Alfalfa - Uses and Benefits
Alfala is also known as: Medicago Sativa, Lucerne, Purple Medick and Trefoil. Alfalfa is an herbal medicine used to decrease cholesterol in the blood. It is also rich in fiber and may protect you from colon cancer. Alfalfa is a good laxative and a natural diuretic. It is useful in the treatment of urinary tract infections, and kidney, bladder and prostrate disorders.
Alfalfa is also a popular herb belonging to the 'legume family', closely related to beans and peas. Alfalfa has been used to relieve fluid retention and swelling. The leaves of this remarkable legume contain eight essential amino acids.
The alfalfa crop can be used as a pasture, hay, or silage crop. It can also be cut and dehydrated to make protein rich meal or pellets for livestock. Alfalfa is one of the few plants that exhibit autotoxicity . Alfalfa seed will not grow in existing stands of alfalfa because of this.
The primary properties of Alfalfa are considered to be anti-inflammatory, diuretic, galactogogue, nutritive, stomach tonic, phytoestrogenic, and tonic. The parts of the plant typically used are flowers, leaves, and sprouts.
Side Effects of Alfalfa:-
In a documented case, one individual who ate more than 100,000 mg (100 grams) of alfalfa seeds per day, experienced a condition known as pancytopenia. In this condition, normal production of both red and white blood cells decreases.
Uses of Alfalfa:
The most convincing clinical evidence for alfalfa is in the area of cholesterol control. In several animal and human studies, alfalfa supplements reduced blood cholesterol levels. Alfalfa has therapeutic uses as both food and medicine. It is rich in vitamins, particularly A, B and C and also Vitamin K. It is believed to contain a higher mineral content than most grains and is a natural source of calcium, potassium, magnesium and phosphorus.
Alfalfa is high in vitamin content, providing beta-carotene, various B-vitamins, and vitamins C, E , and K, and can be used as a nutritional supplement. However, keep in mind that high doses of alfalfa may present some health risks.
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