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Johns Hopkins Medicine- The 5 Spices With Healthy Benefits

“There are more than 100 common spices used in cooking around the world. Spices are concentrated sources of antioxidants,” says Diane Vizthum, M.S., R.D., research nutritionist for the Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine. “But some have been more studied for their therapeutic properties than others.”

There’s no need to go on a massive hunt for exotic ingredients — some of the best spices can be found at your local market. Here, Vizthum suggests which spices to consider incorporating into your meals.

𝗢𝗻𝗲 𝗻𝗼𝘁𝗲: Most studies that show benefits use supplements to control the dose of spice (or the spice’s active compound) that participants consume. Often these provide bigger doses than you’d normally eat in a day.

𝗥𝗼𝗻’𝘀 𝗡𝗼𝘁𝗲: At TrustOrganix.com

, we utilize the research from scientific studies when formulating our products to include an amount deemed both beneficial and safe for daily use. As you would expect, too little of an herb or spice won’t provide optimal benefits whereas too much can sometimes be harmful for daily use.

Our supplements contain only NON-GMO ingredients and we source Organic ingredients when available. Our supplements are made in an FDA Registered Facility and they are GMP Certified and Halal Certified.

𝟭. 𝗖𝗜𝗡𝗡𝗔𝗠𝗢𝗡 (𝘁𝗼 𝗟𝗼𝘄𝗲𝗿 𝗕𝗹𝗼𝗼𝗱 𝗦𝘂𝗴𝗮𝗿)

This popular spice comes from the bark of the cinnamon tree and is used in everything from pumpkin spice lattes to Cincinnati chili. Cinnamon is especially great for people who have high blood sugar. It lends a sweet taste to food without adding sugar, and studies indicate it can lower blood sugar levels in people with type 2 diabetes.

Cinnamon may also provide heart-healthy benefits, such as reducing high blood cholesterol and triglyceride levels. That’s especially important for people with diabetes who are at greater risk for developing heart disease.

Cinnamon is not a replacement for diabetes medication or a carbohydrate-controlled diet, but it can be a helpful addition to a healthy lifestyle.

𝟮. 𝗧𝗨𝗥𝗠𝗘𝗥𝗜𝗖 (𝘁𝗼 𝗙𝗶𝗴𝗵𝘁 𝗜𝗻𝗳𝗹𝗮𝗺𝗺𝗮𝘁𝗶𝗼𝗻)

Turmeric is best known for its use in Indian curry dishes and has become a trendy superfood for its ability to reduce inflammation — a common cause of discomfort and illness.

One of the components of turmeric is a substance called curcumin. Research suggests it may reduce inflammation in the brain, which has been linked to Alzheimer’s disease and depression. In a small study of adults over 50, those who consumed curcumin supplements over the course of 18 months had improvement in memory test scores. They also reported being in better spirits. Most impressive? Scans of their brain indicated significantly fewer markers associated with cognitive decline.

Because of its anti-inflammatory qualities, curcumin is also effective at reducing pain and swelling in people with arthritis. And animal studies indicate that curcumin could have powerful anti-cancer properties. A Johns Hopkins study found that a combination of curcumin and a chemotherapy drug was more effective at shrinking drug-resistant tumors than using chemotherapy alone.

𝟯. 𝗚𝗜𝗡𝗚𝗘𝗥 (𝘁𝗼 𝗥𝗲𝗹𝗶𝗲𝘃𝗲 𝗡𝗮𝘂𝘀𝗲𝗮)

Ginger is a tropical plant that’s been used in Asian cultures for thousands of years to treat stomach upset, diarrhea and nausea. In the U.S., it comes in a variety of convenient forms — lollipops, candies, capsules and teas. You can also purchase the dried powder in the spice aisle of the grocery store, or buy it fresh to make teas or grate into recipes.

Research has found that ginger is effective at calming pregnancy-related nausea and reducing tummy upset after surgery. Some studies have also found that ginger cuts the severity of motion sickness or prevents the symptoms altogether. It may even help with chemotherapy-induced nausea and vomiting when taken along with anti-nausea medications. (Ask your doctor first before taking ginger while on chemotherapy drugs, as it can have a negative interaction with certain medications.)

𝟰. 𝗚𝗔𝗥𝗟𝗜𝗖 (𝘁𝗼 𝗕𝗼𝗼𝘀𝘁 𝗛𝗲𝗮𝗿𝘁 𝗛𝗲𝗮𝗹𝘁𝗵)

Most of us are familiar with garlic, the strong-smelling bulb frequently used in cooking. But what you might not know is that eating garlic may protect your heart from changes that lead to heart disease.

As you age, some hardening of the arteries is normal. This is called atherosclerosis and occurs as fatty deposits made up of cholesterol and other substances build up on the inside of your artery walls. Factors such as smoking, high blood pressure and high cholesterol can make it worse. As the build-up increases over time, the arteries narrow. This can make you susceptible to heart attacks and strokes.

Researchers have linked garlic intake with keeping blood vessels flexible, especially in women. In addition, studies suggest that eating garlic may reduce cholesterol and triglycerides.

Garlic is a key ingredient in the Mediterranean diet, an eating style that heart doctors often recommend. It can be used in any number of savory dishes.

𝟱. 𝗖𝗔𝗬𝗘𝗡𝗡𝗘 (𝘁𝗼 𝗘𝗮𝘀𝗲 𝗣𝗮𝗶𝗻)

Cayenne is a type of chili pepper that you’ll find in Southwestern American cuisine as well as Mexican, Creole and Cajun dishes. Cayenne peppers contain a substance called capsaicin. It’s what makes them spicy and also what can provide pain relief.

Capsaicin reduces the number of pain signals sent to your brain. The result? You don’t register as much discomfort. It works on pain caused by arthritis and diabetes-related nerve damage. You can apply creams with capsaicin directly on joints and muscles.

Lab research and studies in animals suggest that eating cayenne pepper can also help with something that causes a lot of internal pain: ulcers. Although people often associate spicy foods with stomach upset, capsaicin aids in helping reduce ulcers by restricting the growth of an ulcer-causing bacteria (Helicobacter pylori or H. pylori), reducing excess stomach acid and increasing blood flow.

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Reference: Johns Hopkins Medicine. 5 Spices With Healthy Benefits.

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