I took a long break due to my extremely busy schedule at Shiraz Events. We have produced, designed, and catered 12 large scale events in the last 2 weeks. It’s been amazing but took most of my time. Now that my schedule has opened up a bit, I’m back to detecting some stories and posting new cooking videos featuring the best spices and their healing properties.
This story by Julie Ruggirello on The DailyMeal caught my eye, and I wanted to share it.
These herbs and spices can prevent or help shorten illnesses.
The best defense against a cold or cough may be hidden in your spice rack and not the medicine cabinet! In addition to their food-flavoring properties, herbs and spices have long been used for their medicinal properties. Along with lots of rest and a big glass of orange juice, food may be a great way to fight off whatever illnesses your immune system is currently battling. Herbs and spices that you’re already using to season your food may actually help fight illnesses.
Historically, herbs and spices like turmeric and ginger have been used not just for flavor but also for their anti-inflammatory and antibacterial properties (respectively), and modern medicine backs up much of what ancient theory suggested.
Supplement cold-fighting chicken soup with other natural immune-boosters like lemon (vitamin C), ginger, and garlic. Although most of the world agrees that chicken soup is one of the best ways to cure a cold, there are other, more adventurous cold remedies from around the world that you may want to try, like lizard soup or a hot mustard footbath.
But if you’re content with more common natural remedies like herbs and spices, herbal teas and many foods, like oats and yogurt, that also have immune boosting properties and may prevent or shorten the lifespan of everything from flu symptoms to sore throats.
Herbs and spices can help you get back on your feet when you’re battling a cold or sore throat, and they have an added bonuses of making your food taste great.
With winter at its peak, it’s time to boost your immune system naturally with these tasty herbs and spices.
Remember, though, that even if you are using natural remedies to fight an illness, you should always consult with a doctor for medical treatment, and be aware that some spices may interact with medicine.
Black pepper is a natural anti-inflammatory and helps maintain a healthy colon. But those susceptible to kidney stones should not over-do black pepper, as it is high in oxalate, which can create stones.
Cayenne pepper is a powerful antiseptic. The next time you have a sore throat, mix some cayenne pepper into warm water with a bit of lemon juice to kill off those nasty virus germs.
Researchers at the United States Department of Agriculture have demonstrated that oregano oil1has potent bacterial killing properties. They demonstrated that oregano consistently inhibited the growth of infectious E. Coli, Listeria monocytogenes, and Salmonella. These researchers are seeking to improve food safety by figuring out ways to add oregano and other oils to the food supply. This new report is consistent with another study earlier this year showing that oregano was effective against multiple bacteria2 and yeasts such as candida. This new research is the most recent of over 100 articles in the scientific literature demonstrating the anti-bacterial and anti-fungal properties of oregano (active ingredient is called carvacol).
There are no published scientific reports that oregano has direct anti-viral properties for any virus, the flu, or the swine flu. However, many people struggling with a baseline amount of sinus or digestive distress may benefit from oregano oil by helping to clear out a problem that is known to reduce the effectiveness of the anti-viral defense system. Furthermore, oregano oil may have some value in helping to prevent secondary bacterial infections that often follow the flu.
Cinnamon (Cinnamomum zeylanicum)
Cinnamon warms the body, aids in digestion and is used for its antibacterial properties. Cinnamon can be taken as a tea, added to food or the essential oil can be used. When using cinnamon essential oil, remember to use a carrier oil to prevent skin irritation.
Clove (Syzygium aromaticum)
Though clove is typically used as a topical analgesic, clove-infused oil or clove essential oil can also be used to kill bad intestinal bacteria. For internal use, use in cooking or make a cup of clove tea. If using topically, always dilute in a carrier oil.
Garlic (Allium sativum)
As an antibacterial herb, garlic is more effective against several types of bacteria than penicillin. Garlic is also friendlier to the body than antibiotics because it attacks the offending bacteria without wiping out the body’s normal flora. Garlic can be used as a tincture, capsule, infused in oil or simply added to your diet. (If cooking with garlic, avoid heating past 130 degrees as that will decrease its potency.)
Echinacea (Echinacea angustifolia)
Taken at the onset of an infection, echinacea can speed the healing process. Echinacea is most effective when taken as a tincture over a long period of time. Do not use echinacea if you have an auto-immune diseased.
If you have any questions, comments or concerns please e-mail me at and I’ll do my best to answer or refer you to more info online.
The Spice Detective