Celery is one of many leafy, green vegetables that people either love or hate. Known for its flavor and its signature, crunchy texture, this humble vegetable might seem like an ordinary part of quite possibly any meal. However, the celery actually has an impressive amount of health benefits that you normally wouldn’t expect from such a common food item.
If you’re looking for a healthy snack or if you want to try adding a new vegetable to your diet, then this might just be what you’re looking for.
Facts About Celery
Once used as a medicinal herb, celery is a common vegetable that’s now primarily found as a minor ingredient or as part of a side dish in many culinary recipes thanks to its flavor and texture. From soups to sauces and even main dishes, this vegetable can be added into nearly everything and still be delicious.
However, its taste isn’t the only thing that celery can contribute to a fine meal. The vegetable has many nutritional qualities that can not only keep you fit, but also keep your overall health in top condition. Here are 10 health and nutrition facts about celery that you may or may not have already heard about:
It Is Healthy Yet Lightweight
Celery contains very low amounts of carbohydrates and calories and is completely fat-free, which makes it an excellent choice for people who want to lose weight as it can be a very diet-friendly snack. It also has low amounts of protein, which is something you may want to consider.
It is a good source of fiber—in fact, most of its carbohydrate content is actually fiber. Celery also makes for a good source of Vitamin A, Potassium, and Folate.
Celery Is Rich in Vitamin K
Apart from the previously mentioned nutrients, celery contains high amounts of Vitamin K. The vegetable has 29 micrograms of Vitamin K, which is about one quarter of the recommended daily intake amount for adult men and roughly one third of the recommended amount for adult women.
Vitamin K is an essential nutrient for your blood. It is an essential component in the blood clotting process and it is just as important to the bones as calcium is, as it can help prevent diseases like osteoporosis.
Celery Makes for Good Juice
Blending celery into juice form is a testament to the vegetable’s versatility as a food product. Celery is mostly made up of water, which means it’s a good option for healthy hydration for when you want a drink that’s less plain. Drinking celery juice will give you all of the benefits of eating normal celery stalks but in the form of a drink, which may seem novel at first, but it’s bound to have some creative uses.
Celery juice is being touted online as an effective cure for a long list of ailments, but experts are warning people that such claims have no real evidence yet.
Celery Has Anti-Inflammatory Properties
Celery can be used to treat inflammation. The vegetable’s seed extracts have been found to have properties that can treat chronic diseases, and the extracts have been used all throughout history to ease inflammation.
However, these properties do not necessarily mean that celery is to be used as the sole countermeasure for inflammation. The vegetable’s natural properties may help ease symptoms of inflammation, but it is best taken with more specialized medicine.
It Can Help with Digestion
Celery’s low-carb and no-fat composition is great for people who want to lose weight, but the one thing that really makes it shine for dieters is its fiber count, making it a prime candidate for high-fiber diets.
Fiber is a nutrient that helps your digestive tract by being hard to dissolve. It can help regulate bowel movement, lower your cholesterol levels, and help you lose weight since fiber is usually more filling than other nutrients.
Celery Is Good for Your Heart
Celery seed extracts contain properties that can relieve hypertension and manage your blood pressure, keeping it at optimal levels. The seed extracts contain Potassium, which is a nutrient that helps keep your blood pressure in check by balancing out your body’s salt levels.
Celery’s existing anti-bad cholesterol properties paired with its ability to keep your blood pressure leveled makes sure your heart will work as best it can by preventing any unnecessary complications.
It Can Prevent Liver Disease
The decent amounts of micronutrients in celery like Vitamin A, B, C and Iron means that the vegetable can help with the prevention of certain liver diseases.
The liver is particularly vulnerable to diseases when the body doesn’t receive enough nutrients. Nutritional deficiencies may cause diseases such as hepatitis, liver cirrhosis and other chronic diseases. Celery can help combat these diseases by providing your body with the necessary vitamins that can prevent you from getting such illnesses in the first place.
Celery Contains Antioxidants
Much like other green vegetables, celery has properties that can help protect your body from potentially harmful free radicals that come from external sources. Celery contains phytonutrients that prevent your cells from getting damaged by oxidants.
These antioxidants are also the ones that help your body prevent or reduce inflammation, keeping you relatively safe from chronic diseases.
It May Help Fight Cancer
Celery’s anti-inflammatory properties also gives it certain qualities that can fight back against cancer. Celery stalks contain luteolin, which is a known anti-cancer phytonutrient.
Cancer researchers have found that luteolin slowed down the growth of cancer tumors in lab mice, which can hold very promising ideas for the future of anti-cancer studies.
Celery’s natural properties can also enhance your immune system, making you resistant to all kinds of diseases.
Celery Can Prevent UTIs
The natural nutrients found in celery can help prevent urinary tract infections from ever springing up. The vegetable has diuretic properties that can help boost the production of urine and decrease the build-up of uric acid.
Regular consumption of celery means that your urinary tract will almost always be free of any bacteria that may cause unwanted infections.
Risks of Eating Celery
While celery is a very common vegetable, this doesn’t mean that there aren’t any risks surrounding it.
First of all, the combination of certain oils and acids in celery seeds may cause uterine contractions for women, meaning that pregnant women may want to avoid eating anything related to celery seeds or its extracts.
Additionally, the fiber found in celery stalks is that of the insoluble kind. The human digestive tract has difficulty with digesting insoluble fibers. Although this is a normal characteristic of insoluble fibers (it is also the property that helps ease digestion), eating too much of this kind of fiber may cause diarrhea and other similar digestive tract issues.
Lastly, while celery is an excellent diet food, relying on it too much may adversely affect your health. Although the nutrients found in celery are generally healthy, there are simply not enough nutrients in the vegetable to provide for the body’s daily sustenance needs. Be sure to mix it up with other types of food when dieting in order to avoid malnutrition.