“Celery is the athlete’s secret weapon . . . [with] a string of nutrients that keep energy high.”
Type: Stimulating tonic
Properties: Nervine, antioxidant, anti-inflammatory, diuretic
Part Used: Stalks, leaves, seeds
Preparation and Dose: Eat celery as part of a healthy diet. Use celery seed to season soups, beans, grains. As little as four celery stalks a day significantly improves blood pressure readings.
Celery contains: Vitamins B1, B2, B3, B5, B6, C, E, K, carotenes, biotin, and folates (folic acid); calcium, iodine, iron, magnesium, manganese, molybdenum, phosphorus, potassium, selenium, sodium, and zinc; fiber.
Cautions: Celery seed oil is sold, but I consider it dangerous to use without professional advice.
Compounds in both parsley and celery can be harsh on the kidneys, and this effect is most pronounced in the oil of the seeds. I do not feel comfortable with celery juice either.
It comes as a surprise to many people that celery was brought into cultivation as a medicinal plant. As milder-flavored varieties were created, celery found a place at the table.
Celery counters hypertension in numerous ways. First, it is an excellent source of potassium, magnesium, and calcium – minerals known to help keep blood pressure low. Celery also lowers blood pressure by tonifying the smooth muscles which line the blood vessels. Phthalides found in celery relax the arteries, causing a drop in blood pressure. Phthalides also lower blood pressure (by about 14 percent in most studies) by reducing the amount of circulating stress hormones and calming the central nervous system.
Phthalides in celery have been shown to reduce circulating cholesterol levels by about 7 percent. Fiber, abundant in celery, also locks
up cholesterol and prevents it from gumming up the works.
Celery contains luteolin, one of many carotenes found in plants. Luteolin protects the linings of the blood vessels and counters
the formation of cholesterol plaque. Regular ingestion of celery improves blood flow and strengthens the muscles of the arteries. Celery
helps heal injuries to the inner lining of all vessels.
Celery contains coumarins, blood thinning compounds that help prevent stroke, and help healing after a stroke as well.
All parts of the celery are heart-healthy, but the seeds have the scientific focus, as they are stronger in their actions than the leaves and stalks. They have been found to lower LDL cholesterol and raise HDL cholesterol. They are useful as a diuretic to lower blood pressure.
Celery seed improves overall cholesterol use in the body by improving liver function. And they contain linoleic acid, an essential fatty acid which helps keep the heart healthy.
Celery seed is as powerful an anti-inflammatory as willow bark or aspirin, and rarely causes internal bleeding or ulceration. A compound isolated from celery seed is currently being investigated as the basis for a new stroke-preventing drug.