Wheatgrass and its Many Health Benefits
Wheatgrass is the young, freshly sprouted leaves of the wheat plant called Triticum aestivum. It could be taken as a food, drink, or as a dietary supplement. It grows in temperate regions of the United States and Europe and can be cultivated either outdoors or indoors. Wheatgrass is rich in vitamins and minerals and also contains amino acids and enzymes. When it is harvested, it can be freeze-dried (a low-temperature process of dehydration), made into tablet or powder concentrates or made into juice which can be consumed by both humans and animals. You will also find it sold as a gel, cream, massage lotion or spray.
Charles F. Schnabel, an American agricultural chemist, began the study of wheatgrass in the 1930s. He began documenting the amazing nutritional value inherent in it. He is popularly referred to as “the father of wheatgrass”. Other scientists, doctors, and health practitioners have also carried out researches on this plant.
Another very strong advocate of this wonder plant is Ann Wigmore. She campaigned for its consumption as part of a raw food diet. She believed that it could cleanse the body of toxins, produce proper balance of nutrients and heal the body of ailments if eaten as a whole food. You can learn more from this link here https://wheatgrass.com/pages/what-is-wheatgrass-comparison.
Some people grow theirs at home trays in a growth medium. When the leaves develop a split, that is another leaf emerges, they can be cut off with scissors to allow another set of leaves to grow. Cultivating it outdoors is however much better and the leaves are richer in nutrients than when it is cultivated indoors. It also takes longer to grow outside (about 200 days) and the leaves are greener and as such more nutritious due to the absorption of direct nutrients from the soil.
Wheatgrass contains several nutrients. It is a source of vitamins A, C, E, K, and B6. It is also rich in calcium, potassium, iron, zinc, copper, selenium, and magnesium. Other nutrients that can be gotten from it include thiamin, riboflavin, niacin, and pantothenic.
At least eight (8) of the nutrients contained in wheatgrass are considered essential. The body cannot produce these nutrients so they can only be obtained from food sources.
Health Benefits of Wheatgrass
Because of its richness in these nutrients, there are many attendant benefits to the human body. They include but are not limited to:
Working as an Antioxidant
Antioxidants are compounds that fight free radicals to prevent damage to the human cells. They help protect against certain health conditions such as heart diseases, arthritis, and cancer. Wheatgrass contains naturally occurring antioxidants like vitamins A, C, and E as such, it is good as a food supplement. Antioxidants also help fight inflammations that occur when the immune system reacts to an unwanted substance.
Wheatgrass contains a high level of enzymes that are known for helping the body break down food. This of course helps with digestion. It detoxifies and cleans the intestines so a person does not experience gassing, bloating or abdominal discomfort. It can also be helpful for relieving constipation and other digestive issues.
Aiding Weight Loss.
Because wheatgrass is a dense food that is low in calories, has no fat and contains a substance called thylakoids, it is a great addition to a weight loss diet. Thylakoids is a substance that increases satiety. This means that it makes a person feel full faster and also reduces cravings, making perfect for people trying to lose weight. This substance can also be found in a number of other green vegetables.
Boosting Metabolism and Increasing Energy
Metabolism converts what we eat to energy to run cellular processes in the body. The process also breaks down food to proteins, lipids, carbohydrates and nucleic acids while eliminating nitrogenous wastes. Since wheatgrass is rich in nutrients such as iron, zinc, and selenium, it aids and boost metabolism, making a person refreshed and energized.
Regulating of Blood Sugar Levels
A high blood sugar level can cause conditions such as headaches, thirst, fatigue and even diabetes. Wheatgrass can help keep the blood sugar level under control. Asides that, it lowers the cholesterol levels in the body and thus prevents heart diseases. You can learn more about other benefits here.
When you initially start taking wheatgrass, you may experience side effects such as headache, nausea, stomach upset or constipation. This is because your body is not yet accustomed to it. These side effects usually fade in about two weeks when your body system adjusts to it.
You should purchase from reputable suppliers or sources. Start with small doses then gradually increase intake to recommended levels. This makes it easy for your body to gradually get accustomed to digesting it.
To get all its benefits, try taking a serving of wheatgrass daily or every other day. Also, through usage, you will find the best dosage and time that works for you.