HEALTH: Spices play a very important role in the way we prepare and enjoy food around the world. There are so many spices and each one has a particular flavor and essence. The success or failure of a dish can literally come down to whether a spice was added or omitted. There are a whole variety of spices that we use on a daily basis, some more popular and well known like cumin, turmeric, coriander and black pepper.
In the distant past, traders from all over the world found their way to India in search of exotic spices. Today, they are more likely searching for the best game to play at an online casino South Africa. But many of those old traders from the past found what they were searching for and returned home with their find. Some of these traders settled in India bringing with them their own spices.
Spices have always played a central role in Indian culture and are known to impact our health in beneficial ways. In India the bouquet of spices which is often added to Indian home cooked food makes these meals some of the healthiest in the world. Each of these spices has many nutritional components and offers real health benefits.
Below is a list of spices and their different nutrients. We would encourage you to begin adding them to your meals for healthy living.
Star Anise is popular in Indian, Chinese, Indonesian and Malaysian dishes. Star Anise is a good source of two antioxidants. An essential oil called linalool and vitamin C which helps fight environmental toxins which can cause cellular damage to the body.
Allspice is a mix of pepper, cinnamon and nutmeg. It is good for your digestion, is anti-inflammatory, helps with circulation, improves dental health, boosts immunity and contributes to a healthy heart.
Maybe better known as carom seeds. They are mostly chewed and do have a slightly bitter taste. But they can relieve stomach pains and help with digestion. They can also cure a tooth ache. They are a good source of calcium, proteins and also fiber.
A little black pepper will enhance the taste of any meal. It I also known for its medicinal benefits. It can help with weight loss, can relieve symptoms of influenza, helps with digestion and improves metabolism. Sprinkle a little black pepper into a glass of haldi doodh to make a really therapeutic drink.
These seeds are known to help prevent asthma and other respiratory problems including allergies. They contain many antioxidants, acids and b-vitamins helpful to the immune system. They beat any other natural solution when used for autoimmune diseases.
Cumin is an essential ingredient in middle eastern dishes. It helps with digestion and has been added to foods and drinks for centuries in India for this purpose. It boosts immunity and is known to improve skin problems. It also aids those dealing with insomnia, asthma, anemia and respiratory illnesses.
Cloves are antiseptic, anti-fungal and anti-bacterial. Rich in minerals, omega-3 fatty acids, vitamins, minerals and fiber. It is very high in antioxidants. It is often used successfully as a pain reliever for toothaches and stomach ache. Warm clove oil, together with sesame oil applied to the forehead can promote feelings of relaxation.
Coriander has benefits eaten fresh or by adding the seeds to your meals. The seeds are full with antioxidants and fiber that promotes healthy bowel functioning and good working for the liver. They help in the creation of juices that promote good digestion. Adding some coriander seeds into your diet will help if you suffer from indigestion.
Not only do they add some spice to your dishes, they are full of vitamin C, are known to lower blood pressure, helps with congestion and promotes weight loss.
They originate from the Mediterranean region and are often used as tea. It is used to relieve menstrual problems, reduces anxiety and can be helpful with aching joints. It reduces uric acid levels and lowers inflammation. Studies show that including a few sticks of celery to your daily diet can lower high blood pressure.
Everyone loves to use cinnamon. It’s a favorite in many dishes and is known to reduce bloating. It also known for its anti-inflammatory properties and its many antioxidants.
Cayenne is from the tropics and sub-tropics. Grown in India, Africa, Mexico and the US. It is known to be good for digestion, aids blood circulation, promotes weight loss and has many anti-bacterial properties.
Similar to cinnamon but used in cooking. Generally, promotes overall health. Particularly good for digestion and aiding the immune system. It also acts as an antidepressant and promotes feelings of well being and peace.
These seeds have a lot of fiber and are used for seasoning. They are also used in tea and are known to be helpful in treating a cough. They contain many b-complex vitamins and other important vitamins such as A, E and C.
This is considered a very expensive spice. It comes from India, Nepal, Bhutan and Indonesia. It is a source of Vitamin C and A, calcium, zinc and iron. It has many health benefits from aiding in good digestion, healthy heart function, controlling diabetes and asthma and can even help those suffering with depression. It is also used to deal with skin problems and blood clots.
Dill is used in cooking. The use of Dill helps to regulate menstruation and is known to aid in oral health. It also promotes healthy digestion, can be a quick cure for hiccups and may even help those with insomnia.
This is a form of sweet gum and is used for its ability to heal. It’s use in aromatherapy is to reduce stress, pain and enhances immunity.
Fennel is grown all over Europe, the Middle East, India, Turkey and China. Rich in dietary fiber, it also has many antioxidants. It is used to slow down aging and other progressive neurological disorders.
Grown in North Africa, India and the Middle East it has many health benefits. It is said to promote libido in men and to encourage the milk level in mothers. It can reduce inflammation and has been used to help those suffering from an eating disorder.
Hugely popular it has been used as a medicine from ancient times and is known for its anti-bacterial properties. Eating garlic daily can lower cholesterol levels. It can also lower blood sugar and regulate blood pressure.
Originating in China, Ginger can be found in many Chinese therapies. It is used to aid digestion, to lessen nausea and to reduce symptoms of flu. Ginger is one of the main ingredients of the traditional kadha dish.
Horseradish is bitter and spicy. Its antioxidants can reduce skin damage and since it is high in fiber and protein it can be used liberally without adding fats or calories.
These are hot chili peppers. They have antiseptic and antioxidant properties and are often used to detoxify the body. Antioxidants are used to help fight disease in your body and to reduce stress.
Licorice originates in the Mediterranean region and in Russia. It’s many health benefits include helping those relating to digestion like heartburn, stomach ulcers, colic or chronic inflammation in the stomach area.
This is actually the outer case of the nutmeg seed and shares the same taste. It helps your appetite, can aid in blood circulation and reduces stress. It is anti-inflammatory and is thought to protect your kidneys. It also has a nice fragrance.
The Mustard seed is generally spicy. It can reduce pain and the affects of arthritis. Studies have shown that regular use of mustard oil is healthy for your heart. It is a good source of MUFA and lowers cholesterol.
It is full of anti-inflammatory properties and helps promote healthy eyes and lowers blood pressure. It helps to increase saliva and stomach acids aiding in healthy digestion.
Saffron is bright yellow and comes from a flower. It adds wonderful color to food. It is used to help with menstrual difficulties, helps asthma sufferers and can help with dry skin.
Tumeric is literally a wonder spice. An antioxidant, anti-bacterial, anti-fungal, anti-carcinogenic, anti-viral and anti-inflammatory. It is useful in the fight against osteoarthritis and rheumatoid arthritis. It helps prevent cancer and is good for your brain.