Dandelion is a common weed that grows in temperate climates throughout Europe, Asia and America. People have used dandelion root for centuries as a blood purifier, and its diuretic action helps the kidneys and liver eliminate poisons and toxins. The root also aids in healing digestive problems and skin disorders, such as eczema. Dandelion root juice is an excellent and easy way to obtain the plant’s health restoring benefits.
Buy fresh dandelion root at your local farmer's market or health food store. Dandelion root is usually harvested in the fall, but can usually be found through late spring. Look for dandelion plants that are at least two years old. Don't purchase if there are dark spots on the leaves, as this means the dandelion has started to decay.
Make fresh-pressed dandelion root juice. Dandelion root is bitter, and should be mixed with other fruits or vegetables for optimum flavor. Make sure to thoroughly rinse any dirt off the dandelion leaves and roots before juicing. Push the dandelion leaves, roots and 1/2 an apple through a single or twin-gear juicer with a motor speed of at least 450 watts. Drink the fresh juice immediately for the best health benefits.
Prepare dandelion tea. Chop the dandelion roots until you have 1/4 cup, and then boil with 2 cups of water. Add minced ginger root and dried orange peel for additional flavor. Always cook for at least 15 minutes, since the beneficial chemicals are released during the long cooking time, and then filter the broth. Drink 1/2 cup of the warm beverage daily between meals.
Try dandelion root coffee. Chop-up dandelion roots, and grind them in a food processor. Spread the dandelion roots on an un-oiled baking sheet, and roast in the oven at 200 degrees for three hours or until the roots are a consistent dark brown color. Brew the roots just as you would regular coffee to make a rich dandelion-infused drink.
Add chopped dandelion root to stews, broths and soups.
Dandelion root increases the flow of bile, and should not be taken by people who have been diagnosed with closure of the biliary ducts or other biliary ailments.