With our medical system almost in collapse, it’s time to be consciously proactive about protecting your health, and there is much you can do to look after your most valuable asset.
Maintaining a healthy weight is one of the most important things you can do to safeguard your health.
In colder weather, we tend to gravitate to comfort foods, and it may be tempting to move salads and fresh fruit to more of a back seat in your diet. But there are other ways to satisfy your desire for warming, flavoursome nourishment while supporting your immune system.
Making delicious teas using citrus fruit, ginger, and other spices is one way to add a nutritional boost to your daily regimen. Interestingly, many common spices also help manage body weight by balancing blood sugar levels and increasing thermogenesis (body heat) which means you’ll burn up more energy.
And as the weather cools down, these warming spices take on an even greater appeal.
This post covers a few fun facts about five common kitchen spices that you can use to boost your immune system and metabolism!
Ginger is the most studied spice on the planet, and there is a ton of research to back up the numerous health claims.
This amazing food contains natural anti-inflammatory properties, aids digestion, balances blood sugars (which aids weight management), boosts your immune system and warms your body. Fresh ginger root can be frozen for longer storage and is easy to grate into drinks and food.
Simply slice or grate fresh ginger root into water and simmer for 10-15 minutes to make ginger tea. Strain off the liquid and drink warm or cold. Add slices of citrus, a little honey and any other spices you choose for flavour variations.
Ginger compresses can be beneficial for relieving joint pain. Add 1-2 tablespoons of powdered ginger to a bowl of warm water. Soak a cloth in the ginger water for a few minutes, then ring out and apply to the affected area. Wrap a dry towel over the wet cloth and rest for 40 minutes. Repeat daily for a week and then 2-3 times per week as needed.
Cinnamon is another beautiful spice for warming the body and balancing blood sugars. It’s also known for its antioxidant, anti-inflammatory and anti-microbial properties, making it an excellent addition to your diet for immune support and winter wellness.
Turmeric is a veritable panacea for wellness. In India, turmeric was traditionally used for disorders of the skin, upper respiratory tract, joints, and digestive system. Today, turmeric is promoted as a dietary supplement for a variety of conditions, including arthritis, digestive disorders, respiratory infections, allergies, liver disease and depression.
Black pepper is one of the most commonly used spices in the world. It contains a chemical called piperine, which seems to kill bacteria, fungi and parasites. It’s also known to have immune-boosting, cancer-fighting and blood sugar-balancing properties.
Cloves are known for their anti-inflammatory, anti-microbial, and blood sugar-balancing effects and are full of vital nutrients. Drinking clove water daily can boost your immune system and protect you against colds and flu.
Just one cup of clove water can kick-start digestion, increasing gastric secretions and reducing symptoms associated with stomach pain, excess gas, and indigestion. A well-functioning digestive system is essential for healthy weight management.
To make clove water, add 4-5 crushed cloves to 1 cup of boiling and steep for 15-20 minutes, strain then drink. You may add a diced orange, and 1-2 cinnamon sticks to the water and simmer for extra flavour and additional health benefits.
Please Note: Cloves can slow blood clotting, so if you have a bleeding disorder or you’re taking blood thinners, it’s best to avoid them.