A native of Europe and a roadside member of the dandelion clan, this herb has twiggy sems, angular branches and bright blue flowers with jagged edges. It has long been used as food. In Belgium for example, the leaves and roots are eaten as vegetables. In France, the young leaves are used is salads; it is a bitter lettuce.
It is also used as an ingredient in coffee or as a substitute without caffeine.
Chicory is high in inulin a prebiotic fiber. It is not actually absorbed in the stomach but supports beneficial intestinal bacteria to grow and improves bowel function and general health.
Noted for liver support, cleansing the spleen, gallbladder and kidneys and for blood purification, and is an immunity booster.
It is not recommended for habitual use as it may lower blood sugar. Also, it is not recommended for pregnant women.