The Various Health Benefits of Spices Used in Indian Food
India is famously known as the land of spices. Following through to this title, Indian food commonly uses a diverse selection of spices in its traditional dishes. These make the cuisine of this subcontinent palatable and flavourful. Additionally, these also add an enchanting aroma that stimulates the nose and the appetite.
However, the most noteworthy thing is that spices are not just meant to increase the taste of food, they are also loaded with several health benefits. They are hence recommended to be consumed for a fit lifestyle.
Some of the commonly used Indian spices and their robust advantages for well being are mentioned below.
1. Turmeric (Haldi)
Turmeric has recently gained international popularity as a superfood but it has been largely used throughout history in Indian cooking. This spice is usually added to vegetables sauteed in oil when preparing the base for popular curries. Apart from enhancing the look and taste of meals, this also has a number of healthful features. This spice is an antioxidant that has properties enabling it to fight or manage cancer. It also prevents inflammation of the body joints and mental diseases like Alzheimer’s. Moreover, it is known to improve liver health by cleansing the organ of toxins that come with excess alcohol consumption.
2. Asafoetida (Hing)
Asafoetida is associated mainly with its strong aroma and pungent taste. It is the base for a plethora of Indian preparations. Furthermore, it contains 10% essential oils that enhance the fragrance and zest of dishes while adding in an element of health. The most common medicinal use of this herb is for treating indigestion and relieving menstrual cramps. Nevertheless, it is also used to treat or provide relief from lifetime ailments such as asthma and bronchitis.
3. Cumin Seeds (Jeera)
Cumin seeds are one of the most customary ingredients in any Indian kitchen. The main advantage of this spice is that it goes well with every preparation. Talking about its medicinal features, it boosts the immune system. In addition, it is used as an iron supplement. Not just this, cumin is also a commonly known pain reliever and eases stomach aches as well as cramps. Besides, it is good for digestion and relieves nausea and diarrhea. What’s more? Cumin consists of manganese which absorbs calcium and helps control blood pressure.
4. Cinnamon (Dalchini)
Cinnamon is known as dalchini because it has a subtle sugary (chini) aftertaste. This aromatic spice is used as a taste enhancer. It has been loved widely, making it a revered ingredient in western cuisine, especially desserts. But apart from the distinctive flavour, it also entails a list of medicinal benefits. An important one is that it controls the blood sugar level, thus keeping diabetes in check. Moreover, it also treats poor blood circulation, common cold and provides relief from gastrointestinal problems.
5. Cloves (Laung)
Cloves are popular for their medicinal advantages. One of the most known benefits is that it has anti-inflammatory and anti-bacterial properties. It can thus be used to maintain a healthy dental routine, making clove an active ingredient in toothpastes. It can also provide relaxation in times of indigestion, queasiness, vomiting, loose motions and an upset stomach.
6. Ginger (Adhrak)
Ginger is used to add an element of spice to a wide range of Indian as well as international dishes. Its distinctive taste and smell is hard to miss. This herb is largely used to treat sore throats and regulate blood pressure.
7. Cardamom (Elaichi)
One of the few spices that is unique to Indian cuisine is cardamom. It is a popular component in delightful marvels such as Biryanis and the well known Indian Masala tea. This spice is widely recognised for relieving throat and respiratory problems, flatulence, chest congestion and gum infection. It is also anti-inflammatory and hence is perfect to alleviate muscle problems.
Saffron is mainly sourced from the valleys of Kashmir. This exotic spice adds a lovely colour and savour to Indian food. Known as the golden spice of India this expensive ingredient has anti-depressant, anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties. Furthermore, it is also helpful in improving memory and preventing loss of vision.
9. Black Pepper
A very small amount of black pepper can create an explosion of flavours. Due to this property, it had once been the most tradeworthy item in the world. Black pepper produces hydrochloric acid which is used to treat gastro-intestinal diseases. In addition, it reduces blood pressure and contains iron. This spice also has antibacterial properties, making it extremely good for health.
One of the most familiar flavouring agent in Indian preparations is mustard seeds or the oil extracted from these. This spice entails several advantages in terms of fitness. Packed with vitamin B, these seeds are used to relieve rheumatoid, arthritic and muscle pain. Apart from this, they help control the asthmatic symptoms.
The above article proves that consuming spices is essential to human health.
If you want to try Indian concoctions, filled with healthful spices in Melbourne, there is no better place than Lala’s Kitchen. We are one of the most popular Indian restaurants in Boronia and Bentleigh.
Book a table with us or order online today. Give us a call on 03 9532 1579.