Wheatgrass is a cereal grass. Along with alfalfa and barley grass, wheat grass has been found to be beneficial for health since the beginning of the last century. During this time it has been used to improve the health of humans and animals. In the early 1960’s nutritionist and holistic health practitioner, Ann Wigmore, began to promote the health benefits of wheat grass after using it to cure her own colitis.
Wheatgrass is the young grass of the wheat plant (Triticum aestivum). It can be juiced and drunk while fresh or dried and powdered and made into drinks or added to food. It is easy to grow at home indoors. It is also available in health food stores in powder and tablet form, frozen juice and as fresh juice shots.
Wheatgrass contains vitamins A, B1, B2, B3, B5, B6, B8, and B12; C, E and K and all eight essential amino acids as well as thirteen of the sixteen non-essential amino acids. A single teaspoon of wheatgrass juice has only ten calories and almost a whole gram of protein. It also contains 8mcg of iodine, 15mg of calcium ,879 mcg of iron and 62mcg of zinc. Wheatgrass also contains Superoxide Dismutase (SOD). Because of the high content of chlorophyll, wheatgrass is believed to assist in blood flow, improve digestion and boost the overall detoxification of the body. Some studies have also shown that diets high in chlorophyll are related to lower incidences of colon cancer.
Wheatgrass has a number of health benefits because of its high chlorophyll content. It can relieve allergies and clear up congestion. This also helps combat and prevent cold symptoms. In topical form it can ease the pain of minor burns and stings as well as sunburn. It is believed to help the body eliminate toxins, particularly those found in fluoridated water. It also reduces bad breath and body odor. Chlorophyll is also believed to have the ability to cure anemia, stimulating normal red blood cell count. Wheatgrass juice is high in beta-carotene, which the body converts into vitamin A. A study conducted by Dr. Chiu-nan Lai, Ph.D., at the University of Texas Cancer Center, Dept. of Biology in Houston, Texas, showed that chlorophyll can prevent certain types of cancer. Wheatgrass also helps prevent the build-up of bacteria.
Sprout grass seeds in water for about six hours then sow in a seed tray containing fifty percent top soil and fifty percent peat moss. The soil should be two inches in depth. Water the tray lightly. Place the tray in direct sunlight for seven to ten days, watering as needed. Once the wheatgrass reaches seven inches in height, it is ready to harvest. It should be juiced immediately to obtain the full nutritional benefit.
Blend together the following ingredients ; 1/2 cup milk (you can use cow’s milk, goat’s milk, soy milk or rice milk, 1 teaspoon honey, 1 heaping teaspoon wheatgrass powder, 1/4 cup frozen berries (experiment with raspberries, blueberries and cranberries, they are all high in antioxidants) and 1/4 banana.