Monday, 28 February 2011

Dandelion Properties and Actions

One of Kristine Brown’s Herbal Ally Challenges is to list your ally’s properties and actions, so here’s my effort. I have listed properties I have found attributed to dandelion in books and internet articles and put in an explanation of the term and examples of other herbs with the same properties. It’s amazing how many properties are attributed to dandelion, some just to specific parts of the plant.
Alterative: gradually restores the proper function of the body, increases health and vitality by doing so. Helps the body to absorb nutrients and eliminate waste. Thins fluids and reduces heat
Also: Black Cohosh, Boneset, Buck Thorn, Burdock, Cleavers, Echinacea, Golden Seal, Kelp, Liquorice, Nettle, Red Clover, Yarrow, Yellow Dock.
Anodyne:  (flower) pain easing when applied externally.
Also: Chamomile, Meadowsweet, Mugwort.

Antibilious: helps the body to get rid of excess bile.
Also: Golden Seal, Wormwood.
Anti-inflammatory: help the body to combat inflammation.
Also: Ashwaganda, Calendula, Chamomile, Cleavers, Liquorice, Meadowsweet, St. John’s Wort, Wormwood.
Antirheumatic: relieves or protects against rheumatism.
Also: Celery, Kelp.
Aperient: gentle laxative, usually a bitter herb that stimulates the production and release of bile which lubricates the digestive tract.
Other examples: Oregon grape and Yellow Dock.
Astringent: causing contraction of tissue which can also reduce secretions.
Also: Cleavers, St. John’s Wort, Yarrow.
Bactericide: stopping growth of bacteria or creating an environment in which they cannot survive.
Also: Burdock, Echinacea, Garlic, Thyme
Bitter: herbs that taste bitter and stimulate the digestive system. They improve digestion, stimulate the appetite and the liver, relax muscle spasms, dispel gas in intestines and break down fatty foods.
Also: Blessed Thistle, Buckthorn, Burdock, Chamomile, Golden Seal, White Horehound, Wormwood.
Cardio-tonic: acts to improve heart function.
Also: Hawthorn, Kelp, Motherwort.
Cholagogue: promotes gall bladder contraction and release of bile.
Also: Angelica, Calendula, Celandine, Golden Seal, Horehound, Milk Thistle, Oregon grape, Yarrow, Yellow Dock.
Choloretic: encourages bile production in the liver and flow to the gall bladder to increase.
Also: Angelica, Calendula, Celandine, Golden Seal, Horehound, Milk Thistle, Oregon grape, Yarrow, Yellow Dock.
Depurative: removes impurities and cleanses the blood.
Also: Black Walnut, Blessed Thistle, Blue Flag, Buckthorn, Burdock, Elder, Oregon Grape, Red Clover, Yarrow, Yellow Dock.
Diuretic: increases the flow of urine and in doing so can help in removal of toxins/waste products from the system. Dandelion acts by affecting reabsorption and secretion of fluids in the kidney.
Also: Angelica, Blue Flag, Buckthorn, Burdock, Celandine, Celery, Cleavers, Hawthorn, Marshmallow, Yarrow.
Emollient: soothes, moistens, protects.
Also: Burdock, Liquorice, Marsh Mallow, Plantain
Fungicide: Destroys fungus or creates an environment in which it can’t survive.
Also: Thyme
Galactagogue: (leaf) promotes milk production.
Also: Dill, Fennel, Marshmallow, Nettle
Hepatic: strengthens and tones the liver and stimulates the flow of bile.
Also: Buckthorn, Celery, Cleavers, Fennel, Golden Seal, Milk Thistle, Motherwort, Oregon grape, Wormwood, Yarrow, Yellow Dock.
Hypnotic: producing sleep.
Also: Hops, Passion Flower, Skullcap, Valerian.
Laxative: promotes evacuation of the bowels.
Also: Boneset, Buckthorn, Burdock, Cleavers, Golden Seal, Liquorice, Oregon grape, Yellow Dock.
Lithotriptic: breaks down stones such as kidney stones.
Also: Cleavers, Horsetail, Parsley, Nettle.
Sedative: reduces nervous excitement.
Also: Chamomile, Hops, Motherwort, Passion Flower, Skullcap, St. John’s Wort, Valerian.
Stomachic: easing stomach pain.
Also: Chamomile, Fennel, Ginger.
Tonic: strengthens and tones either specific organs or the whole body through nutritional stimulation.
Also: Angelica, Black Walnut, Boneset, Calendula, Chamomile, Cleavers, Echinacea, Fenugreek, Golden Seal, Hawthorn, Liquorice, Milk Thistle, Motherwort, Red Clover, Skullcap, Wormwood, Yarrow, Yellow Dock.
Vulnerary: (flower) relating to the skin, wound healing.
Also: Calendula, Comfrey, St. John’s Wort

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