Parsley and its therapeutic effects


By its Latin name Petrosellinum crispus, parsley is one of the most popular spices, which in addition to its important nutritional qualities also has special therapeutic qualities. Native to the Eastern Mediterranean, its name derives from the Greek 'petros' meaning stone and 'selinon' meaning celery. So the ancient Greeks knew it as rock celery and gave it special attention and significance. It was considered a sacred plant dedicated to Persephone and used in the funerary and religious rituals of the ancient Greeks, and was not consumed in food.
Nowadays, however, the plant is mainly used in food, and the attention paid by scientific circles in recent times has revealed the particular therapeutic power of the plant.

What parsley contains
          All three parts: root, leaves and fruit (seeds) contain particularly valuable chemical compounds. Thus the seeds contain volatile oil, in appreciable quantities, rich in terpenes and apiol, myristicin, coumarins, apiin, resins, mucilage and iron. The particular therapeutic value of the volatile oil is due to its apiol content. The root is rich in mucilage and carbohydrates, carbohydrates, aromatic volatile oil and apiin. The leaves also contain a quantity of aromatic volatile oil and are very rich in chlorophyll, flavonoids, vitamins C, A and E, as well as iron.
Medicinal properties of parsley
Aperitif, antioxidant, carminative, diuretic, hemostatic, depurative, antianemic, hypoglycemic, anti-inflammatory, antiatherosclerotic, hypocholesterolemic, antibronchial, antihypertensive, antiviral, hepatotonic, hepatotrophic, nutritive, immunostimulant, emmenagogue, tonic, vitaminizing.

Therapeutic indications

Anaemia With its rich content in iron (5mg per 100g leaves) and chlorophyll, it is highly recommended for patients with iron deficiency anaemia and iron deficiency in the body, and its vitamin C content makes this element more easily absorbed by the body.
Colds, flu, infections (in general) Thanks to its high flavonoid and vitamin C content (3 times higher than citrus fruits), it stimulates immunity and accelerates healing in case of infections.
Hypertension- Its diuretic, vasodilating and calming effects are of real use in patients with hypertension, frequent consumption of this product lowers blood pressure values and increases the elasticity of the vascular walls, and is also indicated in varicose veins or circulatory problems.
Immunostimulant Luteolin, a substance extracted from parsley leaves, has been shown to stimulate leukocyte production and together with the chlorophyll it contains, makes it effective in cases of decreased immunity.
Kidney disease Parsley leaves and parsley root are good diuretics and depuratives, increase the amount of waste products eliminated (urates, phosphates), have diuresis-increasing effects, and are useful both in preventing and treating renal lithiasis and cystitis.
Menstrual cycle regulator Due to the emmenagogic and estrogenic effect generated by the apiol in parsley seeds and leaves, it is successfully used in cases of dysmenorrhoea, postmenopausal syndrome, infertility in women, sexual dysfunction. Apiol also has uterostimulant effects and is recommended to be avoided by pregnant women.
Rheumatism, atritis and gout - The diuretic effect due to the myristicin in the volatile oil, combined with the anti-inflammatory effect of flavonoids and the depurative effect of the chlorophyll in the leaves, makes parsley an excellent remedy against rheumatism, arthritis and gout, when consumed in therapeutic doses.
Indigestion and other digestive problems It is a good carminative, an effect due to the components in the volatile oil and an effective antispasmodic, used in cases of abdominal cramps, indigestion and abdominal meteorism.
Lung cancer - Research has shown that the myristicin in the volatile oil has lung tumour inhibiting qualities and its antioxidant compounds protect the body against air pollutants, being useful in case of tobacco bronchitis, allergic asthma.

How to administer

          It is best administered as parsley leaf juice combined with carrot juice. You can also use the fresh green leaves in salads, soups, broths, or dried as a powder, taken 1 g three times a day before meals. The volatile oil should be used with caution, only on the advice of a herbalist, due to adverse effects that may occur at high doses. The root can be used fresh or dried and is very valuable both nutritionally and therapeutically.


Precautions for use

 Parsley juice can cause digestive disorders and should therefore only be used diluted with carrot juice.
 In high doses parsley juice can give nervous hyper excitability in children and adults.
 Not to be used in large doses by pregnant women (especially seeds) as it has abortifacient effects.
 Parsley volatile oil can give allergic skin reactions in some sensitive people.

Dr. Violeta Pirvu