May marks National Asparagus Month. And so it should. This delicious early vegetable is packed with nutrients and low in calories. In just a day, asparagus can grow up to 10 inches.
Asparagus belongs to the lily family, along with garlic, leeks and onions. It has a distinct appearance as its compact, bud-like head comes to a point like the tip of a spear.
Asparagus contains many anti-inflammatory nutrients such as flavonoids, isorhamnetin, kaempferol, quercetin, rutin and saponins.
NaturalHealthBenefits.org says that their anti-inflammatory properties may “help with common ailments such as asthma, arthritis, and autoimmune conditions. Asparagus’s anti-inflammatory effects can also help with water retention, PMS, and menstrual cramps.”
“Asparagus ranks among the top 20 foods in regards to ANDI score (Aggregate Nutrient Density Index), which measures vitamin, mineral and phytonutrient content in relation to the caloric content,” according to MedicalNewsToday.com.
An article on HuffingtonPost.com explains another notorious property of asparagus, according to gastroenterologist Dr. Anish Sheth.
“As your body digests food, it breaks down different compounds through the enzymatic process. In the case of asparagus, its compounds are volatile and released as a vapor through the urine. That's the aroma you smell when the compound exits your body.”
The article said that while some claim to have never smelled this aroma, it's there, alright. Those people are just unable to smell it.
According to Natural Health Benefits, “There are actually hundreds of varieties of asparagus although only 20 are edible.” For breakfast, lunch or dinner, here are some of my favorite ways to enjoy the edible variety of asparagus.
SWEET ASPARGUS EGG DROPS
• ¼ cup of fresh asparagus, chopped
• ¼ cup of sliced mushrooms
• ¼ cup of almond milk
• 1 egg/3 egg whites
• ¼ cup of scallions
• ½ cup of milk
• Dash of nutmeg
• ¼ cup of sliced Brie cheese
Pre-heat oven to 350 degrees.
Sauté asparagus and mushrooms in skillet. Spray a muffin pan with non-stick cooking spray.
Beat eggs and egg whites. Add cheese, almond milk and cooked vegetables. Mix well.
Divide mixture evenly into muffin pan. Bake for 20 minutes.
Serving size two cups.
ASPARAGUS CRAB MEAT SALAD
• 2 cups of mixed greens, washed
• 4 raw asparagus spears, chopped
• 6 oz. can of crab meat
• ¼ cup Dijon mustard
• 3 tbsp. of Greek or plain yogurt
• Salt and pepper
Combine mixed greens and asparagus in large bowl. Add the crab meat.
In separate bowl whisk mustard and yogurt together. Season to taste with salt and pepper.
Spoon dressing over salad and serve.
TUNA STIR FRY ASPARAGUS WITH CASHEWS
• 8 oz. piece of ahi tuna, sliced
• 8 pieces of asparagus, chopped
• 2 tbsp. coconut oil
• 2 tsp. sesame oil
• 1 tbsp. fresh ginger root, finely chopped
• 1/2 cup roasted cashews, coarsley chopped
“Health Benefits of Asparagus – MedicalNewsToday.com.” Medical News Today. Web 14 May 2015.
“Health Benefits of Asparagus – Juicing-for-Health.com.” Juicing for Health. Web 14 May 2015. http://juicing-for-
“Asparagus Month – Food.com.” Food. Web 14 May 2015.
“Asparagus Health Benefits – NaturalHealthBenefits.org.” Natural Health Benefits. Web 14 May 2015.
“Asparagus Pee Is Real, But Only Some Of Us Can Smell It – HuffingtonPost.com.” The Huffington Post. Web 14 May 2015.
Joanne Sgro-Killworth is a Television Fitness Expert, Certified Personal Trainer and Sport Nutritionist and Publicist. She is Certified in Pilates, Pre-natal/Post-Partum, Yoga and Senior Fitness. She specializes in Weight Loss, Post-Rehab and Post Cancer Training.
Joanne's fitness plans, recipes and lifestyle advice are available globally on her website http://www.happiwoman.com/ She resides in the Phoenix, AZ area with her husband and children, where she runs her fitness and publicity business, JSK PR, http://www.jskpr.com/
Reviewed May 15, 2015
by Michele Blacksberg RN
Edited by Jody Smith