Parsley has been cultivated for more than 2000 years as a medicinal plant as well as a culinary herb. The biennial plant develops into to beautiful foliage that is easy to grow and makes an ideal kitchen plant. Two basic varieties of the herb exist, curly leaf parsley named due to the ruffled look of the leaves and flat leaf parsley with more level leaves. The flat leaf parsley, also known as Italian parsley, has stronger aroma and is not as bitter as the curly leaf variety. Most commonly seen as nothing more than a decoration on a plate, parsley is actually a highly nutritious food.
Green Parsley Extract
- 1 cup chopped parsley
- 1 small cucumber
- 1 green apple
- 1 lemon
- 1 teaspoon honey
- ½ cup of orange juice
Chop the apple and the cucumber into pieces that the blender will handle with ease. Add the orange juice into the blender along with half of the parsley and blend until smooth and runny. Add all other ingredients one by one, blending about 10 seconds after each ingredient. Finally add the remaining parsley and blend until silky smooth.
Parsley is a total protein; meaning it houses all of the essential amino acids, 2 grams of protein and 2 grams of fiber in every fresh cup full and only around 22 calories. Parsley is a good source of a variety of minerals. One cup contains approximately 8% or 83 milligrams of calcium, 3.7 milligrams of iron, and it delivers ten per cent of the daily copper needs, seven per cent of magnesium and potassium needs, six per cent zinc and five per cent phosphorus.
Parsley is also a powerhouse of vitamins. Just one cup supplies 820% of the daily vitamin K requirement, 23% of folates, 89% of vitamin C in addition to 168% of vitamin A requirements.
Health Benefits of Parsley
Traditionally parsley has been useful in three main areas as a medicine. It is a diuretic and aids in removing excess water from the body, making it useful in offering relief from premenstrual water retention. It also aids flatulence that is brought on by colic pain. Parsley dressings are beneficial in relieving breast tenderness in lactating women. Rubbing parsley helps to soothe insect bites and heal bruises. Lastly parsley is recommended as prevention and breaking up kidney stones by the German Commission, an advisory panel of the government.
More recent research shows that a phytochemical found in the herb offers chemo-preventive properties. One study published in the Journal of Nutrition and Cancer found that people with greater parsley consumption had lower rates of lung cancer. The ample amounts of antioxidants in parsley protect against an array of diseases.