Taraxacum officinale ( Dandelion)

Benefits of dandelion
Taraxacum officinale ( Dandelion)

Taraxacum officinale, also known as Dandelion, is a perennial plant with yellow flowers growing from a hollow milky stem with saw-shaped leaves. Taraxacum officinale is a rich source of micronutrients with numerous therapeutic benefits, thus it has a long history in traditional folk medicine to treat liver, gallbladder, and kidney problems 1. Taraxacum officinale has been mentioned in the China Compendium of Materia Medica. It is also stated in the United States National Formulary, British Herbal Pharmacopoeia, German Pharmacopoeia Codex.

Nutritional Facts

Taraxacum officinale is a very nutritious plant. They are a rich source of vitamins and minerals and even contain antioxidants and anti-inflammatory properties. Antioxidant and anti-inflammatory bioactive components such as Taraxasterol, Taraxerol, Chlorogenic Acid, and Sesquiterpene lactones 1,2,3. Vitamins and minerals such as vitamin A, vitamin C, vitamin K, B Complex, Calcium, Magnesium, Potassium, Zinc, Iron, Inulin, Lutein, Lecithin, Pectin 2.

Published Health Benefits

1. Liver Health

Taraxacum officinale increased the production of bile, which is essential for the digestion of fat, thereby helping the detoxification of the liver 1.

2. Blood Pressure

Dandelion may lower blood pressure due to its diuretic effect and potassium content 1.

3. Cholesterol and Triglyceride

Some of the bioactive compounds in Taraxacum officinale have been shown to reduce LDL- cholesterol, and triglyceride levels, increase serum HDL- cholesterol 4.

4. Blood Sugar Control

Chicoric acid and Chlorogenic acid are two bioactive compounds in dandelion that are able to enhance insulin secretion and improve glucose uptake in the muscle tissue 1,3.

5. Anti-inflammatory

The anti-inflammatory properties of Taraxacum officinale root have shown promising results in reducing inflammation throughout the body 1.

6. Antioxidant

Taraxacum officinale contains high levels of antioxidants such as polyphenols, beta-carotene which are known to provide strong protection against cellular damage and oxidative stress 1,2.

7. Healthy Digestion

Inulin contains fructooligosaccharide (FOS) which supports the growth of healthy bacteria in the gastrointestinal tract. Taraxacum officinale is also rich in chlorogenic acid which can improve the functional activities of several enzymes that are crucial for digestion 1.

8. Immunity

Researchers have found that Taraxacum officinale shows both antiviral and antibacterial properties 1,2.

References:

1. Fatima, T., Bashir, O., Naseer, B., & Hussain, S. (2018). Dandelion : Phytochemistry and clinical potential. Journal of Medicinal Plant Studies, 6(2), 198-202.

2. Sa`id, A., Mustapha, H., Mashi, J., Muhammad, Y., Abubakar, S., & Gadanya, A. (2018). Nutritional and Pharmacological potential of ETHANOL Leaves extract of Taraxacum officinale. Asian Journal of Biological Sciences, 12(1), 1-8. doi:10.3923/ajbs.2019.1.8

3. Wirngo FE, Lambert MN, Jeppesen PB. (2016). The Physiological Effects of Dandelion (Taraxacum Officinale) in Type 2 Diabetes. Rev Diabet Stud. 13(2-3):113-131. doi:10.1900/RDS.2016.13.113

4. Mahboubi, M., & Mahboubi, M. (2020). Hepatoprotection by dandelion (taraxacum OFFICINALE) and mechanisms. Asian Pacific Journal of Tropical Biomedicine, 10(1), 1. doi:10.4103/2221-1691.273081

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