We all know dandelion… how many times have we walked in the meadows and have we taken this flower blowing it in the face of a friend, but few knows the dandelion benefits.
His name DANDELION (Taraxacum officinale) comes from the greek “remedy,” “healing” and is a native of Eurasia and is one of the most common weeds in Italy. The Common Dandelion belongs to the Asteraceae family Composite and spring gives us the flowering meadows of a beautiful yellow, intense and smiling, as if to announce, together with primroses that the cold has passed and spring comes.
Dandelion benefits were known since ancient times for their many virtues, and is used in herbal medicine for its useful roots. It’s a perennial plant, with a very big root and the leaves from the dentate margin. It grows on the lawns of the plain or in the hills or on mountain up to 200 meters above sea level.
Dandelion or rainfall is very prolific and almost impossible to eradicate once naturalized. It spreads not only through seeds with small “parachute” and then transported a great distance from the parent plant, but also through the powerful tap root: if you decide to eradicate it (preferably in early spring), needs to be done very carefully to remove the entire root, or the plant will return to germinate even a tiny fragment.
How to pick it up
Dandelion can be harvested selectively sun tender leaves, buds or flowers as well, for medicinal purposes, the root. Wanting to collect the whole plant (out of the season of flowering), it is necessary to drill a horizontal cut at the collar, so that the root to produce a new plant.
Since 1546 the naturalist Bock knew the dandelion benefits. He attributed to Dandelion a diuretic property, while a German pharmacist in the sixteenth century attributed to the plant virtues able to heal wounds quickly. Many known the dandelion benefits since antiquity: like most of the composite, has digestive properties, anti-inflammatory and cleansing, especially the liver, and is traditionally used as a diuretic (in France and some Italian regions it is called “piscialetto”). The leaves enrich the dandelion benefits because they are rich in vitamins A, group B, C and D, as well as minerals such as iron, potassium and zinc; they were a traditional remedy for scurvy and other nutritional deficiencies. But it is above the root to be used for purposes of purification; is also able to lower blood glucose levels in the blood. Although there are no medical studies depth, there are no contraindications (if not the specific allergy to Asteraceae / Compositae) for the use of decoctions and infusions traditional dandelion as an aid in digestion and small disturbances of the liver and kidneys. The dandelion benefits are good also for children; however it is advisable to hire medically supervised its decoctions or infusions in the presence of kidney or liver disease (because it could move them) or therapies for diabetes (as it may lower blood sugar too). His white latex is a traditional remedy for eczema and warts.
ATTENTION first freely use herbs and plants consult with your doctor
Dandelion contains potassium, in a fairly high, so it is particularly suitable for some people who have little, but you should never overdo it to avoid a framework of hyperkalemia. In summary we can say that he has a very good action and purifying drained and therefore can help the body eliminate toxic substances and deal with new vigor the new season. We do care because we have to avoid very common to pick it up in particularly polluted areas as it is one of the herbs that absorbs more lead.
Even the bees love the flowers of dandelion, from which we produce the nectar and pollen (an excellent honey namesake with all the benefits of dandelion).
Also anaimals know the benefits of dandelion. Leaves are used instinctively by all the wild animals of the forest typical Mediterranean (hares, wild rabbits, deer) when they are intoxicated or digestive diseases. An experimental control, made by the Faculty of Forestry of Florence, has confirmed naturalistic observation.
Dandelion benefits remain also cooking it to enrich salads, together with eggs. You can also put the buds in oil.
Dandelion in the tradition
Origin of name Taraxacum is a name given to the end of the Middle Ages by Apoticari, from greek taraxachè = disturbance, from tarasso = acted, stirred, turmoil and akos = remedy, to signify the relaxing properties. Others maintain that it comes from the Arabic tarakhchakon or tarakhchagoun, name given to a Cicoriacea. Leontodon, from greek leon = lion and odontos, gen. = Tooth, or dandelion, for serrated leaves, compared to the teeth of the lion. Hedypnois is the name of a greek Cicoriacea fragrant; by Edus = grateful, pleasant and peon = smell.
Dandelion benefits were known also during the second world war. It was cultivated for the extraction of rubber latex contained in its roots. The root can replace Turmeric. According to the philosophy of alchemy, dandelion with its beautiful yellow flower, with the multitude of blooms arranged in a radial pattern, reminiscent of the sun’s rays, is considered a solar plant. Its flowers reach maximum power with the summer solstice. To its proud and sure is related to the planet Jupiter and just as Jupiter, king of the gods, put order in his Olympus, dandelion puts order in the universe, purifying body from impurities. At one time, the dandelion, also called “head”, was elevated to the rank of “oracle”. According to some popular beliefs, to determine if a love could be paid, it was enough to blow on pappi, if these were flying all away, love would be paid, if there remained some duvets attached meant that you would have to wait a few months (or years ) as many as the duvets were on the receptacle, and again, depending on the direction that the quilts took blown by the wind, depended on the arrival of good or bad news. Ancient beliefs in various fields ranging from meteorology, in fact, if the blow, the quilts were flying upwards, was an omen of good weather, on the contrary, if glided gently to the ground was a sure sign of bad weather. Said also said colloquially also “piscialletto”, because of its diuretic or “Dandelion”
Chemical composition value per 100 g
Water (g) 87.00
Protein (g) 3.10
Lipids (g) 1.10
Carbohydrates (g) 3.70
Starch (g) –
Sugars (g) 3.70
Fiber (g) 0.40
Energy (kcal) 36
Energy (kJ) 151
Sodium (mg) 76,00
Iron (mg) 3.20
Phosphorus (mg) 65.00
Thiamine (mg) 0.19
Riboflavin (mg) 0.17
Niacin (mg) 0.80
Vitamin A (g) 992.00
Vitamin C (mg) 52,00
Vitamin E (mg) –