A “herb” for many cases – the dandelion
Everyone knows the dandelion; the common name dandelion derives from the French dent-de-lion, or “lion’s tooth”, in reference to the plant’s jagged-edged leaves. Taraxacum officinale has many English common names (of which some are no longer in use), including blowball, lion’s-tooth, cankerwort, milk-witch, yellow-gowan, Irish daisy, monks-head, priest’s-crown and puff-ball; other common names include, faceclock, pee-a-bed, wet-a-bed, swine’s snout, white endive, and wild endive.
It appears in Spring, and is often referred to wrongly as a weed and can be found growing with its lush, yellow flowering on roadsides, lawns and fields. The dandelion is one of our best medicinal plants, since it has many healing properties; its use being so varied and its effect so profound on our bodies. It contains very important vitamins and minerals such as vitamin B6, thiamin, riboflavin, vitamin C, iron, calcium, potassium, folic acid and magnesium.
The photo shows the common dandelion with its well-known yellow rosette, glowing flower heads, that turn into round balls of silver tufted fruits that disperse in the wind called “blowballs” or “clocks”. The seeds are suspended in a kind of “parachute” and spread and multiply diligently. The roots go deep into the ground and the plant, along with its leaves, has several culinary and medicinal uses.
Dandelion contains bitter substances that stimulate proper gastric juice production, so that our stomach can digest better. The gallbladder is supported so digestion is easy – finally getting rid of bloating and flatulence. When our digestion runs smoothly, important substances from our food can reach our whole body and we feel well because everything functions better. Therefore, the dandelion is also known as a tonic; when we need strengthening, especially after a long illness and exhaustion.
If you suffer from chronic rheumatism or gout; try a 6-week course of treatment with dandelion tea or fresh juice. The medicinal plant acts on the cells of the human tissue, dissolves acids (uric acid) and stimulates the metabolism. Pain intensity and frequency can be reduced. Through the vigorous cleansing, the blood is also “purified”, which can have a positive effect on eczema and other ailments.
Dandelion can also be used for kidney stones and urinary tract problems because it flushes the kidneys and the bladder free. One should not be surprised if visits to the toilet are more frequent than usual during treatment. Dandelion and blueberry leaves are a great support if you suffer from diabetes.
It can do even more: Dandelion (Taraxacum officinale) helps with Spring fatigue, hemorroids, itching and eye diseases. And why? All these symptoms improve when the liver is supported. In traditional Chinese medicine, the liver and eyes belong to the same energetic circle. “The liver opens into the eyes”. This can be seen most clearly in jaundice. But even with only slight yellowish, clouding eyes, you could consider a liver detoxification with the help of dandelion.
Spring is a good time of year for collecting dandelions. You can use the leaves for tea and in salads and the flowers for dandelion “honey” or “wine”.
Enjoy your dandelion cleansing cure!
Your (naturopath) Heilpraktikerin Steffi Full
Incidentally, we recommend Schoenenberger pure natural plant juices available in our pharmacy.