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Foods -- Breads and Grains

What is alfalfa?

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Alfalfa sprouts are a popular vegetable for use on salads and sandwiches. However, sprouted alfalfa seeds are not the only part of alfalfa which can be used for food. Dried alfalfa leaves come in the form of flour and in tablets. Tablets contain protein, calcium, B vitamins and Vitamin C. Alfalfa sprouts' nutrient content per cup: 10 calories, 0.7 grams fiber, 26 mg potassium, 51 IU Vitamin A, 10 mg. Calcium. Do not make flour from the raw seeds because toxic factors that interfere with the utilization of Vitamin E, destroy red blood cells and often cause intestinal gas. Sprouting breaks down carbohydrates and toxic factors, so sprouts or dried leaves produce no ill effect.

PREPARED BY: Angela M. Fraser, Ph.D., Associate Professor/Food Safety Specialist, and Carolyn J. Lackey, Ph.D., R.D., L.D.N., Professor/Food and Nutrition Specialist, North Carolina State University (August 2004)

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