13 Surprising Benefits of Dandelion

The health benefits of dandelion include relief from liver disorders, diabetes, urinary disorders, acne, jaundice, cancer and anemia. It also helps in maintaining bone health, skin care and is a benefit to weight loss programs. These and other health benefits are currently being studied for complete validation by a number of international institutions.

Despite the health benefits of dandelions, they are traditionally more popular as ornamental flowering plants than as medicine, because the flowers of dandelions look brilliant and are frequently seen in gardens and parks. There are many varieties of dandelion, but the common dandelion is scientifically known as Taraxacum Officinale. In terms of history, the plant is believed to have evolved about 30 million years ago in Eurasia.

Dandelion, which literally translates into “lion’s tooth” in French, is rich in vitamin A, vitamin C, iron and calcium and detoxifiers which explains its common inclusion in medicines. Below, we will discuss the different things that benefit can do for us, besides decorating our gardens.

Health Benefits of Dandelion

The health benefits of dandelions include the following:

Improves Bone Health

Dandelions are rich in calcium, which is essential for the growth and strength of bones, and they are rich in antioxidants like vitamin-C and Luteolin, which protect bones from age-related damage. This inevitable impairment is often due to free radicals, and is frequently seen as bone frailty, weakness, and decreased density.

Treats Liver Disorders

Dandelions can help the liver in many ways. While the antioxidants like vitamin-C and Luteolin keep the liver functioning in optimal gear and protect it from aging, other compounds in dandelions help treat hemorrhaging in the liver. Furthermore, dandelions aid in maintaining the proper flow of bile, while also stimulating the liver and promoting digestion. Proper digestion can reduce the chances of constipation, which in turn reduces the risk of more serious gastrointestinal issues.

Controls Diabetes

Dandelion juice can help diabetic patients by stimulating the production of insulin from the pancreas, thereby keeping the blood sugar level low. Since dandelions are diuretic in nature, they increase urination in diabetic patients, which helps remove the excess sugar from the body. Diabetics are also prone to renal problems, so the diuretic properties of dandelion can help removing the sugar deposition in the kidneys through increased urination. Furthermore, dandelion juice is slightly bitter to taste, which effectively lowers the sugar level in the blood, as all bitter substances do. Consistently lower blood sugar and a more regulated system of insulin release prevents dangerous spikes and plunges for diabetic patients, so dandelion extracts can be a perfect solution!

Treats Urinary Disorders

Dandelions are highly diuretic in nature, so they help eliminate deposits of toxic substances in the kidneys and the urinary tract. The disinfectant properties of dandelions also inhibit microbial growth in the urinary system. In fact, the diuretic properties of dandelions are so strong that in France, the flower is also called “pissenlit”  which means “urinate in bed”.

Skin Care

Dandelion sap, also known as dandelion milk, is useful in treating skin diseases which are caused by microbial and fungal infections. This treatment stems from the fact that the sap is highly alkaline and has germicidal, insecticidal and fungicidal properties. You should be careful while using this sap though, and avoid any contact with the eyes. This sap can be used on itches, ringworm, eczema, and other skin conditions without the risk of side effects or hormonal disturbances commonly caused by pharmaceutical skin treatments.

Prevents Acne

Dandelion juice is a good detoxifier, diuretic, stimulant and antioxidant. These four properties make it a great treatment for acne. Before we know how it treats acne, we must know what causes it. Acne typically arises during the teenage years, when the body undergoes many physiological and hormonal changes. The flood of new hormones that bring about the changes in the body must be regulated, but if they don’t remain at a healthy ratio, they tend to deposit somewhat toxic substances into the body. These toxins tend to come out along with sweat through the sweat glands or sebaceous glands on the skin.

During these hormonal changes, these glands secrete more oils which, when mixed with dead skin, block the pores and the secretion of toxins is obstructed. Therefore, the toxic substances cannot escape and eventually result in acne. This situation is exacerbated by the microbial infections on the affected places. Dandelion juice, being a stimulant, diuretic and detoxifier in nature, can help regulate proper secretion of hormones, increase sweating and widen the pores. All of these factors help to facilitate the removal of toxins through sweat and urine. Furthermore, dandelion sap, if externally applied to areas with acne, can inhibit microbial infection and reduce the frustrating signs of acne. Also, it can speed up healing due to its vitamin-C content, so the scars and ugly red inflammation that traditionally follows acne treatment will be less noticeable.

Promotes Weight Loss

Our urine consists of up to 4% fat, so the more we urinate, the more water and fats are lost from the body. Dandelions, being diuretic in nature, promote urination and thereby help in losing the dreaded “water weight” without causing any side effects. Furthermore, dandelions are low in calories, like most leafy greens, but for the small expense of calories (~1oo cal./4 cups), you get a huge amount of beneficial side effects. This is also why dandelions are sometimes used as sweeteners, because they are not packed with unhealthy sugars.

Prevents Cancer

Dandelions are high in antioxidants, such as vitamin-C and Luteolin, which reduce the free radicals (major cancer-causing agents) in the body, thereby reducing the risk of cancer. It also detoxifies the body, which further helps protect from the development of tumors and various cancers. Luteolin actually poisons essential components of cancer cells when it binds to them, rendering them ineffective and unable to reproduce. This characteristic has been demonstrated most notably with prostate cancer, although there are other studies being done.

Treats Jaundice

Jaundice is primarily a disorder of the liver in which the organ starts overproducing bile, which ultimately enters the bloodstream and wreaks havoc on the body’s metabolism. The excess bile is also reflected through color of the skin and eyes, which typically develop a yellow tint. The treatment of jaundice includes three main steps. First, you need to curb the production of bile. Second, you must remove the excess bile from the body, and third, you have to fight the underlying viral infection.

Dandelions are very helpful in all of these steps. It promotes liver health and regulates bile production. Being diuretic in nature, it promotes urination, where the excess bile can be eliminated. Finally, as an antioxidant and disinfectant due to the presence of vitamin-C and Luteolin, it fights viral infections as well. It is most beneficial when taken with sugarcane juice, since it replaces the sugar in the body that is significantly lowered due to the impact of excess bile. A lack of sugar can cause extreme fatigue and weakness, so dandelions help boost your energy levels after infection.

Prevents Gall Bladder Disorders

Dandelions are very beneficial for the gall bladder and liver, because they improve their general functioning, protects them from ill effects of oxidants and infections, and regulates the various secretions from both organs.

Cures Constipation

Certain components of dandelion, namely the high levels of dietary fiber, make it a beneficial aid for digestion and proper intestinal health. Dietary fiber stimulates healthy bowel movements by adding bulk to stool, and also reduces chances of constipation as well as diarrhea. It regulates bowel movements, which can prevent more serious gastrointestinal issues. It is commonly prescribed for children who are experiencing constipation, as it is relatively soothing on the stomach. It has also been used to stimulate the appetite, particularly following trauma or surgery.

Prevents Anemia

Dandelions have relatively good levels of iron, vitamins, and protein content. While iron is the integral part of hemoglobin in the blood, vitamins like vitamin-B and protein are essential for the formation of red blood cells and certain other components of the blood. This way dandelion can help anemic people keep their condition in check.

Regulates Blood Pressure

Urination is an effective way of lowering blood pressure. In fact, most of the modern medicines for lowering blood pressure are based on this phenomenon. Dandelion juice, being diuretic in nature, increases urination, both in quantity and frequency. Therefore, it helps lower high blood pressure. The fiber in dandelion is also helpful in reducing cholesterol and thereby assists in lowering blood pressure, since cholesterol is one of the factors that increases blood pressure. Finally, there is the high potassium content of dandelions, which is very effective in lowering blood pressure by replacing sodium.

Other Benefits

Dandelions can also be used as a vegetable and are a good source of fiber. It promotes digestion, and in the past, it was used to treat scurvy because of its high levels of vitamin-C. It also has healing effects on dyspepsia, infections in the stomach, intestines and urinary system.

Word of Caution

Dandelions can be helpful to diabetics by lowering blood sugar, but for patients already taking blood-sugar modulators, this can result in hypoglycemia, an equally dangerous condition. Consult your doctor before adding dandelion supplements on top of your normal treatment. Also, the milk sap of dandelions has been known to cause itchiness, irritation, or allergic reactions on the skin, and should be kept away from the eyes. Finally, there is a rare type of fiber in dandelions called inulin, and some people have a predisposed sensitivity or allergy to it which can be quite severe. When first adding dandelion greens to your diet in any way, start small and closely monitor your body’s response.

Other than that, pick some delicious dandelion greens and get healthy!

Dandelion FAQs

Can you eat dandelions?

Yes, you can eat every single part of a dandelion. Interestingly enough, every part of the dandelion is used for various health benefits and alternative treatments. You can make dandelion wine, fry up the flowers into fritters, make coffee and tea drinks out of the stem and seeds, and so much more. Have you added it to your diet yet?

What is a dandelion?

A dandelion is a type of flower, but actually a broad term for many different types of flowers, that are native to Europe and North America. Taraxacum is the large genus in which these dandelion plants belong. They are herbaceous and perennial plants that can grow very well in temperate climates. They also reproduce quickly and effectively, so it is possible to cultivate a large amount of dandelions at the same time.

What is dandelion good for?

Dandelions are good for a number of different things, including its ability to detoxify the body, help the liver, stimulate urination, promote weight loss, and improve the strength of the immune system. Dandelions are also good for feminine health, as they can help to balance hormones, and these flowers also deliver a healthy dose of minerals, antioxidants and vitamins. It can even help diabetic patients manage their symptoms.

Is a dandelion a weed?

Dandelions are actually flowers but may be seen as weeds by gardeners and those who don’t want a fast-growing and invasive plant in their yard. Belonging to a larger genus Taraxacum, the word dandelion encompasses many different types of similar flowers. While many people will continue to pull up every dandelion they see and throw them in the garbage, they should use them to make health tonics instead!

Where to buy dandelion greens?

Dandelion greens can be purchased at most vitamin shops and health food store, but aren’t available in all big-box stores yet. GNC is a great option, and a brand that can be found in many different countries. Natural health practitioners should also have dandelion greens available.

Is dandelion a flower?

While plenty of people look at dandelions and see weeds, they are in fact flowers! Belonging to the broad-ranging genus Taraxacum, dandelions are perennial and herbaceous flowers that grow very well in temperate climates, such as those found in Europe and North America, where the flower is native. However, the rapid growth and bright flowers, along with the invasive nature of dandelions, is why some people hesitate to admit that they are flowers!

What does dandelion mean?

Dandelion is actually derived from an old French phrase, dent de lion,which meant tooth of a lion, because of the shape of the sharp leaves of the plant. In fact, those types of leaves are called “toothed leaves”. Fortunately, this hasn’t kept people from cultivating and consuming dandelions for centuries, thanks to their wealth of health benefits and unique flavor.

How to eat dandelion greens?

Dandelion greens should be treated like any other leafy green vegetable, such as spinach, chard or collard greens. You can use dandelion greens as a salad booster, to add some unique nutrients to the meal, and can also put them on sandwiches in place of less-nutritious lettuce. Dandelion greens can also be ground up and made into pestos and other spreads for an unusual taste sensation!

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60 comments in this artcle's discussion

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Absalon Guzman

I am surprised of Dandelion's properties, this information is great. I will keep taking it regularly since its benefits are huge!

Hi Absalon,

Thank you for your feedback. Please don't forget to keep reading our other articles.

Thanks,
Team Organic Facts

Rhonda McCaleb Nelson

After I read about Dandelion root, I started taking 1000 mg of it in a pill form I got from the health food store, along with 1000 mg of Moranga also in pill form, I take these 2 times a day to kill Cancer cells. I have stage 4 Follicular Lymphoma ( terminal). I started this 9 months ago, and for the first time in the last 3 years that Ive known I had cancer, My cancer has gone "Dormant" as my cancer doc called it.. She didnt know I was taking the pills, and was very surprised that my cancer had stopped growing.I told her that I was taking the pills, and she told me to keep doing what ever I was doing because it works.

Viorica Heyworth

Thanks a lot for the good info. about Dandelion benefits , Is a old remedy ;
To be honest I use very frecvently the fresh levees for salad, soup,side dish,also I made sirop of flowers, is so delicious I love it . My B/P few months ago was more higher, now I'm so great full is much better, my body is more healthy,I start to loos weight too.

Thanks for this info! I just heard that dandelion is very beneficial and I do appreciate finding out just how it can benefit my health

Je pense que 3 semaines sont la bonne solution.
Je l'ai fait avec ceux de mon jardin. ♥
3 weeks are a good time. I have used them from my garden ☺

Rhonda McCaleb Nelson

I have read the benefits of drinking dandelion root tea to help cure cancer, I have stage 4 Fulicular Lymphomia, Is it only certain cancers that it will help cure? Also, How many times a day is the tea to be drank?

Try soursop and wormwood for cancers but please do your research

disqus_1HUI45H95s

Reading up on cancer cures black seed oil seems to be in the top 10 .

Rhonda wishing you a speedy recovery. Please consult a doctor before trying any home remedy.

Consult a doctor ?????? Most doctors are ignorant of, and opposed to natural remedies. All they promote is cut, burn and poison.

How do you eliminate them from your yard? Organically? , pick each one individually ? That would help health wise .

toujours appécié...

Very good. thanks to dandelion.

YES i took small leafs of dandelion and truly, its increases my urination, hoping for more from this natural ORGANIC

Are red dandelion leaves goitrogenic? I know that regular dandelion in non goitrogenic but I just read that red is not actually in the dandelion family but is rather in the chicory family so I am wondering if it has the same health benefits if regular dandelions.

I use Dandelion tea everyday for my Cancer,I was told to drink the tea.So I have.I was also told it was to help my Cancer.Is this true that it would help me with my Cancer .

Hi Sheila. I suggest that you eat it raw oin a form of salad. Dont add nasty creams from the supermarket and most off juice it and drink it raw..go raw dee the miracle. But i don't know if u have the raw leaves to plug it every day from the soil..

Hello Sheila,

I believe that dandelion do cure cancer, in fact in countries such as Greece where dandelion is part of the local diet, people have less cancer than in north america. I hope you find your cure, be strong, positive and long for life, and all should be well.

there are no references please add them

Meenakshi Nagdeve

The link of sources are there in the article itself. Please check.

Thanks for this information, now I know I have something so precious in my garden. Can someone please tell me which parts of the dandelions can be eaten and how to prepare/ cook them.

Linda, you were not paying attention when I was giving the talk...sad, sad, sad!!! The roots when dried and grinded use as coffee, during spring time use the green for salad or stir fry them with bacons and for the flowers...for wine!!! Of course it is advisable to buy the extract tincture which it is impossible to make them yourself. Have fun!!

how do you consume it and how much? Do you use the yellow leaves or the whole plante?

Idk looks like you harvest the leaves much like lettuce. Ck n google it lol

Maria Fatima Duran Gabas

Dandelion Herbs benefits

hav bn using for a while, n hav lost a considerable weight. Its wonderful

Ruth Griffith

I eat this weed and I use to hurt from arthritis pain all the time I do not hhurt now.

Defne Su Oguzhanli

Why do I get Constipated everytime I drink Fresh Dandelion juice?

Eat as lettuce...

Amazing weed! I'm trying it today!

It is growing abundantly in my backyard this year... Nature giving me a "here's your sign" moment. Here lately I am noticing more NEW weed killers coming about... and mostly to fight this little hostile beauty! LOL The more they try and kill her out the stronger she gets! You think maybe she is trying to tell us something! Little Dandelion is a very smart part of Nature with the simplest of cures for many ailments. I can't say that I will let her take over my yard but I am willing to listen and learn her medicine and work WITH her, not against her.

Oyindeinbofa Nicholas

Hello please how can I get this plant?

Not into city, in the nature

Explained well

Thank you for writing this blog. It a is a very rich source of information about natural treatment and care of liver. I have hepatitis c and will use some of this information for my treatment.I have looked at many blogs on this topic and can only get bits and pieces of the info. You have it all on one page. And on a very nce looking site. Please contact me if you should do any more writing on this subject.Again thank you very much and really nice job.

Eunice Mayinni Atubga

very good

Welcome Mr. Dandelion, you might seem bitter but avocado, olive oil and goat chedar cheese make you playfuly and delicious.

How do you prepare it? I like this article but I see no recipes for it. I hope it's a recipe you can share.

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