As I talk with people around me, it is so clear that they get overwhelmed with health fads and all of the little new discoveries that people claim will completely change their health. Because I can hear the anxiety in their voices, I always try to remind people that small changes make big shifts. You don’t have to start some crazy new diet, you just need to make those small changes that can help you to be healthier.
With that said, I don’t often share fads or trends or the hot new health thing. It takes me a while of experimenting with something new to decide that it has enough benefits that I want to keep doing it. So I’m finally ready to share a new health love with you: celery juice!
I started drinking celery juice more than a year ago, and I still regularly drink it. It has so many benefits that I just didn’t know about!
The Benefits of Celery
When I first started drinking celery juice a year ago, my friend Karen Kipp shared that it is a part of her juice cleanse. For her book, The Decadent Detox, she has done a lot of research on celery juice, which she shared with me.
Historically, celery was used as a hangover cure and to boost libido. Recent research on celery has proven that there are a variety of health benefits from consuming it.
- Celery can have a calming effect that promotes deep sleep
- Celery is alkalizing, meaning it helps to shifts the body away from an acidic environment to an alkaline one which promotes health
- It promotes detoxification
- It calms inflammation
- Celery is effective against respiratory conditions like bronchitis and asthma
- It helps lower blood pressure
- It can help replace electrolytes after a workout, because it contains sodium and potassium
- It is a natural laxative and diuretic, and supports bowel and kidney health
- Celery is loaded with nutrients, including:
- Essential amino acids
- Vitamins A, B complex, and C
- Minerals calcium, phosphorus, iron, magnesium, iodine, and copper
Many studies have been done on the effects of celery. Researchers found that it decreases oxidative stress. Our bodies need to be able to balance the amount of stress they can get rid of and the amount of stress they’re exposed to in the environment. By decreasing oxidative stress, celery improves that balance.
Celery has also been found to inhibit the growth of breast cancer cells. Through the month of October, we’ve heard a lot about breast cancer awareness and have heard many stories of survivors or those still dealing with treatment. New research is finding many new treatment possibilities, and ways that we can put the odds in our favor to maintain our health.
More research is being done on celery and cancer, but scientists have isolated two compounds that are part of celery’s impact. The first is polyacetylenes, which is a chemo-protective compound. Research has shown it fights against the formation of breast cancer cells, intestinal cancer cells, and leukemia cells. The second is apigenin, which causes death of cancerous cells.
Are you convinced? Great! Let’s get some celery added to your diet!
Option one is just to eat celery. The lower blood pressure benefit showed up in a study where patients ate 4 sticks of celery each day. It’s not much, and you’ll get the benefits if you eat it plain or with a little peanut butter.
Option two is to juice it. When you juice celery, you get all of the nutritional benefits, but you can consume even more and the nutrients are more concentrated.
Think about it this way: If I handed you a bunch of celery, you could pull off a couple of stalks and eat them. But you’d definitely be tired of it after three stalks. If we juice that same big bunch of organic celery, you’ll get (at most) a 16 ounce glass of juice, and you can drink it all in just a few minutes. You’ll get the same amount of nutrients as if you had eaten the entire bunch!
Karen Kipp recommends that you juice all of the celery, including the leaves. The natural salts are more abundant in the leaves, so you don’t want to miss out on those benefits. You can drink the celery juice plain, or you can add other vegetables to mix it up. The flavor of the celery will get more assertive over time, so it’s best to juice it and drink it right away. If you need to, you can seal it in a glass jar and store it in the fridge overnight.
My advice is always that small changes make big shifts, and that if we focus on making small changes to add healthy habits to our life, we can put the odds in our favor to manage or overcome any ailments, diseases, or injuries that we might come across in our future.
You don’t suddenly have to add celery juice to your morning routine every single day. But if you already juice a couple of times a week, throw in a bunch of celery once in a while. If you haven’t tried juicing, test it out by finding a juice bar near you and see how it makes you feel. If you don’t want to juice, but you do want the benefits of celery, pack a few celery sticks as an afternoon snack. These small things will still give you the benefits that you need.