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Issue 164: Super Grasses

Super Grasses

Barley grass, like other cereal grasses, is a superfood, a food noted for its nutritional power and health benefits. It’s no wonder that it’s called a superfood, either. Barley grass contains an array of vitamins such as A, B, C, E and K; minerals, including calcium; iron, enzymes and amino acids. Truth be told, barley grass has traces of over four dozen vitamins and minerals. It’s also noted for its chlorophyll and antioxidant content as well as its treasure trove of electrolyte minerals: potassium, magnesium and phosphorus. (And don't forget that you'll want to make sure it's Certified USDA Organic and Non-GMO Project Verified so that it's clean.)

In her book Living Food for Health: 12 Natural Super-foods to Transform Your Health, celebrity nutritionist Gillian McKeith praises barley grass. She says that barley grass offers more protein than a sirloin steak; five times the amount of iron as broccoli; seven times more vitamin C than orange juice; and 11 times more calcium than milk.


Studies are praising barley grass, too. In fact, clinical studies involving the intake of barley grass powder indicate that it can support healthy cholesterol levels, improve the health of those with unhealthy blood sugar levels and also support a healthy weight.

That’s not all this green goodness can do, though. In-vitro studies indicate that barley grass extract also scavenges those pesky and destructive free radicals, making it a powerful antioxidant, too. It also has an alkalizing effect and helps the body’s cells function at their optimal levels. Additionally, studies reveal that barley grass increases the amount of friendly bacteria in the gut.

Other greens, including grasses, you might be interested in are alfalfa grass, oat grass, wheat grass and kamut grass. Technically, alfalfa is a legume, but the green leaves are often referred to as grass. Those leaves contain tons of amino acids, calcium, magnesium and potassium, as well as vitamins A, D, E and K. Alfalfa is also rich in phytonutrients, including chlorophyll, and dozens of trace minerals.

Oat grass is antioxidant rich due to its huge supply of chlorophyll. Like most true nutritional grasses, it contains surprising amounts of protein and amino acids.

Perhaps the most well known of the grasses, wheat grass and its juice are common sights in health-oriented juice bars. Chlorophyll comprises a majority of wheat grass and, along with ample amounts of vitamin E, that makes wheat grass a potent antioxidant.

Whereas wheat grass is well known, kamut is far less familiar to the average person. That’s a shame, too, since kamut contains more protein than wheat grass (up to 50 percent more), and possesses higher levels of minerals such as selenium, zinc and magnesium.

You can see why people love these super grasses, including barley grass. They’re a super way to add more green foods to your life!


This information is intended for educational and informational purposes only. It should not be used in place of an individual consultation or examination or replace the advice of your health care professional and should not be relied upon to determine diagnosis or course of treatment.

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