The health benefits of celery are surprising. This vegetable is more nutritious than most people realize. Instead of being forgotten and soggy sitting along side the chicken wings that were ordered, celery should be part of your regular diet. Learn about the great health benefits, and how to incorporate this veggie into your everyday meals and snacks.
Nutritional Facts for Celery
There are only 18 calories in one serving of celery. It actually takes more work for your body to eat and digest this vegetable than the celery contains. It is a good source of riboflavin, vitamin B6, and pantothenic acid. There are also minerals, including calcium, magnesium and phosphorus. It is a very good source of fiber, vitamin A, vitamin C, and vitamin K. Celery also contains folate, potassium and manganese. There is virtually no glycemic load and it is mildly anti-inflammatory. It is also very nutritious and very filling, taking few servings to make you feel satisfied.
Celery benefits include the high content of vitamin C, which protects your body from inflammation, free radical damage, and even the common cold. There are also potential blood pressure lowering benefits. Celery has actually been used in Chinese medicine as a way to lower blood pressure for centuries. New research in the West is supporting this, in lab tests it was revealed that a compound in celery helps the muscles around blood vessels relax. This allows more space for blood to easily flow, which lowers blood pressure. It also reduces stress hormones.
Getting Celery into Your Diet
Celery makes a great snack. Keep in mind that if you are used to snacking on things like chips that it will take your taste buds time to adjust. Try spreading some peanut butter on celery sticks. You can also try adding a little miso paste. Instead of using high fat dressings, dip your celery in hummus. Hummus tastes great and comes in a variety of flavors, a personal favorite is roasted red pepper hummus.
Simple Celery and Carrots
You will need:
-2 cups vegetable stock
-4 ounces of chopped celery
-7 ounces chopped carrots
-Sea salt and ground pepper
Bring your stock to a rapid boil in a medium sauce pot. Add the veggies, letting them cook until the carrots are tender. This usually takes 10 minutes or so. Scoop the vegetables onto a plate, and pour the remaining liquid over the top. Salt and pepper to taste. This simple recipe makes a great side dish for classic country meals. You can also combine it with rice. One serving contains just 49 calories and 14% of your daily recommended amount of fiber.
The health benefits of celery should be kept in mind. It can lower blood pressure and relieve stress. Celery also offers plenty of vitamins and minerals. It makes an excellent snack food, since not very much is needed before you feel full. Try combining it with peanut butter or hummus to dress it up some. You can also cook simple meals with it.