Magic of Indian spices

From our head to colon, when facing any illness, if, you’re an Indian, you’ll definitely have a family concoction to treat these conditions. These nani ke nuskhe are passed on from one generation to the other without any measured recipe, but they have these organic properties that vanquishes our ailments. These spices are the backbone to our ancient medicines, practiced by the Vedic’s across the country.

These spices not only to jazz up our food with well infused aroma, thus delivering an alluring taste but have an abundant health benefits as well. So much so, that they have taken a global stage with their healing properties. Let’s explore these health fostering spices.


Cinnamon (dalchini): these tree bark spices not only produce beautiful aroma but are beneficial for our health and metabolism. A key ingredient to the garam masala is the best antioxidant with anti-inflammatory properties that assist to eradicate free radicles in the body that may damage your cells and nervous system in addition to reducing the cholesterol levels. Its bactericide properties help improve functions of the respiratory and cardiovascular system, they are antispasmodic and stimulates digestion, aid to reduce stomach bloat. Plus they promote vitality, warm the body, augment the immune system and help treat colds and influenza. This does not mean you do the cinnamon challenge (ingesting a spoon full on cinnamon). They are not water soluble so you’ll end up coughing, with spice spraying out of the nose and mouth. Although hilarious but painful take my word for it.

Cloves: Are added as flavoring agent to impart aroma to rice and savory dishes are also antibacterial, anti-fungal and antiseptic. These small dried clove tree buds are antioxidant, which are rich sources of omega-3 fatty acids, fiber, vitamins and minerals. They act as antiseptic and pain reliever especially for toothache, stomach pain, are good for intestinal infections, cold, improve immune system; they also exhibit certain anesthetic properties. Clove oil (cloves mixed with various oils) is used externally to treat infected wounds, dental pain and mouth ulcers.

Cumin: These aromatic seeds that bring about nostalgic memories of homemade namkeens and biscuits are used in traditional medicine and are a rich source of iron. They have anti -microbial and anti-inflammatory properties as well as are rich in anti-oxidants. They aid in digestion, help treat flatulence, improve immunity and treat skin disorders, insomnia, respiratory disorders, asthma, bronchitis and anemia. From jal jeera to jeera infused water, which are severed in most of the Indian household as a remedy to cure indigestion. Again, this does not mean you eat deep fried snacks encrusted with jeera as your source of cumin. These oily snacks do pose a health risk so consume in moderation.

Coriander: Be it seeds, leaves or powder, this Indian herb has antibiotic properties and aid to treat a range of digestive problems. (Abdominal pain, dyspepsia, flatulence, indigestion, irritable bowel syndrome) The herb is also a good source of vitamin B and folic acid, have anti-oxidant properties and dietary fiber that supports healthy working of the liver and facilitate bowel moments. The seeds are used for menstrual problems, lowers anxiety, treats your joints problem, lowers uric acid in the body and lowers inflammation. Remember how critical we were about those who bargained for free dhaniya from the local vendor may be they were on to something.

Cardamom: Flavoring agent used for tea, curries, desserts and rice. It’s a rich sources of vitamin A and vitamin C, calcium, iron, and zinc, promotes the heart, assists in digestion, enhances oral health, help manage diabetes, diarrhea, fight depression, asthma, prevents blood clots and treats skin infections. These expensive seeds contain essential oils that act as natural mouth fresheners.

Anise: The flavoring punch of Asian cuisines. The star anise is a rich source of two important antioxidants namely linalool, an essential oil, and vitamin C that shields the body against cellular damage due to environmental toxins, it stimulates the heart, respiratory and digestive systems. Anise is somewhat diuretic, aid bile flow and digestion; help with migraine pains.

Black Pepper: This king of spices help promote weight loss, relieve cold, sore throat and cough, improves digestion, boosts metabolism and treats many skin problems. They not only knock out the taste buds but the immune system as well.

Turmeric (Haldi): These bright yellow/orange bitter tasting roots have antispectic properties. Star ingredient to the herbal cosmetic industry, boost immunity and promote healthy liver, taken as a dietary supplement to treat inflammatory arthritis, as well as stomach, skin and gall bladder problems. It’s a cocktail of minerals and vitamins that are used for antibacterial, anti-inflammatory, antiseptic, and antioxidant purposes. The haldi doodh that Indian moms made mandatory (before bed) for all internal infections was because they knew of its healing prowess.

Ginger: This underground stems that normally we use to flavor our tea also help in reducing nausea, pain and inflammation, helps in food digestion. It stimulates the appetite, has antiseptic and tonic properties and reduce travel sickness, vomiting and particularly morning sickness. Massage oil saturated with ginger can be used against rheumatism or to improve blood circulation in muscles. Ginger revitalize the immune system and help prevent sore throats, colds and influenza.

Fenugreek: Methi seeds are traditionally used in Ayurvedic medicine. It improves digestion, is known to increase libido in men, promotes milk flow in lactating mothers, aids those suffering from eating disorders and also reduces inflammation.

Garlic: These vampire repelling bulbs have been used as a medicine since ancient times because of their anti-microbial properties. Having garlic (in food or raw) in your diet helps to lower cholesterol levels due to the anti-oxidant properties of Allicin. It regulating blood pressure because it is a strong anti-coagulant that inhibits blood clotting and helps to break down existing clots, allowing the blood to flow more freely. It relieves the symptoms of cold and respiratory infections, such as sinus congestion. They  prevent digestive system infections and help control ratio of bacteria in the gut.

Use these spices lavishly in your cooking and heighten not only your immunity but the taste buds as well; don't forget to do regular exercise and your routine consultation with doctor. After all we believe that a healthy and happy stomach leads to a content life.