I’m usually not a fan of health fads. But I have kept up with one particular trend…
And not just the green smoothie concept [although those are pretty great]. I usually add a scoop of wheat grass to my smoothie, which most people would say is a waste of money.
What is wheatgrass?
Wheatgrass is derived from the wheat plant and contains iron, calcium, magnesium, amino acids, chlorophyll, and vitamins A, C and E (although depending on the type of grass purchased, these may not be present in large quantities).
What are its proposed benefits?
Assists in red blood cell formation, boosts the immune system, kills pathogenic bacteria, treats various diseases, and detoxifies the body.
What does the research say?
There have not been any credible or large scale studies conducted to substantiate the health claims of wheat grass.
Is it safe?
Generally safe to consume; however, pregnant women or anyone who is immune compromised should avoid use as it is considered a raw product and may be contaminated with bacteria/mold.
And the bottom line?
- If you’re looking for scientific evidence that wheatgrass = magic juice of life, you’ll be disappointed. However, some aspects of holistic nutrition are beneficial despite lacking substantial evidence.
- Wheatgrass contains a variety of nutrients that are beneficial for the body, but I take use it for the micronutrient properties because the kind I buy doesn’t contain them in significant quantities. I also appreciate the phytonutrients (no DRI/RDAs for these).
- A diet high in fruits and vegetables can provide adequate phytonutrients and antioxidants. Wheatgrass is not a substitute for good nutrition.
- Wheatgrass may be beneficial as a dietary supplement, meaning it may be a beneficial way to help meet nutrient needs. The absorption of specific nutrients from wheatgrass is unknown.
Am I wasting my money? Maybe according to the research, but I honestly note a difference in how I feel when taking wheatgrass, and that’s something I feel is worth the extra cash. While I eat a ton of vegetables, I’ve also found that drinking wheatgrass helps my immune system (exposed to 60 billion germs working at a children’s hospital).
Hope everyone has a lovely weekend (yes, I know it’s Wednesday. I’m just looking ahead…). Hopefully, I’ll be eating local food, running, and enjoying the spring weather as much as possible.
Speaking of local food, I’ve was just at Marie Catrib’s, a restaurant in Grand Rapids that uses local produce and is delicious (although a bit pricey); at any rate, it’s a nice treat.
This salad was fantastic. I forgot how amazing goat cheese tastes. Especially when combined with pesto. This dish might be recreated in the near future.
What are your thoughts on wheatgrass?