Parsley

What are the benefits that you can get from parsley?

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2013-05-03 16:52:37

In a health sense the benefits are from the richness parsley has

in Vitamins A B C plus protein minerals iron and calcium. The roots

are a richer source of Vitamin C than oranges. It is an antidote to

the dreaded garlic breath if chewed and helps digest rich food.

Functional as well as decorative, parsley contains two types of

compounds that provide unique health benefits. The first type

includes volatile oils, such as myristicin, limonene, eugenol, and

alpha-thujene. The second type includes flavonoids such as apiin,

apigenin, crisoeriol, and luteolin. Parsley can:

  • Fight cancer: Parsley's volatile oils, particularly

    myristicin, can inhibit tumor formation, and particularly, lung

    tumors. Myristicin can also activate the enzyme

    glutathione-S-transferase, which helps attach the molecule

    glutathione to oxidized molecules that would otherwise do damage in

    your body. The activity of parsley's volatile oils qualifies it as

    a "chemoprotective" food, and in particular, a food that can help

    neutralize particular types of carcinogens (like the benzopyrenes

    that are part of cigarette smoke and charcoal grill smoke).

  • Fight free radicals: The flavonoids in parsley,

    especially luteolin, function as antioxidants that combine with

    highly reactive oxygen-containing molecules (called oxygen

    radicals) and help prevent oxygen-based damage to cells. High

    levels of free radicals contribute to the development and

    progression of a wide variety of diseases, including

    atherosclerosis, colon cancer, diabetes, and asthma. In addition,

    extracts from parsley can help increase the antioxidant capacity of

    blood. In addition to its volatile oils and flavonoids, parsley is

    an excellent source of two vital nutrients that are also important

    for the prevention of many diseases: vitamin C and vitamin A

    (notably via beta-carotene). Vitamin C has many different

    functions. It is the body's primary water-soluble antioxidant, a

    powerful anti-inflammatory agent, and it promotes a healthy immune

    system. Beta-carotene is a fat-soluble antioxidant. And

    beta-carotene is converted by the body to vitamin A, a nutrient

    vital to a strong immune system.

  • Promote a healthy heart: Parsley is a good source of

    folate, which is essential to the process through which the body

    converts homocysteine into benign molecules. Homocysteine can

    directly damage blood vessels, and high levels of homocysteine are

    associated with a significantly increased risk of heart attack and

    stroke in people with atherosclerosis or diabetic heart disease.

    Folate is also vitally important for cancer-prevention in areas of

    the body that contain rapidly dividing cells, including the

    esophagus, lungs, uterus and cervix, and intestines (especially the

    colon).

  • Protect against rheumatoid arthritis: Vitamin C-rich

    foods, such as parsley, provide protection against inflammatory

    polyarthritis, a form of rheumatoid arthritis involving two or more

    joints.

In the garden parsley keeps bugs away from roses and is reputed

to improve their scent. Aphids don't appreciate it and it is

traditionally grown with tomatoes and asparagus too.


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