A dandy liver cleanser that is right at your fingertips is dandelion – yes, that nasty stringy-looking buy weed online that everyone wants to get rid of every spring. I was disheartened to see the very poor reception that DANDELION got in some recent search results: the top seven or eight search keywords in my research were “Weed Strains,” “how to kill dandelions,” “get rid of dandelions,” etc. Not a very welcome reception to such a potent and helpful detoxifier!
So, for the moment let’s put aside our gardener’s disdain for this wonderful healing plant and consider its many good points.
Dandelion has long been prized in Chinese medicine for its healing abilities, especially its ability to dispel heat, reduce inflammation and infection, and detoxify and cleanse the liver. Its recorded use in Chinese medicine dates back to the 7th century A.D. when it was widely used for fighting infections such as boils, carbuncles, bronchitis, tonsillitis, and clarifying the skin, bile ducts and gastrointestinal tract.
It is today used in China as a treatment for mastitis (swollen or inflamed breasts), and that remedy is listed below.
Dandelion is used in powdered form, or in water or alcohol extract, or as a juice. It can be plucked from your backyard and boiled and it makes an ideal green vegetable loaded with minerals and cleansing properties. Its bitterness can be offset by adding some potato to the water and I have often added strained tomatoes, which cuts the bitter flavor too. This combination of tomato and dandelion is surprisingly tasty and not as acidic as it may sound.
Another way to use the healing power of dandelion is to pull the entire plant out of the ground, boil it in 3 cups of water down to 1-1/2 cup, strain, cool and drink the liquid. If desired you may add a teaspoon of honey to the liquid while still hot, to quell the taste. This drink helps ro alleviate mastitis and other cystic conditions of the breast. It is also an excellent potion for gall bladder inflammation or discomfort.
Dandelion wine is also a very healing drink for the G.I. system, liver and gall bladder, and delicious too!
Those gardeners who cannot bring themselves to appreciate dandelion’s fine qualities, take heed: in Nature’s world there is truly something for everyone. If you don’t wish to sample the culinary benefits of dandelion, keep a bit of it around your yard anyway. The milky white exudate from the stem of dandelion makes a great instant poultice for snake bites or insect stings!