Apium graveolens, that’s fun to say! It’s also the scientific name for celery. Recently I notice a lot of fad health infographics and articles touting celery as a ‘negative calorie food’, meaning it takes more calories to process than it contains as body fuel, but I’m going to say firmly that that is not really a thing, sadly.
That is not to say however, that celery is not very beneficial for detox and weight loss too. Cultivated originally in the Mediterranean basin with documented reference as early as 850 BC for medicinal purposes, it has many health benefits.
Celery is a great liver cleanser and can reduce liver fat, a dangerous but nearly asymptomatic condition from too much alcohol, rapid weight loss, high cholesterol or excessive acetaminophen consumption. It also contains an amazing little oily compound called *NBP, which has a diuretic effect to reduce bloating and ease digestion, making it great after a hedonistic holiday or bout of drinking.
Until I started experimenting with celery, I was bored by it. Eating it begrudgingly as raw crudité or finally, when it was sad and wilted in my vegetable drawer, boiling it for soup broth. Snooze. These recipes give celery a few twists and get me excited about celery season from September to November:
- Toning Tonic Cocktail: Celery Grapefruit & Apple (Naughty or Nice)
- Celery & Warm Kale Salad with Spicy Peanut Dressing
- Guacamole Au Celery
California Celery Research Advisory Board – www.celeryresearch.com
*NBP, also known as 3-n-butylphthalide