We often see spices as just these ingredients that add more depth to the flavors of a dish. But do you know that spices are not just good for cooking, they also offer great benefits that will improve your health and well-being.
Here are some of the more common spices that you can find in your spice rack that actually offer a lot of health benefits.
We often use cinnamon for desserts and for Mediterranean cooking. But you may be surprised to know that cinnamon has very strong antioxidant properties that protects cells from oxidizing damage. Because of its antioxidant effects, cinnamon has been used in preventing diseases like diabetes, Alzheimers and even cancer.
Turmeric figures prominently in Asian cooking. But in Asia, it is also a popular homeopathic remedy for a lot of different ailments. Turmeric has an active ingredient called curcumin that has been proven to be a very strong antioxidant. Western experiments has shown that curcumin can reduce the growth of cancer cells. Turmeric is also used to improve heart health. Incorporating turmeric in the diet can help regulate triglyceride and insulin levels.
The active ingredient in rosemary is carnosic acid is believed to be able to protect the brain from damage caused by exposure to free radicals. This helps prevent neurological diseases like Alzheimer’s disease. It can even help protect from strokes. Rosemary also has another active ingredient called carnosol that is believed to be able to discourage the growth of cancer cells.
Basil is a very popular herb that is often associated with Italian cuisine. But its origins are really in India, where it is used to treat diabetes, asthma and stress. Basil is known to have strong antimicrobial and antiviral properties, so it is used in treating bacterial and viral diseases. It’s surprising to know that basil is also a natural COX inhibitor that can help alleviate inflammatory problems like arthritis.
Peppers contribute to the spiciness of dishes and you can actually use peppers for alleviating aches and pains in your body. The active ingredient in peppers, capsaicin, can ease pain like headaches and arthritis, among others. You can actually use it as a topical pain reliever. Ingesting peppers, on the other hand, actually helps release endorphins in your body.