USES OF WHOLE SPICES
India is famous for many contributions to the world. One of the most important among them is Spices. India is called as the spice bowl of the world for a reason. Many invaded India in the past for its natural resources and spices. Spices have been recorded in Indian history from the Vedic periods. Black pepper has been mentioned in the Yajur Veda. Use of spices in Indian food imparts not only flavors but also many medicinal properties. It is a strong belief in India that many cures to diseases can be found in the kitchen cabinet.
Bay leaf (Tejpatta): The pain in joints due to arthritis or sprains can be reduced by a compress made from Bay leaf. They also help to relieve congestion caused by bronchitis. Bay leaf is known for curing colic in infants.Bay leaf in meals helps improve appetite and aids digestion.
Cardamom (Elaichi): Is known and used for its aromatic flavor and essential oil. It is used to treat gas, indigestion and colic. It has an exothermic effect on the body and helps to keep it warm. Tea made from cardamom along with ginger is used it winters to keep the body warm and prevent cold. When made in to an herbal infusion with cinnamon, cloves and peppercorns, cardamom provides quick relief from mild fever, colds and cough.
Black pepper (Kali Mirch): Pepper is one of the commonly used spices all over the world. It can be used whole or freshly ground. This spice is used to treat congestion of sinus and the chest, infections of the throat, cough, diarrhea and skin infections.
Cumin seeds (Zeera): One of the most common spices used for tempering, cumin isa rich source of iron. It helps keep immune system healthy. Cumin seeds when boiled with water help treat the symptoms of dysentery.
Cinnamon (Dalchini): this sweet aromatic spice is used both in savory and sweet preparations. ½ inch stick when used while boiling rice helps impart its medicinal value in day to day cooking. It helps reduce bad cholesterol. It also aids the body to produce insulin.
Coriander (Dhaniya): it is used in the potli treatment of Ayurvedic medicines to treat the aches and pains ofrheumatism. Orally taken it helps to relive allergies, sore throats and indigestion
Clove (Laung): Toothaches in the middle of the night always went down with the use of clove oil dipped in cotton. Many natural types of toothpaste use clove oil for tooth and gum care. It is also beneficial remedy for chest pains, fever, cold, cough and digestive problems. Biting on cloves help prevent nausea.
Mustard (Rye): it is rich in omega -3 fatty acids and is considered very good for the heart. Rich in manganese, calcium, protein, zinc and iron, oil extracted from mustard seeds are used for body and massages.
Star anise (Chakra Phool): This beautiful looking spice is known to combat bad breath. Oil from star anise can be applied to rheumatic joints for immediate relief.
Nutmeg (Jaiphal): It is known to treat eczema when applied externally. A pinch of powder with a warm glass of milk helps aid sound sleep. It can also help relieve vomiting, nausea and indigestion.
Fenugreek (Methi): Soak a spoonful of methi seeds overnight in a glass of water. Drink this on an empty stomach and chew the seeds. It is said to be very effective against diabetes. Sweets made with Fenugreek aids production of breast milk.
Mother Nature has blessed India with the rich abundance of spices and they have been used for centuries as whole spices, powders and oils to prevent and treat common ailments.