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Wheat Grass

Overview

Its proponents claim that it’s a virtual fountain of youth – a wonder food that offers health by providing protection against disease, regulating the blood sugar, cleansing the cells and improving digestion. Wheat grass – often spelled wheatgrass – boasts some of the most fervent believers of any current nutritional or health supplement. It’s not surprising, given the story of wheat grass juice, according to its most avid supporter, Ann Wigmore.

 

Originally, the benefits of wheat grass were discovered in the 1930s, in relation to chickens. Charles Schnabel, a food scientist, experimented with various mixtures of grain and feed and found that chickens fed on mixtures that contained a high proportion of wheat grass had grew better, were more healthy and had 150% better egg production than other hens. Further experimentation on other animals yielded the same results. Animals fed on wheatgrass were undoubtedly healthier than those fed on other grains.

 

Fast-forward to the 1960s, when Ann Wigmore re-discovered the benefits of wheat grass – a discovery she credits to God. As improbable as that may seem to many, Wigmore’s Hippocrates Health Institute and her book extolling the benefits of wheat grass and wheat grass juice claim remarkable health benefits and many cures that can be attributed to wheat grass.

 

While scientific studies into the benefits of drinking wheat grass juice are few, analysis of the chemical components of wheat grass shows that it provides a wide range of vitamins, enzymes and other nutrients that have been linked to disease prevention and specific health benefits. Couple that with recent and ongoing research into the role of diet and nutrition in our health, particularly studies that strongly suggest the effectiveness of phytonutrients and vitamins in combating and reversing disease, and there is good reason to believe that the claims made for wheat grass and wheat grass juice have basis in truth.

 

What Wheat Grass  Does:

Wheat grass has nearly a gram of protein per teaspoon, but contains no cholesterol or fat. It provides eight of the essential amino acids, and thirteen of the non-essential amino acids.  It contains Vitamins A, B1, 2, 3, 5, 6, 8, and 12; C, E and K, as well as 15mg of Calcium, 8mcg Iodine, 3.5mcg Selenium, 870mcg Iron, 62mcg Zinc, and many other minerals.

 

Each of those vitamins, amino acids and other essential elements play a role in the body, and many have been associated with specific health benefits. In addition, wheat grass contains a potent anti-oxidant, and two other substances that are being researched for their anti-cancer biological actions.

 

The main claims that are made for wheat grass juice, though, focus on chlorophyll, the green pigment that gives grass its color. Chlorophyll is the chemical that transforms the sun’s light into life. Among the claims made for chlorophyll is that it is antibiotic, anti-inflammatory and provides nourishment for growing blood cells. Because the chemical composition of chlorophyll is nearly identical to that of hemoglobin, some researchers believe that it provides an excellent source of nutrients and oxygen to blood cells. The improved oxygenation of blood offers the further benefit of detoxifying and purifying bodily systems.

 

Health Benefits of Wheat Grass:

  • Improved digestion

Scientists postulate that the combination of vitamins and antibacterial properties in wheat grass helps the body clear harmful intestinal bacteria and promotes better digestion.

  • Improved ability of the body to heal wounds

The B vitamin family, vitamin K and several of the active minerals and amino acids in wheat grass are known to promote faster healing, and stimulate the growth of new cells. 

  • Chlorophyll found in wheatgrass can prevent the growth of harmful bacteria

A number of studies have shown the ability of chlorophyll to retard the growth of bacteria in wounds, as well as confirming its anti-inflammatory properties.

  • Has anti-ageing abilities and can keep the hair from graying.

Because many of the natural chemicals present in wheat grass are known antioxidants, wheat grass can help slow the damage done to cells by free radicals, thereby slowing the aging process.

 

Possible Side Effects of Wheat Grass

Wheat grass may cause headaches and stomach discomfort in those unused to taking it. Those that have an allergy or known sensitivity to wheat should avoid it.

 

Summary

While many of the claims for wheat grass are not yet confirmed by solid scientific evidence, research has shown that it contains nearly all the nutrients necessary for life. Wheat grass offers the benefits of a complete multivitamin, along with additional supplements of nearly all of the amino acids and the disease-fighting power of several known anti-oxidants. With all that going for it, we recommend it as a powerful nutritional and health supplement.

 

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