Friday, February 1, 2008

Medicinal Importance of Spices

by: Victor Thomas

Spices play an important role in the nutrition of our daily diet. Scientists have done a lot of research on this and have found out that spices contain more antioxidants than fruits and vegetables. The spices contain more antioxidants when they are dried than when they are raw. Half teaspoon of spices will contribute more amounts of antioxidants than half a cup of fruits. Spices play an active role by acting as medicines. Cloves, oregano, allspice, cinnamon, sage, peppermint, thyme and lemon balm are some of the spices. These spices may be of a significant dietary source.

Dried herbs and spices with high amount of antioxidants are:











The fresh herbs with antioxidants are:





Lemon balm


The addition of spices in our daily life not only keeps us healthier but it also adds taste to our food. There are different flavors we can make with different spices.

The function of antioxidants is that:

• They fight against cancer causing cells.

• Some spices reduce the cholesterol level in the blood.

• They prevent us from several skin diseases.

Now we will see about different spices and their medical properties.


Turmeric belongs to ginger family. It is yellow in colour and is a traditional crop of India . Turmeric is used as medicines for centuries. It enhances immune functions, improves digestion and it also reduces the risk of heart attack.

People use turmeric as a lotion to their faces as it keeps your face shinning and prevents from pimples.


Ginger has several medical properties. It helps in preventing the symptoms of motion sickness, especially seasickness. Apart from this, it can also be used in reducing nausea and vomiting brought on by pregnancy. If your stomach is upset drink two teaspoons of ginger juice, it will clean your stomach. Ginger contains an inflammation-fighting substance called “gingerol”, which may help reduce pain and improve function in people who have arthritis.


Coriander is rich in protective photochemical and it is a very good source of iron, magnesium and manganese.


One of the oldest spices known is cinnamon. The benefit of cinnamon is that it reduces inflammation, and recently scientists have found out that consumption of cinnamon reduces cholesterol and is good for heart.

Researchers have found that oregano, dill, thyme and rosemary have some of the highest levels of cancer-fighting antioxidants. Many of the spices contains anti cancerous Enzymes, so it is advisable for cancer patients to consume spices.

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