Growing Up Eating Dandelion Salad

We have always heard that we are what we eat. I grew up in a time where we got up early in the morning and picked our dinner for that night; everything we ate came from outside. My fond memories begin at the age of 8 years old in 1966.

One delicious salad, straight from the garden

I was diagnosed with childhood psoriasis in 1963. I had this Aunt who was always old to me. She believed in eating all outdoor plants and would always give me something that was bitter but swore that it contained the nutrition that would help my skin.

I remember picking dandelions for hours for salad and these other greens that grew from the earth called pork greens and watercress. She would wash them and prepare the most delicious salads ever. Those were the days!

What's to eat in the backyard?

I need you to project a mental picture in your head. I was newly diagnosed with psoriasis, covered from head to toe. I had to cover my arms, legs and sometimes face to stay protected.

There were bees and all types of creepy insects everywhere. It was so uncomfortable going out in the big field picking dandelions, blackberries, mushrooms, anything that was eatable.

Growing up I felt like we were picking unnecessary weeds. I had no clue that these things could be healthy. Many people use the root of the dandelion for various health benefits. I would have never guessed this in a million years; so I decided to do some research on dandelions.

Eating and drinking dandelions

Dandelion Tea is actually an herbal tea with medicinal benefits. People would use dandelions when cleansing the body. I know older people would use it in salads. It was interesting to find out that it has lots of Vitamin C.

It has also been used as an anti-inflammatory benefit along with cleansing our blood and it is good for circulation. If you ever tasted a dandelion it has a very bitter taste and very nasty. It wasn’t great for me as a little girl going out with buckets trying to understand why my Aunt had me out there in the heat all day.

It took me 50 years to understand. She probably didn’t have a clue about the autoimmune system but she knew eating from the earth helped us. Most of my family lived to be in there late 90’s. She was 96 when she left us.

Are there actually benefits?

I was so excited to know years later that my Aunt wasn't crazy about having us eating from the earth, but that she was actually on to something. I know that we were fairly healthy growing up; besides me having psoriasis.

I’m just realizing that dandelions are good for bloating, diabetes and liver dysfunction. It can also be used as a diuretic. One of the most amazing things I found out was that it’s high in potassium so it replenishes lost electrolytes immediately.

It has 2 parts the roots and the leaf. The root is good for liver problems while the leaf is best for ailments to the kidneys.

A new superfood

The warm weather has arrived and the dandelions are here and we know they get run over daily with lawnmowers and are only around for a short time. I just keep thinking, could there be anything in that weed that helped my psoriasis?

It has so many benefits. I feel connected when I look out in my yard; it brings back many childhood memories of me and my psoriasis. You should never try anything without consulting your doctor first.

As with anything you don’t want anything interacting with the medications you already take. We don’t know the side effects or the right amount to take. I’m hearing that dandelions are the new superfood. I wish my Aunt was around to hear this. I don't drink dandelion tea or use it for my salads. I had my share growing up.

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