Parsley “chemoprotective” plant

The History of Parsley

                                   PARSLEY

The name “parsley” comes from two Greek words Petroselinum (petrose) meaning “rock.”, and the other is selenium, which is an ancient name for celery. Literally, parsley means “rock celery.”  Rock celery because it thrives on rocks and walls.  The ancient Greeks and Rome believed parsley was sacred and also evil, where death and victory run hand in hand. Warriors fed parsley leaves to their horses to give them strength. The Greeks placed it on winning athletes and also on the tombs of the dead.  Parsley was closely associated with death, perhaps due to its look-alike “fool’s parsley”, which is poisonous. It was scattered over graves during funerals and planted on those sites as well. The saying “De’eis thai selinon”, or “needs only parsley” was the equivalent of today’s “one foot in the grave”.

A lot of us think that parsley only acts as a garnish for food, making the plate look more presentable and attractive. Some people just toss the leaf away or push them to the side of the plate. Not a lot of people actually eat them along with their meals.

There are two main types of parsley plants used as herbs in recipes:

            1. Curly-leaf parsley also called French parsley
            2. Italian, or flat-leaf parsley

Flat-leaf Italian parsley is more closely related to the wild parsley species that was first grown in the Mediterranean. Compared to curly parsley, it also has a stronger flavor and is easier to grow.

Some people prefer the curly-leaf variety because of its decorative appearance when it’s used on top of recipes. Both types taste very similar to someone who is not extremely familiar with them, and both offer similar health benefits.

Parsley can provide much more than a decoration on your plate. Parsley was used medicinally prior to being consumed as a food in the Mediterranean for 2,000 years before it was used for food.


 

 

 

 

It contains a range of protective vitamins and flavonoid antioxidants that are responsible for many of the disease-fighting parsley benefits being researched today. These antioxidants include luteolin, apigenin, lycopene, beta-carotene, and alpha-carotene.


PARSLEY SUPERSTARS

PHYSIOLOGICAL BENEFITS

 

          Immune Booster

Vitamin C has many different functions.

  • Its powerful anti-inflammatory agent and its antioxidants help slow the aging process.
    • It perfectly helps to fight with edema, no matter where they occur: on the legs, face or in other places.
  • usefulness in conditions such as osteoarthritis and rheumatoid arthritis, and needed for the healthy function of the immune system.
  • It may also be helpful in reducing the severity of asthma, osteoarthritis, and rheumatoid arthritis.
  • Vitamin C improves iron absorption.
  • Vitamin C helps maintain a healthy gut environment, where much of the immune system is actually located

        1. Pass the leaves and roots of the plant through a meat grinder and add the seeds in a glass bowl.
        2. Pour boiling water and wait about 7 minutes. After that, tea can be filtered and drunk.
        3. It is advisable to drink a cup of tea every two hours.
        4. To improve the taste, you can add lemon and honey.

          Important antioxidant

Vitamin A ~ helps reduce the risk for the development and progression of conditions like atherosclerosis, diabetes, and colon cancer.

It is a nutrient so important to a strong immune system that its nickname is the “anti-infective vitamin.”

          Cancer prevention

  • Protecting your cells from damage caused by unstable molecules called free radicals
  • This herb is sometimes called a “chemoprotective” plant because it helps protect DNA from damage, stops cell mutation and helps induce apoptosis, or the death of harmful cells.
  • Folate is vitally important for cancer-prevention or inhibiting tumors due to high levels of anti-inflammatory compounds. It is therefore important for cancer-prevention areas of the body that contain rapidly dividing cells such as the colon and the cervix.
  • Apigenin has been found to
    1. …“inhibit the progestin-dependent synthesis of human breast cancer cells
    2. …significantly delaying the development of, and decreasing the incidence and multiplicity of mammary tumors,” according to research done in 2013 by the American Association of Cancer.
  • Myristicin, limonene, eugenol, and alpha-thujene are powerful oil components that benefit the body’s immune system and help fight cancer neutralizing oxidative stress and fighting off carcinogens.

          Heart Health (B, K, C)

  • K Promotes strong capillaries and is used for the prevention of spider veins.
  • B Reduces blood vessel damage lowering the risk of stroke, heart attack, and atherosclerosis (thickening of artery walls).
  • K Just 10 sprigs improves bone health and improves calcium absorption.
  • K Proper blood clotting, which can help prevent excessive bleeding.
  • C Improves Heart Health
  • Carotenoids (A vitamins) contribute to lower rates of heart disease
  • B Folate is needed for heart health – it’s a vital B vitamin that plays a critical role in protecting your heart. Folate in order to convert homocysteine, a type of amino acid found in the blood. Homocysteine is a potentially troublesome molecule that can cause damage to blood vessels when uncontrolled, potentially leading to a heart attack or stroke.
Just two tablespoons (8 grams) of parsley deliver more vitamin K than you need in a day.
NOTE:  If you are taking blood-thinners such as Coumadin (warfarin),
it is important that you do not suddenly begin to eat more foods containing vitamin K, which plays a large role in blood clotting.

 

Improves Oral Hygiene

Parsley is chock full of chlorophyll, which has antibacterial properties. You have all probably seen a sprig of parsley as a garnish to decorate your plate or on a display of dishes in a restaurant. What you may not know is that eating it after a meal fights oral bacteria that causes bad breath.

          Digestive Health

  • Parsley works as a natural diuretic.
  • Improves digestion of proteins and fats
  • Parsley’s high enzyme content contributes to improving overall digestion, and the effective elimination of waste.
  • Parsley stimulates digestion and the kidneys and helps eliminate toxins and kidney stones. It relieves water retention, bloating, indigestion, and flatulence (preventing the formation of gas).
  • It increases urine flow to remove infection-causing bacteria from the urinary tract.

“Parsley is used for inflammation of the kidneys and bladder, gravel, stones, and urine retention.”

“Parsley is remarkable for its ability to expel watery poisons, excess mucoid matter, [even] flatulence, reducing swollen and enlarged glands.”

According to Dr. John Christopher of the Herbal Legacy Group

  • Acts as antiurolithiatic drug through decreasing urinary calcium excretion, increasing urinary pH, dieresis, decreasing urinary protein excretion, and via its nephroprotective activity.”
  • It helps your body flush out more toxins such as heavy metals

According to a 2002 review done at the American University of Beirut.

  • It prevents the formation of kidney stones, benefiting digestive health because it helps stimulate kidney production of urine and draws excess water out of the abdomen, where it can cause discomfort and indigestion.
  • Regular consumption of parsley also speeds up the process of uric acid removal. This is a symptom of arthritis.
  • Help relieve water retention
  • And eases bloating
  • Treats a number of gastrointestinal symptoms and disorders:
    1. including gas
    2. constipation
    3. bloating
    4. indigestion
    5. nausea
  • It helps increase bile production and beneficial gastric juices that are needed for proper enzyme functions involved in food and nutrient absorption.

        1. Use 30g (or 3 tablespoons full) of parsley leaves per 4 cups of boiling water.
        2. Let it steep for 10 minutes and sip before meals to prevent bloating, or after to relieve it.
NOTE:  Parsley can cause serious issues for those who already have kidney or gallbladder problems.

Wound Healing

An essential amino acid found in parsley is needed to repair damaged tissues. Parsley juice works wonders to speed up wound healing after surgery.

Soothes Irritated Skin:

Rub dried or fresh parsley leaves on irritated skin or insect bites to soothe skin irritation. When dealing with boils, boil parsley leaves in water and apply it on the affected areas for a few hours. It also helps to fade freckles and spots.

Protects Eye and Skin Health(A)

  • Carotenoid and beta-carotene boost eye health. These antioxidants protect the retina and cornea from damage as someone ages.
  • Helping prevent eye disorders like macular degeneration and cataracts.
  • Fights signs of aging on the skin.
  • Parsley benefits skin and dental health by fighting off infections and bacteria.
  • Protects eyes and skin from UV light damage, and may be able to help prevent skin cancer.

Bone Protecting (Ca, K, D, Mg)

  • maintaining bone density
  • fights bone breaks and fractures

Balance Hormones(B6)

  • for normalizing menstruation
  • treating amenorrhea (loss of menstrual cycle)
  • decreasing menstrual pain
  • important for fertility
  • prevents symptoms of PMS
  • prevents neural tube defects
  • important for a healthy pregnancy

Caution: Parsley is not recommended for pregnant women in large amounts, as it may cause uterine contractions, but used after delivery, it is said to tone the uterus.

Parsley Tea (uses 2 to 4 tablespoons of fresh parsley with 2 cups of water). This tea has been used in natural folk medicine as a remedy for treating gallstones, indigestion, kidney stones, constipation, and edema (bloating). Drinking ginger and parsley tea is also a great way to soothe nausea associated with pregnancy, stomach viruses, etc.

  1. Chop fresh parsley and tie up in cheesecloth. Place bundle in a teapot with lid
  2. Bring water to boil in a kettle or heavy saucepan
  3. Pour boiling water over cheesecloth bundle, cover and let steep for 10 minutes
  4. Warm 1 tablespoon honey for each cup of tea and serve while hot.
  5. It is advisable to drink a cup of tea every two hours.

Use 30g (or 3 tablespoons full) of parsley leaves per 4 cups of boiling water. Let it steep for 10 minutes and sip before meals to prevent bloating, or after to relieve it.


Many Christian groups also celebrate Passover. Christians tend to view the brilliant green parsley as symbolizing new life, the life they believe is promised by Jesus’ resurrection. Because of Parsley’s bitterness, it is done in remembrance of the enslaved Jews and the tears they shed.

Thank you so much for taking the time to stop by.  It shows your interest in health or at least your curiosity.  I am truly enjoying learning more about the powerful benefits of the Herbs and Spices we use in our kitchens.  If you enjoyed this post and learning about Parsley, please press the follow button, like it, and share how it helped you.  If you know someone who could be helped by this information please pass it on.  People are destroyed from a lack of knowledge. (Hosea 4:6)  I’d be very grateful if you’d help it spread the word so that more people can live their best life now free and to the fullest.


Dr. Axe

NCBI.NLM.NIH.GOV

Thinkers News

Yellow, The Vision Vitamin

I start this Color Me Beautiful series with the color yellow.

Yellow is the most visible color and is the first color the human eye notices!  Yellow’s stimulating nature and high visibility to the eye is the reason why many road signs are bold yellow (contrasted by black text).  This is another reason why restaurants use the color yellow in their signs.  It is known to stimulate appetite and triggers the feelings of happiness and friendliness, warm like the sun.  Maybe this is why we feel so good when the sun is out.

th-9Likewise, I hope this Color Me Beautiful series stimulates you to introduce and increase your plate with more of the colors of the rainbow.
Imagine with me why certain fast food places use yellow and red colors;  Take Kentucky Fried Chicken (KFC), McDonald’s, Burger King and the other fast food establishments in the image on the left for instance.  These colors are just one marketing ploy that are eye-catching and get your attention to roll in to their establishment for that quick fast food.  Why not stick with real fast yellow food?  Here are some really good reasons why?

Yellows come from The Latin word Lutein lutes means “yellow”.

This plant chemical is geared to protect the eyes by modulating light energy.  The yellow color of the human macula lutea (literally, yellow spot) in the retina
(from Latin rēte, meaning “net”) of the eye is the third and inner coat of the eye which is a light-sensitive layer of tissue. results from the lutein and zeaxanthin it contains.

Lutein nicknamed “the eye vitamin,” is a carotenoid antioxidant phytonutrient (plant nutrient), which ranges from yellow to red pigments.  It is an essential nutrient for normal vision.

Eye protection – The central part of the retina, called the macula, contains macular pigments in which lutein is concentrated. The yellow coloured pigments protect the retina from damage of the photo-oxidative affect of high-energy light.

Heart health – Lutein can also reduce the risk for artery diseases. Studies have shown that persons with the highest lutein intake showed the lowest artery wall thickening.

Skin protection – Lutein can also reduce the risk of skin cancer and sunburn.

Digestion – Yellow foods are associated with digestion.  Proper digestion allows for the absorption and assimilation of nutrients, so your body can function and carry out the countless chemical reactions it needs to on an ongoing basis. Nutrients from foods you eat provide your body with the energy it needs to run, walk, eat, breathe, and read these words. When the process of digestion is impaired, nutrient imbalance and deficiency can result, leaving your body without the fuel it needs to function properly. Over time, there can be downstream effects of ill health such as lowering your risk for developing heart disease, diabetes, constipation, and colon cancer..

Carotene is a pigment that absorbs blue and indigo light, and that provides rich yellows and oranges.

benefits-of-lutein-and-zeaxanthinLutein and Zeaxanthin (fat soluble) are carotenoids that are found in relatively high concentrations in the retina.  Lutein’s yellow color blocks blue (UV) light from absorption.  Because the macula is yellow in colour it absorbs excess blue and ultraviolet light that enter the eye, and acts as a natural sunblock (analogous to sunglasses) for this area of the retina.  Both Lutein and Zeaxanthin helps protect the eye from ultra-violet (UV) damage, and prevents free-radical damage to the retina and the lens of the eye that is associated with diabetic retinopathy, macular degeneration, cataracts, and glaucoma.  Studies have also indicated that lutein improves heart health, protects our skin against UV damage, reduces diabetes induced oxidative stress, and possesses anti-inflammatory and anti-cancer properties.  Lutein and zeaxanthin are found in the liver, ovaries, pancreas, kidneys, spleen, testes, adrenals, and many eye tissues.

002f0eccb487f585c82aa61ff8e6be0cYellow foods are commonly considered the eyesight foods because they contain vitamin A. Beta-carotene, which can be converted into vitamin A, is a component of these foods as well.   Since eyesight is dependent on the presence of vitamin A, it is considered the “vision vitamin.”  Our eyes use the yellow pigment lutein as an antioxidant, especially in the macula, in the center of the retina at the back of the eye contains a lot of lutein.  This protects the eyes from the UV sunlight rays.    It also also seems to lower the risk of developing Age-related Macular Degeneration (AMD).  Vitamin A also help strengthen your immune system and prevent infections like the common colds. Moreover, this nutrient is also one of the best substances that can help you age gracefully.  In addition, they may have high levels of vitamin C, and some contain omega-3 fatty acids according to Kasik-Miller, a clinical dietitian at Sacred Heart Hospital in Eau Claire, Wisconsin.

…Natural Sunblock (think yellow/orange-red like the sun) The yellow pigment, lutein, is also known to absorb excess light energy to prevent damage to plants from too much sunlight.  Our skin uses the yellow pigment lutein to recharge the antioxidants that protect the glands that make the oily lubricant that keeps the skin supple and wrinkle-free.  If we consume our leafy greens and other yellow pigment foods, these protective antioxidants protect our skin from oxidative damage.  This is why our ancestors most likely did not use sunscreen lotions.  Antioxidants reduce the risk of many health problems associated with aging, including heart disease, cancer, arthritis, diabetes, cataracts and macular degeneration, Alzheimer’s, Parkinson’s and others.

Avoid-sunburn-and-tan-more-easily-by-eating-real-food
Click image to follow link

Sunlight is very important for our skin.  Americans tend to be deficient in Vitamin D3 because we are inside more than we are outside. Please visit my Vitamin D Council board for more information about this topic.  Americans are also afraid of the sun lathering up with all those sun screens.  If we are wise and respect the power of the sun, there is no need to buy all those chemically filled sunscreens that short-circuit the benefits of the suns rays that create an atmosphere that brings damage to the skin.  Here are other sunscreen options.

Yellow appears to have important antioxidant functions in the body including vitamin C, beta carotene, and vitamin E that guard the body from damaging effects that can destroy cells and play a role in many diseases

….Yellow was thought to stimulate the nerves and purify the body in light therapy treatment.

…The cream to light yellow crystalline solid (Ellagic Acid) may help protect against cancer by neutralizing the cancer- causing chemicals.  Surprisingly, Ellagic Acid is hidden under the red color of a number strawberries, raspberries, and pomegranates.  It also helps by reducing DNA damage and helps regulate blood sugar response.  But studies of this acid have mainly been done in the laboratory, so its benefits for human health is an unknown.
Yellow lutein may help protect against atherosclerosis (buildup of fatty deposits in arteries), the disease that leads to most heart attacks.
Yellow lutein is a carotenoid with antioxidant properties. It’s known to reduce oxidative stress and neutralize free radicals in various organs, including your skin.
Yellow (under the color green) ~ Lutein

Another interesting fact about yellow is how it is hidden under the top layers of green serveimage-39in your leafy greens – they have 15-47% of lutein, but a very low content (0-3%) of zeaxanthin.  This is why we get the different colors of tree leaves in the fall.  This means that those leafy greens also contain this yellow pigment to bring you all of the great benefits of this beautiful nutrient.  The body cannot absorb lutein without the help of fat, so when eating your leafy green salads or smoothies, include a type of fat like Avocado, coconut oil, or a nut of your choice.

Zeaxanthin – xanthin, a yellow coloring carotenoid present in the retina of the eye and in many plants.

The two major carotenoids in the human macula and retina are lutein and zeaxanthin.  In our periphery vision, Zeaxanthin declines more rapidly than lutein.

On a Spiritual note:  There exists an old saying in American culture: “The eyes are a window to the soul.”  Matthew 6:22 (KJV) says, “The light of the body is the eye: if therefore thine eye be single, thy whole body shall be full of light.”

Let your eyes feast on this yellow that can trigger the feelings of happiness and friendliness, warmth like the sun.

serveimage-38Take care in what you allow your eyes to see.  May the light of the Lord’s words help you to be a light bringing sunshine to someone else as Matthew 5:16 (KJV) says, “Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father which is in heaven.”

Yellow Fruits & Vegetables and some quantities of either Lutein or Zeaxanthin or both:

 

  1. Yellow bell peppers – low amount of lutein (12%) but no Zeaxanthin. The highest amount of Zeaxanthin (8% Lutein 37% Zeaxanthin = 45% total) was found in Orange Peppers.  
  2. Yellow zucchini (or vegetable marrow – 30-52%) These compounds help scavenge harmful oxygen-derived free radicals
  3. Yellow tomatoes (39%-sun dried)
  4. Maize (Sweet corn) – (60% of lutein and 25% of zeaxanthin)
  5. Bananas – the banana skin contains lutein.  Some people prefer to boil the peel for 10 minutes or so before eating it, putting it through a juicer or blending it with other fruits. In Asian countries, banana peels are cooked with their flesh or fried on their own.  Banana peels are packed full of serotonin which boosts your mood and helps you feel happy. Some studies have shown that in just three days, eating 2 banana peels can raise your serotonin level by nearly 15%. Plus, the banana peel can help you sleep easier because of the tryptophan found in it. Tryptophan is the sleep-inducing amino acid.  Bananas contain pectins and fructooligosaccharides(FOS). Pectins have been studied for their effects on blood sugar levels, and FOS is a prebiotic that provides food for the healthy bacteria in your lower intestine.

6. Lemon (10.344ug) – lutein may help protect against atherosclerosis (buildup of fatty deposits in arteries), the disease that leads to most heart attacks.

7. Squash – (2401.3μg/1 cup) listed in the top ten for lutein and zeaxanthin

8. Grapefruit (10.169ug)

9. Mellon – 27.058ug honeydue; 26.25ug cantalope

10. Apples with skin (28.985ug)

11. Pears – (78.32 mcg)

12. Pineapple contains bromelain, a proteolytic substance that breaks down proteins, and it therefore can aid in digestion.  Look for pineapples that are heavy for their size, free of soft spots, bruises, and darkened areas, and they should have a fragrant, sweet smell at the stem.

NOTE: BEST FOODS FOR LUTEIN AND ZEAXANTHIN: (As noted above, green leafy foods surprisingly contain these beneficial nutrients)  

Kale, spinach (47 mole% lutein), Swiss chard, collard greens, turnip greens, dandelion greens, mustard greens, beet greens, radicchio, summer squash (all varieties), watercress, green peas, persimmons, winter squash (acorn, butternut, etc.), pumpkin, broccoli (22 mole%), brussels sprouts (27 mole%), lettuce (22 mole% – especially dark lettuces), asparagus, corn, green beans, okra, artichokes, green bell peppers.