Dandelion is a miracle herb that grows almost everywhere in nature around spring time. The yellow flowers are hard to miss, and a little known fact about them is they are edible too, along with the roots and leaves. The flowers can be eaten raw, as they are sweet and crunchy, but they can also be used to make dandelion syrup. The roots are usually dried and roasted and used as a coffee substitute. Dandelions are rich in vitamins, minerals, antioxidants, and fiber, and have tremendous health benefits. Dandelions are a rich source of beta-carotene and polyphenolic compounds, both of which are known to have strong antioxidant capabilities that can prevent aging and certain diseases.
Scientific tests have been done on dandelions, and they have suggested that dandelions have a significant anti-inflammatory capacity. The dandelion plant contains bioactive compounds that have been shown to reduce blood sugar. This is in fact due to the presence of Chicoric and chlorogenic acids in Dandelions, which are bioactive compounds that help reduce blood sugar, by improving insulin secretion from the pancreas while simultaneously improving the absorption of glucose in the blood.
Scientific studies also have shown that dandelion extract reduces cholesterol and triglyceride levels. Other studies have shown that chlorogenic acid, a compound found in dandelion, was able to reduce body weight and levels of some fat-storage hormones. Most significantly however, is that dandelion root extract has the capacity to dramatically slow the growth of cancer cells in liver, colon and pancreatic tissue, while dandelion leaf extract showed significant reduction in growth of cancerous cells altogether.
Dandelion has also shown to be a good support to lowering blood pressure. That is due to Dandelion’s potassium content, which has a diuretic effect in the blood vessels. Furthermore, it has been shown to protect liver tissue from toxic substances and oxidative stress. And more importantly, research indicates that dandelion has antimicrobial and antiviral properties, which support your body’s ability to fight infection.
Research indicates that dandelion increases contractions and movement of gastrointestinal tract, acting as a solution for constipation and indigestion. Dandelion root is a rich source of the prebiotic fiber inulin, which is the main factor in bowel movement aid. On the other hand, Dandelion leaves are a good source of calcium and vitamin K which are associated with the prevention of bone loss.
Recipe of the month:
Dandelions are best eaten raw like spring mix greens, however some people can’t stand the bitterness of dandelions, so if you are encouraging them to get in the habit of eating them, this recipe will sure make them want more.
Dandelion with Tahini
Created by Princess Saja @saja_algharib
3 bunches of dandelion roughly chopped
2 diced onions
2 tablespoons olive oil
½ tbsp salt
3 squeezed lemons
½ cup of tahini
½ tbsp 7 spices
Sprinkle of black pepper
1 cup of water
Saute the onions in the olive oil until light brown
Add the chopped dandelions and bring heat to a simmer
In a separate container, mix 1 tbsp of water with the tahini, and mix for a few seconds, then add the lemon juice and mix thoroughly. Once done, add the remaining water to thin out the mixture, and a ¼ of a tbsp of salt.
Once the dandelions have started to cook (5-7 mins average), add the tahini mixture to the mix, and bring to a boil
Add the 7 spices and black pepper, and remaining salt, and cook while stirring occasionally for 5 minutes.