12 Spices in Your Kitchen That Will Help You Lose Weight
Cumin, fenugreek, turmeric, fennel - stock up on these spices to aid your weightloss story.
If you are an Indian, you have seen a spice box in your mother’s kitchen that she uses generously in her cooking. If you have been turning your nose up on all those spices, you are doing yourself a great disservice. That spice box packs quite a nutritious punch. And, it may just help you along on your weight loss journey. So stock up on these 12 healthy spices, now!
Fenugreek (Methi seeds)
One of the main causes of weight gain is overeating, and fenugreek helps to curb that by controlling the appetite. Fenugreek has been shown to increase satiety and reduce hunger pangs. Fenugreek seed extract has also been linked to lower fat intake, leading to a reduction in overall calorie intake.
Besides these, fenugreek may also help prevent lifestyle diseases like diabetes, hypertension and high cholesterol. Fenugreek is also in high demand among lactating women.
Cumin seeds are a part of many cuisines, and are popular for keeping you full for longer. Studies show that a single teaspoon a day can burn up to three times more body fat. Cumin is also known to improve digestion.
Along with these, cumin seeds also improve glycaemic control, lower cholesterol and reduce stress.
Ginger doesn't just add a lot of flavour, it also has fat burning properties. Ginger helps to prevent sudden spikes in blood sugar, and has been shown to decrease belly fat along with body weight.
Ginger has many important health benefits like fighting inflammation and relaxing the intestinal tract. It is used in many natural medicines as well.
Turmeric is a favourite among everyone resorting to natural remedies for common ailments. It contains curcumin, which reduces blood supply necessary for the formation of fat tissues.
Weight loss is just one of the many health benefits of turmeric. Others include fighting inflammation, promoting healing and boosting immunity.
This spice has fat reducing properties to match its pungent taste. Garlic has been shown to reduce fat stores in the body, and it triggers fat loss by raising the body's temperature.
Garlic has several other health benefits too, like reducing blood pressure, protecting against inflammation, as well as keeping away illnesses like heart disease and osteoarthritis.
Black Pepper (Kali Mirch)
Black Pepper is rich in piperine, a compound that is known for increasing metabolism. When combined with other fat burning substances, black pepper can burn as many calories as a 20 minute walk. It also blocks the creation of new fat cells.
Besides weight loss, black pepper also increases the bioavailability of foods, which means nutrients are more readily absorbed by the body.
Cinnamon (Dal Cheeni)
Cinnamon contains a compound that can mimic the effects of insulin in the human body, increasing glucose metabolism by 20 times. Cinnamon also prevents overeating by curbing cravings.
This compound also gives cinnamon the ability to regulate blood sugar and also reduce triglycerides and bad cholesterol.
Mustard (Sarson seeds)
Mustard seeds are ideal for weight watchers, with studies showing that having 3/5 of a teaspoon a day helps to burn 45 calories an hour, just 3 hours after consumption. It has also shown to boost metabolism by 25%.
Mustard seeds are also rich in omega-3 fatty acids and selenium which helps to eliminate heavy metals from the body.
Rosemary has a substance called carnosic acid which blocks the formation of fat cells and aids digestion. Rosemary also helps the muscles absorb glucose, which in turn stabilizes blood sugar and controls hunger.
Rosemary also contains anti-oxidants that help to improve memory and fight against macular degeneration.
The active ingredient of cayenne pepper is Capsaicin, which contains thermogenic effects - it raises the body temperature, thus increasing metabolism. Studies show that adding this spice can burn up to 100 calories per meal. It also reduces ghrelin, the hormone responsible for stimulating hunger.
Cayenne pepper also lowers blood pressure and controls bad cholesterol, thus improving heart health.
Fennel is a spice that's ideal for improving digestion and regularizing bowel movements, which in turn promotes weight loss. Fennel also helps suppress hunger and the antioxidant properties help remove toxins.
Fennel also has minerals and vitamins that boost bone health, helping to prevent bone related ailments like osteoporosis.
Cardamom acts as a digestive stimulant that also protects against digestive ulcers. It boosts metabolism, burning calories more effectively and promoting weight loss. Studies also show that cardamom can help reduce belly fat.
Cardamom are also rich in antioxidants and anti-inflammatory substances, offering protection against chronic diseases like cancer.
While all spices have several health benefits, they can be quite potent due to which it is recommended to have no more than a tablespoon a day. For effective and long term weight loss results, it's important to have these spices along with a low calorie, nutrient rich, balanced diet and sufficient activity. In case of any existing medical conditions, it is important to get the doctor's approval before starting out on any new diet.
(Pratibha spent her childhood in idyllic places only fauji kids would have heard of. When she's not rooting for eco-living or whipping up some DIY recipes to share with her readers, Pratibha is creating magic with social media. You can view her blog at www.pratsmusings.com or reach to her on Twitter at @myepica.)
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