Spices are a great way to add flavor without adding calories, fat, sugar, or salt. In addition to enhancing flavor, spices are a great way to naturally sneak in some added health benefits to your food. As you spice up your holiday cookies and treats this holiday season, take a look at these all-star spices.
Cinnamon: This common spice, found in everything from gingersnaps to spiced apple cider to roasted sweet potatoes, has numerous health benefits. Studies have shown that cinnamon can actually lower levels of LDL cholesterol (the bad kind). Studies have also suggested that cinnamon may help to control and balance blood sugar, making it particularly beneficial for those with type 2 diabetes. Ayurvedic medicine uses cinnamon as a remedy for diabetes as well as indigestion and colds.
How to simply add cinnamon to your diet: Sprinkle some on your morning bowl of cereal or oatmeal Or try this cinnamon fried apple recipe and pair it alongside your oatmeal.
Ginger: This spicy seasoning is a natural remedy for quelling nausea. In addition to helping to settle the stomach, ginger also acts as an alleviator of heartburn. It has been shown to help protect against several types of cancer as well. One study showed that ginger can help to slow the growth of cancer cells associated with colon cancer. Another study showed that ginger helps in killing ovarian cancer cells.
How to simply add ginger to your diet: Make a homemade ginger tea. This tea is perfect for soothing both the throat and stomach. Recipe: 4 cups of water, one 2-inch piece of fresh ginger root, honey (to taste). Bring water to a boil in a saucepan. Peeling and cut ginger into thin slices. Add it to the water, and simmer for 20 minutes. If desired, add honey.