10 Healing Spices That Fight Diabetes, Reduce Cholesterol, Relieve Arthritis Pain and More

Most doctors agree that spices can be your best allies when it comes to prevention and treatment of various diseases. It has been scientifically shown that many spices and herbs possess medicinal properties which can help prevent most diseases, from common cold to cancer. We asked two experts about the spices and herbs that best improve overall health. This is what Glen Aukerman, MD, medical director of the Center for Integrative Medicine at Ohio State University Medical Center, and Ruth Knill, PhD, LAc, a Chinese herbalist had to say on the topic.


Turmeric: Curbs Inflammation
HOW IT WORKS: The compound which gives this spice its golden color is called curcumin and it is known for its ability to inhibit cell enzymes which cause inflammation. It is recommended to get ½ to 1 teaspoon of it daily. It is highly versatile and it can be added to organic canned soups, such as black bean, lentil, or tomato varieties.

Ginger: Calms Nausea
HOW IT WORKS: Ginger is a time-tested remedy and even modern medicine confirms its antinausea properties. It contains a substance which shuts down a nerve receptor in the body which causes vomiting. You should aim at getting juice from a tablespoon of ginger or ½ teaspoon dried ginger four times daily. You can add it to tuna salad along with a few drops of toasted sesame oil, for instance.

Thyme: Eases a Cough
HOW IT WORKS: Thyme has antiseptic and antispasmodic properties which help reduce inflammation in the throat and thus ease a cough. Try to get 2-3 teaspoons of thyme daily. To prepare a simple vinaigrette, mix a tablespoon of chopped fresh thyme leaves with a teaspoon honey, ½ teaspoon salt, 3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil, and a tablespoon white wine vinegar.

Cloves: Helps Arthritis Pain
HOW IT WORKS: Chinese medicine suggests that cloves have moving properties which help with arthritis pain. They contain a phytochemical which disrupts the pathways of a protein in the body that has been associated with inflammatory-related issues such as arthritis. Try to get at least ½ teaspoon daily. For example, you can prepare a delicious sauce with goes well with fish or chicken. Sauté cup fresh parsley, 1 clove garlic, 1 teaspoon cloves, 1 teaspoon pepper, and 1 teaspoon salt in 1 tablespoon olive oil. Add 4 cups shredded rhubarb chard after three minutes, and fry for additional five minutes.

Nutmeg: Lowers Blood Pressure
HOW IT WORKS:  Known as “warming spice”, nutmeg brings blood from the center of the body to the skin, allowing dispersing blood evenly across the body. Try to get ½ to a teaspoon of nutmeg daily. You can use it in various recipes as it is highly versatile spice. For instance, steam 1 head of broccoli and one potato, and then add 4-5 gratings of fresh nutmeg or ¼ teaspoon of ground nutmeg. Cook for a while and consume fresh.

Garlic: Reduces Cholesterol
HOW IT WORKS: Various studies done by the Linus Pauling Institute found that people who took garlic over the period of three months had reduced their cholesterol by 6-11%. Given the fact that garlic has antioxidant properties, it can prevent the oxidation of cholesterol in the arteries. Try to get 3-5 crushed cloves daily. Adding 5 garlic cloves to homemade hummus is a good way of using garlic in your dishes.

Rosemary: Improves Memory
HOW IT WORKS:  It contains ursolic acid which inhibits the breakdown of a neurotransmitter which is critical for memory. Try to get 1-2 teaspoons daily. Make a rosemary-infused syrup which can be added to fruit salads of chopped pears, apples, and grapes. To prepare the syrup, mix a cup of water, 2 sprigs rosemary, and ½ sugar. Bring it to a boil and allow it to cool for 10-15 minutes.

Cinnamon: Fights Diabetes
HOW IT WORKS: It has been scientifically shown that cinnamon contains a substance which helps cells respond to insulin, leading to a reducing of blood sugar levels by 18-29%. It is recommended to get ¼ to ½ teaspoon daily. For instance, you can mix ½ teaspoon of cinnamon into 2 tablespoons of peanut butter and spread over apples.

Basil: Combats Colds
HOW IT WORKS: Being abundant in antioxidants, basil is one of the best natural immune boosters. It also acts as antimicrobial agent, which in turn makes it able to fight germs responsible for colds. Try to get 1-2 tablespoons of basil on a daily basis. You can toss a tablespoon of chopped basil into a shrimp stir-fry or slice strawberries, toss with honey, and top with a couple of tablespoons chopped basil. The options are limitless!

Cumin: Prevents Cancer
HOW IT WORKS: Last but not least, there is the cumin, a spice whose active ingredient inhibits the enzymes which help cancerous cells invade healthy tissue. It also keeps tumors from developing the new blood vessels that stimulate their growth.  Try to get 6 teaspoons of seeds or ½ teaspoon of cumin powder daily. You can toss a bowl of root veggies, such as cauliflower, sweet potatoes, turnips, and parsnips, with a teaspoon cumin powder and olive oil. Bake for about 25 minutes and then add cilantro, pepper, and salt to taste.

source: http://justnaturallyhealthy.com

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