There’s more to good food than just using whole food ingredients. One of the best ways to add a little extra nutrition to your meal is by including herbs and spices. These powerful ingredients do more than add a little extra flavor to your food. They can provide more vitamins and minerals than the vegetables, fruits, starches, and proteins that you so carefully choose. While we can’t spill all the secrets of a good herb and spice collection here, we picked out some of our favorites to share with you here.
Basil: This great herb packs tons of vitamin K – more than you’ll find in a serving of spinach, in fact!
Cinnamon: Great for lowering bad cholesterol, helping beat the bacteria that causes stomach ulcers, reducing arthritis pain, and even regulating blood sugar, this great spice has myriad more uses. We could write a book on cinnamon alone!
Cloves: A natural antibiotic, modern dentistry makes use of clove oil. It can also be rubbed on the gums of babies to help ease teething pain.
Ginger: Many pregnant women run to ginger for comfort. Ginger provides many healthy benefits, and is most noted for its ability to soothe upset stomachs.
Hot Peppers: Chili peppers, in all their forms, contain capsaicin. Capsaicin is known to improve blood flow, has stopped heart attacks, and is even used in treating some skin ailments. It’s also a great weight loss additive – when used in moderation – especially for men.
Lavender: Naturally relaxing, lavender is often used in children’s bedtime bath soaps and lotions. The herb’s lovely fragrance helps put the mind at ease.
Onion: Onions, garlic, chives, and other allium family herbs and spices share one characteristic. They are loaded with vitamins and minerals. If you’re getting sick, onion may just help you fight off that infection, too. There are compounds in this family of plants that are proven to fight bacteria.
Sage: This herb is aptly named. Sage has the ability to improve mental performance. Even the aroma of the herb can improve test scores!
As you can see from the short list above, eating a diet that’s packed in flavor can help you in more than one way. Take a look in your spice cabinet, and experiment with the possibilities. Your family will be healthier as a result!