The Benefits of Parsley Tea for High Blood Pressure Reduction
What does a cup of parsley tea have in it that can help you fight elevated blood pressure? Let`s take a look at the nutrients it contains. The ones to focus on are highlighted in bold.
- Vitamin C
- Pantothenic acid
- Rosmarinic acid
- Vit. BA6
Vitamin C, Magnesium, Quercetin, and Potassium all stand out as the main ingredients that will have a positive effect on your blood pressure.
Vitamin C as we know is a powerful antioxidant and improves vasodilation. (Duffy SJ, Gokce N, Holbrook M, et al. Treatment of hypertension with ascorbic acid. Lancet. 1999;354(9195):2048-2049.- PubMed). That is good to know and what`s more, parsley contains twice as much vitamin C as an orange.
Magnesium stimulates the body to produce nitric oxide a vaso-dilator, and get this…it`s a natural calcium channel blocker.
Quercetin however has not been tested vigorously enough to prove it works to lower blood pressure in humans, but research has shown that it works through several mechanisms in animals. Makes me wonder, why not humans???
Potassium has a major role as we will see!
Tea Work as a Diuretic?
I have added parsley to my list of high blood pressure herbs especially for its diuretic action. First I will try and simplify what is happening inside and outside of a cell to maintain the potassium – sodium equilibrium, then see how this is impeded in kidney cells causing an increase in diuretic action.
Each cell uses an enzyme called NA+/K+-ATPase. It`s an ion pump and is called that because it pushes or impulses sodium ions out and potassium ions in or across the cell membrane, maintaining a high concentration of potassium and low concentration of sodium inside the cell.
The cell environment needs to be in an alkaline state constantly, and maintain fluid pressure (osmosis) to function properly for us to stay alive. The NA+/K+-ATPase enzyme transports 2 potassium ions into the cell and 3 sodium ions out of the cell.
Parsley was seen to inhibit the NA+/K+-ATPase pump mechanism in the kidney cells of rats causing diuretic action and a decrease in arterial pressure. To date, researchers do not fully understand how parsley does this but what they do know is that it decreases sodium re-absorption while decreasing potassium secretion. The potassium in the cell becomes concentrated and also the passive potassium which normally flows freely back and forth across the cell membrane through ion channels is inhibited and this causes a diuretic action. (See Chemistry of spices By V. A. Parthasarathy, Bhageerathy Chempakam, T. John Zachariah – page 391) So it has a reputation for being one of the most powerful natural diuretics known to man. A review on the scientific evidence of herbal medicines as diuretics by Wright CI, Van-Buren L, Kroner CI, Koning MM, listed Petroselinum sativum, a species of parsley, as one of the most promising diuretic herbs. Does the benefits of parsley tea sound promising to you?
Making Parsley Tea
Take freshly chopped parsley, enough to fill a 1/3 of a cup. Pour boiling water over and leave to infuse for 2 to 3 minutes then simply drink.
Caution! – If you are using parsley seed use 1 gram to 1 cup.
If you are pregnant however, stay away from parsley in large quantities. But it can be consumed in normal quantities when added as an ingredient to cooking without harming you or your baby.