Asparagus belongs to the lily family along with leeks, garlic, and onions. It can be of a few hundreds of varieties, but only several of them are edible.
Asparagus is available all year round, but it is best in spring and should be harvested when it has reached 6-8 inches. It has a spear top with bud-like, compact and pointed head.
The asparagus variety we consume is green or greenish purple in color, and it is expensive since it is harvested by hand and produced in small volumes.
It is low in calories and carbs, but rich in protein. It is abundant in potassium, folate, vitamins A, C and K, and traces of vitamin B complex, as well as dietary fiber, niacin, and phosphorus.
This vegetable is among the few ones that contain calcium and magnesium in the ideal ratio of 2:1. It is high in an amino acid called asparagine, which cleanses the body.
Here are some of the numerous benefits of this vegetable:
1. Asparagus is rich in minerals that control blood sugar levels, and are beneficial in the case of diabetes and hypoglycemia;
2. Asparagus juice is highly alkaline, and it neutralizes blood acidity and cleanses the tissues and muscles of waste;
3. It has a mild laxative effect and is rich in dietary fiber so it ensures regular bowel movements;
4. It is rich in antioxidants and glutathione that prevent cancer;
5. It contains a unique phytochemical which has powerful anti-inflammatory effects that relieve arthritis and rheumatism;
6. The antioxidants and glutathione in asparagus improve vision and prevent the progression of cataracts and other eye problems;
7. This vegetable has diuretic effects, especially in juice form;
8. Asparagus juice relieves premenstrual swelling and bloating, and the high magnesium levels treat depression, fatigue, and irritability;
9. Asparagus is high in folate, calcium and other minerals which lower the risk of birth defects and low birth weight, while its diuretic effects treat water retention during pregnancy;
10. To improve heart health, drink a small amount of asparagus juice mixed with raw honey three times daily;
11. It has potent diuretic and alkaline properties that prevent or dissolve kidney stones.
The rich phytonutrients content detoxifies the body, and support kidney and bladder functions, cleanses them, eliminates bacteria and toxins, boosts urination flow, and breaks up uric acid and eliminates it from the body;
12. It contains chlorophyll and other phytonutrients that cleanse the liver and improve its function;
When you purchase asparagus, make sure you choose straight and firm stalks with tight tips. If you need to store it, keep it dry and tightly-wrapped in a plastic bag for up to three days in the refrigerator.
You can eat it raw, juice it, or lightly steam it to preserve the minerals and sodium.
You can add asparagus to any vegetable juice you prefer, but you should try the following delicious recipes:
Asparagus and apple juice
- 1 cup of asparagus
- 2 apples
You do not need to peel the apples or trim off the bottoms of the asparagus spears. Just rinse the asparagus, and wash and core the apples to remove any trace of pesticides and seeds. Then, mix them in the juicer. You can also add a bit of lemon juice.
Asparagus Celery Juice
- 4 asparagus spears
- 2 celery stalks
- 2 large carrots
Add the asparagus spears, celery stalks, and carrots in the juicer, juice them and pour the delicious juice in glasses.
Asparagus, Carrot and Tomato Juice
- 1/2 lb Asparagus spears
- 1 lb carrots
- 1 Tomato
Add all ingredients in the juicer, and enjoy the refreshing taste!
These juices are a delicious way to increase the consumption of asparagus, enjoy its detoxifying, and alkalizing properties, and reap all its health benefits!