Spices bring your food to life without adding extra calories but they also offer your body extra health benefits. They contain antioxidants, antiviral, anti-inflammatory and antibacterial compounds. Using spices regularly can lower blood sugar, boost immunity, improve circulation and digestion, and reduce inflammation. Use the following spices to positively impact your health and entice your taste buds.
Thyme – This mint flavored herb helps to strengthen immunity and is rich in antibacterial properties. Add to soups, stews and marinades, or sprinkle over chicken and fish.
Rosemary – Known as a ‘memory tonic’ and a powerful antioxidant, these leaves increase blood flow to the brain. It is also used as an anti-inflammatory and provides iron, potassium and calcium. Use on meat dishes or sprinkle on potatoes but be sure to chop it up to bring out the flavor.
Turmeric (curry) – This potent spice is full of antioxidant and anti-inflammatory compounds. It is shown to activate cellular defense mechanisms and has been used in conjunction with some cancer treatments. Add to a stir fry, sprinkle over egg salad, or mix into rice dishes.
Cilantro – This herb is known for both its tang and powerful health benefits. It soothes indigestion and may remove toxic metals from the body. Add to guacamole, salsa, soups or marinades.
Oregano – This popular herb contains vitamin K, antioxidants, and antibacterial properties. Add oregano to soups, or heat with olive oil and drizzle over salads.
Cayenne pepper – This pungent and fiery spice is popular in Mexican cuisine. It has anti-bacterial, anti-diabetic, and analgesic properties. Sprinkle it on pasta, sandwiches, or even chocolate to give your food a healthy kick.
Vanilla bean – This non-pungent spice is used in a variety of drinks and confectioneries. It contains b complex vitamins, as well as traces of many minerals, including potassium, magnesium, and zinc. Add vanilla bean to your coffee, hot chocolate, or tea for a mineral boost.