Chlorophyll’s Hidden Benefits
©By Dori Cranmore R.N., Holistic Health Practitioner
For many years the benefits of chlorophyll have been discovered in the field of science and research. What is chlorophyll, what makes it so special and what benefits can we get out of it?
Chlorophyll is the single most critical substance in plants that allows them to absorb light from the sun and convert that light into usable energy. All green plants contain at least one type of chlorophyll. It is usually easy to tell when a food has significant amounts of chlorophyll because chlorophyll provides the green color that is found in grasses, leaves and many of the vegetables what we eat.
Chlorophyll has a chemical structure that is very similar to that found within our red blood cells, or more specifically, our hemoglobin. The difference is that where hemoglobin contains iron, plants chlorophyll contains magnesium.
Ever wonder why bright green, fresh vegetables will turn an olive-grey if overcooked? When plants are heated, the magnesium is removed from the center and replaced with hydrogen which causes this color change. Overcooking fresh vegetables is important to avoid when it comes to chlorophyll, but with very short steaming times, the chlorophyll content of these foods is preserved, and absorption of chlorophyll from these foods may actually be increased. Consuming fresh, lightly steamed, green vegetables is an excellent way to obtain the health benefits of chlorophyll.
Forget about breath mints because you can never take enough to cover halitosis (bad breath) if your breath really smells bad. Often, bad breath is an indication of a toxic colon, and chlorophyll helps to remove many of the toxins. The best way to get rid of bad breath is to solve the problem internally. Mother Nature’s amazing green cleaning machine is found in chlorophyll. Start by eating some of the Worlds healthiest foods to help keep your body naturally deodorized. Asparagus, bell peppers, broccoli, brussel sprouts, green cabbage, celery, collard greens, green beans, green peas, kale, leeks, green olives, parsley, romaine lettuce, sea vegetables, spinach, swiss- chard and turnip greens are concentrated sources of chlorophyll.
Parsley is frequently used fresh in restaurants on many meals that are served, yet over 98% is thrown away because people don’t eat it as part of their meal. They see it as a decoration instead of nutrients.
People drink wheat grass and or take alfalfa, barley or spirulina supplements because these plants contain very high concentrations of chlorophyll and can help purify or cleanse toxins from the blood stream. Yerba maté tea, grown in South America, is one of the richest known sources of chlorophyll.
Chlorophyll has a long list of health benefits because of its anti-oxidant, anti-inflammatory and anti-carcinogenic properties. According to the USDA phytochemical database, Chlorophyll fights bedsores and can help prevent cancer (reduces the ability of carcinogens to bind with the DNA in different major organs in the body). It helps growth and repair of tissues as it stimulates red blood cells to improve oxygen supply,
it can neutralize the pollution that we breathe in (great for smokers and especially second hand smokers), it efficiently delivers magnesium which helps the blood carry oxygen to all cells and tissues, it helps assimilate and chelate calcium and other heavy minerals and proven effective in treating kidney stones. Along with other vitamins like A, C and E, chlorophyll has been known to help neutralize free radicals that do damage to healthy cells. Studies have shown it may be helpful in protecting your body against toxins and in reducing drug side effects.
The deodorizing benefits are effective for not only bad breath but urine, fecal waste and body odor. Pets respond very well to a little chlorophyll in their food or water. Women, just after delivery, do well building their red blood cells with chlorophyll which helps build iron and also assists in enriching breast milk. Many of the dog mushers use chlorophyll for their dogs on long runs to stimulate better oxygen levels.
Whether the chlorophyll is in liquid or tablet form, the benefits can allow you to enjoy a stronger immune system, strong set of tissues and organs and a naturally healthy body.
Dori Cranmore is a Registered Nurse, Holistic Health Practitioner and owner of All About Herbs, Inc. in Wasilla. For more information please call 376-8327.