The Powers of Parsley and Cilantro
Eating green is a pleasure with fresh parsley and cilantro. Among the fresh herbs, these two are probably the easiest to find and easiest to start using. And for the beginning gardener, these two fresh herbs are a great way to exercise your green thumb! Buy them or grow them, either way you can simply toss these fresh herbs into your favorite dishes or new creations to add wonderful flavor and color. Packed with antioxidants, parsley and cilantro are a great way to boost nutrition. With all they have going for them, it’s no wonder parsley and cilantro play a starring role in the recipes and meal plans of our book The Fat Resistance Diet.
Parsley and Cilantro Benefits
Parsley is an excellent source of beta carotene, an antioxidant that can help protect the body against free-radical damage and fight the effects of aging. Parsley is also a source of the carotenoids lutein and zeaxanthin, which help to preserve vision. Zeaxanthin, along with its relative lutein, is essential for preventing macular degeneration. Parsley contains Vitamin A, Vitamin C and Vitamin K.
Cilantro, also known as Asian parsley or coriander, is a frequent garnish in Latin and Asian cuisines. In research studies, cilantro’s remarkable components have shown the potential to help promote detoxification, reduce high blood sugar and lower levels of cholesterol. Cilantro is a source of Vitamin A and beta carotene.
Here is a great tip you can pick up from restaurant chefs: Adding a sprinkle of fresh parsley or cilantro adds a quick and easy splash of freshness and color to dishes. When shopping for herbs, freshness is key. Look for bright green leaves that are perky like fresh cut flowers. Organic herbs are becoming more popular, choose them when available.
To use, simply tear off a handful of parsley or cilantro leaves and soak them in water in a bowl. Swish the herbs around in the water with your fingers to speed the removal of any sand or dirt. Rinse them well and then dry. Break the herbs into pieces, then sprinkle them over favorite dishes such as soups, salads, pizzas, pastas—the ways to enjoy these beautiful herbs are endless. We reach for parsley when making Italian and French dishes. For Latin favorites such as salsa or chili, cilantro is perfect. Cilantro also pairs well with Asian dishes such as stir-fried vegetables.
Using fresh herbs is a great way to be a little adventurous and enjoy your creativity in the kitchen. For more delicious ways to enjoy parsley and cilantro, including a one-day meal plan with healthy recipes, visit www.fatresistancediet.com.
This article is provided for general educational purposes only and is not intended to constitute medical advice or counseling, the practice of medicine or the provision of health care diagnosis or treatment, the creation of a physician-patient relationship, or an endorsement, recommendation or sponsorship of any third-party product or service by the sender or the sender’s affiliates, agents, employees, or service providers. If you have or suspect that you have a medical problem, contact your doctor promptly.
By Leo Galland M.D. and Jonathan Galland