Posted by Bangzkie Thursday, February 16, 2012
Apium graveolens is a plant species in the family Apiaceae commonly known as celery (var. dulce) or celeriac (var. rapaceum), depending on whether the petioles (stalks) or roots are eaten: celery refers to the former and celeriac to the latter. Apium graveolens grows to 1 m tall. The leaves are pinnate to bipinnate leaves with rhombic leaflets 3–6 cm long and 2–4 cm broad. The flowers are creamy-white, 2–3 mm diameter, produced in dense compound umbels. The seeds are broad ovoid to globose, 1.5–2 mm long and wide.
Medicinal use: The use of celery seed in pills for relieving pain was described by Aulus Cornelius Celsus around 30 AD.Celery seeds contain a compound, 3-n-butylphthalide, that has been demonstrated to lower blood pressure in rats.It is thought to be an aphrodisiac by some people, because it is thought to contain androsterone, a metabolic product of testosterone. However, this is a misunderstanding of androstenone.Bergapten in the seeds can increase photosensitivity, so the use of essential oil externally in bright sunshine should be avoided. The oil and large doses of seeds should be avoided during pregnancy, as they can act as a uterine stimulant. Seeds intended for cultivation are not suitable for eating as they are often treated with fungicides.
Nutritional value: Celery is used in weight-loss diets, where it provides low-calorie dietary fibre bulk. Celery seeds are also a great source of calcium, and are regarded as a good alternative to animal products. Celery is often purported to be a "negative calorie food" based on the assumption that it contains fewer calories than it takes to digest; however, this statement has no scientific merit.