Here at Olive Branch Wellness Center, we teach our patients that
food is your medicine. The great news is that how you spice it up can
also deliver big health benefits. Your spice cabinet may actually be
the best medicine chest in your house!
The benefits of the following spices and herbs are backed by research or are showing promise in preliminary testing:
Turmeric – contains the active compound "curcumin," a champion in
reducing inflammation linked to Alzheimer's disease, dementia, cancer
and heart disease. Turmeric is the ingredient in curry powder and
mustard that gives them both their yellow color.
Cilantro – is also known as the coriander plant. Cilantro is
anti-inflammatory, has cholesterol-lowering properties, and may also
make blood less likely to form clots that can cause heart attacks. It
may also have antibacterial, antioxidant and anti-allergenic properties.
Cinnamon – is proven to reduce blood sugar levels as well as reducing
inflammation that can lead to cancer, heart disease and diabetes.
Ray Ilg, ND
Raynette Ilg, N.D., is the owner of
Branch Wellness Center in South Elgin, IL. A Naturopath who earned a
Bachelors of Science in Biological Medicine and then a Doctor of
Naturopathic Medicine from National University of Health Sciences, she
employs Nutritional Guidance, Herbal Medicine, Hydrotherapy, and
Homeopathy in her clinic. Dr. Ray can be contacted via her website,
Olive Branch Wellness Center
Basil – treats stomach pain, gas and loss of appetite.
Garlic – is shown to reduce fat deposits in coronary arteries, reduce
blood pressure and cholesterol, and is a natural antibiotic and
detoxifier. Eat garlic raw for the best antibiotic effect.
Ginger – aids digestive system maladies, fights nausea, motion sickness
and diarrhea. Studies show it may also be effective in fighting cancer,
lowering cholesterol, and improving heart health by reducing levels of
oxidized lipoproteins, which are a marker for coronary heart disease.
Thyme – as a tea or vapor can soothe a sore throat or cough. When
applied topically as a salve to the throat, it can help relieve
Cayenne Pepper and Paprika – are both made from ground peppers and have
a compound called "capsaicin." Capsaicin is what gives peppers their
heat, and is an antioxidant that may reduce the risk for cancer and
heart disease, increase immunity, and decrease cancer cell survival.
Cumin – is both an antioxidant and anti-inflammatory that may prevent
and even fight many types of cancers and infections. It can improve
digestion and reduce headaches.
So who says healthy eating has to be
blah? Just reading that list is making me hungry for some spicy Asian
soup or hot chili con carne!
Be sure to purchase high quality, preferably organic spices and herbs.
Cheap spices can sometimes be contaminated with heavy metals,
pesticides or powdered fillers. Spices and herbs can lose both their
flavor and nutritional potency over time, so toss out the old jars and
tins in the back of your cupboard and replace them.
Olive Branch Wellness Center 630-370-7290
The Monthly "Vita - Mini"
B10 - PABA
B10, also known as PABA (para amino benzoic acid), supports the growth
of beneficial microorganisms inside the body and helps our intestinal
bacteria produce folic acid. It also acts as a coenzyme in protein
metabolism and the formation of red blood cells. PABA also helps in the
optimal utilization of protein by the cells.
It's also good for your skin, as it can protect skin from free radical
damage. Free radicals can come from harmful chemicals or overexposure
to the ultraviolet rays of the sun. That's why you will find most
sunscreen lotions contain PABA. It is also an effective agent in
removing fine lines, wrinkles and dark spots from the skin, thereby
preventing premature ageing.
Vitamin B10 acts as an anti-allergen that can treat and prevent skin
conditions such as eczema and vitiligo. Watch out though, as the use of
vitamin B10 in skin lotions has also provoked allergies in some people.
B10 supplements can help correct irritable bowel syndrome as well as
gastrointestinal inflammation and disorders. It has shown positive
health effects in curing rheumatic fever.
Great natural food sources of vitamin B10 include leafy greens, mushrooms, eggs, whole grains and yogurt.
Are you Ready for some Football!
Skinny Bell Pepper Nachos
1 pound lean ground turkey
1 tsp chili powder
1 tsp cumin
1/2 tsp black pepper
1/2 tsp garlic salt
1/4 tsp onion powder
3/4 cup salsa, no sugar added
1 cup grated cheddar cheese
Sour Cream for topping
Sliced Green Onions for topping
seeds, core, and membrane from bell peppers then slice each one into 6
verticle pieces where they dip down. Set sliced bell peppers aside.
Cook ground turkey over medium-high heat, breaking up as it cooks. Cook
until the turkey loses it's pink color and is cooked through. Drain off
Preheat oven to 375 degrees.
Combine cooked turkey with spices and salsa. Evenly distribute mixture
into the bell pepper boats, top with cheese. Bake on a parchment lined
baking sheet for 10 minutes or until cheese is melted.
If you prefer softer bell peppers, add a few tablespoons water to the
bottom of a large casserole dish, add filled nachos, cover tightly with
foil and bake 15 minutes.
Remove from the oven and add sour cream and sliced green onions.