February 4th, 2012 by Tonya Zavasta

Wheat grassWheat grass or wheatgrass—I’ve always wondered which is the correct spelling. Turns out, according to my English gurus, either’s just fine. And wheatgrass would make a fine addition to your diet. I even include it as an ingredient in my Oral Balm.

What is Wheatgrass?

This is one of those times the name really does describe the thing. It is wheat. Specifically, it’s young wheat plants, harvested in their early, grassy stage—at the very height of the plant’s nutritive value—the leaves then (usually) dehydrated and packaged.

You can consume wheatgrass powder, wheatgrass tablets or wheatgrass juice. Hopefully, it’s a staple—in several forms—at your local fresh foods market, and even (with rather less variety) increasingly in supermarkets. As for me, I’ll take any given food—especially one so nutritionally rich as wheatgrass—in its freshest, least processed form, which here means fresh squeezed.

What are the Benefits of Wheatgrass?

Thanks to its high chlorophyll content wheatgrass, like other greens, contributes to healthy blood and blood flow, especially by building healthy red cells.

Wheatgrass—especially in fresh form—is a superb body cleanser. Some studies indicate that 140 grams of fresh wheatgrass is about equivalent, in this respect, to about three kilos of fresh green vegetables. Wheatgrass’s vitamins B, C, E and beta-carotene eliminate free radicals. And the saponin content of wheatgrass helps cleanse the lymphatic system. Wheatgrass juice has even been hailed as a method of preventing gray hair.

Concerned about protein? Then know that wheatgrass is a complete protein, and easy to digest. Calcium, magnesium, potassium and iron are here, but so are about 85 other useful minerals, helping create the alkaline environment which fights disease.

How Does One Consume It?

How best to take your wheatgrass? Tablets are okay—but why risk the effects of processing? Juice works great. Many health food stores now offer “shots” of wheatgrass. They juice it right in front of you.

The very best way, I believe: Juice your own fresh wheatgrass! Like any grass, it’s tough stuff, so not for your regular blender—use a good quality wheatgrass juicer with a robust motor and high-quality blades. I suggest learning how to grow wheatgrass, which will make this practice more economical and result in the most wheatgrass benefits!

If you’re new to the game try adding a slice or two of apple—it’ll take off the little bit of edge some people find in wheat grass juice. Some people find that holding their nose closed as they down the wheatgrass juice is the way to go. I’m betting, though, that, as you start to feel the health benefits of wheatgrass, you’ll begin to enjoy the fresh, aggressive taste of one of the few true superfoods out there!

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2 Responses to “Wheatgrass”

  1. Yasmin Rodriguez Says:

    I have a wheat/gluten intolerance. Do you think consuming wheatgrass would have a negative effect on those of us who cannot eat wheat/gluten?

  2. Tonya Zavasta Says:

    My understanding is that the problem is usually gluten and wheatgrass contains no gluten, so it should have no negative effect. http://www.wheatgrasskits.com/2005/08/wheat-allergy-and-wheat-grass.html But of course always pay attention to what your body says to you.

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