Parsley is an herb that originated in the Mediterranean region of Southern Italy, Algeria and Tunisia. It’s been used for centuries as both a medicinal plant and a food source. For a small herb, parsley sure packs a big nutritional punch. The nutrients found in parsley are many, including:
- Vitamin A
- Vitamin K
- Vitamin C
- Vitamin E
- Vitamin B6
- Vitamin B12
The vitamins, minerals and antioxidants found in parsley are known to help strengthen the immune system. The Vitamin A content helps to protect the surface of the eyes by keeping them moist. When Vitamin A is combined with other antioxidants, it can reduce the risk of developing age-related macular degeneration. Food rich in beta carotene such as spinach and carrots are even more beneficial when combined with parsley.
Other carotenoids in parsley – lutein and zeaxanthin – are compounds that work hard to erase eye damage caused by environmental sources, such as UV radiation. These two carotenoids are known to reduce the risk of cataracts, while lutein works to inhibit biological processes that are known to be damaging to the retina.
Parsley also boasts natural diuretic effects that helps to control various diseases such as kidney stones, urinary tract infections and gallbladder stones, along with anti-inflammatory properties that treat toothaches, bruises, insect bites and other causes of inflammation, including rheumatoid arthritis.
Parsley can provide much more than just a decoration on your plate. Its volatile oil components – particularly myristicin – have been shown to inhibit tumor formation while protecting against cell damage from oxidation. Parsley also supports a healthy heart, aids in maintaining strong and healthy bones, and can even be used to help control blood sugar levels in those suffering from diabetes.
JUICING WITH PARSLEY
Adding parsley to your diet has numerous health benefits! When possible, choose fresh parsley over the dried form of herb. It should be deep green in color, fresh and crisp. Avoid bunches that have wilted leaves or a yellow color. Choosing organic parsley is the best way to reap all of its health benefits without the risk of unwanted pesticides. Keep it refrigerated in a bag, ready to juice or cook with.
FOR HEALTHY EYES, TRY MIXING UP ONE OF THESE DELICIOUS JUICES:
1. Best’s Disease: a genetic condition that affects the back of the eye when reading, writing or watching television.
Juice: parsley, celery, apples, garlic, leeks, beets, ginger, apples, carrots, spinach, lemon, raspberries, cabbage, grapes and wheat grass.
2. Cataracts/Conjunctivitis: Cataracts can develop with age, as the protein in the eye clumps together and forms a could over the lens. Conjunctivitis is an infection caused by a virus or bacteria that causes the eye to become sore, irritated and red.
Juice: parsley, blueberries, apples, endive, spinach and celery.
3. Diabetic Retinopathy: a diabetes complication that causes progressive damage to the retina.
Juice: parsley, Jerusalem artichokes, asparagus, spinach, ginger, beets, celery, raspberries, wheat grass, carrots, pumpkin, leeks, garlic and cabbage.
4. Glaucoma: a condition that causes damage to the eye’s optic nerve and worsens over time.
Juice: parsley, cucumber, carrots, radishes, celery, raspberries, turnip, cabbage, beets, apples and plums.
5. Macular Degeneration: the deterioration of the macula, which is the small central area of the retina, resulting in blurred vision.
Juice: parsley, raspberries, apples, broccoli, bell peppers and leafy greens.
6. Lattice Degeneration: a thinning of the peripheral retina that can affect peripheral vision.
Juice: parsley, carrots, apples, spinach, leeks, ginger, beets, cabbage, grapes, celery, lemon, raspberries and wheat grass.
7. Floaters: a separation of the retina that causes small clouds or dark spots to move about in one’s filed of vision.
Juice: parsley, celery, parsnip, beets, garlic, apples, raspberries and carrots.
8. Optic Nerve Problems: damage to and loss of the protective sheath surrounding the optic nerve that can cause blurring and blind spots.
Juice: parsley, beets, ginger, endive, carrots, berries, cabbage and wheat grass.
9. Retinitis Pigmentosis: a group of inherited diseases that causes a gradual decline in vision.
Juice: parsley, leeks, carrots, beets, cabbage, garlic, ginger, grapes, lemon, raspberries, celery, wheat grass, apples and spinach.