• Wellness Workdays

5 Spices for Health

Updated: Dec 11, 2020

colorful flavorful spices, spices and health

Spices have a long history of being used for their flavor and medicinal qualities. In the U.S., seasonings that contain added sugar and salt are used more often than pure spices. This may be because many people do not recognize the health benefits of using pure spices. Using spices can add more flavor to your favorite foods and drinks or help you to create new recipes. Spices can also improve the function of your immune system and help prevent conditions such as inflammation, heart disease, cancer and more. Open yourself up to a new world of flavor and spice up your health with these doctor and dietitian favorites:

1. Garlic is classified as a vegetable but is used more like a spice added to flavor food. Garlic gains its health benefits and its distinct smell from a compound called allicin. Garlic can help combat sickness such as the common cold and there is evidence it may be beneficial for heart health, possibly having a positive effect on cholesterol and blood pressure.

Raw garlic has a pungent flavor which turns sweeter when cooked, like its relative, the onion. You can roast and eat it whole or try adding fresh or ground garlic to:

  • Omelets

  • Baked fish

  • Roasted vegetables

2. Turmeric is a flowering plant in the ginger family, well known as the golden spice used in curry. Turmeric contains several beneficial compounds including the phytochemical curcumin, which provides the spice with most of its anti-inflammatory, anti-cancer, and antioxidant properties.

Turmeric provides an earthy, peppery flavor that can be used in much more than curry. Try adding turmeric to: