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4.1.3 DANDELION (Taraxacum officinale)

The name dandelion is sometimes loosely applied to other milky-sapped weeds with fluffy yellow flowers. But true dandelion is that ubiquitous weed growing prolifically in millions of lawns, backyards and pastures throughout America. This perennial herb has deeply cut leaves forming a basal rosette in the spring and flower heads born on long stalks. All leaves and the hollow flower stems grow directly from the rootstock. The creator of the comic strip “Marvin” once had his adorable diapered hero surveying a clump of dandelions and then thinking to himself, “Dandelions are Nature’s way of giving dignity to weeds!”

The late naturopathic physician, John Lust, stated in his Herb Book that dandelion root is good for all kinds of liver problems, including hepatitis, cirrhosis, jaundice and toxicity in general, as well as getting rid of gallstones. Bring 1 quart of water to a boil, reduce heat to low and add about 20 tbsp. of fresh dandelion leaves, stems and clean, chopped root. Simmer as long as it takes for the liquid to be reduced to just a pint, then strain. Take 3 tbsp. six times daily, Dr. Lust recommended.

For those desiring something more convenient in capsule form, there is the AKN Formula from Nature’s Way, which contains considerable dandelion root and other cleansing herbs. It can be obtained from any local health food store. - Heinerman Encyclopedia of Fruits, Vegetables and Herbs, John Heinerman, Parker Publishing Company



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