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The Blog Spot

Using Spices for Flavor and Health: Part 2



This is Part 2 of a 2 part series on herbs and spices that you can add to your daily cooking routine to enhance your health.

Cayenne Pepper


Culinary Uses

Leafy greens, soups, rice, and beans. It brings heat to a dish more so than it does flavor.

Health Benefits

Anti-catarrhal, anti-microbial, carminative, rubefacient, sialagogue, and stimulant.* Cayenne Pepper may be helpful in blocking the pain and itching in the skin nerves. It also may be useful in increasing peripheral blood circulation to the hands and feet.

Thyme


Culinary Uses

Eggs, lamb, roast beef, pork, turkey, grilled fish, beans, all root vegetables, and French dishes. Can be used fresh or dried. Pair with bay, cilantro, oregano, sweet marjoram, rosemary, and sumac. Use whole sprigs in soups or stews. Plucked leaves can be added at any stage of cooking.

Health Benefits

Anti-microbial, anti-spasmodic, anthelmintic, astringent, carminative, and expectorant.* Thyme may be useful in treating upper respiratory infections, coughs, and bronchitis.

Parsley


Culinary Uses

Fish, eggs, chicken, pasta, tomatoes, grains, onions, curries, Italian dishes, and Asian dishes. Can be used fresh or dried. Pair with basil, bay leaf, chives, dill, garlic, oregano, tarragon, and thyme.

Health Benefits

Anti-spasmodic, carminative, diuretic, emmenagogue, expectorant, and hypotensive.* Parsley may be beneficial in eliminating water from the body and to stimulate menstruation.

Ginger


Culinary Uses

Fish, potatoes, rice, pears, marinades, curries, and in stir-fry and miso soup. Can be used fresh in root form, ground, or dried. Pair with allspice, basil, chives, cilantro, cinnamon, cloves, coriander, curry, fennel, garlic, nutmeg, pepper, and turmeric.

Health Benefits

Anti-spasmodic, carminative, diaphoretic, emmenagogue, rubefacient, and stimulant.* Ginger may be used to increase peripheral circulation to hands and feet. It is useful in treating motion sickness. Gargling ginger may help to relieve a sore throat.

Fennel


Culinary Uses

Fish, bread, sausage, tomato sauce, and Italian dishes. Pair with basil, cilantro, cinnamon, dill, fenugreek, garlic, mint, parsley, and thyme.

Health Benefits

Anti-inflammatory, anti-spasmodic, aromatic, carminative, galactagogue, and hepatic.* Fennel may be used to stimulate digestion and appetite. It may also be beneficial in calming the effects of bronchitis and coughs. It can be used to increase the milk flow in nursing mothers.

* Health benefits:

· Anthelmintic (destroys parasitic worms)

· Anti-catarrhal (decongestant)

· Anti-depressant (reduces depression)

· Anti-fungal (prevents the growth of fungi)