Wheatgrass is the young grass of Triticum aestivum, which is also known as common wheat plant. The grass is considered extremely nutritious and hence, usually used to make juice or dried powder for human consumption. The juice contains several essential nutrients along with chlorophyll. The juice is available in many juice bars and health stores. Apart from juice, it can also be found in the form of tablets, powder and as shots. The shots are nothing but concentrated juice prepared from wheatgrass.
What's in the Shot
It is the concentrated juice prepared by squeezing fresh wheatgrass. Usually, people take a 30 ml shot once daily to derive all the benefits. This shot is taken in an empty stomach and before meals for therapeutic benefits. Many people also prefer to take a higher dose of up to 60 to 120 ml twice or thrice daily to get more benefits from the drink. On the other hand, people who consume it for detoxification take the shot 3 to 4 times a day. Such shots are available in many juice bars. But, these shots are relatively expensive, and for this reason people prefer to grow it at home to make shots on their own.
Any Health Benefits?
Wheatgrass can be simply termed as a power pack of nutrients like, vitamins, minerals, proteins, and above all chlorophyll. About two ounces has been found to contain vitamins and minerals, that can be found in approximately 3 pounds of vegetables. This grass is especially high in iron, magnesium, potassium, calcium and vitamin A, C, E and K. All these make wheatgrass extremely beneficial for promoting health and wellbeing.
- It has high level of chlorophyll. Chlorophyll has structural resemblance to hemoglobin, for which it is generally considered that human body can transform chlorophyll to hemoglobin. For this reason, it is believed that the shots or juice can facilitate the formation of red blood cells and improve blood circulation.
- The chlorophyll can also improve digestion, relieve constipation and detoxify the body. Additionally, a diet rich in chlorophyll is considered to be very helpful in lowering the risks of colon cancer.
- It also contains antioxidants, which can protect the body cells and tissues from the oxidative damage caused by the free radicals. This in turn, can prove helpful in lowering the risk of several life-threatening conditions including, certain types of cancer.
- In addition to all these benefits, these shots are effective in regulating the level of blood pressure and blood sugar. It can alleviate sores, ulcers and skin irritation as well. Even those trying to lose weight can benefit from the juice as it can help suppress appetite.
How to Make the Juice
First, take some fresh wheatgrass and clean it properly under running water. Now, chop it and add it slowly to your juicer, and put a small shot glass underneath to collect the juice. Continue adding the grass to the juicer, until the glass is filled. Drink this concentrated juice immediately without diluting. However, many people do not like the taste of this concentrated drink, and hence add other juices to it. As for example, you can use wheatgrass along with carrot, spinach, cucumber, celery and also fruits like, apple and orange to make the juice more pleasant to your taste buds.
Though the benefits are enormous, it should be taken in moderation. At times, intake of excessive juice can cause nausea, headache and diarrhea, which are its common side effects. Therefore, moderation is required while taking any kind of medication, herb or herbal and nutritional supplements. Regarding the appropriate dosage of wheatgrass drink or shot, you can consult your physician or health care provider. Lastly, some people can be allergic to it, in which case allergic reaction can be experienced after ingesting its juice. Symptoms of allergic reaction include, skin rash, hives, breathing problems and unusual swelling of the face, throat and lips. If you observe any of these symptoms after taking wheatgrass juice, immediately inform your physician.
Disclaimer: This HolisticZine article is for informative purposes only, and should not be replaced for the advice of a physician/nutritionist.