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GOD’S WORD FOR MARCH 26 ~ ~Romans 8:28~ ~ “And we know that all things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are the called according to his purpose.”

Somewhere under this snow, are lawns. On those lawns there are weeds, or flowers, called a variety of names: lion’s tooth, Irish daisy, priest’s crown, peasant’s cloak, or yellow gowan. All of these are on our lawns, and all are edible and medicinal.

None of them ring a bell with you? Hmm– me neither. How about this one: Dandelion? They’re all names for that prolific flower that is the suburban lawn owners nemesis. Meanwhile, we rural people either tolerate it, or call it good grazing for our livestock. But few people actually value it.

Unknown to most of us, the dandelion actually has a very interesting history. It was first brought to North America from Europe because of its beautiful flower. As late as the early 20th century, seed companies were still selling packets of dandelion seeds for home flower gardens!

But there’s still another mystery to grab out of the bag of the dandelion that few people know, or care to bother with. But, the way things are going in the food chain, among other aspects of our society today, we may need to look at the humble dandelion in this other light.

Up to 1957, more than 100,000 pounds of dandelion roots were imported annually to the United States for pharmaceutical use. In spring, the dandelion contains mannitol, which is used as a base for pills, a treatment for hypertension and coronary insufficiency, as well as in manufacturing radio condensers and percussion caps.

This is just the beginning of the wonders of this little yellow flower. Personally, when we make butter, we use dandelion flowers to color it that rich, tempting tone of yellow.

From root to flower, dandelions are edible and highly nutritious plants loaded with vitamins, minerals, and fiber.

Dandelion greens can be eaten cooked or raw and are an excellent source of vitamins A, C, and K. They also contain vitamin E, folate, and small amounts of other B vitamins.

What’s more, dandelion greens provide a substantial amount of several minerals, including iron, calcium, magnesium, and potassium.

The root of the dandelion is rich in the carbohydrate inulin, a type of soluble fiber found in plants that supports the growth and maintenance of healthy gut bacteria in your digestive tract. Incidentally, chicory, a coffee substitute used highly during the rationing of WWII, is also high in inulin, and can help in digestion issues.

Dandelion root is often dried and made into tea, but you can also eat it whole as you do other root vegetables, either cooked or raw.

They are also a rich source of beta carotene and polyphenol compounds, both of which may neutralize harmful free radicals and protect against chronic disease, along with being a very powerful anti-inflammatory.

Chicoric and chlorogenic acid are two bioactive compounds in dandelion that may help decrease blood sugar levels.

Some animal studies indicate that dandelion reduces cholesterol and triglyceride levels,

Dandelion may lower blood pressure as a result of its diuretic effect and potassium content. However, very little research is available.

In fact, though, one animal study found that it helped prevent liver damage in mice exposed to sodium dichromate, a compound used to induce liver injury.

Other animal studies have shown that dandelion extract may reduce levels of excess fat stored in the liver and safeguard against oxidative stress, thus helping to save the liver.

This is pretty impressive—but this flower isn’t through yet….

One study in mice also suggests that dandelion extract may aid weight management by reducing fat absorption

Another study in mice found that chlorogenic acid, a compound found in dandelion, reduced body weight, decreased fat accumulation, and altered levels of certain proteins involved in weight control

Some research indicates that dandelion may even have antimicrobial and antiviral properties, which may support your body’s ability to fight infection.

Several test-tube studies have found that dandelion extract significantly reduces viruses’ ability to replicate, while at the same time, other research indicates that some active compounds in dandelion protect against various harmful bacteria.

Dandelion greens are a good source of calcium and vitamin K, both of which play a key role in bone health.

One small study linked an increased intake of vitamin K-rich leafy green vegetables to lower blood levels of osteocalcin, a protein found in your bones, directing it to where it’s needed. This suggests that eating more leafy greens such as dandelion greens may help prevent bone loss.

In one study, dandelion leaf and flower extracts prevented skin damage when applied just before or immediately after exposure to UVB radiation, which is the radiation you get from sunlight. Interestingly, dandelion root did not have the same effect.

However, an older test-tube study showed that dandelion root extract increased the generation of new skin cells, which may support your skin’s appearance as you age.

Additionally, other older research indicates that dandelion extract may reduce skin inflammation and irritation while increasing hydration and collagen production. This may be useful in preventing and treating certain types of acne or rashes.

Don’t go away—-the dandelion’s best act is coming up………

Perhaps one of the most intriguing health claims about dandelion extract is its potential to prevent the growth of cancerous cells in various organ systems.

A 4-week study in rats showed that administering dandelion root extract modified specific pathways involved in suppressing the growth and spread of breast cancer cells, while other test-tube studies have found that dandelion root extract may slow the growth of cancer cells in liver, colon, and stomach tissue.

These findings are encouraging, but human research is needed.

Since the lowly weed is free, and doesn’t bring wagonloads of money to big pharma, you probably won’t see it on the shelves anytime soon, nor will it be promoted by the “powers that be”. But here are a few dosage estimates by knowledgeable people in the medical field.

  • Fresh leaves: 4–10 grams daily
  • Dried leaves: 4–10 grams daily
  • Leaf tincture: 0.4–1 teaspoon (2–5 mL) three times per day
  • Fresh leaf juice: 1 teaspoon (5 mL) twice daily
  • Fluid extract: 1–2 teaspoons (5–10 mL) daily
  • Fresh roots: 2–8 grams daily
  • Dried powder: 250–1,000 mg four times per day

The dandelion illustrates that God has not made anything that is without use. It is up to us to put what He has given each of us to use for His purposes. Who knows, we may be grazing on our lawns one of these summers if leadership doesn’t change!

But, no matter what happens in the world around us, it remains true, and forever will, that God always has and always will provide the substances and guidance we need for “such a time as this”

2 Cor 9:9 And God is able to make ALL grace ABOUND toward you, ALWAYS having ALL sufficiency in ALL things, so that you may ABOUND in every good work.

Look at all those superlatives!!! Promises don’t get any better than this!

Or this:

2 Peter 1:3

According as his divine power has given us ALL THINGS that pertain to life AND godliness, through the knowledge of him that has called us to glory and virtue:

Psalm 25:9

The humble He guides in justice, And the humble He teaches His way.]

Psalm 32:8

I will instruct you and teach you in the way you should go; I will guide you with My eye.

Ps 89:13

You have a mighty arm;
Strong is Your hand,
and high is Your right hand.

1Samuel 2:9

He will keep the feet of His saints, and the wicked shall be silent in darkness, for by strength shall no man prevail.

Ps 4:8

I will both lay me down in peace, and sleep: for you, Lord only make me dwell in safety.

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