I continue to be amazed by the health benefits of herbs and spices. I used to think they were around as tasty and decorative additions to our culinary art. With summer, the taste of cilantro plays big in so many dishes and mixed drinks. The aromatic herb is well known and adored in Mexican, Middle Eastern, and Thai food, but who knew how healthy it is?! (Maybe they knew knew all along, and that's one of the reasons they've been using it!. . . )
Cilantro has been effectively used to help remove toxins from the body. The chemical compounds in cilantro actually bind to the heavy metals, loosening them from the tissues, blood and organs. Cilantro's chemical compounds then help to transport these damaging substances out of the body through elimination. Does this sound a bit like natural magic? It actually is! (BTW- at your grocer's or farmers markets, cilantro is usually right next to Italian or the "ordinary" frizzy type parsley we're usually most familiar with. The only way to tell for sure--unless it's labelled--is to sniff it. That's when you'll recognize the inimitable aroma of cilantro.)
Many claims have been made suggesting that cilantro could be one of nature's best chelation agents, particularly for individuals who have been exposed to heightened levels of mercury. Mercury excess is a common problem that may be the result of metallic teeth fillings or over-consumption of predatory fish (tuna, for instance).
Also, the rich qualities of cilantro oil have a powerfully positive effect on our inner digestive tract. The oils aid our digestive system in its production of digestive enzymes, acids and juices. The oil also helps to stimulate digestion through peristaltic motion.
The known benefits of cilantro are extensive, and researchers are discovering more every day. Currently, there are several well-known, well-documented benefits of organic cilantro. Here is a list I found on nutrition-and-you.com.
Powerful anti-inflammatory capacities that may help symptoms of arthritis
Protective agents against bacterial infection from Salmonella in food products
Acts to increase HDL cholesterol (the good kind), and reduces LDL cholesterol (the bad kind)
Relief for stomach gas, prevention of flatulence and an overall digestive aid
Wards off urinary tract infections
Helps reduce feelings of nausea
Eases hormonal mood swings associated with menstruation
Has been shown to reduce menstrual cramping.
Adds fiber to the digestive tract
A source of iron, magnesium, and is helpful in fighting anemia
Gives relief for diarrhea, especially if caused by microbial or fungal infections
Helps promote healthy liver function.
Reduces minor swelling
Strong general antioxidant properties
Disinfects and helps detoxify the body
Stimulates the endocrine glands
Helps with insulin secretion and lowers blood sugar
Acts as a natural anti-septic and anti-fungal agent for skin disorders like fungal infections and eczema
Contains immune-boosting properties
Acts as an expectorant
Helps ease conjunctivitis, as well as eye-aging, macular degeneration, and other stressors on the eyes.
Jam-packed with Vitamin A, 100gms provides 225% of the recommended daily intake. Vitamin A helps protect the body from lung and oral cavity cancers.
Cilantro is also one of the richest herbal sources for vitamin K; it has a potentially important role in bone mass building and has been used in the treatment of Alzheimer's disease patients to limit neuronal damage in their brain.