Several herbs and spices contain chemical compounds that reduce chances of cell damage and other such issues associated with serious health conditions and diseases. This is largely due to the presence of disease-fighting antioxidants in spices, which is in fact, more than that present in fruits and veggies.
According to researchers at the University of Georgia, the traditional spice, Ginger, works in the same way as anti-inflammatories like Ibuprofen and naproxen, offering even more pain relief and less side effects.
The researchers studied 74 volunteers taking either ginger supplement or placebo for 11 days. On the eighth day, the participants were subjected to a muscle-taxing work out, and the ginger group reported 25 percent less pain than the control group.
According to Dr. Issac Mathai, Medical Director, Soukya International Holistic Health Center, Bangalore, the carminative, anti-inflammatory, and anti-histaminic properties of ginger are well-known. It is a part of various herbal formulations used in treating rheumatic disorders, arthritis, migraine and abdominal colic, with pain being the most pre-disposing symptoms.
“Maintaining a daily intake of 1-3gms of ginger really helps,” he suggests.
Adding cinnamon and cloves to your cereal or desert may help in preventing formation of bad high blood sugar compounds that could otherwise lead to diabetes and related heart ailments. This property of cinnamon and cloves are largely due to the presence of anti-oxidants in them. Herbs such as sage, rosemary and tarragon also have similar effect on the body.
Garlic stimulates blood circulation to the brain and kills brain cancer cells, a scientific study has confirmed. It was also discovered that regular intake of garlic can lower total cholesterol and triglyceride levels by 10% on an average.
The other commonly used spices found beneficial for health are basil (has anti-inflammatory qualities that provide resistance form Alzheimer’s), cumin (slows growth breast and colon cancer cells and improves conditions like insomnia, memory loss, digestion, respiratory ailments, kidney health and metabolism).