Wheatgrass is a food prepared from the common wheat plant. It is commercially available in a wide variety of forms, including juices, bars, powders, creams, gels, and, most pertinently, liquid supplements. Certain health enthusiasts even grow wheatgrass in their own homes. For those who want all the nutrients provided by wheatgrass but can’t be bothered to cultivate and harvest their own, a liquid wheatgrass supplement may be the best alternative.
Ann Wigmore, a Lithuanian who immigrated to Boston, believed that wheatgrass had powerful healing capabilities; she promoted a wheatgrass diet as a cure for various diseases. She was sued repeatedly by the Massachusetts Attorney General in the 1980s for various promissory statements, and was eventually ordered to stop representing herself as a physician. She died in 1993, having gained notoriety in the health community, with some extolling her as a pioneer in alternative medicine and others denouncing her as a quacksalver. At any rate, the wheatgrass diet still has devout adherents, despite an apparent lack of credible research corroborating the diet as a treatment for any disease or condition.
Wheatgrass is used for diabetes, tooth decay prevention, high cholesterol, high blood pressure, urinary tract infections, bronchitis, the common cold, sore throat, joint pain, arthritis, and even cancer. Chlorophyll, the chemical that allows plants to convert sunlight to energy, is believed to stimulate antioxidant activity, but this may not be true of dietary chlorophyll. Some small studies seem to implicate wheatgrass as a possible treatment for ulcerative colitis and certain bacterial infections, but there are not many other studies supporting wheatgrass’s ability to treat, prevent, or alleviate any health condition.