Celery (Qin Cai)
Botanical Name: Apium graveolens
Celery stimulates the nervous system and mineralizes the body. Because celery is both a diuretic and depurative it makes it a perfect ingredient for weight-loss programs. 3 glasses of celery juice a day is excellent for treating rheumatism, allergies, stomach disorders, detoxifying, and as an all-round aphrodisiac. Celery has an alkalizing effect on the body, which can help counteract the degenerative effects of the too acid diet many eat today. The high silicon levels in celery help renew joints, bone, arteries and connective tissues. Celery is one of the few vegetables that combines well with fruit making it an easy addition to fruit dishes, salads and juices. Celery builds energy, cleanses, calms you and tastes good too!
Below is an overview of Celery, combining and interpreting the best of Western Science, Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM), Shamanism, Folklore and more. Gain a balanced and thorough understanding of the healing properties of Celery.
Western Name: Celery
Also Known As: Smallage, Wild Celery, Celery Root
Organs/Systems: Digestion, Kidneys, Skin, Blood
Key Western Actions & Medicinal Uses: Aphrodesiac, Detoxifier, Antioxidant, Diuertic, Dichlordic, Depurative, Energizing, Hypoglycemic, Expectorant, Emollient, Laxative, Carminative stimulant, Tonic, Nervine, Anti-inflammatory.
Pin Yin: Qin Cai
Also Known As: N/A
Meridians: Kidney, Stomach, Spleen, Liver
Key TCM Actions & Medicinal Uses: Tonifies the Spleen and Stomach/Tonifies Qi: aids digestion, flatulance, loss-of-appetite, energizes. Cools the Liver/Relieves Damp: headaches, dysmenorrhea, menopausal disorders, gout, rheumatisms. Purifies the Blood. Promotes Sweating: colds, flus, fevers. Promotes Urination: cleanses the kidney and bladder, relieves heat in the body. Stops Bleeding: heavy menses, wounds, ulcers.
Parts Most Frequently Used: Stalks, Leafs, Root, Seeds
Flavors/Temps: Slightly Pungent, Slightly Bitter, Slightly Sweet, Cool, Aromatic
Caution: Extremely safe. Some very few can have an allergic reaction to celery and as celery is a diuretic, be aware if you are suffering from extremely low blood pressure as large doses could leave you feeling faint.
History/Folklore: Celery was used by the Ancient Greeks to make wine. They also valued it for its aphrodisiac and medicinal properties. The Romans used celery leaves to make their “Winner’s Crowns.” They also used it to cure a hangover, some folks say that is the reason a celery stick is included in the popular “Blood Mary” beverage. The plant’s high water content, sodium, potassium and vitamin C would all contribute to easing a morning after hangover.
The fruit and seeds can be dried or pressed into oil. This volatile oil can be used as a medicine and as an ingredient in perfumes. The roots and seeds have been used for centuries as a natural diuretic, helping to rid the body of toxins and increase urine output. It has a long history of tonifing the kidneys.
To prepare an infusion use four spoonfuls of celery powder in 1 liter of boiling water. Once boiled, pass the liquid through a sieve. One cup a day can be used for hoarseness, intestinal gas or for its diuretic/laxative properties. An infusion of 2 spoonfuls of grained celery will stimulate the nervous system. A glass of cold water with a spoonful of grained celery root left to macerate is a good mixture for treating anorexia.
The natural organic sodium in celery is very safe for consumption and is, in fact, essential to the body. Many who are sensitive to regular table salt can use celery powder as a safe alternative.
Celery provides many of the essential amino acids that the body cannot produce itself.
One cup of chopped celery has only 19 calories AND it takes more calories to chew and eat a stick of celery then the stick contains!!
Due to celery’s highly stabilizing compounds, in particular, phtyalides, the Chinese use it in particular to treat high blood pressure. They also consider celery a wonderful Qi (Energy) building and tonic vegetable and herb.
If celery has wilted a bit, simply sprinkle it with water, wrap in paper towel and replace in the refrigerator for a few hours.
While many foods loose their nutritional qualities during cooking, celery experiences only a very slight minimal loss.
Volatile oil, Apiol, Silicon, Phthalides, Coumarins, Vitamins A, B1, B2, B6, C, E, K, PP, Iron, Calcium, Phosphorous, Potassium, Sodium, Magnesium and Zinc.
Eliminate Intestinal Parasites
Traditionally celery has been used to eliminate intestinal parasites.
Highly Nutritious and Healing
Celery is both an alimentary and medicinal herb, meaning it is highly nutritious as well having healing properties.
Best Eaten Raw
Celery’s therapeutic properties are best preserved when it is eaten raw. Juicing is another great way to access the plants many nutritional properties.
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