“D” is for Dandelion

pooh bear & dandelions

My entire backyard is covered, and I mean covered in dandelions. I have almost a primal urge to go and blow on them the second I see one. Before I got so sick that I had to use a walker, I would go outside every day…weather permitting…and spend hours in the woods, down by the creek, or by a little pond that we have between our house and the creek. It was a good way to let the fur babies work off energy & I would take pictures…lots & lots of pictures. And I could blow on every dandelion that I could find and not have to worry about Prince Charming reminding me that they are useless weeds that he really doesn’t like mowing. And I still hear about he hates to mow them down, but he no longer uses the words useless when describing them anymore.

Did you know that dandelions are not only good to make wishes on, but can also help prevent & relieve quite a few ailments? True story! The USDA ranked dandelions in the top 4 green vegetables in overall nutritional value in their Bulletin #8, “Composition of Foods”, (Haytowitz and Matthews 1984).

Since dandelions are highly diuretic in nature, they help to detoxify the kidneys & urinary tract. And because dandelions also have disinfectant properties, they help keep microbial growth inhibited in the urinary system. For people, like Prince Charming, who are Diabetic they can drink dandelion juice and it helps remove sugar deposits in the kidneys by making you pee…a lot. Plus, since the juice is kinda bitter…lower blood sugar. {For those who aren’t Diabetic, bitter substances help lower blood sugar.}

Sticking with diuretic properties…dandelions also help with high blood pressure. Prince Charming also has HBP…we are a doctor’s dream & an insurance company’s nightmare, but I digress. Diuretics are almost always either prescribed as a stand alone prescription or part of the base chemical compound in medications created to treat HBP.

Dandelions are also a good source of potassium, another thing commonly prescribed for people with HBP because it replaces sodium which lowers your blood pressure. Don’t get me wrong, there is sodium in dandelions. But, sodium is a good thing…assuming you aren’t adding a couple corn kernels to a salt lick for supper. It helps aid in digestion by regulating hydrochloric acid levels in the stomach lining.

It’s also recommended that people with HBP add fiber to their diet to help reduce cholesterol, and that helps lower your blood pressure. Guess what dandelions have? That’s right, fiber! Which means that dandelions also help in the prevention of heart disease!

Did I forget to mention that dandelion milk has germicidal, insecticidal and fungicidal properties & is highly alkaline?! Big words meaning that you can use dandelion milk to treat eczema & ringworm. {Yeah, ok so they don’t technically mean that, but technically smechnically.} Oh, and dandelion juice a good detoxifier, diuretic, stimulant and anti oxidant…4 really good things to look for in acne treatments.

Aside from the potassium & fiber, dandelions are also:

  • high in calcium 
  • rich in iron
  • a good source of copper
  • a good mix of folic acid, riboflavin, pyridoxine, niacin & vitamins B, E & C

Ready to try dandelions? Here’s just a few recipe links to get you started:

Dandelion Salad

Sauteed Dandelion Greens

Italian Style Dandelion Greens

For more information on the health benefits of dandelions, Leaf Lady,  Nutrition & You  and LiveStrong all have more information.

Today’s post brought to you by the letter:

Day "D"

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