Alfalfa is a medicinal plant, also known as Royal Alfalfa, Purple-flowered Alfalfa or Meadows-Melga that is very nutritious, helping to improve the functioning of the intestine, decrease fluid retention and relieve the symptoms of menopause.
The scientific name of Alfafa is Medicago sativa and can be found in its natural form in health food stores, drugstores, and in some open markets, or in its form prepared for salads in some markets and supermarkets.
What is Alfalfa for
Alfalfa is rich in proteins, fibers, vitamins, and minerals, in addition to having a diuretic, digestive, soothing, depurative, anti-anemic, antioxidant and hypolipidemic properties. Thus, alfalfa can be used to:
- Assist in the treatment of anxiety and stress, since it also has a calming action;
- Combat poor digestion and constipation;
- Decrease fluid retention due to its diuretic action. In addition, by increasing the volume of urine, it may favor the elimination of microorganisms that may be in the urinary tract, being, therefore, effective in preventing urinary infections;
- Combat anemia, as it contains iron salts that are very well absorbed by the body, preventing anemia;
- Regulation of cholesterol levels in the blood, since it has a lipid-lowering agent, being able to decrease the level of total cholesterol;
- It promotes body detox, eliminating toxins from the body.
In addition, alfalfa is rich in phytoestrogens, which are substances with estrogen-like activity, and is therefore effective in relieving menopausal symptoms.
How to use Alfalfa
Alfalfa is a very nutritious sprout, with a low amount of calories, which has a delicate flavor and must be consumed raw, thus taking advantage of all its nutrients and benefits. Thus, the leaves and roots of alfalfa can be consumed in salads, soups, as a filling for natural sandwiches and in the form of juice or teas, for example.
One way to consume alfalfa is through tea, using about 20 mg of dry leaves and plant root in 500 ml of boiling water. Leave for about 5 minutes and then strain and drink up to 3 times a day.
Contraindications for Alfalfa consumption
The consumption of Alfalfa is not recommended for people with autoimmune diseases, such as Systemic Lupus Erythematosus and people who are being treated with anticoagulants, such as Aspirin or Warfarin, for example. In addition, pregnant or lactating women should also not consume Alfalfa, as it can change the menstrual cycle and milk production.
Although no side effects related to Alfalfa have been described, it is important that it is consumed in accordance with the nutritionist’s guidance, as it is thus possible to obtain the maximum benefits that this medicinal plant can offer.