allergic reaction from touching dandelion, and others may develop mouth sores. Dandelion may also increase the blood levels of herbs processed by the liver. Dandelion may worsen the side effects associated with lithium, a medication commonly used to treat manic depression. Dandelion should not be taken with diuretic drugs and other antihypertensive medications.