Parsley is in the Apiaceae family and native to the Mediterranean region of Southern Italy, Algeria, and Tunisia but has been naturalized throughout Europe and the US. It is one of the most commonly used culinary herbs in the world. It's in the same family as carrot, and fennel so not surprising that the root can be eaten, though it tastes more bitter than sweet. The curled and flat varieties of leaf were both used to impart fresh, clean notes to various recipes. It's a true culinary staple. In Greek Mythology it is said that parsley sprang from the blood of "the forerunner of death", Archemorus. Due to this mythic association with death, parsley was also used for burial rituals. It is interesting that an herb with such a reputation as a nutritive, flavor enhancing addition to medicine and food would be so closely associated with death. It is possible that the various death associations with Parsley could be due to the fact that many were referring to a toxic plant also native to the mediterannean called Fool's Parsley (Aethusa cynapium) a relative of poison hemlock, which on first glance looks like Petroselinum.
Petroselinum is highly nutritious, containing all the major minerals and is loaded with flavonoid antioxidants, especially Luteolin. It has been used as a breath freshener*, to assist healthy fluid elimination*, and for its vast stores of chlorophyll. Parsley contains iron phosphate and supports healthy iron and energy levels.*
Uses of Parsley
This information in our Herbal Reference Guide is intended only as a general reference for further exploration, and is not a replacement for professional health advice. This content does not provide dosage information, format recommendations, toxicity levels, or possible interactions with prescription drugs. Accordingly, this information should be used only under the direct supervision of a qualified health practitioner such as a naturopathic physician.