Spices have been around for centuries and they’re definitely not going anywhere. Not only are they are a great low calorie way to flavor your food but they’re also packed full of different benefits.
- A spice is a dried seed, fruit, root, bark, or vegetative substance used in nutritionally insignificant quantities as a food additive for flavor, color, or as a preservative that kills harmful bacteria or prevents their growth.
- In the kitchen, spices are distinguished from herbs, which are leafy, green plant parts used for flavoring.
- Many spices are also used for other purposes, such as medicine, religious rituals, cosmetics, perfumery, or eating as vegetables.
- For example, turmeric is also used as a preservative; liquorice as a medicine; garlic as a vegetable.
Here we share some of the top spices we use.
In numerous studies, the active compound in cayenne, capsaicin, has been shown to reduce appetite. (1)
Capsaicin also has been shown to increase energy expenditure through the activation of brown adipose tissue in humans (aka boost fat burning capabilities) (2)
Studies suggest this fiery spice, which gets its flavor from capsaicin, may increase fat oxidation, allowing the body to better use fat as fuel.
The compound curcumin in turmeric is a powerful antioxidant that fights oxidative stress.
Turmeric help relieve the pain, swelling, and redness that may come from inflammation-inducing conditions.
It’s also known to help treat digestive problems.
This spice is often used to color food as well as add a faint earthy flavor.
Initial studies show promising effects of curcumin on the prevention and therapy of cancer (3)
Black pepper Black pepper in particular boosts the absorption of the compound curcumin and in one study was shown to boost the bioavailability by up to 2,000% (4) Studies has also shown it to boost the absorption of beta-carotene.
Sea salt salt Is an essential mineral and too little or too much can prove to be problematic for overall health.
High quality pink Himalayan or sea salt also contains trace minerals and doesn’t have any additives like the standard table salts you normally find.
Ceylon Cinnamon can lower blood sugar by slowing down the breakdown of carbs and improving overall insulin sensitive (5).
Cinnamon also is a potent antioxidant that can help fight inflammation (6)
Cumin has been shown to increase the activity of digestive enzymes and increase the release of bile form your liver which helps to digests fat and certain nutrients.
1 tsp of cumin has 1.4mg of iron which is 17.5% of the RDI (7)