Super foods, Spices

fresh basil
fresh basil | Source
thyme
thyme | Source
fresh jalapeno
fresh jalapeno | Source

Spices

There is a distinction between spices and herbs. We typically confuse the two, though. Most of us think of them in terms of spices as dry, and pulverized while herbs are fresh, the leafy green parts which has water, even a plant or a root.

Yet spices are herbs that have been dehydrated in most culinary terms.

Spices, dried or fresh - in terms of age, have been on the rise for the last years or so, especially since people have been taking more of an interest in the culinary arts. Whether they cook it or have it cooked for them it doesn't make a difference.

Yet when we eat we want to enjoy our foods, herbs and spices make all the difference especially if one is trying to be health conscious as well.

Healthy eating

Healthy eating is being touted as the way to live well and live long. I particularly like Spock's mantra of 'live long and prosper', because these are the concepts on which preventative, holistic medicine are based upon.

Like i said spices have made a resurgence because of all the beauty they can add to the taste of any food, whether it is simple or fancy. This makes a difference, good food is good food and all of us want to enjoy our foods when we eat.

Problem is the market is also flooded with bad foods, bad tasting and bad for you!

We are discovering more and more everyday that spices can and do make a significant difference in our health.

Typically the fresher the food the better for the human body! Yet when spices are consumed in any form, it gives the body a fighting chance when it comes to health, not just taste.

Most of us live to eat, that is a foodie.

We can also eat to live and know the celestial enjoyment that comes along with feeding the body foods that will make an impact on our health.

Packaged foods

We know that prepackaged foods are bad! At least most of it is known to be bad for us because it has been scientifically enhanced. We know that our foods are tampered with - manufactured, that even rats won't eat!

We know that we are consuming foods that are keeping us hungry, contributing nothing to us but a moment of pleasure that quickly affects our insulin sensitivity. Which we have found eventually leads to diseases if we are not careful, because the body reacts to it negatively.

Super foods, spices

Super foods are being hailed as a great solution to the nutritional deficit problem that we are experiencing. They take many forms. Fresh or dried. Organic or farmed.

The choice is always the consumers and their budget.

Health begins from the inside out, we all know that even if we don't abide by what we know. Yet it is small changes that can do great good. Spices does more than just make our foods palatable to our taste buds.

Spices, yes more and more of us are making use of many more spices just because we know they are better for us and deliver a healthy punch as well.

  • Thyme
  • Red pepper
  • Hot peppers -Goat pepper, cayenne, chili
  • cloves
  • cinnamon
  • curry
  • turmeric


Turmeric

The star among super spices is turmeric. It is better known as one of the main ingredients in curry powder used in Asian and Indian cuisine.

Also known as 'Indian saffron'.

It gives the powder the ochre yellow color that is well known.

Flavor

  • pungent
  • peppery
  • bitter
  • warm

Uses

  • food spice, mustard, curry
  • textile dye
  • medicine

Health benefits, Turmeric is known for it's medicinal properties, it is an anti inflammatory spice, widely used in Chinese and Indian healing remedies..

How to use it

  • add it to warm milk
  • drink
  • try this daily

benefits

  • purifies the blood of toxins
  • clears the skin
  • destroys free radicals

Topical

it can be used on the skin

caution, it leaves a yellow tinge / stain

Adding spices

Getting your daily intake of spices is not hard, some meals are more challenging than others but if you have experience with Indian and Chinese cuisine you have an advantage because you already know of some dishes you can eat and enjoy.

Turmeric

If you are a curry fan adding Turmeric to your meat and vegetables will be easy. Since turmeric is an anti inflammatory spice adding it to as many of your meals during the week - 7 days is to your advantage especially if you are having digestive problems.

Pairing turmeric with onions and garlic is also a great ways to aid in your digestion and if you are daring adding some fresh minced ginger will give you an added taste bud kick while solving stomach problems.

Cinnamon

It has been proven that cinnamon helps with regulating blood sugar or spikes in our blood when we eat, so it is a perfect match for carbohydrate rich meals and even refined foods that trigger blood spikes and insulin release.

It is also known to have antifungal benefits.

The great taste of cinnamon also acts as a sweetener so it helps when reducing refined sugar usage.

Sprinkle it over cereal, and yogurt. Bake it in cakes, cookies and pies. You can also add it to your coffee drink or protein shakes!

Hot peppers

Cayenne pepper for example is known to boost the metabolism but it is also known to have been used in healing remedies where pain was an issue.

The great thing about hot peppers is you can add them to anything you like if you like spicy or hot.

For example, It has been added to chocolate or cocoa - and old use by the Mayans, and other foods using chocolate because it is known to enhance the flavor of the cocoa.

Known to aid in blood flow because of the capsaicin that hot peppers contain, it has also been touted as a aphrodisiac in males.

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Comments 2 comments

My Cook Book profile image

My Cook Book 2 years ago from India

A good informative hub :)


Celiegirl profile image

Celiegirl 2 years ago Author

Thanks, My Cook Book, love herbs and spices, confused myself a lot, so inspired me.

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