Useful seasonings and spices have now become an integral part of cooking and medicine. Most dishes are difficult to imagine without the typical spices, because their taste becomes completely different. Such an abundance did not always reign: in former times, spices were available only to the rich and royal persons. In addition, most spices grow only in hot climates. This also determined the later acquaintance of our people with them.
Today, every housewife has a dozen fragrant sachets. By adding them to food, we primarily care about the taste and aroma of food, but they also positively affect our health. In this article we will tell you what the most useful seasonings and spices are worth adding to your diet.
What are spices useful for?
Spices have been known to people for a long time, they were used in ancient times and not as a seasoning, but rather as a medicine. Healers have noticed that they help to cope with bacterial infections and accelerate metabolism.
It is no coincidence that it is precisely in the cuisine of the peoples of the East that dishes abundantly flavored with spices predominate, because the hot climate does not contribute to the long-term storage of prepared food.
Ginger has a wide variety of useful properties and uses. For ordinary people, ginger is most often familiar as an appendix to sushi and rolls. Meanwhile, it is not only pickled. For medical purposes, it is more often found either in the form of a fresh root, or as dried and ground to a powder state. Effects of Ginger:
With toxicosis, it is advised to add ginger to the diet - it will help get rid of nausea. If at the end of the day you feel a breakdown, and there are still some urgent things ahead, brew yourself a cup of ginger tea with lemon, which has a tonic effect. And it’s also useful to drink such tea when the first signs of a cold appear.
Shredded nutmeg is one of the spices that has a positive effect on men's health: it helps restore potency and cope with premature ejaculation. In addition, nutmeg affects digestion and improves the functioning of the cardiovascular system. It can be added to vegetable and meat dishes to add piquancy. It is a permanent ingredient in desserts, pastries and spicy drinks.
Be careful not to overdo it with its quantity. Firstly, it negatively affects the taste of food, and secondly, you can not eat more than 30 grams at a time. Take this warning seriously, otherwise you will have to go through such an unpleasant procedure as gastric lavage.
Perhaps no hostess can do without black pepper. It gives the dishes spice and pungency. It is combined with meat, fish and vegetable dishes. It is also used in the preparation of certain drinks, such as mulled wine or “bloody Mary”.
When used regularly, it helps the stomach to cope with the digestion of food and increases appetite. Positive effect on blood circulation, removes toxins. It will prevent the premature formation of blood clots in the body and accelerate metabolic processes.
To achieve a powerful aroma and taste in dishes, buy whole peppers and grind them immediately before adding to the dish. To do this, it is very convenient to have a mill in the house. Mix several types of pepper in it: red, white, black, pink. You will get a universal seasoning for all occasions.
Everyone knows about the health benefits of garlic in our country. It is usually recommended to increase immunity and resistance to colds. In addition, it is able to influence the level of sugar, reduce blood coagulation. And where to add garlic, you probably can not explain, but just in case, we recall: in borscht, aspic, meat and vegetable dishes.
Paprika is good for men's health because it enhances potency. As with most spices and spices, the benefits of paprika have a beneficial effect on the functioning of the stomach and intestines. She copes with bloating, flatulence, abdominal pain.
Like black pepper, paprika dilutes blood and generally positively affects blood circulation, improving its outflow to various organs. Prevents blood clots.
Paprika - both sweet and spicy - combines with most products, in addition to taste, adding a pleasant pinkish color to them.
Judging by the historical documents of the past, the first properties of coriander were discovered and recorded by Hippocrates. He used it to help patients with epilepsy. Indeed, coriander has a sedative effect. Relieves stress after a hard day and soothes a tantrum.
It also increases appetite, tones muscles and affects the functioning of the liver. Due to the special property - regeneration - it is used for recovery in the postoperative period.
It goes well with fish, meat, vegetables and dishes from wild mushrooms. It is often one of the components of alcoholic tinctures and marinades. And, of course, it is impossible to imagine Borodino bread without a generous portion of whole coriander.
Many dieters are aware of the wonderful effects of cinnamon on metabolism. On the Internet you can find many recipes for using spicy powder in this quality. It also reduces blood glucose and lowers bad cholesterol. It is recommended for problems with cartilage and joints. Cinnamon is known as a disinfectant that works with some fungi.
Its most popular cooking uses are pastries, desserts and drinks. Most associate it with sweetness. Indeed, it is inimitable in confectionery, some of them without cinnamon will lose all taste and aroma. In the East, meanwhile, no one considers it to be an addition to exceptionally sweet dishes, just try to cook grilled meat with cinnamon one day, and you will change your mind.
Ancient healers and healers actively used bay leaves. It was given to patients with rheumatism, diabetes mellitus and dysentery. Now we know that in addition to the above, bay leaf relieves inflammation and inhibits the processes of fermentation and decay. It is used to relieve stress, as a sedative.
In Russian cuisine, the bay leaf took root perfectly. This is a universal spice that combines with many products. Please note that very often bay leaf is used incorrectly, adding it to food too early, this kills its useful properties. Lay it no more than five minutes before the final readiness of the dish.
Another spice used since antiquity. This burning taste and bright aroma cannot be confused with anything. Clove is the best breath freshener, it does not just change the smell, this spice kills the bacteria that provoke it. The taste of cloves stimulates appetite, has a calming effect on the nervous system, relieves accumulated fatigue and relaxes.
In cooking, cloves are popular. The main thing when adding it is not to overdo it. Use the spice for meat dishes, meatballs, broths. Harvesting vegetables for the winter is not without it. Some desserts and drinks are revealed in a new way.
It is impossible to imagine Indian cuisine without a generous serving of turmeric. Although she was in last place on our list, this does not detract from her merits. Together with cinnamon, it helps to fight excess weight, removing excess fluid from the body. Lowers bad cholesterol and improves blood circulation. Helps stable liver and gall bladder function.
It has a bactericidal effect. A spoonful of turmeric on an empty stomach in the morning is an excellent support for immunity. It perfectly complements cereals, legumes and vegetables, can be added to meat, soups and sauces.
Benefit and harm
Can spices harm health besides health benefits? Of course, any product has contraindications. In the case of spices, they can occur in the form of allergic reactions. When developing your own healthy nutrition system, keep in mind that measure is important in everything, and especially in spices. For example, nutmeg abuse can lead to drug intoxication.
Of course, this will not happen from a pinch of the product, do not be afraid. Pregnant and lactating should also be careful not to provoke a food allergy in the child.
Summing up, I must say that spices are an incredible cooking tool that can, with the help of taste, transport you anywhere in the world in an instant. And it’s great that, besides this, they have a lot of wonderful effects for our body.
Capsaicin - a substance that gives pepper its signature sharpness, in small doses can serve you well. For example, it is known that 1 g of red pepper per day significantly reduces appetite and activates the burning of subcutaneous fat. That is why it is often used in weight loss supplements.
However, over time, sensitivity to capsaicin decreases and the effect slows down. So if you are an avid spicy food lover, the described effect does not apply to you. But don't be discouraged. According to studies, red pepper also has the ability to boost immunity and prevent the development of certain forms of cancer, at least in animals.
How to cook: add to sauces and hot dishes, if you do not like spicy or have contraindications - replace with paprika.
Just 1 g of ginger will help you deal with nausea, especially morning sickness or caused by motion sickness. In addition, ginger showed a wonderful anti-inflammatory effect. The use of 2 g of ginger per day in one of the studies caused a decrease in inflammatory processes in the intestines of the subjects, similar to the effect of taking aspirin. Also in some cases, this spice can serve as an anesthetic.
How to cook: add to tea and other warm drinks (for example, you can add to milk with cinnamon).
Rosmarinic acid - the active ingredient in this aromatic spice - can inhibit an allergic reaction and relieve nasal congestion. This effect is manifested with daily use of from 50 to 200 mg of rosmarinic acid. There is also evidence in favor of her ability to withstand some forms of cancer - the colon and breast.
How to cook: for culinary purposes - add to potatoes, meat people, sauces, for medicinal - use extract or tincture.
Types of spices
spices in a healthy diet
At the moment, there is a huge selection of all kinds of food additives, seasonings, but all of them can be divided into certain categories depending on what part of the plant we will eat:
- Spices in the shape of leaves. This type includes bay leaf, oregano, fenugreek leaves and much more.
- Spices from fruits and seeds of plants: black pepper, cardamom, coriander, anise, mustard and other species.
- Spices from buds or other parts of flowers are represented by cloves, turmeric and saffron.
- Spices from the bark of plants are cinnamon, cassia, and so on.
- Spices from the roots of plants. This type includes ginger, galangal, cassava root and asafoetida.
spices - the key to a healthy diet
Sometimes another classification is distinguished, for example, spices are:
- Clean. Such spices include those that did not respond to any processing and exist in their original form. These types include: ground pepper, cloves, turmeric and coriander.
- Mixes. This is a fairly widespread type of spices. So, for example, you can often find bags in stores with the inscriptions “Mix of spices for chicken”, “Spices for soup”, “Special mixtures for salads”. This is the most convenient way to cook, because the only thing you need to do is pour the contents of the bag into a salad or other dish.
- Mixes of spices with flavoring additives. They are very similar to the previous type of spices, but the only difference is that in addition to herbs, there are also chemical additives that are not very good for your health, so think before buying such a product.
Storage and consumption of spices
As for storage, the spices should be kept in closed airtight containers so that dust and moisture do not get there in order to preserve the original taste and aroma of these herbs. It is best to leave such jars in a dark place so that direct sunlight does not fall on them. It is recommended to store seasonings no more than 2-3 years, because after this period they will lose their aroma, useful properties and taste. Therefore, you need to remember to keep your spices intact, you need to protect them from the sun, humidity and high temperatures.
variety of spices on your table
Each type of food supplement is consumed in different ways, sometimes due to improper use, it can lose its taste and become completely invisible in a particular dish. Therefore, in order to prevent such simple mistakes, you need to remember how to apply different types of spices:
- Large or large spices are preferably added at the beginning of cooking so that they can saturate the dish. It can be either bay leaf, black pepper, peas, and cardamom or cinnamon.
- Spices in the form of powder are recommended to be added before you remove the finished dish from the stove.
- It is best used in small quantities so as not to make the dish too spicy or spicy.
- If you want to add spices to bread, rolls or other flour products, then this should be done at the stage of kneading the dough.
- The most important thing is that excessive consumption of specific additives can lead to diseases such as gastritis, poisoning and problems with the gastrointestinal tract.
Despite the fact that we are constantly scared by the fact that spices are harmful to our health and should be consumed as little as possible, they have a fairly large number of useful, and most importantly therapeutic properties.
ground turmeric masks - good for hair
These spices include:
- Cinnamon. Many do not even think about it, but eating cinnamon in food is the best way to lose weight. The fact is that it is able to control blood sugar and does not allow it to degenerate into mast cells. For prevention, it will be enough to take no more than half a teaspoon per day.
- Anise - This is another plant that will help keep your body in good shape. It is able not only to freshen breath, but also quenches appetite, thirst and gives the body a certain strength.
- Ginger able to speed up metabolism. Not only does it raise body temperature, but it also lowers blood cholesterol.
- Turmeric. Most people do not even realize that such a simple spice has an anti-inflammatory effect. It also activates the metabolism and improves the functioning of the stomach and intestines. Turmeric is ideal for heavy meat dishes, because it will help you facilitate the digestion of food and can eliminate the heaviness in the stomach. Another unusual way to use turmeric is to apply powder to the head and hair roots. This is done in order to reduce hair loss and improve their growth. Quite an unusual way, but the people of India still believe in this miraculous method.
- Black pepper helps to improve blood circulation in the body and improves the functioning of the digestive system, improves appetite and also has an antibacterial property.
- Red pepper. Its properties are similar to the benefits of black pepper, but scientists have proven that this spice can kill cancer cells, and is also effective in diseases such as diabetes, asthma, kidney disease, colds and arthrosis.
As you can see, spices have a fairly large number of important, and most importantly useful properties, so you should not limit their intake, but you need to do this in moderation.
The benefits of spices for weight loss
In many cases, being overweight is the result of poor metabolism, therefore, in order to get rid of this problem, dietitians often prescribe a variety of spices and seasonings, while not violating a healthy lifestyle.
So, for example, vanilla aroma is able to produce a hormone of pleasure, which in turn eliminates the need to eat something sweet. Just smell the vanilla and you are already on the right track to losing weight.
Vanilla can be replaced with sugar, and in small quantities added to mineral water or other drinks, the most important thing is not to overdo it.
But the most effective way to lose weight with spices is to use ginger. How does he do it? The answer is quite simple.
Firstly, ginger stabilizes the metabolism, helps with constipation, improves digestion and produces gastric juice. Secondly, it helps to remove unwanted substances from the body, burns fat and cleanses the body as a whole of a large amount of cholesterol.
But another positive quality of ginger is that it improves the functioning of the nervous system. Помогает почувствовать прилив сил и энергии, а также запросто снимет стресс и усталость.
При токсикозе помогает убрать ощущение тошноты, частично облегчает состояние женщины, при этом совершенно не навредит ребенку.
Кардамон также поможет избавиться от лишнего веса, при этом улучшается метаболизм и организм очищается от шлаков. If you regularly take a small amount of this spice, then the calories will gradually begin to be burned, without affecting the general condition of the body.
lose weight with ginger - nice and healthy
There are many more different seasonings that will help to get rid of excess weight without harming your health, these include:
- marjoram and many others.
With the right diet and physical activity, these spices will be an excellent option for those who want to lose weight. But you should not rely only on them, because spices play only an auxiliary role here.
Spices and healthy eating
The biggest misconception is that with a healthy and proper diet you need to completely exclude any spices from your diet, and especially salt, as it retains fluid in the body. But in fact, the salt contains a substance that we urgently need - sodium.
Sodium, in turn, is responsible for water metabolism in the body, for the production of gastric juice and for the transmission of nerve impulses. Therefore, with a deficiency of salt in the body, a person will feel lethargic, tired and forever sleepy.
But in everything you need to know the measure, since a large amount of salt can harm the body and make it very weak and prone to other diseases.
After all, greens primarily soothe the nervous system, improve sleep, reduce weight, stabilize the gastrointestinal tract and reduce appetite.
All these spices can be used every day in your diet, but in acceptable doses, namely:
- You can add spices to decoctions or tinctures.
- Drink tea with herbs and spices.
- Add to desserts.
- To add flavor, you can put it on a preheated pan before cooking.
- Season salads with spices with olive oil.
As you can see, spices do not represent anything dangerous, as many of us think, on the contrary, if used correctly, they will only have a positive and healing effect on our body.
It is only necessary to avoid too spicy and spicy dishes, so as not to harm your health.
Who is who, or how to distinguish seasonings from spices?
At the very least, seasonings and spices differ in that the former mainly affect the taste buds, and the latter, on the contrary, olfactory and occasionally the thermal. However, you must understand that even when the food is already in your mouth, you get most of the pleasant sensations from the olfactory receptors. Remember how tasteless food becomes when your nose is stuffy?
Spices need to be added to food according to certain calculations. You can not allow an overabundance of spices - this will ruin the taste. In small quantities, spices will not even be noticeable in your dish. Therefore, you need to look for a middle ground.
With seasonings, the situation is also very interesting. As a rule, seasonings in their pure form practically do not exist. Most of them are prepared according to a special recipe in combination with other seasonings or spices. Therefore, seasonings are divided into vegetable (their units) and chemical.
So, seasonings include mustard, horseradish, vinegar, tomato paste and even mayonnaise. Bay leaves, cloves, peppers and cinnamon - these are already spices. And “spices” is what unites them, the common name for spices and seasonings.
What are the main benefits of spices?
The history of spices is deeply rooted in history. The useful properties of seasonings and spices were noticed by ancient healers. They found that spices contribute to better absorption of food, and in addition, kill bacteria and inhibit the processes of decay in the body. But one important nuance - the benefits of spices will bring only with moderate use.
Spices vary in composition. It is interesting that nature enriched some of them with vitamins.
So, just a pinch of seasoning can positively affect the work of the body as a whole, in particular digestion, as well as the endocrine, nervous and cardiovascular systems. Spices also accelerate the movement of enzymes, absorb impurities in the cells and contribute to the speedy removal of toxins from the body.
It is interesting that most healthy spices are quite exotic and finding them is just not so easy. But there are also useful seasonings and spices among the familiar to us. We have compiled a list of the 10 most useful and at the same time the most affordable spices.
1. Black pepper
Behind the scenes, black pepper is called the "king of spices." He received such a title due to his popularity. Surely something, and black pepper will definitely be found in every home. And it is not for nothing that people loved him so much. This spice gives not only interesting notes to the dish, but also has many useful properties.
In particular, black pepper stimulates digestive processes and perfectly affects the work of the stomach. Black pepper has a positive effect on blood circulation. Also, the “king of spices” prevents the formation of blood clots, removes toxins and has a beneficial effect on metabolic processes.
Moreover, black pepper is useful both in its entirety and in powder form. Peppercorns are added to broths, pickles, and even some meat dishes. Ground also appears in meat products, and in addition, in various sauces and soups, adding to the dish spicy and fragrant aroma.
It is a natural catalyst for metabolism. So it is recommended to everyone losing weight. But in addition to its “magical” properties for weight loss, cinnamon also has other equally useful properties. So, the components that make up cinnamon contribute to lowering glucose and cholesterol in the blood, improving blood circulation, and also developing cartilage lubrication.
In addition, cinnamon disinfects and kills fungi. The most common uses of cinnamon are pastries and pastries. But you can also find cinnamon in some sauces. And having diluted cinnamon with tea or coffee, you can plunge into the world of the east.
A real find for men, as it enhances potency. Paprika favorably affects the gastrointestinal tract. If you feel any discomfort in your stomach, then paprika will help eliminate spasms, gas formation and flatulence. Paprika has a positive effect on blood circulation - it dilutes the blood, improves its outflow to tissues and organs, and, moreover, prevents the formation of blood clots.
Paprika goes well with cheese, seafood, fish and meat. There are several types of paprika that are used in Hungarian, Portuguese, Spanish, Indian and Mexican cuisines.
Nature gave man one cure for many diseases. And this, strangely enough, is ginger. Ginger root acts simultaneously as an antispasmodic, painkiller, bactericidal and anti-inflammatory. In addition, ginger root is an excellent prevention for women's health. The use of ginger prevents infertility, removes the tone of the uterus, enhances libido. Pregnant girls are also advised to consume ginger - so during toxicosis they will feel less sick.
Ginger also soothes and relieves fatigue. It goes well with meat and seafood (for good reason sushi is always served with ginger). Very unusual notes appear in tea with ginger root.
People call garlic "the killer of germs and bacteria." True, garlic is a great cure for the common cold. Moreover, both fresh and dried. Interestingly, garlic also helps lower blood sugar, reduces blood coagulation, and even fights tumor cells.
Ideally, garlic feels itself in borsch, aspic, all kinds of meat dishes and mixed vegetables.
6. Bay leaf
This is a great painkiller. Bay leaf also relieves inflammation, prevents decomposition, decay and fermentation. Useful properties of bay leaves were noticed by ancient people. In ancient times, it was used as a cure for rheumatism, dysentery and diabetes. Bay leaf is also a good remedy for calming the nervous system.
“Lavrushechka for flavor” is added to almost any dish. It is difficult to imagine your favorite soup, vegetable stew or stew without adding bay leaves.
Nutmeg is especially good for treating male ailments - it helps to cope with impotence and uncontrolled ejaculation. In addition, it favorably affects the digestive, nervous and cardiovascular systems. Useful nutmeg in all forms.
It can be found in all kinds of sauces and ketchups. Nutmeg adds piquancy to them. And in minced meat, baked goods, sausages and fish, nutmeg reveals new flavor notes. Baking, desserts and alcoholic cocktails will give Muscat a pleasant aroma.
Dried buds of tropical clove Sizigium with a burning taste and a peculiar aroma are known as cloves. Since ancient times, cloves found its place in cooking and has become a favorite spice in many cuisines of the world. She was found not only a rich addition to food, but also an excellent cure for many ailments. Even the ancient Chinese chewed cloves to get rid of bacteria and in addition to get rid of bad breath. Clove also has a positive effect on the nervous system - it calms, relieves tension and irritability, fatigue and fatigue. In addition, cloves increase appetite and the production of digestive juice.
Crushed cloves can be found in hot meat dishes, minced meat and broths. In general, cloves are a great addition to preservation and all kinds of marinades. Cloves give interesting tastes in combination with cinnamon in desserts.
This spice is very popular in Indian cuisine. Here she takes pride of place. And this is not surprising. Firstly, turmeric is an excellent assistant in the fight against excess weight, as it catalyzes metabolism and removes excess fluid from the body. Turmeric is also very useful for the circulatory system - it helps lower blood cholesterol, lower blood pressure, and also liquefies and circulates blood well. Those who often eat turmeric often have good liver and gall bladder function. And besides, turmeric perfectly fights parasites and even inhibits the growth of cancer cells.
You can meet turmeric mainly, as mentioned above, in Indian dishes - this is, first of all, chicken, vegetables and legumes, as well as various sauces and broths.
An excellent remedy for calming the nervous system. This was noticed by Hippocrates, who first began to use coriander as a medicine for epilepsy. Coriander is able to relieve stress and calm tantrum. But this is not the only beneficial property of coriander root. It eliminates congestive liver phenomena, accelerates regeneration processes, tones up the heart muscles and blood vessels, and also improves appetite.
The best companions of coriander are fish and meat, mushrooms and vegetables. Often coriander is added to all kinds of marinades. And the seeds supply alcoholic drinks and even pastries. This gives the dishes a special aroma and interesting notes. Remember the taste of Borodino bread? Coriander plays a very important note in it.
Spices can be harmful?
Like any medicine, spices also have contraindications. But also do not forget about the "dosage". Seasonings and spices are useful only with moderate use. And here the key word is “moderate”. If one pinch of spices is good for the body, then two may already be redundant. It is important to understand that it is better not to get carried away with spices.
- This is especially important when working with nutmeg. The consequences are not the most favorable - headache and hallucinations.
- Ginger may cause bleeding.
- Clove is contraindicated in pregnant women, since it increases muscle tone, and in pregnant women - uterine tone, which can be fraught with negative consequences up to a miscarriage.
- Turmeric should be taken with caution in hemophilia patients and those who often complain of low blood pressure.
- Coriander can disrupt the menstrual cycle in women, therefore, ladies should also be treated with special attention to its use.
- Ginger, cinnamon and paprika are harmful to those who have problems with the liver and kidneys, as well as patients with pancreatitis.
But do not forget that any dish can become bright if you know the secret to using seasonings. Try to add extremely healthy spices to your dishes. So the food will be both tasty and healthy.