We all know that herbs and spices are used with cooking to
varying degrees, and of course the primary reason for doing
so is to make food much more tasty and interesting.
I suspect however that you might be surprised at the
considerable health benefits that can also be gained by
using them. In saying this I am referring to those everyday
items that can be found in most larders, and not necessarily
those exotic and probably not so well known varieties.
I happened to discover the many benefits of herbs and spices
and the fact that they can be most beneficial to a weight
loss program, when I was doing extremely detailed research
for my latest book. The results of that research were so
extensive that it could be the basis in itself for a
complete publication, and much more detailed therefore than
I could possibly include in this short article.
However I have been able to include a fair amount of
information in this feature about various herbs and spices
which are known to particularly help to speed up weight
loss, and that is also in addition to their excellent
overall health benefits by the way.
You should find that you will be able to purchase these
herbs from any good Herbalist supplier.
Garcinia:(Garcinia cambogia) is a herb which is sold
primarily for enhancing weight loss and boosting the
amount of lean muscle. This is also known as hila or
One of the major benfits of Garcinia is that it acts as an
appetite suppressant and stops the body from storing fat.
Pysillium:(Plantago spp.) This cheeky little herb has quite
a few health benefits. Physillium is known to help lower
cholesterol, and another major benefit is that it also helps
to prevent constipation.
If you use it as part of your weight loss program, it can
help you to eat less calories and yet still feel really full.
This is because of the amount of fiber that it contains.
I mentioned earlier that it does help in preventing
constipation, but in order to achieve this you should make
sure that you drink plenty of water.
Siberian Gingsing:(Eleutherococcus senticosus) If you
are going to start regular exercise as part of your health
and weight loss routine, which is normally to be highly
recommended, then this is a really useful herb.
It can help your body adapt to the stress of
unaccustomed changes, and it will help to make you feel
less tired even when you are doing simple exercises
like walking for example.
So in turn therefore you are more likely to stick to your
Little Known Secrets In Your Larder
Cayenne:(also known as Capsicum, hot pepper, chilli pepper,
tabasco pepper). The majority of us have cayenne in our
larders, and it is very commonly used in many food dishes.
Cayenne can be found in many forms such as ground spices,
teas, and would you believe it, topical creams.
It is well known for its antitoxidant action, and greatly
helps with osteoathritis and rhumatoid athritis, shingles,
and diabetic neuropathy.
A note of caution however: Cayenne may act with anticoagulant
drugs so be sure to consult with your doctor. Excessive use
may also irritate the intestinal tract.
Manufactured topical capsacin creams can cause a burning
sensation, so test first on a small area of the skin,
remembering to wash hands thoroughly after applying the
cream. This will avoid it spreading to the eyes nose or
other sensitive areas.
Fennel: is native to the Mediterranean and is widely
utilized throughout the world. You will find it in teas,
capsules, tinctures and lozenges.
Fennel can be used to help with bloating, flatulence,
mild digestive spasms, catarrh, and coughs. It also has
antimicrobal, antispadmodic, and anti inflammatory
A note of caution here: Fennel can sometimes cause rare
allergic skin and respiratory tract reactions.
Fennel is also a potential source of synthetic oestrogens
and should be avoided if you are pregnant.
Garlic: you can buy this fresh, or the one you will most
probably have in your larder will be dried. The downside
of garlic is the odour which it leaves on your breath,
but chewing some parsley after eating will soon sort out
Garlic is also known to help stimulate the immune system,
and to help in fighting cancer. Well documented health
benefits include lowering cholesterol,fighting infections,
and reducing blood pressure.
Again a note of caution: garlic may also interact with
anticoaglant drugs, so do be sure to check with your doctor
if in any doubt.
Rare cases of allergic reactions are known, and some people
might possibly experience heartburn or even flatulence.
These are just a few of the herbs you can use in cooking,
but do remember that there are many many more, and the
benefits in using them frequently can be quite remarkable.
You will realize of course that when using them as part of
any dish to use them sparingly, as to add too much would
just spoil the meal.
As with everything in life one should try and strike a
balance, after all you know what they say “all things in