The flu season is here, and there is no better time than now to get your natural flu shots…. I am not talking about the one with the needle, where you get 20% off at Safeway. I am talking about the type of booster, that can really enhance your health and wellness, at a higher level (and with no side effects). This juice is one of many, that I enjoy to make, and there are even extra benefits if you are an athlete, and need a great recovery drink.
I want to put watercress at the center of my juice today. Watercress (Nasturtium officinalis) is a semi-aquatic perennial herb, belonging to the family of Brassicaceae, which has long been known for its flavoring, therapeutic and aphrodisiac properties. Watercress is rich in fiber, anti-oxidants, vitamin C, beta-carotene, folic acid, potassium, calcium, phosphorous, iron, Vitamins B1, B2, zinc, copper, manganese and is also a good source of iodine. In fact, watercress has more calcium than milk, and more iron than spinach.
Watercress has many health benefits, and has been used for cancer prevention, treat upper respiratory tract infections (just don’t consume it, when you have stomach or intestinal ulcers or inflammatory kidney diseases), and appears to have vision preservation properties by helping to lower the risk of one of the most common cause of adult blindness, macular degeneration, which could be due to the effect through its high level of two carteniods, lutein and zeaxanthin.
We all know, that hard exercise takes its toll on the body. A lot of people think they can exercise hard, and then eat and drink junk afterwards, but the fact is, that this just breaks down the body over time, and you get more injuries, colds, and the body take longer to recover. A study published in the British Journal of Nutrition reports that eating a small amount of this leafy green each day raised levels of key antioxidants, that fend off the damage caused by exercise. The sudy also showed, that wear and tear creates more free radicals, which contribute to DNA damage. The same study showed that the athletes, who ate watercress 2 hours prior to a workout, were able to reap benefits right away. Just 3 oz. of juice will do the trick. That’s why a nutrient-rich diet that neutralizes free radicals, and allows the body to heal goes hand in hand with training.
Watercress has plenty of health and therapeutic properties. However, due to its strong, pungent and bitter taste, it is never used alone, but is always added to juices, salads or other dishes as an ingredient, flavor or garnish.
My morning juice was a great tasting juice, and watercress took it to the next level.
- 8 stalks of celery
- 1 -2 bunches of fresh watercress
- 1/2 cucumber
- 2 red grapefruits
- 1 red apple
- 2 cups raw coconut water
- 1 tsp Bee pollen
Juice the celery, watercress, cucumber,grapefruit and apple. Add the coconut water and blend well. Garnish with bee pollen!