Herbs & Spices that heal February 10, 2018 – Posted in: Functional Foods

Whether you are recovering from an injury, or struggling to recover from a heavy workout, or have caught a flu- directly heading to an anti-inflammatory pill or popping in a supplement may not always be the best approach.
Plenty of herbs & spices especially Indian have properties of repair and healing. Unfortunately, in the fast-paced world, we need immediate fixes- which mind you, are often temporary.
A gradual approach may be like it suggests- gradual- but surely promises long term relief.
In the case of such herbs and spices, they take their time building you up slowly against common infections and bouts of flu preparing you to fight your own battles!
This is my top 5 list of anytime-go-to herbs and spices!

1. Turmeric (haldi)

This vibrant spice apart from being auspicious is extremely medicinal; having therapeutic properties. The active component- curcumin is a potent antioxidant posing anti-inflammatory properties. Whether it is relieving arthritic pain, or treating a sore throat, turmeric is the spice to go to!

In more severe conditions such as cardiac diseases, diabetes, hypertension, this spice can act as a fantastic support system especially in preventing complications.

I enjoy ¼- ½ tsp of turmeric in my milk, or in a glass of warm water on rising!

2. Garlic (lahsun)

A close cousin of onion; garlic, is rich in a bioactive compound called allicin which has many medicinal properties. Apart from being anti-inflammatory, garlic is anti-microbial, immune boosting and anti-fibrinolytic.

Athletes with constant sores or individuals with abnormal lipid profiles, chewing on a couple of garlic cloves on rising/ increasing the use of garlic in all your meals is a good start.

Make sure to chew on some ‘saunf’ post to avoid a strong pungent breath!

3. Ginger (adrak)

Ginger along with Turmeric are from the same plant family. Gingerol is the potent bioactive component present in ginger that has anti-clotting and immune boosting properties. Runners who most often suffer from dry throat and upper respiratory tract infections, grated ginger/ ginger juice in your during run drinks can be of great aid!

One of the other most important benefits is in digestion as it cures nausea if your suffering from morning sickness or treats acid reflux, acidity and ulcers.

I enjoy it in my ginger-lime juice, one can always add it in their teas and meals throughout the day!

4. Cinnamon (dalchini)

This earthy bark is rich in cinnamaldehydes as well as proanthocyanidins. Cinnamon is packed with many antioxidants that prevent the rise in free radicals due to stress of any kind!

It is extremely potent as an anti-inflammatory and plays significant role in relieving pain and swelling! Cinnamon is also known for its benefits in controlling blood sugar levels as well as balancing an abnormal lipid profile.

Stir it up in your coffees/ teas or add up in the breads you bake!

5. Holy basil (Tulasi)

Apart from its auspicious significance, it is extremely rich in essential oils and phytonutrients that are antibiotic and anti-bacterial.

Basil is our defense system to all infections, mainly, the ones related to respiratory tract. It relieves congestion and treats bronchitis as well as asthma.

Chew on a couple of basil leaves each morning to strengthen your immune system!

Let Food Be Thy Medicine…

To Well-Being, Positivity & Happiness Always…

Mihira A R Khopkar