7 Common Spices to Keep Your Heart Healthy

Looking for a simple way to support your heart health?

Adding spices to food won’t just excite your taste buds but enhance healing and preventative qualities. Here is a good and easy “starter” list for your flavor experiments.

Turmeric – there are books out there written on its endless health benefits. If you haven’t already, go ahead and add turmeric to anything you can! The powerful antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties have shown to reduce accumulation of the excess platelets that occurs in clot-forming blood. Researchers have found that curcumin, the active component in turmeric, has preventative effect on cardiac hypertrophy, inflammation, and fibrosis. And just to add to all the turmeric’s superpowers, it also supports healthy blood pressure. The super-spice cape goes to turmeric, don’t you agree?

Ginger has been widely used in Chinese, Ayurvedic and Tibetan herbal medicines since ancient times. It is a potent blood thinner with anti-inflammatory properties and is commonly used to alleviate nausea. Using ginger on a regular basis has potential to protect your heart and prevent cardiovascular diseases.

Garlic is an effective natural blood thinner, anti-inflammatory and anti-microbial. It has shown to support lowering of blood pressure as effectively as some drugs. Garlic is known to reduce cholesterol, blood pressure and act as a heart tonic by strengthens the heart and maintaining the fluidity of blood.

Cayenne Pepper is a potent antioxidant that is known to reduce lipid oxidation and decrease platelet stickiness. Just a tiny (tiny!) dash of this mighty little pepper will go far!

Onion helps to normalize blood pressure and has qualities that promote dissolving of blood clots. Be warned – tears might be rolling down your cheeks as you chop it up!

Black pepper – considered, by some, a king of spices. It has impressive antioxidant and antibacterial effects, and it even stimulates the breakdown of fat cells which helps with digestion and supports weight loss. I know what you are thinking… the King-of-Spices Crown goes to black pepper!

Cinnamon improves circulation and is an effective antioxidant and antimicrobial. According to recent studies, cinnamon helps to regulate blood sugar levels, lower cholesterol, and alleviate congestion!

Tip of the Trade: To get the most out of your spices, make sure they are fresh, use whole spices and grind them just before using.

Let spices brighten up your meals; your heart will thank you!

By Zita Resnais-Dattilo

 

References:
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3083808/
http://www.drsinatra.com/spices-for-heart-health/
http://www.naturodoc.com/library/herbal/herbs_4_cardio.htm

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