Did you know that the Indian Cuisine is comprised of six tastes namely Madhura, Lavana, Amala, Katu, Tikta and Kasya? You could roughly translate them as sweet, salty, sour, pungent, bitter and astringent. Indian Cuisine is well known for the flavorsome platter it offers and attributes credits to the judicious inclusion of spices. Yes, Indian food, be it North Indian dishes or South Indian dishes are bland without the same.
Given below are some spices that have medicinal properties and other benefits associated with them:
Cinnamon is a popular spice that can be found in many Indian recipes and baked goods. Cinnamon decreases sugar level in the blood and is highly recommended for diabetic people. It contains cinnamaldehyde, a compound responsible for its medicinal properties. Cinnamon boosts antioxidant activity helps in fighting inflammation and has been known for reducing cholesterol. Cinnamon slows down the breakdown of carbs in the digestive tract and improves insulin sensitivity, one of the several mechanisms by which they control sugar. Studies have shown that cinnamon can lower fasting blood sugars by 10-29% in diabetic patients, which is a significant amount.
If the curry is yellow, chances are high that it contains turmeric. Turmeric is a spice which boasts of powerful Anti-Inflammatory properties due to the presence of curcumin. Curcumin fights against oxidative damage and boosts body’s antioxidant enzymes thus checking ageing and many other diseases. In fact, it can be used as a substitute in place of some anti-inflammatory drugs. Studies suggest that it can improve brain function, fight Alzheimer’s, reduce the risk of heart disease and cancer, and relieve arthritis, to name a few.
Pepper is the king of spices. Cayenne pepper is a chili pepper which makes for a popular ingredient in spicy dishes. Cayenne Pepper Contains Capsaicin, a compound which curbs appetite in addition with having anti-cancer properties. They can also found in commercial weight loss supplements due to their enhanced fat combustion mechanism in our bodies. Appetite reduction was commonly found in people who consumed less spicy food than people who had a regular intake of spicy food since tolerance to the effects can build up. Some animal studies (who knows, it might benefit humans too) have also found capsaicin to combat certain forms of cancer, including lung, liver and prostate cancer.
Fenugreek was commonly used in Ayurveda, particularly to enhance libido and masculinity. It also checks the blood sugar level in our body due to the presence of plant protein 4-hydroxyisoleucine, which improves the insulin secretion of the pancreas. Many studies have shown that at least 1 gram of fenugreek extract per day can lower blood sugar levels, particularly in diabetics. The health benefits of fenugreek are many with it acting as a galactagogue, a substance used to increase milk supply, increasing workout performance etc.
Curry Leaves is one of the top restaurants in West Kennedy, Tampa that serves you plentiful of tasty and healthy dishes from the Indian Cuisine and Thai cuisine. We make the best use of spices in our Indian food to bring forth the tastes of India right into your taste buds.