September 1, 2008

You Ask, I Answer: Wheatgrass

I really liked your video on supplements. So many of them are just empty hype. I completely agree with you.

What are your thoughts on wheatgrass? One of my cousins swears by it.

He says it's the easiest way to get a bunch of vitamins and minerals.

-- Name withheld

New York, NY

Wheatgrass juice, the end result of pulping the young shoots of sprouted wheatberries, sure sounds like a magic green potion.

Depending on who you listen to, it clears acne, helps detoxify the colon, has "living enzymes" (ugh!), and even cures cancer and heart disease.

Before I go on, allow me to say "shame on you!" to anyone who advertises a food, beverage, or supplement as a cure for any disease, much less cancer.

It's absolutely despicable to toy with people's emotions and hopes like that.

Anyhow, I'm sure someone, somewhere, also claims wheatgrass gives you a foot massage after a long day at the office.

Wheatgrass advocates point out its high chlorophyll content as a major "plus" in the nutrition department.

Since chlorophyll resembles hemoglobin, so the wheatgrass PR goes, this juice is a great way to "rebalance the blood."

I have no clue what rebalancing the blood means, or why we even need that, but chlorophyll has absolutely no effect on human health. If we were plants, a nice chlorophyll shake would certainly work wonders!

Chlorophyll may share some molecular similarities with hemoglobin
(a protein in red blood cells that transports oxygen from the lungs to other tissues), but it does NOT transform into it, nor does it have any effect -- positve or negative -- on our blood.

And the ridiculous claim keep on coming, folks!

"Wheatgrass has what is called the grass-juice factor, which has been shown to keep herbivorous animals alive indefinitely."

The grass-juice factor? What PR intern came up with that "catch phrase"?

And as for keeping herbivorous animals alive indefinitely -- can someone tell me where I can find one of these timeless creatures subsisting on grass juice?

"Wheatgrass juice is great for constipation and keeping the bowels open. It is high in magnesium."

Apart from the fact that keeping the bowels open doesn't sound very pleasant, wheatgrass is not high in magnesium. It contains absolutely negligible amounts.

If you seek magnesium, reach for nuts, seeds, fish, and whole grains.

The only nutrients wheatgrass offers are protein (at a practically nonexistent 0.5 grams for a 1 ounce serving), some vitamin C (7% of the Daily Value in a 1 ounce shot), and iron (10% in that same shot).

I have absolutely no ideae where some of these wheatgrass companies get their statistics about their product offering vitamins A, B2 (riboflavin), C, D, and K, along with potassium and calcium.

"Wheatgrass helps the body rid itself of toxins."

No. The liver and kidneys take care of that.

Simply put, there is nothing about wheatgrass that can't be found in other fruits and vegetables.

While there is no harm in having it, perceiving it as some kind of miracle beverage is completely inaccurate.

Spinach, broccoli, Swiss chard, and Granny Smith apples are much more nutritious green foods. In fact, the actual wheatberries are much more nutritious than the shoots.

Remember, no one food or beverage meets all nutrition requirements or holds the powerful secret to longevity and agelessness.

Anyone who tells you otherwise is a big old fraud.

1 comment:

jenninat0r said...

Oh my. so all along I've been paying $3 for shots of grass?!