Dandelion Tea Benefits & Side Effects
Waldo Emerson, a famous 19th-century poet, once wrote: “What is a weed? A plant whose virtues have not yet been discovered.” Such is the case with Dandelion Tea benefits.
Indeed, while gardeners might hate it, health-conscious individuals love it for its incredible ability to combat numerous ailments. You can find out more about its potential in the following article. Topics covered will include:
- What is Dandelion Tea?
- What are the Health Benefits of Drinking Dandelion Tea?
- Is Dandelion Tea Good for the Liver?
- Should You Drink Dandelion Tea for a UTI?
- How to Make Dandelion Tea for Cancer?
- Can You Drink Too Much Dandelion Tea?
- Can I Drink Dandelion Tea While Pregnant?
This is but the start. There will be much more waiting to be discovered, so please keep reading. And, perhaps best of all, once you know the facts, you can buy the Tea right here.
The Kent and Sussex Tea and Coffee Company take tremendous pride in packing our products fresh to order. Doing so ensures not only quality but also consistency with every cuppa brewed.
What is Dandelion Tea?
The Dandelion (Taraxacum) comes from a large genus of flowering plants belonging to the Asteraceae family, the same family as Camomile, Milk Thistle and Chrysanthemum Tea.
Its name stems from the French phrase “dent de lion”, which means “lion’s tooth.” This refers to the toothed shape of the leaves that surround the bottom of the plant’s stem. It can grow to heights of up to 30 centimetres (11 inches).
Over time, it develops miniature yellow flowers known as ray florets, which, when the Dandelion matures further, become “blowballs.” These, in turn, consist of a multitude of single-seeded fruits called achenes.
Though children (and, let’s be honest, adults) take great pleasure in picking and blowing achenes into the wind, they need little assistance when it comes to widespread germination.
The plant’s achenes, attached to a pappus of fine hairs, can disperse themselves at distances of up to five miles in breezy conditions. They then flourish freely almost anywhere with adequate sunlight, including meadows, grasslands, forest edges, gardens and lawns.
Originally native to Europe, the Dandelion has now spread across much of the globe over the course of 30 million years.
Harvesting the leaves, drying them, and finally making Dandelion Leaf Tea is an excellent choice. You can expect a potent floral aroma and a smooth, earthy flavour with herbaceous and even slightly minty undertones.
There is also the option of making Dandelion Root Tea from the thick taproot found underground. This, too, has a distinctly earthy flavour and is used as a popular Fresh Coffee substitute.
Dandelion Tea Properties and Calories
Brew once, and you’ll get a delicious infusion for any time in the day. Brew it frequently enough, and you’ll get Dandelion Tea benefits. The primary reason is Dandelion Tea’s nutritional value. We now know that it contains a wealth of vitamins, minerals and other antioxidants capable of improving life in small yet significant ways. Its constituents include, but are not limited to, the following:
It’s worth noting, too, that, according to research, it contains no more than 25 calories per serving. This makes it a fantastic alternative to the likes of sugary, fizzy soft drinks.
Much of the same is true of almost every type of Herbal Tea, from Peppermint to Hibiscus to Lemon Balm Tea. What’s more, and perhaps even more importantly, there is evidence to suggest it promotes weight loss. More on that momentarily.
Dandelion Tea Benefits
We’re about to show you the “hows” and “whys” of Dandelion Tea benefits. But before we do so, allow us to reveal the journey it has taken from pesky weed to medicinal wonder. It began in ancient Egypt, much like the stories of countless other herbal remedies.
News of its capacity to treat ailments then spread through Arabian physicians. Centuries later, its use became widespread in the British Isles.
When Europeans eventually arrived in North America, they took the common Dandelion plant with them. The indigenous communities there were quick to realise its potential.
The Iroquois ate boiled leaves along with fatty meats to avoid indigestion, while the Ojibwas drank Dandelion Root Tea for heartburn. Also noteworthy were the Mohegans, who consumed it as a tonic to maintain their energy levels.
In the Far East, Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) utilised it to clear heat from the liver and in support of the stomach and lungs. Little has changed today as TCM continues to hold it in high regard. However, you’re probably wondering, “What is Dandelion Tea good for in the world of modern science?”
The short answer is, well, quite a lot. The long answer is what we’ll be talking about now.
Dandelion Tea Weight Loss
We’ve already briefly established that Dandelion Leaf Tea benefits your waistline due to its lack of calories. But there’s more. According to a 2008 Korean study published in the Journal of Nutrition Research and Practice, it has a similar effect as the weight loss drug, Orlistat. It reportedly functions by inhibiting pancreatic lipase, an enzyme released during digestion to break down fat.
Furthermore, the infusion acts as a Diuretic Tea capable of increasing urine output, leading to decreased water weight. This might be especially useful if you’re feeling bloated.
Yet that’s another story - and another one of Dandelion Tea’s benefits we’ll be discussing in greater detail soon. Just remember to maintain a healthy and active lifestyle alongside consumption as it won’t work by itself.
Dandelion Root Tea Cancer Research
We return to Dandelion Tea properties, specifically its antioxidants, which famously combat free radicals in the body. This slows oxidative stress - a natural but nevertheless often harmful process - thereby reducing the risk of developing several chronic conditions, including cancer.
Additionally, in 2016, a Dandelion Tea cancer study published in Oncotarget established more of its anti-cancer potential.
The preliminary (emphasis on “preliminary”) research in question concerned Dandelion Root Tea benefits, in particular, the findings of which showed that, fundamentally, it killed cancer cells.
It did so by effectively manipulating the cancer cells into committing a sort of molecular suicide, meaning they turned on themselves. However, until we know more, we do not endorse its use for such a purpose.
Dandelion Root Tea Detox Results
Could drinking Dandelion Tea for the liver have a detoxifying function? It could indeed. But what is a Detox Tea, and how, exactly, does it work?
This term refers to the process of removing toxins from the body, such as trace amounts of alcohol left behind after consumption. The liver’s job is already to help filter and detoxify the blood. But Dandelion Root Tea Detox benefits could provide further support.
A study published in the Journal of Pharmacy and Pharmacology might well have the evidence to back the claim. It showed that the Tea increased a detoxifying enzyme for the control group of animals tested.
There is a catch, though, as a large portion of the scientific community questions the legitimacy of Detox Tea. We therefore do not explicitly endorse it, nor any other type of Tea we stock.
Dandelion Root Tea Urinary Tract Infection
A urinary tract infection (UTI) is an infection that affects your bladder, kidneys or the tubes connected to them. It is often easily recognisable by a sudden need to pee and pain or a burning sensation while urinating.
The most common treatments are painkillers, drinking plenty of fluids, and, if the issue persists, visiting a GP who may prescribe antibiotics. Another option is Dandelion Tea for a UTI.
An admittedly relatively old study from 1993 discovered that supplemental use of Uva Ursi (also called Bearberry) with Dandelion Root Tea reduced UTI recurrence compared with a placebo.
The fifty-seven women involved might have had fewer occurrences of the infection due to the Tea’s anti-inflammatory properties. We remain hopeful that more modern evidence can soon offer clearer proof.
Dandelion Root Tea Diuretic
While we’re on the topic, it’s probably worth discussing Dandelion Tea’s diuretic activity in more detail. The word “diuretic” refers to promoting urine formation, enabling someone to excrete excess water in several ways.
Ultimately, doing so takes the strain off numerous organs. This is particularly useful to people with high blood pressure, heart failure, swollen tissues and kidney disease.
A 2008 study published in the Journal of Alternative and Complementary Medicine verified that Dandelion Root Tea extract could increase urination for five hours after consumption. Interestingly, another popular choice of Diuretic Tea comes from the same botanical family: Milk Thistle Tea, which has a similar ability. Also worth checking out are Peppermint or Stinging Nettle Tea.
Dandelion Tea Gallstones
We’ve covered Dandelion Tea for liver health. Allow us now to move to its neighbour, the gallbladder. This is a kidney-bean-shaped organ connected to the liver. It works as a storage facility for the pint or so of bile the liver produces every day.
When the cells of the intestinal walls secrete a hormone called cholecystokinin, it is your gallbladder that sends the bile to the appropriate place.
Bile consists primarily of dissolved cholesterol, but an excess of cholesterol can lead to small, hard stones forming within the gallbladder. Most cases of gallstones don't cause any symptoms.
However, if a gallstone blocks one of the bile ducts, it can cause sudden, severe abdominal pain known as biliary colic. Enter Dandelion Tea benefits, which might help promote bile excretion from the liver.
The possible result is that the body can more efficiently metabolise fat. Additionally, it is reportedly effective at stimulating a sluggish gallbladder, thereby promoting blood purity and lessening the burden on the liver.
But despite these promising findings, much of what is seemingly known has been based on anecdotal reports. In other words, little scientific research has yet been conducted to back the claim.
Dandelion Root Tea Benefits Skin
Your skin is the body’s largest organ, one that requires ample care and attention to keep it fresh, vibrant and youthful. Acne, on the other hand, is a skin condition that often gets in the way of your skin-care goals.
It occurs when hair follicles become clogged with oil and dead skin cells. This then leads to breakouts in whiteheads, blackheads or pimples on the face, forehead, chest, back or shoulders.
The good news is that Dandelion Tea benefits for skin health have been well documented, including in a 2011 study published in Toxicological Research. It established that Dandelion Tea’s anti-inflammatory properties reduced acne-related inflammation while increasing hydration and collagen production.
It has anti-ageing properties, too, according to a 2012 Japanese study. What could be better than that?
Dandelion Root Tea Blood Pressure
High blood pressure can be caused by unhealthy lifestyle habits, such as drinking too much alcohol, smoking, being overweight and not exercising enough.
When not addressed, it could lead to many serious issues, heart and circulatory diseases, strokes, eyesight complications and vascular dementia among them. Which prompts the question: What case can be made that Dandelion Tea benefits blood pressure?
Dandelion Tea’s potassium content could play a considerable role. This mineral has long been associated with lowered blood pressure in those with previously high levels.
The infusion may, therefore, have an indirect effect - and, we must admit, a small one at that. Should you have any concerns or already be on blood pressure-lowering drugs, we’d urge you to seek medical consultation before brewing.
Dandelion Tea Benefits Diabetes
Diabetes is a chronic condition that affects your body’s capacity to convert food into energy. It impacts the efficiency of the pancreas to create insulin, which in turn can lead to too much glucose (also known as blood sugar) staying in your system.
This then becomes a potential contributing factor to severe health complications, not least cardiovascular disease, vision loss and kidney disease.
There are three main types - type-1, type-2 and gestational. Type-1, which 8% of diabetes patients live with, is where the body attacks the cells in your pancreas so that it cannot make insulin.
Type-2 - found in 90% of those with diabetes - is where the body cannot produce enough insulin or it doesn’t work properly. Finally, gestational diabetes is high blood sugar levels in pregnant women.
Dandelion Tea for diabetes functions by lowering blood sugar levels and, overall, improving diabetes management. It removes excess sugar stored in the body through its diuretic activity while stimulating the production of insulation.
These facts come from a 2001 study conducted at the University of Zagreb, Croatia, and published in the Journal of Ethnopharmacology. Yet, once again, we do not endorse it.
Dandelion Tea for IBS and Digestive Health
Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS) is a common and typically chronic problem that affects the gastrointestinal system. It causes symptoms such as stomach cramps, bloating, diarrhoea and constipation, among others.
Between 10% and 20% of the world’s population have, at one time or another, experienced it. So, what can Dandelion Tea for IBS achieve? Is it a worthwhile choice?
One 2011 animal-based study published in the Journal of Neurogastroenterology and Motility can provide the answers. It determined that root extract increased gastric motility, which is the rate that food passes through the stomach, by as much as 37%.
Scientists indicated that it worked by increasing pressure in the stomach while relaxing the muscular sphincter between the stomach and the small intestine.
Furthermore, in general, the root can act as a mild laxative, thus ensuring the effectiveness of drinking Dandelion Tea for constipation. Meanwhile, due to its diuretic activity, having Dandelion Tea for bloating is yet another brilliant herbal remedy.
The bottom line is that Dandelion Tea’s digestion-improving prowess is reason enough to consume it before, during or after a large meal.
Dandelion Tea Side Effects
That’s everything good about Dandelion Tea benefits. Now, unfortunately, we have to move onto the side effects of Dandelion Tea. Moderation appears to be critical as the plant contains oxalates.
These are a combination of sodium oxalate with calcium and magnesium in the body, which, in large quantities, can become toxic to the kidneys. Children, in particular, should avoid drinking it.
There have also been reports of it causing allergic reactions, especially in people with allergies to related plants such as ragweed. Contact dermatitis can also take place in those with sensitive skin.
If you’re taking certain medications, including diuretics (water pills) and antibiotics, we’d strongly urge you to speak to a medical professional before consumption.
Dandelion Tea Pregnancy
Expecting mothers have long been told to err on the side of caution when it comes to Herbal Tea. Some varieties - Camomile, Peppermint and Raspberry Leaf Tea among them - can be enjoyed in moderation.
Others - namely Liquorice Root, Vervain , Sage and Thyme Tea - are best left until after giving birth. We’re afraid to say that Dandelion Tea pregnancy is in the latter camp.
While there is little evidence making a case against it, there is likewise next to none advocating its use while pregnant. The risk is that it could cause complications not yet widely documented. Much of the same applies to Dandelion Root Tea while breastfeeding.
Should you have any concerns about Dandelion Tea pregnancy or, indeed, any Tea, herbal or not, please seek medical consultation.
Summary of Dandelion Tea Benefits
This hugely underrated plant can support your life from two avenues. It depends on whether you choose Dandelion Root Tea benefits or Dandelion Leaf Tea benefits.
The former can provide a Dandelion Root Tea liver cleanse while improving skin health and reducing cancer risks. The latter might promote weight loss. Be sure to buy both from The Kent and Sussex Tea and Coffee Company.