Archive for the ‘Nutrition’ Category

DAILY DOSE

May 8, 2009

dandelion

What is a weed? A plant whose virtues have not been discovered. -Ralph Waldo Emerson

The scope of frutz is expanding. On the heels of my last post’s title, I am inspired to share another facet of my interests and studies: holistic nutrition. I’ve added the category to my Category Cloud to the right and will try to post small snippets of nutrition wisdom upon occasion. Our backyard garden is shaping up quite nicely so I hope the summer can include some herbal and nutrition wisdom straight from my dirt to you.

Back to dandelions: the title of my last post was Spring Medicine. It was not a coincidence that I chose to include a photo of my darling niece Karle-bug holding teeming handfuls of dandelion heads. Dandelions, though regarded as one of the greatest pests to a suburban lawn (yes, they are unrelenting!), are packed with nutritional power and healing abilities. In fact, the dandelion has more nutritional value than most vegetables– it’s a rich source of vitamins, minerals, protein, choline, inulin, and pectin. It even has a higher vitamin A content than the carrot!

Dandelion’s nutrient and other compounds make it a wonderful bitter tonic for the spleen, stomach, kidney, and liver. Dandelions can stimulate liver function, reduce swelling and inflammation, and improve digestion. Dandelions are also antiviral and have been used to treat:

  • AIDS
  • Herpes
  • Jaundice
  • Cirrhosis
  • Edema due to high blood pressure
  • Acne
  • Breast and lung tumors
  • Premenstrual bloating

Dandelion can be foraged wild (beware of pesticides) or store bought. The greens are great in a salad, the flower heads can be used in a tea, and dandelion tinctures can be made at home or found at the store. Dandelion roots and greens can be chopped and sauteed with oil and garlic in any cooking recipe. What’s more, the dandelion makes a fashionable bracelet when tied around your wrist– just ask my nieces!

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