In a week from now, my backyard will be a sea of bright yellow little flowers….and I love them. They remind me of being a little kid, of warm spring air and of playing outside. I use to live across the street from a little church and beside the church was the most amazing open field. And yes, in the spring that field was full of dandelions, exactly like my backyard in spring. One year, my dad hired us to collect the flowers for one cent each…he needed them to make his dandelion wine. I remember it as a bit of a neighbourhood legend the morning after.
 
My clever grandmother use to say, that a weed was a plant that you decided was in the wrong place. So I’ve decided, that my weeds can’t be weeds, if I’m happy about them being in my backyard.
 
Besides, those dandelions have ancient roots. The Egyptians, The Greeks and The Romans used the dandelion. Today it’s used in traditional Chinese medicine.[1]

They can remove toxins from the bloodstream and help support the digestive system.

Look around, you can find dandelion roots and leaves in teas and tonics and capsules. The dandelion is important for liver support and removing toxins from the bloodstream. It also helps support the digestive system and can help relieve menopausal symptoms. It improves functioning of the kidney, pancreas, spleen and stomach. It even helps with anemia and constipation. Phew…that’s quite a list for a little unloved weed 😉
 
The dandelion is also nutritious. It has Vitamin A , C, Calcium, Iron, Magnesium, Phosphorus, Potassium, Selenium, and B’s 1-3
[2]
 
So how can you get them? If you don’t spray pesticides on your lawn, then grab the spring leaves from your own backyard. You can also find fresh dandelion right now in the grocery store or at a health food store, or drop by my house!
 
You can eat the roots, flowers, leaves and tops. The young leaves aren’t too bitter yet so toss them into a salad. I like to add a few leaves to my mid-morning fresh juice. You can also boil the leaves like spinach. The flowers are a mild laxative and used in salads, made into tea or as my dad use to do…made into wine.
 
So go grab some weeds, make some dandelion tea, detox your liver, absorb more iron, and get rid of those menopausal symptoms. 
[1] http://www.mofga.org/publications/The-Maine-Organic-Farmer-Gardener/Summer-2007/Dandelions
[2] “Prescription for Nutritional Healing”, Phyllis A. Balch, CNC, Penguin Group

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