Dandelion root is often included in detox teas and detox supplements, so it must be effective, right? This is not something that you should be taking on a daily basis as excess use can cause harm, but when taken as part of a detox program it could be just what you need to get rid of that excess weight and rid your body of harmful toxins.
What follows is a list of the ways that dandelion tea can help with a detox, as well the side effects you need to be on the lookout for.
1. Dandelion Root Tea is a Diuretic
A diuretic is simply something that causes you to urinate more. Sounds pretty uneventful, right? Well yes, but you have to consider that many people, especially those who are overweight or otherwise unhealthy, are storing a lot of excess water.
When you eat a diet rich in sodium, you don’t exercise and you consume a lot of refined sugars, then your body tends to hold onto water more than usual. This is why you find yourself urinating a lot when you go on a new diet, because as soon as you shift from unhealthy to healthy, your body begins to expel the water that it clung to so dearly.
By taking a natural diuretic such as dandelion root tea you can hasten this process, eliminating that excess water and taking all of the toxins with it. You will lose weight quickly and you will notice more definition around your muscles.
2. Dandelion Could Help you to Lose Weight
If any company tries to sell you a laxative or a diuretic as a weight loss product then stay clear. It’s a con, and a dangerous one at that. But while most of the weight you lose with dandelion root tea will be water and therefore nothing to get excited about (at least as far as reducing the number on the scales go) there is also some potential for actual fat loss.
One study undertaken by Korean scientists in 2008 discovered that dandelion root could be as effective as the prescription weight-loss drug Orlistat when it comes to weight loss. This is down to the way that it interacts with certain enzymes in the body. It seems to inhibit the release of an enzyme used by the body to breakdown fat, which increases the chances of this fat passing straight through the digestive system.
3. Dandelion Root Can Help to Prevent Cancer
Every time the C word is mentioned alongside a potential cure, people get excited. We all know someone who has died from the disease and it will be responsible for the death of at least 30% of the people reading this article, so it’s no real surprise that we get excited. It is worth noting, however, that many herbal teas have made such a connection and it really all depends on why that connection was made.
In most cases, herbal teas are claimed to be “anti-cancer” teas purely because they contain high levels of antioxidants and we know that a diet rich in antioxidants can limit the development of most cancers and chronic diseases. Only when a tea has a direct impact on the development or growth of cancer does everyone here at DetoxTeaBlog get excited, and that’s exactly what’s happening here with dandelion root.
A study performed in 2011 found that dandelion root could kill melanoma cancer cells even when they had proved to be resistant to other drugs. And it was able to do this without negatively affecting healthy cells, which is a common side effect of most chemotherapy drugs.
As far as we know, very few studies have been performed since to further research these claims (although we did find one recent study that suggested dandelion root could also kill pancreatic cancer cells) which means there is still a lot of work to do. But this is very promising, and if you’re drinking this tea on the daily basis then you’re getting all of these benefits for yourself.
4. Dandelion Root Can Soothe Digestive Ailments
Many herbal teas have a soothing effect on the digestive tract and dandelion is another one. It doesn’t seem to be as effective as herbal teas like camomile and even turmeric, but as an additional benefit it’s something that’s definitely worth noting.
It has been used much in the same way as peppermint tea has, soothing the stomach after eating a big meal and stopping indigestion, and it may also help to regulate appetite, increasing food cravings in people who are undernourished and decreasing them in people who are obese. It is worth noting, however, that a lot of these claims have been taken from user reports and there isn’t a great deal of scientific claims to back them up.
We do know that dandelion root contains antioxidants, that it can act as an anti-inflammatory and that the simple act of drinking tea can help to soothe the stomach and ease indigestion, but as far as actual soothing effects go, the jury is still out.
Side Effects of Dandelion Root Tea
Now that you know how effective dandelion root tea can be for a detox, it’s time for the warnings. This tea is not without side effects and while these are rare and minimal, they are still something to keep in mind when undertaking a dandelion root tea detox program.
Firstly, it is possible to have an allergic reaction to dandelion. If you have ever experienced a reaction from touching this plant or coming into contact with it in any other way, then you should avoid consuming it at all costs. If you are using diuretic medications, either because they were prescribed as such or because they cause rapid water loss as a side effect, you should consult with your doctor before using dandelion root tea.
You should also consult with a healthcare professional who knows your medical history, if you are on any other medications or you have any preexisting health condition. Serious side effects are rare, as mentioned above, but it is always worth taking an extra precaution where your health is concerned, especially if you are concerned about a potential reaction.