Asparagus Efficacy and Nutrition

The asparagus plant (Asparagus officinalis) is valued for both its medicinal properties and culinary taste. Its roots, ferns and shoots are all edible and have many health benefits. In fact, all parts of the asparagus plant are used as a medicine in many cultures. It is commonly known that asparagus can reduce the risk of cancer, prevent Alzheimer’s disease and rheumatoid arthritis. It can also provide relief from premenstrual syndrome and help in treating convulsions. In addition, asparagus can help in lowering levels of homocysteine, which is associated with depression. Asparagus is also helpful in preventing dementia and may improve cognitive performance in older adults, according to a study conducted by Tufts University.

Asparagus can be grown in a variety of climates and soil conditions. However, it is most successful in areas with a cool, frost-free growing season and well-drained soil. Fertilizer recommendations for asparagus should be based on soil test results and should be broadcast in the spring of every year before spear emergence. The soil should be lightly cultivated or mulched to minimize weed problems.

Harvesting asparagus when the tips are still closed tight is a good way to maintain quality. Asparagus should be stored in the refrigerator, where it will keep for up to three days. If it is being displayed for retail sale, it should be kept near 32 F and sprayed periodically with cold water to help preserve freshness.

Traditionally, asparagus has been used as a laxative and diuretic. The roots contain several soluble fibers that promote digestion and relieve constipation. It also contains the amino acid glutathione, which helps detoxify the liver and protect against cancer. Asparagus is a source of vitamin A, which is important for eye health and vision. In fact, asparagus root extract has been shown to be effective in the treatment of cataracts and night blindness.

Folate, a key nutrient in asparagus, helps to protect against depression. Depression is often caused by low levels of folate in the body, which can prevent blood and other nutrients from reaching the brain. Folate in asparagus, which works with vitamin B12, can prevent this problem and make you feel more positive.

Asparagus is a good source of potassium, which can help control high blood pressure and lower cholesterol. It also has an antiseptic property, which can be useful in the treatment of infections. Folic acid in asparagus is also important for the production of feel-good hormones such as serotonin, dopamine and norepinephrine, which can help boost mood and energy.

A study conducted in mice showed that the aqueous extract of asparagus stem had anxiolytic-like activity. Asparagus extract induced significant reductions in anxiety behavior in the Elevated Plus Maze and Vogel conflict tests. The anthelmintic efficacy of asparagus was also demonstrated in a laboratory test using two representative groups of helminth parasites. Asparagus extract significantly inhibited both the growth of Hymenolepis diminuta and Syphacia obvelata, both common parasites of asparagus plants. It also prevented the formation of cysts in the parasites.