(NaturalNews) Many health conscious individuals are including green food concentrates such as Barley grass and other cereal grasses in their diets. The appeal being that Barley grass is richer in individual vitamins and enzymes than many other known super-foods. The real benefit and power of Barley grass is the combination of all these nutrients and enzymes in one food.
Barley grass is sprouted from barley seeds and is best consumed by juicing the grass sprouts (at 3 to 7 days old) to produce a powerful fresh green juice elixir. It is also available in powder form (spray-dried barley grass) and is very easily digested by the body.
Celebrity Nutritionist, Gillian McKeith, states in her book, "Living Food for Health: 12 Natural Super-foods to Transform Your Health", that barley grass offers more protein than a sirloin steak, five times the amount of iron as broccoli, seven times more vitamin C than orange juice and 11 times more calcium than milk.
Consuming Barley grass has also shown to balance the pH of the body. The average Western diet is fairly acidic especially when large quantities of processed foods are eaten. Raised acidity in the body is linked to many diseases and general ill-health. Barley grass is very alkalizing and useful for helping the cells in the body function optimally.
Studies on Barley Grass Research done on patients with ulcerative colitis showed that those given Barley grass showed significant improvements in their symptoms - including fewer episodes of diarrhoea and less pain - compared to the group receiving conventional medication (standard anti-inflammatory medication including steroids).
Ulcerative colitis is linked to low levels of friendly bacteria in the gut and an accumulation of toxins in the bowel. Barley grass helps reverse this by stimulating the growth of friendly bacteria, which in turn helps reduce inflammation and improves symptoms. Barley grass helps combat ulcerative colitis by lowering the amount of inflammatory chemicals in the bowel, including one called epithelial NF-k, and by balancing the water content of the bowel content. Studies also show that barley grass increases the amount of friendly bacteria in the patients' bowels.
Other studies done in Japan have shown that barley grass tea significantly improves the flow of blood as well as lowers the amount of LDL (Low Density Lipoprotein) cholesterol.
Barley grass has also shown promising results in preliminary studies done on its ability to inhibit certain cancer cell growths, mainly breast and prostate cancer. There are testimonies of cancer patients, who have been healed by consuming Barley grass and changing their lifestyles, but further studies are needed.
How To Include Barley Grass In Your Diet Enjoy barley grass in healthy smoothies or by juicing it. It's simple to grow all year round (by sprouting) on a sunny kitchen windowsill. Cut the grass with kitchen scissors to juice with carrots, apples, beetroot, parsley and celery. Its super-food status makes it well worth having in constant supply.
Try this super-food energising drink from the recipe below. Drink it straight away to benefit from the enzymes and nutrients - it makes enough for two. Use a juicer with a centrifugal twisting action. Ordinary juicers don't twist the juice out thoroughly enough.
Take 2 cups of fresh barley grass and juice with: 2 medium-sized beetroots 2 medium-sized carrots 2 celery sticks 1 cup of parsley 1 large peeled apple or two smaller ones.
Other healthy grasses you can sprout and eat are alfalfa grass, oat grass and wheat grass.
1. "Dr. Gillian McKeith's Living Food for Health: 12 Natural Superfoods to Transform Your Health"; Gillian McKeith, M.D.; 2005
Katherine Oosthuis is completing a Diploma in Nutritional Therapy. She researches and writes for a health and nutrition website Detox For Life . Her passion is to make research available to those who are looking to improve their well-being and revolutionise their health through better nutrition and alternative medicines.