Herbal Basics: Bitters 101 – Traditional Medicinals

Bitters Herbs & Their Digestive Benefits

Dandelion (Taraxacum officinale)

Often overlooked or dismissed as a weed, dandelion is one of the greatest medicinal plants in Traditional European herbalism. It is one of the most commonly used herbs for gently stimulating the liver, supporting the kidneys and promoting healthy digestion.* Dandelion’s role as a bitter herb and a diuretic make it a fantastic herb for general health, daily detox, and well-being. All parts of this plant are medicinal and edible.

Enjoy the root as a tea, in tincture form, or you can add the fresh root to soups or broths. Harvest the young spring leaves in unsprayed or uncontaminated areas and add to soups, juices, and salads. The yellow “petals” can be plucked from the head of the dandelion and sprinkled over salads, battered and turned into fritters, or brewed into an old-time recipe of dandelion wine. As an herbal supplement, our organic Dandelion Leaf and Root tea is a daily habit for us and a faithful ally for everyday wellness.*

Burdock (Arctium lappa) 

Burdock root is highly regarded as a unique digestive tonic and supporter of healthy liver function. As a bitter, it is mild, yet effective. As a fresh herb, burdock root has a rich nutritional profile and is very nourishing and food-like. Herbalists have long used it to support healthy skin and to nourish the microbiome. This root has long been praised for its alterative action, which supports channels of elimination in the body and supports healthy digestion. Rich with inulin and prebiotic starches, burdock root is used to help support healthy kidneys and beautiful, glowing skin.* Fresh burdock root makes a great addition to stir-fries and soups. It’s also delicious pickled.

For its liver-supportive functions, you can find it in our organic EveryDay Detox® Lemon tea and in all of Urban Moonshine’s digestive bitters.

Schisandra (Schisandra chinensis) 

In Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM), schisandra is known as wǔ wèi zi, or the “five flavor fruit,” as it contains all five tastes — bitter, pungent, salty, sour, and sweet. Because of its unique complexity in flavor, schisandra pairs well with almost anything, making it a truly versatile herb. We love using this herb because of its gentle liver support and gentle detoxifying qualities.*

This herb is one of the real superheroes in our organic EveryDay Detox® Schisandra Berry tea.

Chamomile (Matricaria recutita) 

This common flower isn’t just a sleep aid but also a calming herb that eases digestion and occasional nausea, and relaxes twitchy tummies.* Soothing and calming, chamomile is a fantastic and gentle bitter, especially when steeped as a tea for longer than 5 minutes or in tincture form.

Enjoying a cup of Chamomile tea after a big meal is a time-honored tradition by herbalists.

This content was originally published here.

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