Wheatgrass Health benefits

What is wheatgrass ?

Wheatgrass is a type of food that is made from the cotyledons of the wheat plant. It is a type of young grass that can be cultivated in soil or water. Wheatgrass is sold either in power form or in the form of juice. It is different from wheat malt in the sense that while wheat malt is dried up, wheatgrass is served fresh or freeze-dried. Additionally wheat malt is smaller in length than wheatgrass. The main components of wheatgrass are enzymes, amino acids, minerals, chlorophyll and vitamins. It has no gluten. Many studies indicate that the benefits of wheatgrass include its ability to treat ailments provide supplemental nutrition. Wheatgrass is available at juice bars and at health stores in the form of powder, tablets, fresh produce or frozen juice. Some individuals do cultivate and juice wheatgrass in their homes.

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History of Wheatgrass

The benefits of wheatgrass were accidentally discovered by an agricultural chemist named Charles F. Schnabel. In 1930, he came across a situation, which prompted him to use freshly cut grass to treat the ill hens. To his surprise the hens not only recovered but also had greater productivity of eggs. This prompted him to supplement the diet of his family and friends with powdered wheatgrass. Also, when he conducted the experiment of the hens again, he found that the hens that consumed the grass were healthier and more productive than those who did not. Subsequently, research on the uses and benefits of wheatgrass were carried out on a corporate level. By 1940s, wheatgrass was sold in various health stores across the United States as well as Canada.

Health benefits of Wheatgrass

  • Wheatgrass is rich in vitamins such as E, A and C which have antioxidant properties and thus assist in boosting the immune system. The fortified immune system is thus able to successfully ward off conditions such as common cold, bronchitis, anemia, coughs, diabetes, fevers, constipation, infections and colitis.
  • One of the constituents of wheatgrass is chlorophyll which gives it the green color. But the most important aspect of this component of wheatgrass is that it prevents the emission of body odors, smelly wounds, bad breath as well as foul odors of feces and urine.
  • Some studies indicate at potential benefits of wheatgrass that may help in preventing and treating conditions such as cardiovascular disease, Alzheimer’s disease, macular degeneration and cancer.
  • Research also suggests that wheatgrass helps in general detoxification of the human body, blood flow and digestion.

Side effects of Wheatgrass

  • Wheatgrass is grown in the soil and hence is at risk of contamination by bacteria and other microorganisms. Hence its consumption may result in side effects such as swelling of the throat, hives, headache or nausea.
  • Allergic individuals, pregnant and breast feeding women, people with celiac disease and gluten intolerance should avoid consuming wheatgrass as it may cause many side effects, because of the presence of seeds in wheatgrass.
  • Wheatgrass is not that tasty and hence one may gag while consuming it. Also, it tends to leave a bad taste in the mouth.
  • In case, you have difficulties in breathing after the intake of wheatgrass, then you should immediately contact a doctor.

Wheatgrass – Nutritional information

For every 100 grams, here is the nutritional information in wheatgrass Calories 21.0 Cal Fat 0.06 g Carbohydrates 2.0 g Water 95 g Iron 0.61 mg Sodium 10.3 mg Folic Acid 29 mcg Calcium 24.2 mg Glucose 0.80 g Magnesium 24 mg Zinc 0.33 mg Potassium 147 mg Phosphorus 75.2 mg Vitamin B1 0.08 mg Vitamin A 427 IU Vitamin B2 0.13 mg Vitamin B5 6.0 mg Vitamin B3 0.11 mg Vitamin B6 0.2 mg Vitamin C 3.65 mg Vitamin B12 < 1 mcg Vitamin E 15.2 IU Choline 92.4 mg Chlorophyll 42.2 mg

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