By Jennifer Copley (Last Updated 8 January 2010)
Research with animals suggests that volatile oil compounds in parsley may inhibit tumour formation. Parsley also provides chemoprotective benefits because it helps to neutralize certain carcinogens, such as benzopyrenes found in smoke from cigarettes and charcoal grills.
Parsley is a source of vitamin C and beta-carotene (antioxidants which may provide a variety of health-protective effects including reducing the risk of cancer, heart disease, and diabetes, as well as diminishing the impact of inflammatory conditions such as arthritis) and folic acid (which helps to maintain a healthy cardiovascular system).
A great edible garnish for almost any meal, parsley is also a particularly nice addition to soups, rice dishes, potatoes, and pastas, and adds a fresh, crisp taste when sprinkled on salads.
For a full list of healthy herbs and spices and the reference list for this information series, see the main High-Antioxidant Herbs and Spices page.