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Parsley A Nutritious and Healing Food

By June 2, 2014June 6th, 2014Nutrition Information


Garden142I am having so much fun picking greens from my garden.  It is still quite cool here but the arugula, lettuce and spinach are ready to eat.  I love it.  Every day fresh greens, it feels like magic!
I have mentioned in the past I have Hashimoto’s, an autoimmune thyroid condition.  I have been doing lots of research on autoimmune conditions to help the healing process for myself and my clients.  I recently read a book call The Wahls Protocol  by Terry Wahls M.D. who has recovered from MS using paleo principles and functional medicine.
Even though my Hashimoto’s is not as serious as MS the principles in the book are about treating all chronic autoimmune conditions.   I have been living by my principle of eating the foods that support my body 70% of the time and then 30% of the time I get to enjoy some of my pleasure foods.  I learned from this book that with autoimmunity you often present with food sensitivities that inflame your body.  The more things upsetting your system the more your immune system will attack things that it should not attack (in my case my thyroid) The idea is stop triggering the immune response by not eatIng ANY foods that are inflammatory. You need to declutter the waters so your immune system is no longer confusing the system
I have decided to not eat ANY gluten or dairy and go on a paleo diet for a month.  I have even started to eat some organic meat, this is a big change for me. The only animal protein I usually eat is free range chicken and wild fish.  I am curious to see the results of this protocol.  I will let you know.
 I will go off the paleo plan for the…

The Nourishing Foods Summer Cleanse  August 4-8 Mon-Fri  

 In the summer cleanse we will focus on our Small Intestine.  The abundance of fruits and vegetables available from the garden and farmers market makes this a delicious time to cleanse. This protocol will help balance your pH levels too. I hope you will all join me.  Save the dates. More information coming soon.
One food I have been eating a lot of lately to alkalize my system is parsley.

parsley2Parsley is super rich in chlorophyll, the energy producing substance that gives herbs and plants its characteristic green color. Green foods contain high levels of plant antioxidants like chlorophyll which is the “king” of the plant based antioxidants.  High chlorophyll foods are cleansing for the blood and circulation.  In addition green foods contain the essential nutrients folate and vitamin B6 which are needed to lower levels of a reactive compound in the blood known as homocysteine.  Studies indicate that there is a correlation between blood homocysteine levels and the incidence of heart disease.

Parsley the world’s most popular culinary herb is also known as “rock celery.“

Usually we see parsley on our plate as a garnish and may even nibble on a sprig or two.  Unfortunately that will not give you enough parsley to get all the amazing health benefits. In order to have parsley improve your health, have 1 ounce, about 1 cup, 3 or 4 times a week.  The best way to enjoy it is to put it into a juice or smoothie.  You can also make a sauce from it or add 1-2 cups to your salad, bean salad or quinoa salad.  Think of it as a green vegetable and you will find lots of uses for it.

One cup of this unique herb provides:parsley

Vitamin A   5055 IU    101%
Vitamin C   79.8 mg    133%
Vitamin K   984 mcg   1230%
Folate           91.2 mcg   23%
Iron               3.7 mg       21%
Calcium       82.8 mg      8%
Potassium  332 mg         9%

Health Benefits of Parsley

Cancer Prevention – Parsley’s volatile oil myristicin has been shown to inhibit tumor formation particularly in the lungs.  The activity of parsley’s volatile oils qualifies it as a “chemoprotective” food, which is a food that can help neutralize certain types of carcinogens (cancer causing agents) particularly from pollution and smoke.

Helps Prevent Anemia – The high amount of Vitamin C makes the iron in parsley and other foods you eat more easily absorbed.  The high chlorophyll content in parsley is an excellent blood purifier and helps bring up the hemoglobin count.

Good For Your Heart  – Parsley is a good source of one of the most important vitamin B’s folate.  Folate and Vitamin B6 play a critical roll in breaking down homocysteine which is a naturally occurring amino acid in the body. If you don’t have enough of the co-factors needed to break down the homocysteine it accumulates in the blood and can literally “sear” the walls of your arteries.

Supports Your Bladder, Kidneys and Urinary Tract – Two of the volatile  oils in parsley, myristicin and apiole, helps you pee more which removes infection causing bacteria from the urinary tract. Keeping your urine flowing well detoxifies the toxins from your whole body.  The diuretic effect of parsley can help prevent kidney stones and urinary tract infections.

Reduces Excess Water Weight – Parsley is a natural diuretic, which helps to eliminate excess fluid without depleting the body of potassium.  Many actors use it before big events to help get rid of extra water weight and bloating.

Keeps Your Eyes Healthy – The vitamin A as well as the other vitamins help prevent age-related macular degeneration in the retina of the eye through its anti-oxidant function.

Good for your Immune System – Parsley contains a high amount of Vitamin A, a nutrient so important to a strong immune system that its nickname is the “anti-infective vitamin.” The essential oils in parsley have been shown to suppress an over-stimulated immune response making it a key player in the fight against allergies, autoimmune and chronic inflammatory disorders.

Freshens Your Breath – The essential oil Eugenol present in parsley acts as local anesthetic and anti-septic agent for teeth and gums. Bad breath often comes from a toxic colon.  The fiber and chlorophyll in parsley will help detoxify your colon which will result in fresher breath.

Improves Digestion  Parsley is high in enzymes helping to improve the digestion of proteins and fats .promoting better absorption and assimilation.  Parsley aids in balancing blood sugar and plays a key role in preventing the degenerative effects of diabetes on the liver.

Beneficial to Your Brain –  The high amount of vitamin K has been shown to limit neuronal damage in the brain and plays a role in the treatment of Alzheimer’s disease patients.

Buying and Storing Parsley

Choose fresh parsley that is deep green in color and looks fresh and crisp.  If it is limp or yellow it means it is old and won’t taste as good.

Keep your parsley in the refrigerator in a plastic bag or container.  I like to wash my parsley when I bring it home and store it in a container.  It is then ready for me to use.

In general, flat-leaf parsley has a more robust flavor, while the curly variety will chop up more finely.  They can be interchanged in most recipes.

Save the stems which have a stronger flavor than the leaves and can be juiced, added to homemade stock or beans.


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