Alfalfa is packed-full of B-vitamins, vitamin C and vitamin K. It’s also a rich source of minerals copper, manganese, iron and zinc and has loads of bioactive compounds to benefit health. Which Vegetables & Fruits Naturally Have the Hormone Estrogen? What Are the Benefits of Garlic & Parsley? Studies suggest that alfalfa sprouts may have antioxidant properties to prevent free radical damage and reduce the risk for disease. Dietary fiber and compounds called saponins in alfalfa may slow cholesterol uptake into your blood, according to experts at Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center. For example, a study published in the "Pakistani Journal of Pharmaceutical Science" in 2008 found that laboratory animals fed a high-cholesterol diet, along with alfalfa, had slightly lower total cholesterol levels, higher levels of high-density lipoprotein, or "good" cholesterol, and fewer fatty deposits in their arteries after 12 weeks, compared to a control group. Laboratory research on alfalfa suggests that consuming it regularly might also reduce the buildup of fatty deposits called plaque in arteries, possibly lowering your risk of atherosclerosis and heart disease. Calcium is vital for strong bones and teeth, and iron is essential for production of red blood cells and to support many cellular processes. Alfalfa is used for kidney conditions, bladder and prostate conditions, and to increase urine flow. Alfalfa powder is available at health food stores, either as compressed tablets or in capsules. Removes Toxins. Joanne Marie began writing professionally in 1981. It contains some important vitamins and minerals, as well as several natural compounds with potentially significant health benefits. These include calcium and iron, with 1 tablespoon of powder providing 10 percent and 19 percent of the recommended amount of these minerals, respectively. A paper published in "European Journal of Pharmacology" in 2011 found that biochanin-A blocked production of inflammatory chemicals by cultured immune cells called macrophages, while another study published in "Lupus" in 2009 found that alfalfa extract suppressed inflammation in laboratory animals with lupus, an autoimmune disease. Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center: Alfalfa, MyFitnessPal: Calories in Now Alfalfa Powder, Lupus: The Ethyl Acetate Extract of Alfalfa Sprout Ameliorates Disease Severity of Autoimmune-Prone MRL-Ipr/Ipr Mice, Pakistani Journal of Pharmaceutical Science: Effects of Alfalfa on Lipoproteins and Fatty Streak Formation in Hypercholesterolemic Rabbits, European Journal of Pharmacology: Biochanin-A, an Isoflavon, Showed Anti-Proliferative and Anti-Inflammatory Activities Through Inhibition of iNOS Expression, p38-MAPK and ATF-2 Phosphorylation and Blocking NFkB Nuclear Translocation, USDA National Nutrient Database: Alfalfa Seeds, Sprouted, Raw, A Web Experience brought to you by LEAFtv. Bean Sprout Nutritional Information Alfalfa has been shown to help lower cholesterol, and may also have benefits for blood sugar control and relieving symptoms of menopause. Alfalfa is known for its detoxification properties, making it a great food to cleanse … People also take it … What Are the Health Benefits of Lemongrass Tea. A member of the legume family of plants, alfalfa is also dried and ground to produce a powdered supplement that's been part of herbal medicine for hundreds of years. Alfalfa should not be used during pregnancy because it could stimulate uterine contractions and should also be avoided during breast-feeding. Compounds in alfalfa also have anti-inflammatory properties, according to Memorial Sloan-Kettering, possibly making them useful in conditions that involve inflammation, such as asthma and arthritis. Her work has appeared in health, medical and scientific publications such as Endocrinology and Journal of Cell Biology. She has also published in hobbyist offerings such as The Hobstarand The Bagpiper. Marie is a certified master gardener and has a Ph.D. in anatomy from Temple University School of Medicine. For the most part, the scientific evidence to support these claims is weak. These are promising but preliminary findings that still need confirmation in studies on humans. Although alfalfa isn't considered a high-energy food, with only about 8 calories in 1 cup of fresh alfalfa sprouts, its nutrients are mostly in the form of protein, like other legumes. Alfalfa also contains significant amounts of several important minerals and vitamins. Alfalfa also contains significant amounts of several important minerals and vitamins. These include calcium and iron, with 1 tablespoon of powder providing 10 percent and 19 percent of the recommended amount of these minerals, respectively. Although supplements are considered generally safe, you should only purchase them from reputable suppliers that guarantee the product is free of contaminants. These promising findings still need confirmation in trials with human subjects. Calcium is vital for strong bones and teeth, and iron is essential for production of red bloo… Although you may have heard of alfalfa -- Medicago sativa -- you may know it as a farm crop used mostly as animal feed. Beyond its dietary benefits, alfalfa is often used in alternative therapies to treat medical conditions and metabolic disorders. Although alfalfa isn't considered a high-energy food, with only about 8 calories in 1 cup of fresh alfalfa sprouts, its nutrients are mostly in the form of protein, like other legumes. Discuss alfalfa supplements with your doctor to decide if they're appropriate for you. Alfalfa contains several natural chemicals called flavonoids, including one called biochanin-A, that may block some of the steps involved in inflammation, at least in laboratory experiments. It may interact with some medications, including diuretics, diabetes drugs, anti-inflammatory medications and hormones, and it should not be used by anyone who has a clotting disorder or gout.
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