Dandelion
Dandelion

Background

Dandelion (Taraxacum officinale) is an herb native to Europe. The leaf, flower, and root have been used for various infections, but with little evidence.

Dandelion is found throughout mild climates of the northern hemisphere. It contains chemicals that might decrease swelling, increase urine production, and prevent crystals from forming in the urine that could lead to infections in the kidneys and urinary tract.

People use dandelion for conditions such as swollen tonsils, kidney infections, UTIs, and many others, but there is no good scientific evidence to support these uses.
When taken by mouth: Dandelion is likely safe for most people when consumed in the amounts commonly found in food. It is possibly safe when taken in larger amounts. Dandelion might cause allergic reactions, stomach discomfort, diarrhea, or heartburn in some people.

Special Precautions & Warnings:

Pregnancy and breast-feeding: There isn't enough reliable information to know if dandelion is safe to use when pregnant or breast-feeding. Stay on the safe side and avoid use.

Eczema: People with eczema seem to have a higher chance of having an allergic reaction to dandelion. If you have eczema, be sure to check with your healthcare provider before taking dandelion.

Bleeding disorders: Dandelion might slow blood clotting. In theory, taking dandelion might increase the risk for bruising and bleeding in people with bleeding disorders.

Ragweed allergy: People who are allergic to ragweed and related plants (daisies, chrysanthemums, marigolds) might also be allergic to dandelion. But conflicting data exists. If you have allergies, be sure to check with your healthcare provider before taking dandelion.

Surgery: Dandelion might slow blood clotting and lower blood sugar. It might cause extra bleeding and problems with low blood sugar during and after surgery. Stop using dandelion at least 2 weeks before a scheduled surgery.

Kidney failure: Oxalate is a chemical that can build up in the kidneys. Dandelion might reduce how much oxalate is released through urine. In theory, this might increase the risk for complications in people with kidney problems.

Effectiveness

There is interest in using dandelion for a number of purposes, but there isn't enough reliable information to say whether it might be helpful.
Likely effective Effectiveness definitions
Possibly effective Effectiveness definitions
Likely ineffective Effectiveness definitions
Possibly ineffective Effectiveness definitions
Insufficient evidence Effectiveness definitions

Dosing & administration

There isn't enough reliable information to know what an appropriate dose of dandelion might be. Keep in mind that natural products are not always necessarily safe and dosages can be important. Be sure to follow relevant directions on product labels and consult a healthcare professional before using.

Interactions with pharmaceuticals

Antibiotics (Quinolone antibiotics)

Interaction Rating=Moderate Be cautious with this combination.

Dandelion might decrease how much antibiotic the body absorbs. Taking dandelion along with certain antibiotics might decrease the effectiveness of these antibiotics.

Lithium

Interaction Rating=Moderate Be cautious with this combination.

Dandelion might have an effect like a water pill or "diuretic." Taking dandelion might decrease how well the body gets rid of lithium. This could increase how much lithium is in the body and result in serious side effects. Talk with your healthcare provider before using this product if you are taking lithium.

Medications changed by the liver (Cytochrome P450 1A2 (CYP1A2) substrates)

Interaction Rating=Moderate Be cautious with this combination.

Some medications are changed and broken down by the liver. Dandelion might change how quickly the liver breaks down these medications. This could change the effects and side effects of these medications.

Medications changed by the liver (Glucuronidated drugs)

Interaction Rating=Moderate Be cautious with this combination.

Some medications are changed and broken down by the liver. Dandelion might change how quickly the liver breaks down these medications. This could change the effects and side effects of these medications.

Medications for diabetes (Antidiabetes drugs)

Interaction Rating=Moderate Be cautious with this combination.

Dandelion might lower blood sugar levels. Taking dandelion along with diabetes medications might cause blood sugar to drop too low. Monitor your blood sugar closely.

Medications that slow blood clotting (Anticoagulant / Antiplatelet drugs)

Interaction Rating=Moderate Be cautious with this combination.

Dandelion root might slow blood clotting. Taking dandelion root along with medications that also slow blood clotting might increase the risk of bruising and bleeding.

Water pills (Potassium-sparing diuretics)

Interaction Rating=Moderate Be cautious with this combination.

Dandelion contains significant amounts of potassium. Some "water pills" can also increase potassium levels in the body. Taking some "water pills" along with dandelion might cause too much potassium to be in the body.

Interactions with herbs & supplements

Herbs and supplements that might lower blood sugar: Dandelion might lower blood sugar. Taking it with other supplements with similar effects might lower blood sugar too much. Examples of supplements with this effect include aloe, bitter melon, cassia cinnamon, chromium, and prickly pear cactus.
Herbs and supplements that might slow blood clotting: Dandelion might slow blood clotting and increase the risk of bleeding. Taking it with other supplements with similar effects might increase the risk of bleeding in some people. Examples of supplements with this effect include garlic, ginger, ginkgo, nattokinase, and Panax ginseng.

Interactions with foods

There are no known interactions with foods.
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This monograph was last reviewed on 23/09/2022 18:54:53 and last updated on 04/03/2014 20:37:37. Monographs are reviewed and/or updated multiple times per month and at least once per year.
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