Celery, which has the scientific name Apium graveolens, is a vegetable in the plant family called Apiaceae. The benefits of celery begin with it being an excellent source of antioxidants and beneficial enzymes, in addition to vitamins and minerals such as vitamin K, vitamin C, potassium, folate and vitamin B6.
Administered as an anti-hypertensive agent in folk medicine for centuries, celery continues to prove that there are many cardiovascular benefits. In recent pharmacological studies, celery demonstrates both antioxidant and anti-inflammatory activities that help improve blood pressure and cholesterol levels, as well as prevent heart disease.
Celery also provides dietary fiber – especially when you eat more than one cup at a time – that boosts digestion and weight loss. In addition, celery’s high percentage of water and electrolytes can prevent dehydration, and special compounds help celery to act as a diuretic and reduce bloating. As a supplier of antioxidant flavonoids and polyphenol phytonutrients, other significant benefits of celery include its ability to improve liver, skin, eye and cognitive health.
Most people choose to eat celery stalks, but the leaves and seeds of celery are also edible and beneficial. For example, celery leaves make a great addition to stir-fries and soups.
Celery seeds — which can be found either in whole seed form, extract form or ground-up — have impressive health benefits on their own, as they help to lower inflammation and to fight bacterial infections.
In some parts of the world, celery is grown primarily for its beneficial seeds, which are actually a very small type of fruit. Celery seeds are commonly used as a spice when crushed and contain a special oily compound called apiol that is used as a flavoring agent and for its many medicinal uses.