Do Your Body a Favor and Detoxify With Dandelion Tea

Just about everybody knows what a dandelion is. In the western world it is a weed, but in many other societies it is an important herb that is used to treat many common diseases and conditions of the human body.

It is also a food, being used in salads and the roots are also used by some as a coffee substitute the same as chicory. It is also used to make a herbal tea, and most people have likely heard of dandelion tea. However, its medicinal properties are not so well known, even though it has been use for hundreds, if not thousands, of years for the treatment of many conditions including those associated with the gall bladder, liver and kidneys.

However, that is not all, and there are several more traditional uses of dandelion in the folk medicine of many different countries including conditions as diverse as water retention and eczema. So, taking all of this into consideration, what exactly are the main benefits of dandelion to the body and what is it that provides these benefits?

Dandelion contains its fair share of minerals and vitamins, and is rich in vitamin C of course, with its strong antioxidant properties. It also contains the antioxidant vitamin A together with several B vitamins and the sunshine vitamin, vitamin D, which is so important for the absorption of calcium by the kidneys and into the bone structure. The minerals it contains is like an encyclopedia entry of minerals important to the human body. It’s not so much what minerals dandelion contains, as what it doesn’t contain.

The list includes phosphorus, iron, magnesium, calcium, potassium, silicon, manganese and boron, and the organic nutrients include lecithin, carotenoids, terpenoids, tannins, sterols, choline, inulin, aspargine and so on. It would take a whole book to describe the health benefits of each of these, but an attempt will be made later to discuss the more important of them.

Suffice it to say that the list contains antioxidants, anti-inflammatories, and substances that help to reduce blood cholesterol levels and also maintain the health of your blood and major organs. However, the effect of dandelion on the liver and the digestive system are due largely to substances known collectively as taraxacin. That is what gives dandelion its bitter taste.

What was once known as taraxin, is now known to consist of sesquiterpene lactones known as eudesmanolide and germacranolide, which although claimed to be unique to the dandelion, are very similar to other sesquiterpenes found in chicory. In fact, dicaffeolquinic acid and chicoric acid (dicaffeoyltartaric acid) have been found to comprise a significant proportion of the extract from dandelion roots, together with a number of phenolic acids and flavanoids. Each of these, of course, is important and effective antioxidants, responsible for many positive health effects in the body.

Among the more important of these is the stimulation of the circulation of the blood throughout the body. The sesquiterpenes are also believed to support the activity of the pancreas, and the presence of so many strong antioxidant species within the leaves and roots of the dandelion explains the traditional use of dandelion for the treatment of inflammatory diseases.

Antioxidants support the immune system that causes inflammation when it is under stress. Studies of rats have indicated that dandelion is effective in reducing acute pancreatis, which is itself an inflammatory condition. The large querticin glycoside and flavanoid content of dandelion root extract posses anti-inflammatory properties, and suddenly dandelion is beginning to take on the appearance of a ‘wonder plant’.

However, let’s get away from the technical stuff for a while, and check out exactly what you can use dandelion for. Pregnant and post-menopausal women can gain the benefit of all these nutrients detailed above by taking dandelion extract, and it also has a diuretic effect. Although mild, this can help to remove excess water from the body, and helps to reduce blood pressure and the effects of heart problems. LDL cholesterol levels can be reduced by virtue of its anti-oxidant properties, and can help to resolve minor digestive complaints.

Traditionally it is claimed to have been used as a laxative and a cure for rheumatism. The latter can be explained by its antioxidant effects, and the way the sesquiterpenes reduce the inflammation associated with rheumatism. It is this inflammation of the tissues that causes so much of the swelling and pain of rheumatism and arthritis. Anti-inflammatories help to reduce this effect.

Dandelion is also believed to stimulate the flow of bile from the gall bladder to the duodenum, and help promote the digestion of fats and oils, thus alleviating many of the digestive problems associated with a fatty diet. This also appears to have the effect of stimulating the appetite, and dandelion juice is frequently drunk before a meal for these reasons. It is believed to help bladder and kidney stones, and also helps to alleviate infections of the urinary tract.

Although dandelion is normally safe to take, those with problems associated with the bile ducts should not take it, and if you are already on diuretic drugs, or any medicines designed to lower your blood pressure, you should stay clear of dandelion extract. The same is true if you are taking lithium for manic depression since some of the components of dandelion juice can exaggerate the side effects. It is also recommended that diabetics do not use dandelion extract, and neither should anyone on blood thinning drugs such as Coumadin, or any other form of warfarin.

Although dandelion can be a very effective natural remedy for many conditions, you should always refer to your physician before taking it, since it could interfere with any medications you are currently taking. Your doctor might also be aware of certain medical conditions you have that, while you are not being treated for, could deteriorate in the presence of one of the constituents of dandelion extract.

Although all of this could suggest that dandelion is dangerous to take, in fact what it indicates is that it is very effective against many conditions, and that taking it could lead to the effects of an overdose of the treatment you are already on. Had it not so many contra-indications, dandelion wouldn’t be as effective at doing what it does.

About the Author More information on dandelion root tea is available at VitaNet ®, LLC Health Food Store, vitanetonine.com.

68 Responses

  1. Angie Says:

    Hi there,

    I just started drinking Dandelion tea,but was wondering if it mattered which form you take for dandelion – is it better to take capsules, drink tea, eat it, grind the root? And does it matter that the tea is roasted?

    Thanks,
    Angie

  2. Cheng Says:

    Dandelion has been Chinese medicine since thousands years ago. My father taught me when I was a kid, and he came from Luo Tien, Huang Kang, Hubei, China, a famous place of many good Chinese medicine doctor. My father said our ancestor was doctor of China Emperor, and Chin Dynasty King nominated one the best Chinese doctor in the country. Dandelion is a magic plant that has been proven for thousands years in China that can cure many more problems than mentioned here.

  3. Cheng Says:

    In general, fruit or vegetable is better to consume fresh, so are dandelion, tea, ..etc. However, due to two major practical reason, people do not have the luxury. The two reasons are storage and transportation. e.g. tea leaves needed to be stored and dried to have smaller size, and transport to far away before it is added water and consumed.

    Because, I have lots of dandelions in my front and backyard, I have the luxury to consume dandelion fresh. So, it comes even “the best time” to pick up, the dandelion flowers to drink and eat. In Chinese medicine, the best time of the day would be “noon” time, i.e. 11am to 1pm (or 12pm to 2pm day light saving time). Why? in that time period, the flowers open widest and most beautiful and has the best condition to pick up and consume.

    So, I just pick up 30 flowers for each cup and put water and microwave to heat up and drink like tea. and every day drink a few cups, as little as one cup, as many as 6 to 8 cups, and at the end, chew up the web flowers. My son is in Pharmacy, and his cup often add some sugar just like some people drink coffee with sugar, some don’t.

  4. Cheng Says:

    Keep in mind any soft drinks are very bad to your health, one cup a day can add you 10 lbs of weight each year, so what to drink at restaurant like Applebee’s we went tonight?

    We asked for “hot water” and brought our own bag of hundreds dandelion flower, and we put each cup 30 of them, and add lemon and some sugar. It taste so great and it is very healthy drinks, and free.

    We also brought some dandelion leaves, and when order salad, would add 50 leaves into the salad order, and eat them all; it taste great and with healthy ingredient … 🙂

  5. celly Says:

    I would like to share my experience with danelion root tea. Ive been taking it for a month now, and OMG has it helped my long-time troubled skin. Ive suffered of acne for about 10 years now, gone through MANY many medications, doctors, dermatologists, long trips, chemical peels, over counter acne meds, creams, blood drawings, etc. its been a long journey until I came accross a good esthetician while getting a facial, she advised “take this tea, it will help you.” AND IT REALLY HAS, im down by about 80% in my overall acne, with only 2-3 breakouts in my entire body, inlcuding my back. I am thinking about sharing this experience with everyone who has struggled with acne.

  6. April Mae Says:

    Does Dandelion tea help with weight lost?

  7. Pamela Tewes Says:

    Hi,

    i would love to find the BonVit Dandelion / chicory root tea, but am having trouble. Do you know where I can get this tea (USA)

  8. Steva Says:

    Hello I took the Jillian michaels detox tea(1 bag roasted dandelion root tea 2 T lemon juice & 2T cranberry juice in 60 ounces water daily) for 5 days.I loved the results lost 3 lbs. and had a flatter tummy. the day after I stopped I was uncharacteristicly exhausted. That night and the next day horrible stomach pains. I also felt week when I went to the bathroom. Could this be due to the detox process? Or something else?

  9. Lucinda Says:

    Everyone loves what you guys are usually up too.
    This sort of clever work and coverage! Keep up the fantastic works guys I’ve you guys to blogroll.

  10. Nancy Says:

    I like to steep dandelion tea with a spicy cinnamon tea to make it tastier. Am I defeating the detox value with this combo?

  11. Grace Oakley Says:

    It works! I’ve seen major results in my GI tract in only 24 hours.

  12. Candice Says:

    It works, for lowering BP and lowering
    bad cholesterol, of course along with
    exercise and diet.

  13. Terri Says:

    I just recently heard about dandelion tea–Have heavy bloating from much water retention–It was suggested I drink this–make it iced with stevia and lemon–I prepare it with 4 bags in 2 quart picher, and drink it all day–how long before I notice a difference in how I feel?

  14. Molly Says:

    When you roast dandelion does this affect the nutrient/mineral content at all?

  15. Lisa Says:

    Hi.

    I am interested in knowing how well this tea works for bloating. I get very bloated and can gain up to 10 lbs in water weight gain during my cycle. Will it help me with this problem? I just retain a lot of water period.

    Also, how much tea can you drink per day? The box says up to 3 cups per day but does not specify for how long or if there is a limit to the amount you can drink.

    Thank you.

  16. magali boggio Says:

    my 28 year old son suffers from acid reflux, he takes nexium daily and from enuresis. will this tea be good for him and what brand should I buy? root? leaves? seeds?, thnks for any info

  17. winnie Says:

    I have low blood pressure. It is ok for me to take?

  18. Dandelions – weed or feed? « Pip Marks Says:

    […] ‘Do Your Body a Favor and Detoxify With Dandelion Tea‘ by Joe at http://www.dandeliontea.org (Published 11 July 2009) […]

Leave a Comment

Please note: Comment moderation is enabled and may delay your comment. There is no need to resubmit your comment.

Posted on May 23rd, 2014 by joe and filed under dandelion tea, dandelion tea benefits | 68 Comments »