Everything About Dandelion

What Dandelion Is?

Dandelion is an herb that is native to Europe. It is also found throughout mild climates of the northern hemisphere.

People take dandelion by mouth for tonsillitis, heart failure, loss of appetite, upset stomach, intestinal gas, gallstones, improving bile flow, joint pain including arthritis pain, muscle aches, eczema, and bruises. Dandelion is also taken by mouth to increase urine production and as a laxative to increase bowel movements. It is also used as a skin toner, circulation tonic, blood tonic, and digestive tonic.

Some people take dandelion by mouth to treat infection, especially viral infections and urinary tract infections (UTIs), as well as cancer.

In foods, dandelion is used as salad greens, and in soups, wine, and teas. The roasted root is used as a coffee substitute.

Is Dandelion Effective?

Insufficient Evidence to Rate Effectiveness for…

  • Inflammation of the tonsils (Tonsillitis). Early research shows that people who have had their tonsils removed recover faster if they eat soup containing dandelion compared to those who eat soup without dandelion.
  • It is preventing urinary tract infections (UTIs). A specific combination of dandelion root and leaf extracts of another herb called uva ursi was taken by mouth seems to help reduce the number of UTIs in women. In this combination, uva ursi is used because it appears to kill bacteria, and dandelion is used to increase urine flow. However, this combination should not be used long-term because it is not known if uva ursi is safe for extended use.
  • Arthritis-like pain.
  • Heart failure.
  • Loss of appetite.
  • Upset stomach.
  • Intestinal gas (flatulence).
  • Other conditions.

More evidence is needed to rate the effectiveness of dandelion for these uses.

How Does It Work?

Dandelion contains chemicals that may increase urine production and decrease swelling (inflammation).

Are There Safety Concerns?

Dandelion is LIKELY SAFE for most people when taken by mouth in the amounts commonly found in food. It is POSSIBLY SAFE when taken by mouth in medicinal amounts (more significant amounts than those found in food). Taking dandelion by mouth might cause allergic reactions, stomach discomfort, diarrhea, or heartburn in some people.

Special Precautions & Warnings:

Pregnancy and breast-feeding: There is not enough reliable information about the safety of taking dandelion if you are pregnant or breast feeding. Stay on the safe side and avoid use.

Eczema: People with eczema seem to have a higher chance of having an allergic reaction to dandelion. If you have eczema, be sure to check with your healthcare provider before taking dandelion.

Bleeding disorders: Dandelion might slow blood clotting. In theory, taking dandelion might increase the risk of bruising and bleeding in people with bleeding disorders.

Ragweed allergy: People who are allergic to ragweed and related plants (daisies, chrysanthemums, marigolds) might be more likely to be allergic to dandelion. But conflicting data exists. If you have allergies, be sure to check with your healthcare provider before taking dandelion.

Kidney failure: Dandelion might reduce how much oxalate is released through urine. In theory, this might increase the risk of complications in people with kidney problems.

Are There Any Interactions With Herbs and Supplements?

Herbs and supplements that can lower blood sugar

Dandelion might lower blood sugar. If it is taken along with other herbs and supplements that might lower blood sugar, blood sugar levels might become too low in some people. Some herbs and supplements that might lower blood sugar include devil’s claw, fenugreek, guar gum, Panax ginseng, Siberian ginseng, and others.

Herbs and supplements that might slow blood clotting

Dandelion might slow blood clotting. Using dandelion with other herbs that can slow blood clotting might increase the risk of bleeding in some people.

Some of these other herbs include garlic, angelica, clove, danshen, ginger, ginkgo, red clover, turmeric, vitamin E, willow, and others.

What Dose Is Used?

The appropriate dose of dandelion depends on several factors, such as the user’s age, health, and several other conditions. At this time, there is not enough scientific information to determine an appropriate range of doses for dandelion. Keep in mind that natural products are not always necessarily safe and dosages can be important. Be sure to follow relevant directions on product labels and consult your pharmacist or physician or other healthcare professional before using.

What Other Names Is The Product Known By?

Blowball, Cankerwort, Cochet, Common Dandelion, Couronne de Moine, Dandelion Extract, Dandelion Herb, Délice Printanier, Dent-de-Lion, Diente de Leon, Dudal, Endive Sauvage, Fausse Chicorée, Florin d’Or, Florion d’Or, Herba Taraxaci, Laitue de Chien, Leontodon taraxacum, Lion’s Teeth, Lion’s Tooth, Piss-a-bed, Pisse au Lit, Pissenlit, Pissenlit Vulgaire, Priest’s Crown, Pu Gong Ying, Red-Seed Dandelion, Salade de Taupe, Swine Snout, Taraxaci Herba, Taraxacum, Taraxacum dens-leonis, Taraxacum laevigatum, Taraxacum mongolicum, Taraxacum officinale, Taraxacum sinicum, Taraxacum vulgare, Tête de Moine, Wild Endive.

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In 2014, she discuss her Ph.D. thesis in Food Science and Biotechnology entitled “Use of Biotechnology to increase the content of bioactive compounds in Fermented Foods of Plant Origin” at the University of Bologna in Italy. She has been a Postdoctoral Fellow in Food science and Biotechnology for more than 2 years, working on development of new bakery products, study of the impact of cereal based diet on health and the effect of processing on bioactive compounds. She collaborated on various national and international research projects.