An herb entry from the Ancient Herbs and Modern Herbs book by James K. Sayre, Copyright, 2001. All rights reserved.
Dandelion - Taraxacum officinale - family: Asteraceae (Compositae) (Sunflower Family) (Composite Family).
This perennial plant grows to about one foot high. It has jagged lance-shaped
dark green leaves. In the spring, summer and fall it produces yellow flowerheads
which are soon followed by spherical seedheads. Each tiny beige-colored
seed (achene) has a tiny parachute (pappus) which can ride on the slightest
breeze. The familiar yellow-headed blossoms mark this plant's appearance
in lawns across North America. Greens used traditionally in Europe and America
both raw in salads and as a cooked vegetable. Traditional European and American
folk use of leaves as a remedy for acne, anemia, diabetes, eczema, edema,
gall bladder problems, gallstones, high blood pressure and urinary tract
disorders. Traditional European folk use of leaves as a bitter digestive
aid. Traditional European and American folk use of roots as a remedy for
acne, constipation, diabetes, eczema, edema, gall bladder problems, gallstones,
gout, indigestion, inflammation, liver problems, kidney problems, arthritis,
and rheumatism. Modern European folk use of roots as a remedy for allergies
and hay fever. Traditional European and American folk use of whole plant:
(flowers, leaves and roots) as a remedy for acne, congestive heart failure,
edema, gall bladder problems, gallstones, gout, indigestion, liver problems
and urinary tract infections. Approved by the German Commission E as a remedy
for gall bladder problems, kidney stones, liver problems, urinary tract
infections and for a poor appetite. Modern American folk use of leaves and
roots as a remedy for high blood pressure, menstrual problems, menstrual
cramps, joint pain, obesity and pre-menstrual syndrome (PMS). Under the
name Dughdapheni, Dandelion has been traditionally used as Ayurvedic medicinal
herb. In the sense of protecting the liver against the toxicity of alcohol,
Dandelion might be construed as a remedy for the alcoholic hangover, although
it would probably have no direct effect on the symptoms felt. Juice from
the stems has been used externally on warts. Dandelion was probably one
of the bitter herbs used by Jewish faithful in the Passover meal in Biblical
times. Also used as an herbal tea, which is usually made from the dried
root. Flower petals have been used as the base for making Dandelion wine.
It may cause a skin rash in certain individuals. Note: do not use if pregnant
or nursing. Note: long term use may not be advisable due to a lack of studies
on long term effects. Note: possible side effects from ingesting Dandelion
include diarrhea, indigestion and liver pain. Note: avoid harvesting Dandelions
from areas such as lawns which have been sprayed with herbicides. The roots
will yield a magenta-colored dye. Note: large doses may cause diarrhea,
indigestion or a rash. Dandelion roots were listed in the United States
Pharmacopoeias from 1830 to 1910. Native to Europe. Naturalized in eastern,
central and western North America. Naturalized in California.
Questions? Comments? Suggestions? Please feel free to Email the author at sayresayre@yahoo;com. email@example.com
This web page was recently created by James Sayre.
Contact author James K. Sayre at firstname.lastname@example.org. Author's Email: email@example.com
Copyright 2003 by Bottlebrush Press. All Rights Reserved.
Web page last updated on 20 May 2003.