Made either from the fresh leaves of Triticum aestivum or dried wheatgrass powder, a 30-milliliter shot of wheatgrass juice contains just five calories, but packs a powerful punch. For example, it boasts phytonutrients that help in preventing diseases like cancer, rheumatoid arthritis and bronchial disorders.
So, if you're looking for a juice to change up your morning juicing routine, consider a shot of wheatgrass juice for a boost of energy and daily doses of vitamins. One shot of wheatgrass contains up to 12 milligrams of vitamin C.
About Wheatgrass Powder
According to Mayo Clinic, wheatgrass is a juvenile grass with the scientific name, Triticum aestivum, originating from the wheat family. An October 2015 study published in the Journal of Pharmacy & BioAllied Sciences suggests that wheatgrass is high in fiber as well as minerals like phosphorus, zinc, magnesium, iron, manganese and copper. As a result, wheatgrass is not easily digestible, which is why you'll normally find it sold in juice or powder form.
Wheatgrass powder is made by grinding up the leaves of fresh wheatgrass and is commonly sold in health food stores in powder or capsule form. If finding wheatgrass powder is proving somewhat tricky, you can always grow it yourself at home.
Fresh wheatgrass can easily be sprouted at home. It takes about an eight to 12-hour soak out of sunlight before the roots of the grass begin to show. Once planted, it can take anywhere from six to 10 days for wheatgrass to germinate and grow.
Wheatgrass Nutrition Facts
According to the authors of the October 2015 study in the Journal of Pharmacy & BioAllied Sciences, wheatgrass benefits can be credited to its nutritional content. Wheatgrass nutrition includes chlorophyll, vitamin A, vitamin C and vitamin E, minerals like calcium and manganese. Additionally, 17 amino acids all play a role in the impressive health benefits of wheatgrass.
A July 2018 study in the Journal of Food Science states that the nutrients found in wheatgrass can efficiently reduce oxidative stress absorbed by the human body when consumed in powder form. But, it's even better if wheatgrass is consumed as a juice. The proteins found in one shot of wheatgrass powder can help prevent the onset and proliferation of cancers and even reduce oxidative stress by decreasing the production of free radicals in the body.
Wheatgrass is also rich in chlorophyll, a photosynthetic pigment that gives plants its green hue. The results of a study published in 2014 in the International Journal of Chemical Studies found that wheatgrass juice can help prevent anemia due to its high chlorophyll content. The study explained that a combination of the plant's chlorophyll levels, along with vitamin B12, iron and folic acid, were responsible for alleviating the symptoms of anemia, thalassemia and cancer.
Side Effects of Wheatgrass Powder
Though wheatgrass benefits are many, it's important to note that consuming wheatgrass powder is not for everyone. Too much wheatgrass juice much may lead to nausea and constipation for some people, as explained by Mayo Clinic.
And, since it's part of the wheat family, those who are allergic to wheat or grass should consult their doctor before consuming wheatgrass powder or wheatgrass juice. If using fresh wheatgrass to make wheatgrass juice shots, make sure the soil being used is quality and free from bacteria and mold contamination, as the juice is often consumed raw.
Some studies have revealed the potential wheatgrass benefits in stalling the spread of cancer and ulcerative colitis. However, more in-depth research needs to be done in order to identify any wheatgrass dangers and potential side effects of wheatgrass nutrition before prescribing wheatgrass powder as an alternative form of therapy.
- USDA: Organic Wheatgrass Shots
- Mayo Clinic: Should I Add Wheatgrass to My Smoothies for Better Health?
- Journal of Pharmacy & BioAllied Sciences: Chromatographic Analysis of Wheatgrass Extracts
- Journal of Food Science: Nutritional Quality and Antioxidant Activity of Wheatgrass (Triticum aestivum) Unwrap by Proteome Profiling and DPPH and FRAP Assays
- International Journal of Chemical Studies: A Pilot Study on Wheat Grass Juice for Its Phytochemical, Nutritional and Therapeutic Potential on Chronic Diseases
- The NYU Dispatch: The Benefits and Risks of Herbal Supplements and Natural Medicine