In the Kitchen: Spices That Are Good for Your Health

In the Kitchen: Spices That Are Good for Your Health
Health & Fitness

Have you ever realized that some of the most simple health remedies in life may very well be sitting in your own spice cabinet? 

Although spices can be used for flavoring purposes, some concoctions actually provide some health benefits for seniors. 

Let’s explore 10 of those spices and how they can best serve your overall health needs:

  • Cinnamon: Cinnamon provides a sweet flavor in order to reduce sugar intake.  Additionally, studies show that cinnamon can aid in reducing high cholesterol which is especially important for individuals who have a risk for heart disease.
  • Ginger: Ginger has been popularly known and used for curbing nausea as seen in morning sickness during pregnancy as well as motion sickness and nausea associated with cancer treatments.  Recently, ginger has potentially shown promise in reducing a person’s risk for certain cancers.
  • Turmeric: Turmeric has anti-inflammatory properties that have been intensively studied over recent years.  Specifically, turmeric has shown positive effects in slowing the progression of Alzheimer’s disease symptoms.
  • Cayenne: Cayenne contains a small derivative called capsaicin, which is popularly used for pain relief.  This includes pain associated with arthritis, muscle and joint stiffness, and nerve damage.  Interestingly, even though it sounds counter-intuitive, cayenne has been found useful in combating ulcers and bacteria-associated stomach infections such as H. pylori.
  • Garlic: Although excessive garlic use can ring in that pungent smell in your skin to scare off mosquitos, it can also be used for other health-related benefits such as heart function.  Garlic can increase the flexibility of blood vessels in the heart in order to reduce blood pressure and cholesterol levels.
  • Cardamom: Cardamom is a sweeter spice that is loaded with magnesium and zinc which are minerals that help boost brain health.  Additionally, cardamom can also be used to curb an upset stomach.
  • Cocoa: Yes, the ever popular cocoa is actually quite healthy for you.  The antioxidants provided in cocoa are known for boosting heart health by lowering cholesterol, lowering blood pressure, and keeping arteries healthy and strong.
  • Rosemary: Compounds in rosemary may prevent cellular damage.  Some studies even show that just simply sniffing a waft of rosemary can improve memory performance.
  • Cumin: Cumin can provide a substantial amount of iron to your diet, which is essential in fighting anemia and allowing your body’s blood to circulate and to oxygenate vital organs and tissues.  Even more fascinating, cumin is popularly used to promote weight loss.
  • Oregano: Oregano comes with a host of health benefits including, but not limited to aiding in digestion, reducing muscle and joint pain, and curbing headaches.  Oregano can also act as an anti-bacterial agent to ward off infection.

Do some research and toy around with a few recipes at home in order to incorporate some of these spices into your daily nutritional intake. 

The following resources (as well as a multitude of other accredited sources) can assist you with knowing how to use (amount) and to prep (fresh, dried) these ingredients for optimal better health results.


5 Spices with Healthy Benefits (2020). John Hopkins Medicine. Viewed on 8/31/2020.

Pagan, C.M. (2020). Spices and Herbs that can Help you Stay Healthy. WebMD. Viewed on 8/31/2020.

Glassman, K. (2020). Why is Oregano Good for Me? WebMD. Viewed on 8/31/2020.

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