The dandelions in your yard is more nutrient-dense than nearly all the veggies in your supermarket.
Pull up all your grass and plant a yard of nutritious dandelions. Your neighbors may hate you but, in spite of themselves, will be forced to inquire about your fresh radiant glow. Who knows—you could propagate a whole new health trend, spreading from neighborhood to neighborhood like fertile seed.
This stubborn little plant has not always been seen as the bane of suburbia; in fact, from ancient times, the dandelion has been prized as a nutritious food with powerful medical benefits. From the Celts of the North to the Romans, this little plant has been consumed as food. Dandelion was grown in the medicinal gardens of monasteries, and is even talked about in the writings of the famous Arab doctor Avicenna who incorporated it for a number of ailments, including to regulate menstruation. Today, the use of dandelion as a medicine is widespread throughout Europe, used as a diuretic, and to help improve the functions of the kidneys, liver, and digestive system.
The Healing Powers and Health Benefits of Dandelion Juice
Detoxifies and Cleanses Digestive Track
Dandelion Juice Nutrition
The dandelion in your yard is more nutrient-dense than nearly all the veggies in your supermarket. Only 45 calories of dandelion (two cups) provide a whopping 203% of your daily need of vitamin A, 58% of vitamin C, 17% of iron, and a surprising 20% of calcium. Dandelion is an excellent source of vitamins K, E, B6, thiamin, riboflavin, potassium, manganese, and fiber when eaten, and a good source of folate, phosphorus, magnesium, and copper.
Dandelion Juice is an excellent source of:
- Vitamin C
- Vitamin A (beta-carotene)
- Vitamin K
- Fibre (when eaten)
- Vitamin B6
- Vitamin E
Dandelion Juice is a good source of:
- Folate Acid
Phytochemicals & Antioxidants in Dandelion Juice
Dandelion has more of the antioxidant, vitamin A, than carrots have. In addition, this super-weed contains a phytochemical in the guaianolides family called taraxacin, which is now believed to be largely responsible for dandelion’s digestive tonic effects, and also has antiseptic, expectorant, and germicidal properties.
Preparing for Juicing
Wash well. Push through the hopper with a carrot or apple.
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Dandelion Juice Tips
If you decide to introduce this nutrient-packed green to your family’s juice, you may want to keep it a secret until after a few glasses, so they can have a chance to develop a fondness for this reviled weed.
Picking Perfect Produce
We are now seeing dandelion greens in better grocery stores. When used for eating, the younger plant is less bitter, but any size can be used for juicing. Of course, it would not be hard to harvest this weed just about anywhere grass grows, but make sure no fertilizers, insecticides, or local dogs have contaminated the plant. Dandelion is one of the greens used in the common spring mix of salads, which is also excellent for juicing. As with all greens, look for bright color and crispness, with no yellowing.
Storing Your Produce
Will keep wrapped up to five days in the crisper.
Dandelion is a great replacement for spinach or kale to green up any favorite veggie combination. If picking wild, add just a little first and taste-test for bitterness.