Dandelion is more commonly thought of as a weed than a food, but it actually has a lot of medicinal properties and can be consumed in a variety of ways. Though the leaves are the most commonly consumed part of the plant, the flower petals, roots and stems can be eaten as well. Here are 10 health benefits of dandelion:
The antioxidants in dandelion help prevent free radical damage to cells, a condition often associated with increased cancer risk. Dandelion is also believed to help the body detoxify itself, another benefit believed to help reduce the risk of cancer. In vitro studies show dandelion extract to have anti-tumor properties as well.
High In Antioxidants
Dandelion leaves contain high levels of two potent antioxidants, vitamin C and luteolin. Antioxidants help prevent free radical damage to the body's cells, which may be associated with cancer, heart disease and a variety of other health problems.
Dandelion is a powerful natural diuretic. Stimulating and increasing urination can have a wide variety of health benefits. Diuretics are useful in cleansing toxins from the liver and may benefit diabetics by helping to reduce blood sugar levels.
Dandelion is believed to help stimulate the production of insulin in the pancreas. Diuretics like dandelion are great for diabetic health, because urination helps cleanse the body of excess sugar and fat. They also help with retina, a disease of the kidneys common to diabetics.
The diuretic properties in dandelion help cleanse the liver of toxins. The compounds found in dandelion can also assist in the flow of bile and stimulate the liver and digestion. Antioxidants like vitamin C and luteolin are also considered great for healthy liver function.
Dandelions are rich in calcium and vitamin C. Both nutrients are considered essential to maintaining good bone density and proper bone growth.
Dandelion helps stimulate the liver, increase flow of bile and helps facilitate digestion. It stimulates the appetite and acts as a natural laxative, relieving gas and preventing constipation.
Dandelion sap is believed to be an effective treatment for acne, itchy skin and eczema. It may also be effective against fungal skin diseases like ringworm.
Diuretics like dandelion can contribute to weight loss as urine helps rid the body of excess fat. Dandelion also contains a good amount of fiber, which helps balance the metabolism and stabilizes body weight.
Lowers Blood Pressure
Natural diuretics like dandelion are believed to help lower blood pressure. The potassium and fiber in dandelion may also contribute to a reduction in blood pressure levels.