Taste/Smell: Leaves and root are somewhat bitter but also slightly sweet taste in the root.
Tendencies: Cooling and drying.
Dandelion is used for arthritis, gout, high blood pressure, high cholesterol, edema and abnormal blood sugar levels. It is indicated for many female problems and skin diseases due to its action on the liver. The whole plant, especially the root, is beneficial to the liver but is slow in producing the desired action. Autumn roots are roasted and used as a coffee substitute.
Dandelion is a valuable herb, originating in Europe, but now naturalised in many countries, largely due to wind disposal of the seed. This may be nature’s way of telling us it is readily available for us all to use regularly, as the plants’ properties are so valuable. Dandelion has been a revered herb throughout history, regarded as one of the very best herbs known for gall, spleen and liver complaints, and one of the safest and most active plant diuretics. The common name Piss-in-bed, which comes from the French word ‘pissenlit’, indicates the herb’s habit of giving the kidneys the urge to expel urine. Women, who find they puff up at the time of menstruation, may get considerable relief from bloating and breast tenderness, by drinking dandelion tea, as soon as they feel these symptoms.
A daily tea of dandelion root, or eating the leaves, is recommended for anyone with liver complaints. It can be eaten regularly as a preventative, helping to keep the liver at peak efficiency. As the green leaves are a valuable alkaliser to the body, eaten regularly they assist the body to reduce excess acidity; oxygenate, purify and build blood; cleanse and regenerate cells. The bitter principles stimulate the digestion (by salivation, and the production of stomach acids and enzymes); assist liver, spleen, gall and pancreas function, and make it easier to digest fats and oils. Dandelion has been found to stimulate mucus membranes, sooth the digestive tract, absorb toxins from the bowel, help friendly flora to thrive and inhibit unfriendly bacteria. Eating dandelion regularly has a reputation of relieving diabetes. . It is said that dandelion leaves consumed daily in salads can dissolve gallstones.
Dandelion is helpful for people who suffer from allergies, eczema and other skin conditions, asthma, arthritis, gout, rheumatism, gall stones, metabolic disturbances, bone disorders, low blood pressure, poor circulation, ulcers, anemia, halitosis (bad breath), constipation, malignant tumors, colds, lowering cholesterol, cardiac edema, heart burn, swollen glands, hot flushes, and as a sleep inducing night cap. Dandelion is a herb with fat metabolising properties. For weight loss several cups of dandelion tea can be sipped daily, adding 1-2 tablesp. of cider vinegar to each cup. Therapeutically, dandelion can be used as leaf or root tea, a tincture, or the fresh leaves blended with vegetables or fruit juices. An infusion of 1 teasp. of root to 1 cup of water may be prepared and taken freely (several cups a day). Sweeten with honey if desired. 5-6 fresh leaves to 1 cup of boiling water, left to steep 5-10 minutes, can be used similarly. A wash to relieve inflamed eyes and also applied to facial blemishes is made with dandelion leaves, stems and flowers. The white sap from the stems placed on warts several times a day will be a powerful way to tell them to shrivel and disappear.