Celery – Properties and medicinal uses

Botanical name: Apium graveolens L.
Other names: True celery, Pascal celery.

Celery is the leaves and stalk of the celery plant, Apium graveolens L., a herbaceous plant of the botanical family Umbelliferae.

Properties of celery
In terms of nutrition, celery is poor in carbohydates (represent about 1.9% of its total content), and proteins (represents just about 0.75% of its total content. It also contains virtually no fat.

Health benefits / medicinal uses of celery
It is a fact, celery is considered a poor food from a nutritional point of view. However, it contains some important substances which helps in healing a number disorders. These active substances in celery makes it useful in the following cases:

The presence of an effective vasodilator in the essential oil of celery, combined with its diuretic effect helps in preventing hypertension. This hypotensive effect is due to the presence of a strong vasodilator which helps dilates blood vessels, and in turn reduces blood pressure.

Kidney stones, Edema, arthritis, and excess uric acid
The essential oil present in celery helps dilate the arteries, and result in the increase in urine volume as well as the elimination of waste substances like uric acid and urea. This is due to the remarkable diuretic effect of celery. For those suffering from one of the disorders above, the consumption of celery is highly recommended.

Excess cholesterol
An experiment conducted in the University of Singapore demonstrated celery’s ability to reduce blood cholesterol level. In the experiment, two groups of pigs were fed a high fat diet for about eight weeks. Two tablespoons of celery juice were added to the daily diet of a particular group. At the end of the eight weeks, the animals fed celery juice showed a significantly lower cholesterol level than those that had not been fed celery juice.
Thus, the consumption of celery is highly recommended for those willing to reduce their blood cholesterol level.

Metabolic acidity
A diet rich in meat and animal products in general causes excess acidity in the internal organs and blood, and as a result, it causes negative effects such as:
» Fluid retension
» Loss of calcium, and
» The formation of renal calculi (stones)
The consumption of celery halts all these negative effects due to its remarkable alkalizing effect which has the ability to neutralize excess acids in the body.

Psoriasis is a disease which is difficult to treat, it is characterized by reddish eruptions and scales on the skin. But thanks to celery, which contains psoralens, substances that can produce hypersensitivity to sunlight in predisposed individuals which provides a protective effect against psoriasis.

Even though celery contains a moderate amount of carbohydrates, it is indicated for diabetics. This can be due to the presence of a sunstance in celery known as Glycoquin. This substance being similar to insulin, helps reduce blood sugar level.

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