Health Boost from
Kitchen Herbs & Spices
There are some very simple ways you can give your health an extra boost, such as incorporating kitchen herbs and spices into your cooking routine.
Select herbs and spices, dried or fresh, for flavour and enjoy the health benefits that come with them.
Below are some examples and you may be surprised at the many diverse conditions for which they've proven useful.
Basil is a herbal carminative, and can aid with relieving gas and soothing stomach upsets. Research has also suggested that basil helps combat aging to some degree too.
Basil is great with tomatoes and onion, mixed in salads, or in pesto sauce.
Black pepper is one of the oldest and commonly used of all the spices. It has a stimulating effect on the digestive organs and produces an increased flow of saliva and digestive juices. Black pepper can also help reduce indigestion and flatulence.
Black pepper can be added to most savoury foods to add an extra kick.
Garlic is a natural antiseptic and is a powerful natural remedy for colds and flus, especially when taken at the first sign of symptoms. It also has a reputation as a cancer fighter with numerous other health benefits. It can help lower cholesterol and blood pressure, assist with plaque, and can lower the risk of hardening of the arteries. Garlic is also effective against digestive problems and diarrhoea.
Garlic can be eaten raw or cooked and adds flavour to many different meals.
Parsley is a natural diuretic-herb, which helps with our body's plumbing by helping it to produce more urine - it also helps prevent such problems as kidney stones and bladder infections. Parsley can also help relieve bloating during menstruation.
Parsley is often used as a garnish, and also goes very well in salads or meals cooked with garlic.
There are many clinical studies which indicate the curcumin in turmeric has anti-inflammatory effects, including a significant effect in relieving rheumatoid arthritis and carpal tunnel syndrome. Curcumin, which gives the yellow pigment, may also lower cholesterol. Turmeric is also packed with antioxidants, including vitamins A, C, and E, which have been shown to help prevent cataracts. It has also been suggested that the curcumin contained in turmeric provides powerful anti-cancer properties, especially for smokers and past smokers.
Turmeric is can be used in curries and other spicy foods.
Cayenne pepper is a hot red powder made from tropical chili peppers. It contains alkaloid capsaicin, which can help relieve pain. Cayenne pepper helps boost appetite, improves digestion and relieves gas, nausea, and indigestion. It also thins phlegm and helps to ease its passage from the lungs, and in doing so helps to prevent and treat coughs, colds and bronchitis.
Cayenne pepper can be added to give a hot spicy boost to any dish.
Sage contains both antiseptic and antibiotic oils, so it is helpful in fighting infections. It also can helps with symptoms of menopause, such as night sweats and hot flushes, because of its estrogenic action and because its tannins can dry up perspiration.
Sage can be cooked with all sorts of interesting dishes, but a personal favourite of mine is sage and onion stuffing with a roast chicken.
This is a great source of antioxidants and it also has antibacterial properties to help fight infection, as well as being a natural anti-inflammatory. It has also traditionally been used to help ease asthma. It may also help ease breast pain by acting as a natural drying agent to fluid filled cysts.
Rosemary is very nice with lamb, or mixed in with roasted vegetables and potatoes.
Ginger is a wonderful digestive aid, which helps to stimulate saliva flow and digestive activity, helps settles the stomach and relieves vomiting and pain from gas and diarrhoea. Ginger is also effective as an anti-nausea remedy. Ginger is also used as a pain reliever and it helps lower bad cholesterol.
Ginger is a very nice when mixed in vegetable juices, as well as being used in cooking in fish dishes and curries.
Cinnamon contains a compound that kills a variety of illness causing bacteria, including the E.coli, Salmonella, and Staphylococcus aureas. Cinnamon can help lower blood pressure and regulate menstrual cycles. In addition, cinnamon has a tranquilizing effect that can help reduce anxiety and stress.
Cinnamon is a really useful kitchen spice as it can be used in both sweet and savoury dishes.
Adding a variety of herbs and spices to your food has many health benefits, and this is evident in countries where diets are rich in these things, such as Mediterranean and Asian countries.
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