Asparagus is another spring time gift from Mother Nature

Asparagus is a nutrient-dense food that contains no fat, no cholesterol and is low in Sodium; perfect for spring detoxification and weight loss except for those who suffer from gout.

Asparagus, a member of the lily family is a spring time delicacy. The name asparagus comes from the Greek language meaning to “sprout” or “shoot”

Asparagus is a nutrient-dense food which is high in Folic Acid and is a good source of potassium, fiber, vitamin B6, vitamins A and C, and thiamin contains no fat, no cholesterol and is low in Sodium; perfect for all health regimes except for those who suffer from gout.  Asparagus is one of the richest sources of rutin, a compound which strengthens capillary walls and contains glutathione GSH which aids in liver detoxification; perfect for spring.

Asparagus is a perfect spring vegetable for its high fibrous content that can easily pull unhealthy toxins from our body. It’s high folic acid content aids in the synthesis of protein metabolism and healthy red blood cells that keeps our energy reserves in optimum shape and our immune systems healthy.

Potassium allows proper water balance in the body and promotes an acid-alkaline balance which prevents illness. Potassium also aids in protein and carbohydrate metabolism thus keeping us slim and fit. Asparagus comes in three colours, white, green and purple.

Have you noticed that after eating asparagus your urine has a pungent odour? Some have reported their urine smelling like rotting cabbage, ammonia or rotten eggs. Completely harmless and not to worry, for some people this naturally occurs. A sulfur compound in asparagus called mercaptan the same compound that gives skunks their offensive odor is the reason and believe-it-or-not, can only be detected by 50% of the population.

There is no one theory for the foul smelling pee, however one theory is that only half the population has the gene that enables the body to break down mercaptan. Another theory involves asparagine a non-essential amino acid which was first isolated from asparagus in 1932. The smell noted in the urine after eating asparagus is attributed to the breakdown of asparagine.  Asparagine is important to the nervous system to maintain balance and to transform amino acids.

The best time to purchase asparagus is in the spring. They usually make an appearance early March and depending on weather conditions can be purchased up until early June. When purchasing asparagus look for stalks that are firm, crisp, with tightly closed tops that are not discolored or slimy, and the bottom of the stalks should look crisp and well hydrated. Avoid stalks that are split and woody. The best way to purchase asparagus are ones that are stored standing in a small amount of water.

Fresh asparagus will only last 3 to 5 days in the refrigerator, if at all possible place asparagus in a small container of water and stand up right in your refrigerator. If they were not stored in water, cut off a 5 mm (1/4 inch) of the bottom of the stalks and place in water.

Asparagus can be steamed, sautéed, roasted and grilled on the barbeque.

Here’s a quick Asparagus recipe to add to your dinner tonight:

Super-Duper quick Asparagus

Ingredients:

  • Asparagus           as many as you like
  • Olive oil                1 teaspoon per 5 stalks
  • 1-2 clove              garlic, minced
  • Pinch                     sea salt
  • 1 tsp                      sesame seeds per 5 stalks

Take as many asparagus as you would like, cut into 2 inch pieces, coat with olive oil. Place in a skillet and cook over medium heat for 3 minutes, add minced garlic and cook for another 2 minutes. Remove from heat; serve with a sprinkle of sea salt and sesame seeds. Enjoy immediately!

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*The information provided in this article has not been approved by the FDA or Health Canada and is not intended as a substitute for consulting with your physician. This article is not recommending changing any treatment or medication you are taking without consulting with your personal physician or qualified health care practitioner. Before implementing any suggestions seen here please consult with your physician or qualified health care practitioner