A Great Herbal Heart and Blood Pressure Healer

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Pleasant and inexpensive. Not a cure-all by any means but a good start. One to put on your table that is pleasant to eat as well. An herb of many talents, Parsley. That sprig of green that I see so many leave on their plate in restaurants.

This herb supplies important vitamins and minerals, for instance, just ј cup of fresh organic parsley provides a third of your daily vitamin C requirement. It's high vitamin C and A content also helps fight cancer. Parsley ranks higher than most vegetable in bistidine an amino acid that inhibits tumors. In addition, parsley is an excellent source of potassium, which is important in lowering blood pressure. Also supplies folic acid, which helps prevent cardiovascular disease. It also contains calcium, manganese and iron.

Is it any wonder that a Mediterranean diet is one of the known healthy diets? The average Mediterranean inhabitant eats lots of parsley in a lot of different dishes.

The Medieval German herbalist St Hildegard of Bingen prescribed parsley wine to improve blood circulation. It was believed to help heart conditions. To make parsley wine, combine 10 - 12 large sprigs of parsley with 1 quart of red or white wine and 2 teaspoons of white-wine vinegar. Boil for 10 minutes then add 9 ounces of honey. Strain the mixture and pour into bottles. Take 1 Tbsp. Three times a day is said to keep the blood circulating.

WARNING: If you are taking blood pressure medications do Not drink parsley wine as your blood pressure may go too low.

Tips:

  • Parsley contains essential oils; the most important one, apiole, is a kidney stimulant. Because these essential oils can stimulate uterine contractions, pregnant women should avoid eating large quantities of it. BUT, after the baby is born, parsley can help tone the uterus and promote lactation.

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  • Don't cook parsley, because heat destroys its valuable vitamins and minerals. To retain parsley's flavor, chop the herb just before using and add it to hot foods at the last minute.

  • Avoid dried parsley, it is far less tasty and less healthful than the fresh herb.

  • Try the flat leaf variety, also called Italian parsley, It has more nutrients and a better flavor than curly parsley.

  • Add parsley to compliment a dish, such as potatoes, smoked salmon, trout, poultry, pasta and vegetables.

  • Freeze fresh parsley to save preparation time in the kitchen. Wash, zip seal plastic bag. You can then remove the amount you need with each recipe.

  • To keep parsley fresh, sprinkle it with water, wrapping it in paper towels and refrigerating it in a plastic bag. Or place parsley stems in a glass of water, like a bunch or flowers, and refrigerate.

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Lena Sanchez Author of "Handbook Of Herbs To Health

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