Dandelion tea is full of vitamins and minerals and also provides important antioxidants. The tea is known to have diuretic properties while also improving the body’s digestion and detoxification processes. Nutritionist Nancy Geib from the Cleveland Clinic in the USA explains what other health benefits dandelion tea brings with it.
Although most people know dandelion (Taraxacum officinale) as a garden weed, it is an extremely potent medicinal plant with a wide range of uses.
What is dandelion tea made from?
Usually, dandelion tea is made from the leaves. The ground root is also often used, and there is also tea made from leaves, flowers and roots, Geib reports. The only part of the dandelion that is not used due to the bitter taste is the stem.
Dandelion tea has many of the same health benefits as dandelion medicinal plants. The tea contains healthy ingredients such as folic acid, calcium, potassium and vitamins A, C and K.
Effect of dandelion tea
“Dandelion tea is known to have a diuretic effect and gently stimulate the digestive and detoxification organs of the liver and gallbladder,” reports Geib in a recent press release.
If the root is used in the preparation of the tea, there are other potential benefits. For example, tea made from the root has a stronger detoxifying effect on the liver and can also help against acne and other skin problems caused by a stagnant liver.
Dandelion tea contains many antioxidants
Antioxidants are known to protect the body from what are known as free radicals, which can cause damage at the cellular level. According to research, dandelion tea has high levels of the antioxidant beta-carotene, which protects against cell damage and oxidative stress.
Reduces inflammation and protects the heart
Dandelion tea also contains other antioxidant polyphenols that have an anti-inflammatory effect and, according to study results, are beneficial for heart health, reports the expert.
Additionally, dandelion contains taraxasterol, a compound that also has antioxidant properties and fights inflammation by regulating white blood cells and stopping them from triggering unnecessary inflammation, Geib explains.
Beneficial for blood pressure
According to the expert, dandelion tea can also help regulate blood pressure thanks to its high potassium content. Potassium interacts with the kidneys to help remove excess sodium from the body.
In addition, the potassium contained in tea can reduce the stress on blood vessel walls, which is generally beneficial for heart health.
Benefits for blood sugar and blood lipid levels
Furthermore, studies have already shown that dandelion tea can influence the regulation of fat and sugar metabolism, which is particularly beneficial for type 2 diabetes, reports Geib.
“Dandelion root has a positive effect on digestion and inhibits the activity of lipase, which is known to reduce fat absorption, which can promote weight loss,” explains the nutritionist.
Maintaining healthy cholesterol levels is important to prevent heart disease, and studies have found that dandelion lowers triglyceride levels, which are just as damaging to the heart as high levels of low-density lipoprotein (LDL) cholesterol bone
How much dandelion tea daily?
Dandelion tea can be drunk two to three times a day, but the tea increases the urge to urinate and the body should therefore slowly get used to smaller amounts, explains the Epxertin. After that you can gradually increase consumption. Geib adds that the optimal effect of dandelion tea unfolds only after prolonged use.
Which people should avoid dandelion tea?
“Although the studies are inconclusive, people with liver or gallbladder problems, gallstones, or kidney disease are advised to use dandelions with caution – eat or drink,” reports Geib.
It should also be noted that dandelion should be avoided if you are already taking a diuretic, as the medicinal plant also has a diuretic effect. In principle, a medical consultation is advisable before taking dandelion.
It should be noted that dandelion tea can generally interact with various medicines. These include, for example, lithium, blood thinners, various antibiotics, diuretics and various heart and blood pressure medications.
As a precaution, you should also refrain from consuming dandelion tea during pregnancy because research into the effects of dandelion on pregnancy has not yet provided any clear results, says Geib. The expert adds that people with ragweed allergies should also avoid dandelions. (as)