Parsley: useful properties and contraindications

No festive table can do without juicy and fragrant parsley leaves. But, in fact, the scope of this product is much wider. What are the beneficial properties of parsley for the body should everyone know? What parts of this plant can I use? You will find answers to these and other questions in our article.

Parsley: useful properties

This product has been known to people since ancient times. Translated from Greek, its name translates as "growing on the rocks." Initially, parsley was used in cooking. This spicy greens improves the taste and visual quality of many dishes. But the high content of vitamins, minerals and plant fibers makes it an indispensable tool for normalizing the activity of many organ systems. Consider the beneficial properties and contraindications of parsley in more detail.

bunch of fresh parsley

Systematics and biological description

Parsley, the useful properties of which we study in our article, is a typical representative of dicotyledonous plants of the Umbrella family. This two-year-old grass is easily recognized by its characteristic leaves. They have a dark green color and shine. Leaf blades of triangular shape, twice pinnate. They are located on a low erect stem.

In the first year, the plant does not bloom. Parsley has a thickened main root, in which water and nutrients accumulate. Thanks to this reserve, the plant tolerates cold, and by the middle of next summer the first inflorescences appear. Their type is a complex umbrella. Small flowers are white or yellow. As a result, fruits are formed - bifid achenes.

Areas of use

Traditionally, the most valuable part of this plant is fresh leaves. But this is not at all true. Parsley seeds and roots have beneficial properties. How can these parts be used? Culinary experts add chopped parsley root to fish dishes and sauces. This gives them a tart and spicy taste. From herbs and fruits, essential oils are obtained, which are used for canning.

Already in the 17th century, recipes for parsley medicines were known. They were used as a diuretic and anti-inflammatory agent, as a treatment for kidney and liver diseases.

fresh parsley and juice from it

Chemical composition

The beneficial properties of parsley are due to the diversity of its organic and mineral components. The first group consists of carbohydrates and proteins. Of the macronutrients, iron, magnesium, potassium, calcium and phosphorus are the most valuable. This plant is rich in vitamins. First of all, these are ascorbic and nicotinic acids, retinol and thiamine.

Essential oils give a distinctive taste to different parts of parsley. Most of them are found in fruits and fresh leaves. The main substance of the oil is called apiol, or camphor parsley. Scientists have proven that it has chemoprotective properties - it stops the growth of cancer cells.

mutated parsley root

Healing root

Parsley has a modified underground part. It is called a root crop. On the Mediterranean coast and in European countries, parsley root is eaten. Moreover, it can be eaten both fresh and boiled. Many essential oils are found in the root peel, so it is best to wash it before cooking with a soft brush. This product is cooked very quickly - it will be ready in five minutes after boiling water. And for the winter, you can prepare powder from the healing root. For this, the root crop will need to be chopped, dried, and then grind. This preparation can be added to soups, meat dishes, fish and salads.

The useful properties of parsley root were used by ancient healers and shamans. This part of the plant is rich in carbohydrates: fiber and starch. These substances help increase appetite, normalize digestion and intestinal motility. The combination of a large number of B, A, E vitamins with macro- and microelements makes this product indispensable as a diuretic, bactericidal and anti-inflammatory agent.

Parsley root is especially useful for hypertensive patients and people with diabetes and urolithiasis. The iron content determines the hematopoietic properties of this root crop, and magnesium determines the ability to tone muscle tissue. This product was also appreciated by cosmetologists because it has whitening properties: it brightens age spots, freckles, and tans. It is also known that masks prepared on its basis stimulate hair growth.

green fresh parsley

Gastronomic characteristics

In cooking, parsley gained wide popularity not for its unique taste, but for its ability to shade other products. Green shoots give them aroma, remove unpleasant odor and taste. This is especially true for meat and fish broths, on the basis of which first courses are prepared. Ear, cabbage soup, borsch, pickle, cabbage can not do without the addition of parsley. This spice can also be added to pearl barley, oatmeal or millet porridge.

Parsley is a part of many salads of fresh vegetables and spices, it is used as a decoration for dishes, dressings, breading, and it is also added to the conservation of salted and pickled vegetables, adjika, sauces, mushrooms.

Dried leaves

The beneficial properties of dried parsley are also undeniable. Naturally, it is inferior to the taste of fresh herbs, but in winter it will be simply irreplaceable. This spice has its own bright aroma, but it does not interrupt the taste and smell of the main dish, but only complements it.

Use dried parsley in folk medicine. For this, decoctions, infusions and lotions are prepared from it. These funds are used to normalize the genitourinary and digestive systems, increase immunity, and allergic skin reactions. On a glass of water you need to put a teaspoon of dried parsley and boil. In such a product, you can add the crushed root of this plant.

You can prepare this valuable product yourself at home. To do this, the green shoots are crushed, spread on a flat surface with a thin layer and left in a well-ventilated room until dry. You can speed up this process. To do this, greens can be dried in the oven. But the temperature should not exceed 50 degrees. Otherwise, all vitamins and minerals will be destroyed. After heat treatment, the shoots are crushed manually or using a blender.

Dry parsley is stored in food containers or bags. It is very important that they are airtight. Then the useful spice will be stored until the next harvest.

healing parsley leaves

Infusions and decoctions

All parts of the plant can be used to prepare these medicines. Green shoots, leaves, seeds or root crops (about 50 g) need to be chopped, poured with water and put on a small fire. After boiling, you need to detect 5-7 minutes, then remove from heat and insist for about half an hour. Next, the broth is filtered and poured into a separate container for storage.

What are the beneficial properties of parsley infusion? They can be added to cosmetic masks, cleansers, lotions

Tinctures and decoctions based on parsley fight problem skin and eliminate infectious, inflammatory processes. It is recommended to take infusions of parsley inside to relieve swelling of the face and limbs, normalize the menstrual cycle.

Parsley seeds: useful properties

By their composition and valuable properties, the seeds are in no way inferior to greenery and root crops. In addition to essential oils, vitamins E, C and PP, magnesium, potassium and iron, they contain inulin. It is a polysaccharide that is a polymer of fructose. By chemical nature, it belongs to the group of dietary fiber. Inulin is broken down only in the human large intestine, contributing to the growth of microflora in this part of the gastrointestinal tract. In medicine, it is used as a prebiotic, and in industry to produce fructose.

The substances that make up the seeds normalize blood sugar levels, metabolic processes and bone growth, the thyroid gland and adrenal glands, remove excess salts from the body, and maintain muscle tone of the walls of internal organs. Decoctions are prepared from this part of the plant, which can be taken both hot and cold.

Benefits for women

For the fair sex, the properties of parsley will be especially useful for normalizing the menstrual cycle. Its use can reduce bleeding, eliminate pain, irritability, and normalize menopause. The fact is that parsley contains the substance apiol, which acts on the female body like the hormone estrogen.

For women, the beneficial properties of parsley can also be used for cosmetic and anti-aging purposes. Masks, lotions, infusions and fresh juice on its basis increase skin firmness and elasticity, relieve puffiness and fatigue, narrow pores, whiten and tone. In such cosmetics, you can add lemon juice and honey.

Parsley will be useful for women who decide to lose weight. This product has a low calorific value - only 49 kcal per 100 g of greens. The high content of dietary fiber allows you to quickly quench hunger, activate metabolic processes, remove excess fluid from the body, lower cholesterol, and stimulate the breakdown of adipose tissue cells. Especially effective for this will be juice from fresh parsley shoots.

parsley plant inflorescence

Benefits for men

Parsley is a useful product for the stronger sex. It is about the effect on the potency and functioning of the prostate gland. The beneficial properties of parsley for men are due to the presence of a substance called the flavonoid myristicin. It improves blood flow, thereby improving an erection. Another flavonoid, apigenin, inhibits the secretion of the female hormone estrogen.

How to take this remedy? The most effective is parsley juice. Since it is very concentrated, it can be bred. For this, carrot or celery juice is suitable. Recommended proportion 1: 3. Such a mixture is a good tool for relieving edema, with cystitis, gas formation of the intestine.

Often use infusions from seeds. They just need to be filled with boiling water and after 8 hours you can take 4 times a day before eating. Decoctions from the roots can be prepared in water and milk.

parsley leaves, inflorescences and seeds

Caution: contraindications!

As you know, everything is good in moderation. A day is recommended to eat about 50 g of parsley. Each product has beneficial properties and contraindications. It is especially important to remember this during an exacerbation of diseases. This is especially true for people suffering from impaired renal function, bladder, urolithiasis. Since the concentration of active substances in parsley is quite high, its excessive consumption can lead to the movement of stones in the urinary system and painful sensations.

Parsley has beneficial properties and contraindications for women. It is not recommended to use during pregnancy, as it contributes to rejection of the uterine mucosa . This can cause a miscarriage or premature birth.

A side effect of the flavonoid myristicin, which activates the bloodstream and has an exciting effect, is the appearance of nausea, dizziness and even hallucinations.

So, parsley, the beneficial properties of which we examined in our article, is a storehouse of vitamins, mineral elements and plant fibers. It does not require much effort when growing and storage. Medicines based on it can be made independently at home throughout the year. This makes parsley a versatile and affordable product that will complement any dish and benefit the body.


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