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Looking for a way to spice up your life? Well let’s get it on, in the kitchen. Yes I said the kitchen…this is where the spices are stored. Here is a quick look at the health benefits of a few of my favorite spices. Just a few reasons to eat at home, eat fresh and healthy. Food as medicine. But remember to always consult your physician before using these spice remedies.
Popular in Chinese medicine for its antioxidant and antibacterial properties. It will help fight a bad stomach bug, candida yeast infections. Some researchers claim that cinnamon is effective in improving memory and cognitive development. Sprinkle cinnamon in your oatmeal, in your coffee, on sweet potatoes fries, squash…really anything that sounds good!
For me the most common benefit of turmeric is its anti-inflammatory properties. The active ingredient is curcumin, which can have antiviral, antibacterial, anti-fungal and antioxidant properties as well. Use turmeric on cauliflower, in salad dressings, rice, and curry dishes. Another favorite way to consume it is through a glass of tea with honey and lemon. You can find many recipes online.
An ingredient in cayenne called Capsicum is responsible for its health benefits. Capsicum has been shown to increase circulation and contribute to weight loss. You can use cayenne to flavor beans, chili, tacos, and really anything you want to spice up with some heat.
This beautiful green herb has had its claim to health fame since the early days of the Romans. Parsley’s health benefits include anti-oxidant nutrients, high folic acid content, and Vitamin C. These benefits can help fight against arthritis, keep the heart healthy, and fights against bad breathe. Parsley can be used in marinades, added to soups and sauces, meats, fish…the list can go on!
The oil of this plant has antibacterial and antiseptic properties. Recent studies suggest it is effective in killing MRSA bacteria strains. My most common use for thyme is in marinades, soups and in roasted beef, chicken or turkey.
Of course these are only a few of the many herbs and spices that provide health benefits. Add some spice to your life and some real health benefits!
Here is a delicious superfood breakfast recipe to make sure you get a boost of the essential vitamins, minerals and antioxidants that our bodies need. I found myself falling in love with steel cut oatmeal this week. Well that love actually started after the previous blog on the different types of oatmeal. I had never wandered outside the world of flattened oatmeal. You just cannot do a segment without really trying the foods right? Sounded like a delicious chore to me! I did just that, and now every morning I start my day with steel cut oatmeal. To keep it interesting, and to make sure I cram as many healthy benefits into the meal, I made myself a superfood version. My version provides antioxidants, an anti-inflammatory boost and plenty of fiber. So many endless possibilities with steel cut oatmeal.
Pumpkin Spice Steel Cut Oatmeal Topped with Walnuts and Apples
1 C steel cut oatmeal, cooked according to package directions
1/4 pumpkin puree
1 T honey
1 tsp cinnamon
1/4 C chopped walnuts
1/4 C chopped apples
Cook the steel cut oatmeal according to package directions. Add pumpkin, honey, cinnamon and stir. Top with the walnuts and apples. ENJOY!!