Did you know the dandelion is a powerful anti-inflammatory healing plant that can relieve pain and help us to detox from the toxic loads that contribute to arthritis?
Dandelions are everywhere and even though gardeners hate them for messing up their laws we shouldn’t be so harsh on them. Our ancestors loved them for their medicinal benefits.
The latest research suggests our ancestors were right to regard this plant as a powerful arthritis healer, and here’s why.
The science backing dandelions arthritis healing power
Dandelions are a powerful anti-inflammatory.
Scientific proof comes from the August 2010 issue of the Journal of Medicinal Food which wrote that “dandelion leaf extract shuts down inflammatory pathways in mice.”
The study concluded…
“The anti-inflammatory effects of TOLs ( Taraxacum officinale leaves) are probably due to down-regulation of NO, PGE(2), and pro-inflammatory cytokines and reduced expressions of iNOS and COX-2 via inactivation of the MAP kinase signal pathway”.
Need more proof?
Here’s what the author of the book “Clinical Naturopathic Medicine” Leah Hechtman, says about these underappreciated plants. Dandelion greens “inhibit interleukins and other immune molecules that trigger inflammation. Controlling inflammation by suppressing COX-2 enzymes”.
More evidence comes from Korea med, which carries a study stating that dandelion possesses the therapeutic ability to eliminate heat, alleviate swelling, choleresis, and inflammation.
This nine-day trial found that oral administration of dandelion significantly alleviated arthritic symptoms in rats.
The study stated in conclusion that” dandelion was found to be effective in alleviating the inflammatory response and thus arthritic symptoms in arthritis induced rats.”
More evidence of dandelions power
The work pointing to dandelion’s anti-inflammatory power doesn’t stop there. Molecular and Cellular Biochemistry stated in 2004 that Luteolin and luteolin-7-O-glucoside from dandelion flower (also abundant in celery juice) suppress iNOS and COX-2 in mice. The study shows the inhibitory effects of dandelion extract were attributed to the suppression of both inducible nitric oxide synthase (iNOS) and cyclooxygenase-2 (COX-2) expression.
“Dandelion was found to alleviate the inflammatory response and arthritic symptoms in rats.”
The anti-cancer protection of dandelion greens
Published in the May 2008 edition of the International Journal of Oncology, the anti-carcinogenic activity of dandelion was investigated. The data suggested that dandelion extracts “may be of value as novel anti-cancer agents.” The most startling revelation was that the extracts of dandelion were found to block the invasion of both prostate and breast cancer cells.
How do I use dandelion?
Dandelion has been used to make medicine since before written records began. People used all of the plant, including the powerful root.
The leaves are undoubtedly the most versatile part of the plant for culinary uses, but there are also some great uses for the root too.
You will need to be selective when picking dandelions because the large older leaves are too bitter to eat and won’t taste good. I go for the smaller new shoots and mix these leaves into salads with lettuce, shallots, chives, clover flowers or anything else I have available.
My advice is to incorporate the leaves into a salad and match them up with whatever else you like! Do what feels good, because If we had followed the good example set by our ancestors we’d still be eating these nutritious leaves today rather than looking down on them as inferior weeds.
Go easy on the number of dandelions you eat, these things are powerful. That doesn’t mean they are non-toxic if used responsibly but could give you problems due to their powerful diuretic effect.
As a general warning, pregnant women and those on medications need to take extra care when adding powerful healing plants to their diets.
There is an indication that some medicines may interact negatively with dandelions. Please do your research.
The leaves are good in soups, but my favorite way to use the leaves is in teas and smoothies. I like to brew them up and keep them as a cold filler liquid for smoothies, adding them to chia seed gels, or storing the unused tea in the fridge for later use. ~
I never throw anything away, especially not cold teas. 😉
When juicing I’ll usually add a large piece of fresh root or a small handful of small fresh leaves to the mix. They can be quite bitter if you use too many so wash them thoroughly and always eat them as fresh as possible.
A nice handful of leaves is plenty for any juice combination but bear in mind that more delicate flavours may be overcome by the punchy dandelion flavour.
For an easy introduction to the world of dandelion eating you could go for a dandelion tea, or just eat the leaves raw as you pick them.
You will soon get hooked on the feeling of eating freshly picked dandelions, but please make sure you only eat dandelions from pristine environments.
Pesticides are everywhere and we still need to be mindful of this when we’re picking fresh foods in nature. Stay off the beaten track, don’t pick near industrial areas or highly farmed areas.
Fancy a tasty coffee alternative without caffeine?
The root of the dandelion can be used as a coffee substitute! And it actually tastes good?
My experiences of “dandelion coffee” have been pretty good and I enjoy the sharp nutty/ burnt flavor.
However, I’m not big on hot drinks or coffee, unless it’s winter, so this isn’t my favorite year-round use for dandelion.
That’s just my personal preference so don’t be put off trying dandelion coffee because it’s uniquely awesome and free!
You can buy dandelion coffee ready-made or make your own!
Before we can make this delicious brew we need to roast the root to release the full flavor. The taste is quite pleasing, depending on the levels of roasting but trial and error should get you there eventually.
If you’re searching for an arthritis-fighting winter warmer or looking for a healthy coffee alternative then I seriously suggest giving dandelion coffee a go.
Other health benefits of the official remedy for disorders
No post on dandelions would be complete without explaining the origins of the name Taraxacum officinale. This is the really cool part because Taraxacum officinale translates as “the official remedy for disorders!” How cool is that!
This astounding nod from our ancient past is evidence of the esteemed position this medicinal herb was held in by our ancestors. Someone certainly knew their stuff all those centuries ago and must have observed the powerful healing effects of dandelion many times over.
The leaves and roots of dandelion are used in traditional healing practices all around the world and are well known to have a host of disease-fighting capabilities.
Internal Healing Applications of Dandelion
- Aid digestion
- kidney tonic
- Liver Tonic
- Antioxidant powerhouse
- cancer fighter
- lower blood pressure
External Healing Applications of Dandelions
- Soothe sore muscles
- Relieve achy arthritic joints
- Soften rough and chapped skin
Other Nutrients in Dandelions
One incredible number that sticks out like a dandelion on a perfectly manicured lawn is the extraordinary levels of Vitamin K. 100g of uncooked leaves contains 778.4 μg of Vitamin K.
That’s (741%) of your recommended daily intake of Vitamin K right in your garden for free!
Not impressed? You might be when you consider that Vitamin K is vital for building bone and calcium absorption. This is seriously important news for anyone suffering from arthritis or any other bone-related condition.
Vitamin K is essential to build strong and healthy bones and we should all have an eye on our intake of this vitamin. My supplement regime includes Vitamin K, especially in winter when the variety of fresh produce is reduced and cooking becomes the norm in the northern latitudes where I live.
Dandelions are also packed with organic calcium. 100g of uncooked dandelion leaves contains 20% of your daily calcium needs. Combine this with the vitamin K content and were looking at sure-fire arthritis and bone-building superfood.
The other really surprising nutrient fact is that dandelions have more beta-carotene than Carrots. 100g of fresh uncooked leaves provides about 200% of your daily nutritional requirement for this important antioxidant.
100g of uncooked Dandelions contains 741% of your recommended daily intake of vitamin k!
- Vitamin B
- Vitamin D
- Trace Minerals
Dandelion [is] an example of a harmonious combination of trace elements, vitamins and other biologically active substances in ratios optimal for a human organism” (Hobbs 1985).
Herbal medicine belongs to us all!
When we eat plants like dandelions we feed ourselves from nature’s pharmacy, we treat them beautifully, and in harmony with the resources we have been so generously given.
This rejoining with health and nature is as soothing as it is wholesome.
Take some time to reconnect and enjoy all of the healing beauty of the world around you, it’s so satisfying and the benefits are amazing.
Strange how we spray cancer-causing chemicals on dandelions and show them no appreciation
As a general warning, pregnant women and those on medications need to take extra care when adding powerful healing plants to their diets.
There is an indication that some medicines may interact negatively with dandelions.
Please do your research.
9 thoughts on “Healing arthritis with dandelions”
I have osteopirois and on axrelto, blood thinner, how does that mix ith dandelions?? This is very excellent option. I could go off the blood thinner.
Hello Gloria! 🙂 Unfortunately I can’t give you medical advice because I am not a doctor and I have no experience of drugs. I don’t and never have taken any drugs in my journey to remission.
There are plenty of natural options that thin the blood and have positive effects on arthritis, like serrapeptase, but as always you really need to continue your research and see what works for you. Working closely with your doctor and taking the tests is the only real way to know.
My health was quite robust, other than the RA, so I was confident that I wouldn’t damage myself or tip myself in a direction that would be unhelpful. I was also young and didn’t have any other complications to consider. This means our experiences may be very different.
The simple facts is that you cannot do any better than living a natural organic lifestyle and using meditation to quiet the mind and bring about balance to all your internal systems. If you take this path you may find that many of your health issues improve.
Supplementation, nutrition, exercise, and staying away from trigger foods is the best way forward for everyone.
If you have bone on bone issues then the best place to start would be doing some research on eggshell membrane or collagen supplementation to help rebuild your cartilage and stop the immediate pain.
The rest is down to nutrition, rest, and rebuilding. But don’t sit for too long because exercise is massive and at the core of all recoveries from disease…. Even movement disorders.
Another obvious one is making sure that your weight is on track. Being light on our feet and lowering the potential loads on our joints is one of the best gifts you can give to tired worn out joints.
I would also give up milk and find some healthy sources of calcium. Ramp up the vitamin D3 levels, take zinc, magnesium and include some weight bearing exercises.
The best way to approach this is with lifestyle change rather than a “what can I put in my body to help me right now” attitude. Short term fixes cannot heal chronic disease. Nor can drugs.
Dandelion is part of the equation because of its huge amount of vitamin K and other amazing bone building nutrients.
Vitamin K, D3, Calcium, Magnesium are vital to building strong bones As is a good supply of fresh clean water and natural salts like pink Himalayan salt. But there aren’t any minerals that aren’t found in bone. Mineralisation is huge!
So I would get moving, eating right, supplementing with cartilage building supplements, mineralising and get in the gym so you can turn this condition on its head and start building your own best healthy future.
as a word of caution I wold say that most of the concentrated plant based interventions and anti-inflammatories I talk about can thin blood and often do have interactions with drugs. Checking out potential interactions on sites like webmd is best practice.
There is some info on this site…
What is the most important information I should know about dandelion ()?
Do not take dandelion without first talking to your doctor if you
have gallbladder problems,
have diabetes or if you take medicine to control blood sugar levels,
take a diuretic (water pill), or
take an anticoagulant (blood thinner) such as warfarin (Coumadin).
but that should betaken as caution rather than a straight up “do not take”. Work with your doctor and improve in every way possible.
Good luck for the future and have a wonderful pain free day! 🙂
Just a smiling visitor here to share the love (:, btw great
Super-Duper website! I am loving it!! Will be back later
to read some more.
I don’t know that dandelion has great benefits like this, & I’ve been suffering from arthritis. Now, i will go for it. Thank God for your lives. Keep on with the research & remain blessed.
Hey Agnes. 🙂
Sorry to hear that you’ve been suffering so badly. There is hope if you follow all of the tips on the site you will start to improve. I will be adding more tips and strategies very soon and hope we can become great friends. Stick around because I have some big news coming on how to stop this painful condition dead and some remarkable content lined up for you lovely people.
I’m working flat out because I know you’re all suffering like I did, and I want to help.
Your wonderful comments provide inspiration and are the biggest reward I could hope for.Thank you. 🙂
Have a great pain free day. x
Hello my little girl has arthritis and I struggle to get her to intake thing that help I was wondering if you think if I cooled the tea and added squash if it would still have the benifits also if i warmed the leaves and squished them to go in with a paste if it would help when externally applied normally my best bet is putting them in a cloth bag and adding into bath water which I can do if these other two options wouldn’t help
Really sorry to hear of your little girls suffering. 🙁
This is a tricky one to navigate because of her age.
Could you tell me which type of arthritis has she been diagnosed with, and is she on any medication?
All of these things together with her age dictate what you can give to her.
The good news is that there is hope. 🙂
I am really interested in helping, so please feel free to come and find me on facebook and let’s have a chat. I feel that would be the only responsible way to proceed.
I have quite a few tips that I’m sure would help…If they are appropriate.
For a start I would not give her any processed foods or anything like squash. None of that stuff is going help.
The way forward depends on what type of arthritis she has, because without that information I have no idea if she is suffering from inflammation or some other form of bone problem.
There is much that can and should be done but without knowing more it wouldn’t be responsible for me to suggest life change habits for anone, let alone a very young person.
Please come and find me via any of the social media icons on site and I’ll be highly delighted to see if I can help.
Hope you both have a wonderful pain free day!
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