Cleansing anti-inflammatory watercress salad

By Sari Huhtala

Although watercress is an often-overlooked vegetable when tossing a salad together, health-wise it offers a plethora of benefits as a functional food. Try a simple watercress salad with your next meal.

A 2021 review on the therapeutic potential of watercress on human disease in the journal Evidence Based Complementary Alternative Medicine found numerous studies on its efficacy in disease prevention. Studies show it has antioxidant, anticancer, anti-inflammatory, antigenotoxicity effects, and offers benefits to the heart, kidney and liver.

Traditionally, the vegetable, which is in the Brassicaceae family and typically grows near water, has been used to treat scurvy, hypertension, arthritis, hyperglycemia, bronchitis and other ailments.

Find watercress in the produce section at local grocery stores, or hunt for your own wild watercress. I discovered the plant beside a natural spring where I collect my drinking water from. It grows abundantly around the spring, even in the winter months.

Watercress salad

  • A bunch of fresh watercress
  • 1 apple, diced
  • A handful of raw pumpkin seeds
  • Dried cranberries

Watercress salad dressing

  • 1/8 cup olive oil
  • 1/8 cup lemon juice
  • 1 tsp Dijon mustard
  • 1 tbsp raw honey
  • Salt to taste

Wash and tear apart the fresh watercress, stem and all, into bite-size pieces. Toss into a bowl with diced apple. Drizzle with salad dressing and top with cranberries and pumpkin seeds.

For the salad dressing, measure ingredients into a mason jar and shake before drizzling onto a salad.

(This information is not intended to replace medical advice and treatment from a health care practitioner).

Sari Huhtala is the creator, publisher and editor of Alive and Fit Magazine, which was created in 2007.  She has over 25 years of experience in journalism and over 15 years of experience as a certified personal trainer and fitness instructor, and is a holistic chef, offering holistic cooking and edible wilds workshops. She is an organic farmer, wild-crafter and grandmother, who has spent over 20 years navigating a holistic, healthy path for her family. Reach her at friends@thelaughingforest.ca 

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