Celery is a low-calorie vegetable that is high in dietary fiber; use of it can be traced back to the 7th century. Celery seeds have been used in pills since around 30 AD. One cup of raw celery contains about 19 calories. It is high in vitamin K and can also help with respiratory problems, arthritis, and kidney issues.
Celery allergies are comparable to the severity of peanut allergies in some cases. Celery should not be used during pregnancy or if you are suffering from a kidney infection. Celery can be foud in capsule and fluid extract form.
The medicinal parts are the root, above-ground foliage and stems, the fruit (seeds) of the plant, and the oil extracted from the seeds.
Flower and Fruit
The umbels are greenish-white, small, 6 to 12 rayed, star-shaped and splayed. Some umbels are top-heavy, short petioled or sessile, and some are terminal and more or less long-petioled with no involucre. Petals are usually 0.5 mm, white or greenish to yellowish, cordate at the base and have indented tips. The fruit is almost spherical and somewhat compressed at the side. The 5 mm mericarps are rounded in section. They are 5-cornered with 5 equal, weakly protruding, bow-shaped main ribs. The edge of the ribs form the edge of the mericarps. The fruit axis is bristly and slightly crenate at the tip.
Leaves, Stem, and Root
The glabrous plant is a biennial and reaches a height of 30 to 100 cm. The root of the wild variety is fusiform, about 5 to 7 mm thick, branched and becomes woody in the second year. The root of the cultivated variety is fleshy, roundly tuberous and reaches a diameter of over 15 cm. The stem is erect, with edged grooves, often hollow and branched. The leaves are glossy and rich green. The basal and lower cauline leaves are more or less long-petioled and pinnatifid. The upper cauline leaves are sometimes opposite. They are on short white-membrane-edged sheaths and are almost sessile and tri-pinnate. The lower leaves are roundish, almost blunt at the base with broad, lozenge-shaped, indented-serrate, blunt and short-thorned tips. The upper cauline leaves are wedge-shaped and acuminate, also 3-lobed or pinnate or lanceolate and entire-margined.
The plant has a strong odor.
Celery is found in Europe from England and Lapland to southern Russia. The plant also grows in western Asia as far as eastern India; in northern and southern Africa and South America; and is cultivated and grows wild in North America, Mexico and Argentina.
Celery seed consists of the fruit of Apium graveolons; celery herb consists of the fresh or dried above-ground parts of the plant; and celery root is the plant's fresh or dried underground parts.
Actions & Pharmacology
Compounds: Celery Seed (Fruit)
Volatile oil: chief constituents ((+) - limonene, beta-selinene, phthalides among them 3-butyliden phthalide, 3-butyl phthalide, 3-isovaleryliden-3a, 4-dihydrophthalid, 3-isobutyliden phthalide, sedanoid, neocnidilid)
Flavonoids: graveobioside A and B, apiin, isoquercitrin
Furocoumarins: including bergapten, isoimperatorin, isopimpinellin
Effects: Celery Fruit
In animal tests, a sedative and anticonvulsive effect was demonstrated; a diuretic effect could not be proved. The essential oil contained in the drug had a mildly inhibiting effect on bacteria and fungi.
Compounds: Celery Herb
Volatile oil: including (+)-limonene, myrcene, beta-selinene, alpha-terpineol, carveol, dihydrocarvone, geranyl acetate, phthalides (including 3-butyliden phthalid, 3-butyl phthalid, 3-isobutyliden dihydrophthalid)
Flavonoids: including apiin, luteolin-7-O-apiosyl glucoside, chrysoeriol glucoside
Furocoumarins: including bergaptene, xanthotoxin, isopimpinellin
Caffeic acid derivatives: including chlorogenic acid
Effects: Celery Herb
See Celery herb
Compounds: Celery Root
Volatile oil: chief constituents (+)-limonene, beta-pinene, p-cymene, cis-, 3-methyl-4-ethyl-hexane), phthalides (including 3-butyliden phthalid, 3-butyl phthalid, ligustilid, neocnidilid)
Flavonoids: including apiin, luteolin-7-O-apiosyl glucoside
Furocoumarins: including bergaptene
Polyyne: including falcarinol, falcarindiol
Effects: Celery Root
See Celery herb.
Indications & Usage
Celery Fruit, Herb, and Root
Folk medicine use of celery and preparations of celery are used as a diuretic, for regulating the bowels, for glandular stimulation, rheumatic complaints, gout, gallstones, and kidney stones. Other traditional uses include as a prophylactic for nervous agitation, for loss of appetite and exhaustion. Celery is also used as a cough treatment and as a helminthic.
Celery preparations are used in homeopathy for ailments of the ovaries and rheumatism.
Celery Seed (Fruit)
The drug should not be used during pregnancy. Also, because of the kidney-irritating effect of the volatile oil, the drug should not be administered to individuals with kidney infections.
Precautions & Adverse Reactions
Celery Fruit, Herb and Root:
No health hazards or side effects are known in conjunction with the proper administration of designated therapeutic dosages. Nevertheless, because of the kidney-irritating effect of the volatile oil, the drug should not be administered in the presence of kidney infections. Latent yeast infections of the plant could cause the furanocoumarin content of the fresh root to rise to 200 times its original level under storage conditions. For this reason, the relatively large amounts of furanocoumarins frequently to be found in stored celeriac bulbs, or in incorrectly dehydrated drug samples, could lead to phototoxicoses.
Celery Seed (Fruit)
Mode of Administration
Whole and powdered drug, liquid extract, and as a component in a variety of tea mixtures.
- Capsules: 450 and 505 mg
- Fluid Extract: 1:1
To prepare a liquid extract, percolate 1 kg of seed in a specula process to 1 liter of fluid extract. The essential oil is removed after filtration with paper soaked in alcohol. For an infusion, pour boiling water on 1 g of the squeezed drug and strain after 5 to 10 minutes. Decoctions are prepared in a 1:5 ratio.
The daily dosage of the seeds is 1.2 to 4 g and as an infusion, 1 g drug.
5 to 10 drops, 1 tablet, or 5 to 10 globules 1 to 3 times daily or 1 mL injection solution twice weekly sc (HAB34).
Celery seed should be kept tightly sealed, away from light and moisture.
Mode of Administration
Whole and cut drug as well as a variety of tea mixtures.
Celery is contained in a variety of tea mixtures (kidney and bladder teas).
Pressed juice of the fresh plant: 23 g (15 ml) 3 times daily.
5 to 10 drops, 1 tablet, or 5 to 10 globules 1 to 3 times daily or 1 ml injection solution twice weekly sc (HAB34).
The herb should be kept sealed, away from light and moisture.
Mode of Administration
The drug is available in a few combination preparations for internal use.
A cough mixture is prepared by boiling the root juice with sugar.
Pressed juice of the fresh plant: 23 g (15 mL) 3 times daily.
5 to 10 drops, 1 tablet, or 5 to 10 globules 1 to 3 times daily or 1 mL injection solution twice weekly sc (HAB1).
Celery root should be kept sealed, away from light and moisture.