Dandelion Greens, The Beneficial Weeds

February 26, 2023 0 Comments

Everyone is familiar with dandelions and most consider them nothing more than an annoying weed. Thankfully in recent years, the internet has brought popularity and attention to this once hated plant.

From a medicinal standpoint, dandelion is one of the best healing herbs on planet Earth. It has such a wide range of benefits it is considered a “Do All” plant.

The root of dandelion is usually credited with the most potent medicinal qualities, but many are unaware of the amazing benefits the greens have to offer.

Health Benefits

May Control blood sugar: Dandelion greens contains potential bioactive components (TS and CGA), which can sometimes can offer safe treatment and control of diabetes type 2.

Diuretic effects: Due to the high potassium content of dandelion greens, they work as a diuretic. Diuretics help increase urine output and treat water retention. These qualities are extremely beneficial for kidney health.

May Lower blood pressure: Dandelion leaves are believed to have a positive effect on the cardiovascular system due to their high potassium content. Increased potassium intake with food has been found to lower blood pressure in many individuals.

May Lower inflammation: Dandelion greens contain natural anti-inflammatories. Reducing inflammation in your body can reduce your chances of developing certain illnesses, cancers and heart disease.

Antioxidants: Oxidative stress can damage your cells and contribute to cancer, metabolic disorders, and disease. The antioxidants found in dandelion greens can protect your body, cells, and keep your immune system strong.

May Control cholesterol: Dandelion greens affect lipid metabolism and preliminary studies show they might be useful in lowering cholesterol, thus helping the heart.

Highly Nutritious

Dandelion greens offer your body a lot of nutrition. In fact, dandelion greens are one of the most nutrient-dense greens you can eat. With just 25 calories a cup, raw dandelion greens are a source of:

Calcium (103 mg)

Folate (14.8 µg)

Iron (1.7 mg)

Potassium (218 mg)

Vitamin A (279 µg)

Vitamin C (19.2 mg)

The greens of dandelions can be harvested by simply cutting off the leaves where they meet the ground. You want to make sure that if you’re going to be eating these greens, you are harvesting from clean areas, free of pesticides and chemicals. Give your greens a brief rinse before consuming.

You have many options when it comes to how you prepare your dandelion greens.

Raw: Dandelions are considered a bitter plant. Bitter greens are extremely beneficial for the digestive track, but have a strong bitter flavor. If you enjoy the strong flavor, raw dandelion greens are the easiest way to eat them. You can mix them into a salad with other greens to dilute the bitterness. A tasty vinegarette dressing is also helpful.

Sauteed: Sauteeing the greens with olive oil and garlic is a good cooking method for any leafy green. Boil the greens for 5 minutes, then sautee them in a pan of hot olive oil and garlic for up to 5 minutes.

Baked: Similar to how you might bake kale chips, you can make dandelion leaf chips by baking them in your oven. Coat the greens evenly with a light amount of olive oil and seasonings. Place the greens in a single layer on a baking sheet. Bake at 400 degrees for up to 10 minutes or until the desired crispiness.

Soups: Dandelion greens can easily replace kale or chard in your favorite soup recipe.

Eggs: Add dandelion greens to an omelet the way you would any other leafy green.

Baked Dishes: Dandelion greens are delicious when added to quiche, casseroles and or other baked cuisines.

Juicing or Smoothie: If you enjoy juicing, try adding a handful of dandelion greens into your juicer or blend fresh greens into a smoothie. Cucumbers can help water down some of their bitterness, and apples can add sweetness.

Remember, the favor is very strong, so you won’t want to add too much dandelion into the mix if you are averse to their taste.

Experiment with your favorite recipes that include other leafy greens, such as kale or spinach, and replace all or a portion with dandelion greens.

How to use

If you’re not interested in eating dandelion greens, but still want the benefits, you are in luck. There are a few other ways to receive these medicinal benefits, without consuming the bitter leaves.

Like most herbs, dandelion greens can be enjoyed as a tea! Use 1 tablespoon dried dandelion greens or 2 tablespoons fresh, per 8 ounces of water. Add the herbs to the cup and pour boiling water over them. Let steep 5-10 minutes, strain and enjoy! You can also add additional herbs to enhance flavor or benefits. Read more about herbal tea..

Another way to receive benefits from dandelion greens is to take in tincture form. A tincture is a liquid extraction of medicinal herbs usually made from vodka or high proof alcohol. They are extremely easy to make, efficient and effective. If you have never made a tincture before, follow our step-by-step guide on the process.

Incorporating dandelion greens into your daily regimen may have an amazing impact on your overall health.

For those not interested in harvesting their own, but still want to receive these amazing benefits, HealthPrimitive offers a Dandelion Greens Elixir to promote good health, daily.

Safety Considerations

Dandelion is likely safe for most people when consumed in the amounts commonly found in food.Consuming dandelion may cause allergic reactions, stomach discomfort, diarrhea, or heartburn in some people. Dandelion slows clotting and may cause extra bleeding, and problems with low blood sugar during and after surgery. Stop using dandelion at least 2 weeks before a scheduled surgery. Taking dandelion might increase the risk for bruising and bleeding in people with bleeding disorders.

People who are allergic to ragweed and related plants (daisies, chrysanthemums, marigolds) might also be allergic to dandelion. But conflicting data exists. If you have allergies, pregnant, nursing, or have kidney disorders, be sure to check with your healthcare provider before taking dandelion.Herbal medicine is still medicine, so it’s important to make sure it is safe before you to consume. Always speak to your doctor first before starting any herbal therapies. View our disclaimer here.

The next time see dandelions, hopefully you see them in a different light instead of an annoying weed. After all, they can provide you with so many benefits, what’s not to love!

Stay Wild


Kayce Heister
Kayce Heister

Kayce is a Clinical Herbalist, Holistic Health Practitioner (HHP), Active Forager, Wild Food Chef and Mother of three. She has spent the last 18 years practicing herbalism and natural health, and spends most of her time educating others on the amazing potential the natural world can offer.

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