DANDELION LEAF - Is a very potent diuretic and is an excellent remedy for water retention and oedema, particularly when it is of cardiac origin, or hepatogenous oedema (ascites). Its action is comparable to the drug Frusemide. The usual effect of a drug which stimulates kidney function is a loss of potassium from the body, which aggravates any existing cardiovascular problem. A high level of potassium is particularly desirable when digitalis heart drugs are being prescribed, because if potassium levels fall, the drugs will produce irritability of the heart muscle.
Dandelion is one of the best natural sources of potassium and therefore is a perfectly balanced and safe diuretic. Dandelion leaf may be applied to urinary disorders in general, especially where worsened by the presence of oliguria. It also has similar actions to the root, but to a lesser extent. Dandelion root is a gentle liver tonic and may be used to treat inflammation and congestion of the liver and gall bladder. It can be applied to gallstones, cholecystitis, hepatic and post-hepatic jaundice, congestive dyspepsia with constipation and other toxic conditions such as chronic joint and skin inflammations.
The root contains bitter substances which are beneficial to the digestive process and also have an aperient effect. The sesquiterpene lactones may produce the choleretic action. The active principle is taraxacin, which is found in the whole herb, particularly the root, and stimulates bile secretion. The white sap may be applied directly to warts.