HERBAL GLOSSARY // Dandelion (Taraxacum officinale) – THE DETOXIFIER

The humble dandelion deserves so much more credit than it receives. It may be a stubborn weed, but what it offers us both as a food and as a medicine is a true gift.

It is a nutritive plant with a long history of culinary and medicinal use, packed with minerals like potassium, iron, magnesium, zinc, manganese, copper, and choline, vitamins A, C, D, and B’s, as well as beta-carotene, phenolic acids sesquiterpene lactone, triterpenes, and inulin – some weed hey?

And If you haven’t already tried and you deem yourself a bit of a foodie, head down to your organic farmers market because the leaves can be used in salads or cooked as you would with spinach so you can access all those amazing nutrients through the diet as well as drinking it as an infusion. Picking them straight out of the ground however, is probably not the best way to try it as it is most likely contaminated with sprays amongst other environmental toxins.

It is a bitter herb which means it’s all about giving our digestive system some love, especially our livers and gallbladders which are so essential for proper detoxification and maintaining digestive homeostasis.

Historical uses of Dandelion included a beautiful gentle way to control blood pressure with minimum side-effects in the elderly without the loss of potassium and magnesium unlike some of the synthetic alternatives when drank in place of coffee. Other historical uses included muscular rheumatism, hypoglycaemia, anorexia, cachexia, congestive heart failure, topically for warts using the milky sap, and was combined with Yarrow and Lime flowers for high blood pressure.

Present day its use in clinic centres around use as a diuretic (leaves mainly), a liver tonic, for treating diabetes, rheumatic conditions, as a gentle laxative, for heartburn, and chronic skin disorders such as urticaria (hives) and eczema.

The dried root makes a for a great caffeine-free alternative to coffee with the added benefit of all those active constituents and nutrients, what’s not to love about that?

So with all that goodness in mind, why not try a new thing in your daily routine whether its starting your day with Little Wilding Co’s Dirty Dandi Chai or Alive & Energise before you have that coffee, or even as a 3pm pick me up, your body will thank you for it!

Action: Bitter tonic, choleretic, mild laxative, antirheumatic, cholagogue, mild diuretic, nutritive, hepatoprotective, alterative, anti-inflammatory.

Indications: Dyspepsia, lack of appetite, constipation, digestive liver insufficiency, flatulent colic, gall stones, cholecystitis, gallbladder dysfunction, water retention, chronic skin disorders, acne, and rheumatism.

Pregnancy / Breastfeeding safe: Yes. Dandelion is generally considered very safe and non-toxic however may cause allergy in those who are allergic to ragweed and daisies.

Enjoy in blends:

DIRT DANDI CHAI https://www.littlewildlingco.com/products/dirty-dandy-chai

REHAB (Cleanse & Detox) https://www.littlewildlingco.com/products/rehab-cleanse-detox

ALIVE & ENERGISE https://www.littlewildlingco.com/products/alive-energise

I AM A GODDESS https://www.littlewildlingco.com/products/i-am-a-goddess


Bone, K: The Ultimate Herbal Compendium: Dandelion (Taraxacum officinale) 2007, Pg. 29-30

The Herbal Extract Company Australia – Full Monograph Dandelion Root (Taraxacum officinale)

Bartram, T: Bartram’s Encyclopedia of Herbal Medicine, 1995, pg 140

Braun, L, Cohen, M: Herbs & natural Supplements – An Evidence-based guide V2, 2015, pg 275