Spices = Good or Bad?
Have you ever think that if there is no spices and herbs, what will be your food taste like? Tasteless, or much the same? Personally, I use spices and herbs a lot in preparing my meal, especially black pepper and green onions. Without them, I can’t really take any single meal. I guess everyone like spices and herbs to be added into their meal, but is there any of us know the advantages and disadvantages of consuming herbs and spices? Should we consume more of them, or in moderate way?
ByAlexander Baxevanis (futureshape) from Flickr.
Spices and herbs are usually used for flavouring, colouring or preserving food, and may include cinnamon, pepper, chili and curry powder, mustard, basil and green onion. Research has shown that spices and herbs contain lots of disease-fighting antioxidants than most of the fruits and vegetables have. Other than antioxidants, which is beneficial in fighting against free radical damage that may harm our cells in the body, other benefits of spices and herbs have been discovered recently. Here, I will point out and give example of three spices and herbs and their benefits.
By Cinnamon Vogue from Flickr.
1. Cinnamon – a natural food preservative
~ Regulate blood pressure = beneficial in lowering blood pressure and it has been to be a great choice for patients with diabetes and hypoglycemics-alike.
~ Regulate cholesterol = studies show that it will reduce or lower the level of LDL cholesterol level, which is harmful cholesterol in our body. This make it to help in reducing the risk of cardiovascular disease.
~ Have anti-infectious effect = it contains natural anti-infectious compounds and studies have shown that it is effective in fighting against ulcer-causing H.pylori and other pathogens by inhibiting their actions.
~ May reduce the proliferation of cancer cell = due to its nature effects of antioxidants, study conducted at the University of Texas shown that Cinnamon promises to prevent cancer and reduce sufferers of the disease.
~ Contains essential minerals = fiber, calcium, iron and manganese, which can be beneficial to our health.
~ Menstrual pain and infertility = it has been shown that it is effective in menstrual pain and infertility. As it contains natural chemical called cinnamaldehyde , this can help in balancing the hormone by increasing hormone progesterone and decreasing testosterone production in women.
~ Fat reduction on belly.
By daDOUBLEryl from Flickr.
2. Green onions
~ For bone health = contains both Vitamin C and K. This is the important in maintaining our strong bones as well as in growth and development of bones in order to prevent from osteoporosis or bone fractures in later age.
~ For eye health = contains Vitamin A that is needed to maintain our good vision. Without vitamin A, rhodopsin, which is protein in the eye that allow retinal receptors to absorb light, will not be produced and will develop night blindness and other vision disorders.
~ For heart health = due to natural properties of Vitamin C and A which is antioxidant, as reported by the University of Maryland Medical Center, this may help in preventing cellular damage due to free radical. There is link to reduce the risk of heart disease and Vitamin C may also help to prevent high blood pressure.
~ For immune system health = as stated by American Institute for Cancer Research and the Linus Pauling Institute, green onions have phytochemical, which is an naturally occuring plant chemicals, to support the function of our body’s immune system. This phytochemical can also prevent cancer by inhibiting xanthine oxidase, and thus prevent the production of free radical that can damage the DNA.
By cheapeats from Flickr.
3. Black pepper
~ Antibiotic properties and free radical suspension = due to Vitamin C content that may fight against free radical damage and modulate immune system.
~ Promote intestinal health = increase hydrochloric acid secretion and thus will decrease the time of food to sit in the stomach that may cause indigestion and heartburn. Act as natural products for people with anorexia.
~ Cough and flu = helps loosen phlegm and relieve a stuffy nose due to anti-bacterial properties.
~ Anti-depressant = One of the study that published at The Journal of Food and Chemical Toxicology shows that it may improve cognitive function of the brain and helps in depression as well as helping brain to function properly.
Other than green onions and etc., there are other spices and herbs, but I use this three the most in my cooking and so I wish to share on the benefits.After having research on these three spices and herbs, I love green onion more for now. I like to add these green onions on my hot dishes and yes, I really like the taste.