Food Friday – Parsley

Curly Parsley

Parsley is a lovely garnish that’s been used for as long as I can remember and most people know that it is an excellent breath freshener. What you might not know is how good it is for your health.

This easy-to-grow herb is packed with Vitamin K which is a powerful ally in allowing blood to clot normally, protecting bones and preventing bone loss in postmenopausal women, and helping to prevent calcification of arteries.(Warning:  According to Dr. Weil, people taking anticoagulants should monitor their intake of veggies packed with Vitamin K and should not take supplemental K.

What other health benefits can you get from including parsley in your diet? There are so many that leaving it on your plate is downright criminal! Here’s the short version

An organic compound found in the essential oil of parsley inhibits tumor formation and assists in reducing the impact of oxidized molecules. It also neutralizes carcinogens in cigarette and charcoal grill smoke that can pass through the body.

Luteolin leads the pack of anti-oxidants by attaching to oxygen radicals to prevent the cell damage caused by these bad boys. I do believe they wear white hats!

It’s a good source of folic acid which converts homocysteine into benign molecules and is critical to healthy cell division. High levels of homocysteine are related to increased incidence of stroke and heart attack due to atherosclerosis.

It’s loaded with Vitamin C which is the body’s primary water-soluble anti-oxidant.  People who consume healthy

Italian parsley tends to be sweeter than the curly varieties. Also known as Flat Leaf.

amounts have reduced risks of atherosclerosis, colon cancer, diabetes, and asthma.

Parsley is an excellent source of beta-carotene which is a fat-soluble anti-oxidant; an important nutrient in supporting the immune system. It is associated with reduced risk of development, and progression, of atherosclerosis, colon cancer and diabetes.

This lovely green sprig is easy to grow, preferring partial shade and moist, humus-rich soil. I put mine in the ground over the weekend … Looking forward to picking it fresh for my salads and smoothies!  For starters, you might want to try the Pear Parsley Smoothie at Gone Raw. Enjoy!

Big thanks to World’s Healthiest Foods for their crazy bank of knowledge!

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