Health Benefits Of Dandelion Root
As the Health Benefits of Dandelion Root become increasingly known. They are starting to lose their negative image as a garden weed. These childhood favourites crop up everywhere, from football fields and public parks to the cracks in the pavement. Packed with vitamins and nutrients such as zinc, vitamin C, potassium and magnesium. They really should be revered, not feared.
Lets see how dandelions can bring a boost to your health.
Dandelion has been shown to improve liver function by removing toxins and protecting the liver cells. A study by the Department of Food and Nutrition at Chonnam National University in South Korea showed that dandelion root extract prevented damage to the liver caused by alcohol.
As a natural diuretic, dandelion helps the kidneys get rid of waste, salt, and excess water. The increased need to urinate helps inhibits microbial growth in the urinary tract. As this can lead to the decrease of vital minerals in the body, dandelion helps replaces some that are lost in the process.
Dandelion root has been shown to reduce cholesterol levels. In a study printed in the International Journal of Molecular Sciences, rabbits were fed a high-cholesterol diet and also given dandelion root. It was found that dandelion led to a reduction in total cholesterol, triglycerides and bad LDL cholesterol. It also found an increase as in beneficial HDL cholesterol.
Rich in Antioxidants
In addition to the mineral and vitamin content, dandelions are also high in antioxidants. These help reduce the impact of free radicals on the body. Free radicals are the result of numerous factors such as bad diet, pollution and stress. Over time, the build up of free radicals can lead to cell damage which in turn, can lead to chronic disease including heart disease and cancer.
A study at the University of Windsor, Canada in 2011, treated skin cancer cells with an extract of dandelion root and found that it started killing off cancer cells within 48 hours. Another study by Pamela Ovadje in Oncotarget Journal showed that dandelion root extract was able to kill 95% of colon cancer cells within 48 hours. Further research is also looking promising in the treatment of leukemia, pancreatic and prostate cancer.
When picking dandelions, you should avoid the ones on your lawn if you have used any pesticides. Try foraging for them in the countryside, away from traffic to ensure they are pollutant free. Or even grow at home in planter pots.
One my favourite ways to consume dandelion root, is in tea. Readily available in most supermarkets and stores.
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