It is a happy coincidence that usually the flavors we prefer are derived from spices and herbs that are extremely useful for our health.
For instance, despite being common in your favorite Indian meals, turmeric provides multiple health benefits, such as asthma and joint pain relief. Also, oregano effectively fights bacteria.
Yet, in order to reap all the benefits of herbs and spices, you most often need to take supplements, as adding a bit of them to your pizza, or curry is not the best solution, as you cannot get the needed dose.
Also, you can prepare your healthy, herbal tea, but the following six herbs are best to be taken in the form of supplements:
Turmeric has potent anti-inflammatory properties and studies have confirmed that it relieves the pain in the case of rheumatoid arthritis and osteoporosis.
It is extremely helpful for patients suffering from inflammatory conditions, like tendonitis, and since inflammation also leads to heart diseases, it supports the cardiovascular heart.
Unlike numerous other spices, you can intake it in sufficient amounts through food. According to an Ayurvedic clinician in San Jose, California, Reenita Malhotra, all you need is a pinch per serving, or only 4 grams in the form of supplements daily.
Caveats: Due to its strong ability to cleanse the blood, you should use turmeric sparingly.
Ginger (Zingiber officinale)
Ginger is a popular remedy for nausea, as well as post-chemotherapy nausea and morning sickness. Numerous studies have suggested that it is even more effective than Dramamine in the case of motion sickness.
To relieve motion sickness, you should take 500 mg of the powdered extract half an hour before you start the trip, and then every 4 hours until you arrive at the destination.
You can also prepare an infusion, by adding ¼ to 1 gram of ginger to boiling water, leave it to steep for 15 minutes, and drink it three times daily.
Caveats: You should take ginger in food if you are prone to heartburn, and in the case of pregnancy, do not take more than 2 grams daily.
Garlic (Allium sativum)
Garlic is an extremely beneficial bulb with a specific aroma and pungent taste, which is excellent for the heart health.
Mark Blumenthal, founder and executive director of the Austin, Texas-based American Botanical Council, claims that atherosclerosis patients who consumed garlic dramatically lowered the plaque in their arteries.
He explains that “Garlic slightly lowers LDL, or bad cholesterol, and raises HDL, the good type. It also lowers blood pressure and reduces the potential for a stroke, because less plaque means there’s less possibility that pieces will break off from the artery walls and lodge in the brain or heart.”
For best effects on the health of the arteries, it is recommended to take 200 to 300 milligrams of standardized garlic powder three times daily.
Caveats: Garlic can excessively thin out blood do avoid taking it as a supplement combined with aspirin or warfarin (Coumadin).
“For the same reason, stop taking garlic one to two weeks before surgery, “advises James Snow, chair of the herbal division of the botanical healing program at the Tai Sophia Institute in Laurel, Maryland.
Peppermint (Mentha x Piperita)
Peppermint is the most effective stomach-calming herb you can use, and it quickly relieves the upset stomach.
Moreover, peppermint oil, which is in the form of enteric-coated capsules, is extremely efficient in treating irritable bowel syndrome (IBS).
These capsules, since coated, go through the stomach and open in the intestines, have a strong antispasmodic activity on the muscles and prevent constipation and diarrhea.
If you want to calm the upset stomach, you can drink a cup of peppermint tea, and in the case of IBS, you should take a capsule of 0.2 milliliters of peppermint essential oil 1-3 times daily with water and before meals.
Caveats: Snow warns that“Peppermint will cause heartburn and worsen acid reflux in some people,” so avoid this herb if you suffer from these issues.
Oregano (Origanum vulgare)
Scientists confirmed that oregano oil treats infections, due to the two potent compounds in the plant, thymol, and carvacrol.
David Bunting, director of botanical and regulatory affairs at Herb Pharm in Williams, Oregon, says that:
“Oregano can be helpful for traveler’s diarrhea and giardiasis, but it’s used primarily for upper respiratory infections. It’s best for short-term, low-grade problems like coughs and colds, but if you don’t feel better after several days, or you develop a high fever, you should definitely see a physician, who may need to prescribe antibiotics.”
The essential oil is the most therapeutic form you can use, and if taken improperly, it can even burn the mouth. Therefore, you should use products like Herb Pharm’s Oregano Spirits, which is a mixture of essential oil and a liquid oregano extract.
The recommended doses vary due to different weight and symptoms, from 20 drops two times daily to 30 drops 4 times daily, diluted in 4 ounces of water.
Caveats: Here we can only mention the potential of the essential oil to burn the mouth.
Sage (Salvia officinalis)
The traditional herbal medicine considered sage as a brain-boosting herb, and modern studies confirmed it. A study conducted on British healthy adults showed that those who took Spanish sage oil capsules has better results on a word-recall test than those in a control group all the time.
Apparently, this herb includes a compound which inhibits the same enzyme which is targeted by drugs involved in the treatment of memory loss in the case of Alzheimer’s disease.
Additionally, it has powerful antiseptic properties, so it is the best natural remedy for a sore throat. In this case, you should drink sage tea or gargle with a much-diluted solution of the liquid (10-20 drops) in a cup of warm water.
On the other hand, people suffering from Alzheimer’s are advised to take 30 drops of the liquid extract 2-3 times daily, as well as individuals who would like to boost their sharpness.
Caveats: there is no risk if you use sage normally or add it to foods, but you should never take it in excessive amounts and too long, as it may lead to seizures.