- Dandelion is native to Europe but found throughout temperate regions in the Northern Hemisphere. The leaves, flowers, and root of the plant have traditionally been used in Mexican and other North American medicine.
- Today, dandelion is promoted as a “tonic,” as a diuretic, and for a variety of conditions, including infections and digestive symptoms. As a food, dandelion is used as a salad green and in soups, wine, and teas. The roasted root is used as a coffee substitute.
- We know very little about dandelion’s health effects. There’s little scientific evidence on this herb.
- There’s no compelling scientific evidence supporting the use of dandelion for any health condition.
- The use of dandelion in the amounts commonly found in food is generally considered safe. Less is known about the safety of taking it in larger amounts. Some people are allergic to dandelion; allergic reactions may be more likely in people who are allergic to related plants such as ragweed, chrysanthemums, marigolds, and daisies.
- Little is known about whether it’s safe to use dandelion in amounts greater than those in foods during pregnancy or while breastfeeding.
- Talk to your health care providers about any complementary health approaches before you use. It may be contraindicated with any medications you are currently taking.