“Ants on a Log” has got to be one of the most brilliant childhood snacks ever conceived. Not only did the fun little combination of peanut butter, raisins and celery provide a healthy alternative to processed snacks through the relatable elements of critters in nature, but the snack was a subtle lesson in balancing food groups and flavor profiles. It’s a real pity that the high frequency of nut allergies amongst today’s children means many kids will never enjoy this particular tasty life lesson.
To adults, celery most often gets passed over. Somewhere along the line we began to see celery as merely a resource to our kitchen instead of a fun and edible food. While celery still has its role in classic dishes like chicken soup, it’s often scoffed for hardly being worth the calories taken to chew it. So you might be surprised that the celery plant has more to offer than being your meal’s garnish or a weight-loss snack paired with carrot sticks.
There are actually several types of celery. People are most familiar with the long and vibrantly limbed Pascal or “stalk celery.” Celeriac is another type of celery that is growing in prominence because it’s root is considered so tasty. Then there’s Smallage or “wild celery” where celery seed comes from. And it’s celery seed that contains quite a few potential health benefits.
Celery Seed for Digestive Health
Celery seed has been used traditionally as a support for digestive health and abdominal comfort. Celery seed is believed to promote bowel regularity and may support the removal of excess fluids in the body. Some people suggest it may even help with loss of appetite.
Celery seed is also recommended for healthy weight management since it is thought to be a good metabolic agent. One way to use celery seed for weight management is by making a tea from ground seeds. One recipe calls for one teaspoon of crushed celery seed to be boiled in one cup of water for twenty minutes or until the tincture becomes one half cup. Combined with a daily workout routine, such a beverage is thought to give your body extra support for weight management.
Celery Seed for Nerve Health
Another use for celery seed tea is to support the nervous system and provide an overall calming effect. Celery seed is also used in aromatherapy. The oil of celery seed is said to have a tiring effect on the brain. One may want to combine celery seed oil with sandalwood to have this effect. A nice warm bath using about ten or drops of celery seed oil, in combination with burning celery seed essential oil in an oil lamp, can be an effective way to relax your muscles and mind.
Whether we are sleeping efficiently can have an effect on whether we feel exhausted or refreshed and at ease. Celery seed has been said to help with the body get proper sleep. Celery seed contains the very important nutrient magnesium, which has been linked to a healthy sleep cycle. Magnesium is a cofactor for hundreds of enzymes that play many important roles in the body, including protein synthesis, muscle and nerve function, and blood glucose control.
Celery seed has quite the array of potential health benefits. In addition to the above uses, celery seed has been used traditionally as a mosquito repellant and even for love potions. Researchers continue to investigate the ways that celery seed might be beneficial for women undergoing painful menstrual symptoms since the apiol in celery seed is thought to benefit the endocrine system.
So perhaps it’s time to invest a couple inches of cabinet space for some celery seed. After all, it stores much better than all those leafy stalks of celery.