Wheatgrass? Why-grass?Last week, a couple of fellow workers were discussing wheatgrass juice in the lunch-room.
They mentioned that although expensive at $5 for a small shot-glass (est. 30ml) of the stuff and despite it tasting horrible it was worth it because of it's health benefits. Of course, they could not specifically mention exactly what wheatgrass does that is good for you, just that it is healthy.
This prompted me to start searching for information on the health benefits of wheatgrass. Unfortunately, pubmed comes up blank, as does quackwatch (apart from being mentioned as an ineffective anti-cancer treatment).
The search for reliable data that shows wheatgrass to have positive health benefits has come up blank. The closest I could get was a Dutch study on rats showing that a diet that had Chlorophyll (found in wheat grass) was better than a diet which was almost exclusively red meat.
Doctors, dietitians, schools and various other organisations have been putting the message forward to eat a balanced diet that contains fresh fruit and vegetables. While wheatgrass is unlikely to do any harm, for the same $5, you could buy a kilo and a half of broccoli or a couple of bunches of spinach. Eating these would provide much more chlorophyll (as well as vitamin B) and give the added advantage of providing more fibre than in the juice.
I often wonder where these stories come from about the health benefits of certain items. Regardless of the source, at $5 for around 30ml, I'm sure there are growers and health food shops laughing all the way to the bank.
I'll continue to spend my money of broccoli, rather than wheatgrass juice. From a parent's point of view, why buy something expensive that the kids won't eat, when they have been eating the cheaper, tastier version for years?
"There is only one truth. How we interpret that truth is called belief."
"The presence of belief, does not indicate the existence of truth."