“Herbal medicine lives outdoors, where nature spirits arouse our enchantment, and our vitality is naturally quickened.” -James Green
I grew up in the country on 30 acres of mostly heavy forest. I grew up eating plants and berries from the forest. But I missed a very important plant that grows wild everywhere. It is a plant with the single yellow flower that almost every lawn owner has loved to hate, the Dandelion (Taracum officinale) The Latin names means disease remedy! How did I miss munching on this wonderful herbal treasure?!
Yesterday I decided I was going to make a dandelion salad. So I went outside, picked a leaf of the dandelion and ate it! And it wasn’t bad! First thing I thought is that this will taste good mixed with kale and other salad greens and a vinaigrette dressing.
Because I believe so much in prevention and building up our bodies immunity and strength I wanted to look into what I can do to help support my families liver, especially my daughter Emalee who has multiple food allergies. There are so many toxins in our environment and it is way too easy for those toxins to get stuck in our liver. I will do a separate post on all we can do to help support our liver and some toxins to avoid. For today’s post I’m going to concentrate on how the dandelion can help support our liver.
In The Herbal Medicine Makers Handbook by James Green, pg. 18 he says: “The following are some specific indications and an adult dosage for using the whole plant Dandelion tincture.”
- relieve intestinal gas and poor digestion that is due to insufficient bile
- relieve constipation that is due to sluggish liver activity
- relieve difficulty in urinating and/or water retention
- use as a blood purifier to treat chronic autotoxemia which is contributing to rheumatism, arthritis, and/or skin eruptions.
Due to the diuretic properties, dandelion leaf is excellent for your liver and kidneys. In Canada, the National Health Products Directorate recognizes products containing dandelion for their role in treating appetite loss and indigestion, and as a diuretic. In clinical practice dandelion is used to detoxify the liver and gallbladder, reduce side effects of medications metabolized by the liver, release stored water (edema), and relieve symptoms associated with liver disease. (Ferragine & Wylde, 2014, P. 98). I find this very interesting! So many great health benefits of the common flower we like to call a weed. Dandelion also contains inulin, a dietary fiber key to helping the good bacteria in your gut. (Ferragine & Wylde, 2014, P.98). This is fascinating to me as I think it would be a great bonus to take dandelion and a probiotic daily.
The easiest way to get some dandelion in your body, is to eat their leaves in a salad. I recommend reading herbal books that teach you how to identify each plant properly. There are some look alike plants, one of them is called an August flower. You should never take picking wild plants or flowers lightly so I cannot stress enough about purchasing a proper book. I will include links below to where you can find the books I use.
I would recommend using the dandelion greens with kale and other greens and vegetables. The leaves can be bitter so I served mine with this vinaigrette dressing. The salad turned out amazing and no one could tell they were even in there! I hope you enjoy the whole process as much as we did!
Ferragine, F. & Wylde, B. Power Plants. (Canada: Harper Collins Publishers Ltd, 2014).
Green, James. The Herbal Medicine Maker’s Handbook: a home manual. (United States: Crossing Press, 2000).
- My YouTube Video on Edible Plants in my Backyard
- An article on the benefits of the dandelion leaf
- Power Plants is available HERE to buy
- The Herbal Medicine Maker’s Handbook is available HERE to buy
Little Jacey fascinated by the dandelion seeds!
Love & Light,