A spice is a seed, fruit, root, bark, or other plant substance primarily used for flavoring or coloring food. Spices are sometimes used in medicine, religious rituals, cosmetics, or perfume production. Here is the list of the top 10 Indian spices you may find in your kitchen.
Herbs are the leaves, flowers, or stems of plants used for flavoring or as a garnish. When we use coriander leaf we refer to it as a herb, however, when we use coriander seed we say we are using spices. Even the tiny filaments of saffron are referred to as a spice.
Turmeric is one of the most used spices that comes from the turmeric plant. You probably know turmeric as the main spice in curry. It contains bioactive compounds with powerful medicinal properties.
Turmeric contains curcumin, a substance with powerful anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties. Most studies used turmeric extracts that are standardized to include large amounts of curcumin.
According to the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) National Nutrient Database, one tablespoon (tbsp) of turmeric powder contains:
- 29 calories
- 0.91 grams (g) of protein
- 0.31 g of fat
- 6.31 g of carbohydrates
- 2.1 g of fiber
- 0.3 g of sugar
That same 1-tbsp serving provides:
- 26% of daily manganese needs
- 16% of daily iron
- 5% of daily potassium
- 3% of daily vitamin C
Uses of turmeric
- Turmeric Contains Bioactive Compounds With Powerful Medicinal Properties.
- Curcumin Is a Natural Anti-Inflammatory Compound.
- Turmeric Dramatically Increases the Antioxidant Capacity of the Body.
- Curcumin Boosts Brain-Derived Neurotrophic Factor, Linked to Improved Brain Function and a Lower Risk of Brain Diseases.
- Reduced heart attack risk.
- Turmeric Can Help Prevent (And Perhaps Even Treat) Cancer.
- Curcumin May Be Useful in Preventing and Treating Alzheimer’s Disease.
- Turmeric Provides Relief from Arthritic Pain.
- Reduce Depression Symptoms.
- Turmeric Helps Boost Immunity.
- Acne: Curcumin May Help Delay Aging and Fight Age-Related Chronic Diseases
Side effects of Turmeric
- Digestive issues: People may experience mild digestive issues such as bloating, acid reflux, flatulence, and diarrhea at daily doses exceeding 1,000 mg (19Trusted Source, 20Trusted Source).
- Headache and nausea: Doses of 450 mg or higher may cause headaches and nausea in a small number of people (20Trusted Source, 21Trusted Source).
- Skin rash: People have reported a skin rash after taking a dose of 8,000 mg of curcumin or more, but this seems to be very rare (20Trusted Source).
- It can upset your stomach.
- It thins your blood.
Best time to eat turmeric
The best time to take turmeric is three or more hours before or after eating a meal; in other words, after fasting.
Can you take turmeric at night?
Initial mice studies have found that turmeric can protect against oxidative damage and sleep deprivation. Slip this super spice into your bedtime ritual to relax, improve mood, help depression, and potentially lower your anxiety levels (as seen in mice).
Is it safe to take turmeric every day?
Turmeric products that provide up to 8 grams of curcumin daily seem to be safe when used for up to 2 months, and up to 3 grams of turmeric seems to be safe when used for up to 3 months. Turmeric usually doesn’t cause serious side effects.
Garlic (Allium sativum) is a species in the onion genus, Allium. It is comprised of individual sections called cloves, and there can be anywhere from 10 to 20 cloves per head.
The following nutrition information is provided by the USDA for one medium clove (3g) of raw garlic (1):
- Calories: 4.5
- Fat: 0g
- Sodium: .5mg
- Carbohydrates: 1g
- Fiber: .1g
- Sugars: 0g
- Protein: .2g
- Reduced Risk of Heart Disease
- Better Athletic Performance
- Stronger Bones
- Acts as a natural antibiotic.
- Boosts immunity
- Works as an anti-inflammatory
- Improves cardiovascular health
- Gives you better hair and skin
- Improved Memory
• Unpleasant breath or body odor;
• Heartburn, burning in your mouth or throat;
• Nausea, vomiting, gas or
Best time to eat garlic
Studies have shown that garlic if eaten on an empty stomach acts as a powerful antibiotic. It is more effective when you eat it before breakfast because bacteria is exposed and cannot defend itself from succumbing to its power.
How much garlic should you eat a day?
Dosages generally recommended in the literature for adults are 4 g (one to two cloves) of raw garlic per day, one 300-mg dried garlic powder tablet (standardized to 1.3 percent alliin or 0.6 percent allicin yield) two to three times per day, or 7.2 g of aged garlic extract per day.
Ginger is a flowering tropical plant, well-known as a spice and flavoring. It’s been a traditional remedy in many cultures for thousands of years.
1 tablespoon of fresh ginger has (2):
- 4.8 calories
- 1.07 grams (g) of carbohydrate
- .12 g of dietary fiber
- .11 g of protein
- .05 g fat
- .1 g of sugar
- Reducing gas and improving digestion
- Relieving nausea
- Good for Your Heart
- Prevents Cancer
- Ginger eases menstrual pains
- Ginger may regulate blood sugar levels
- It can support your immune system.
- It can reduce your risk of diabetes.
- Fights Germs
- Keeps Your Mouth Healthy
- Soothes Sore Muscles
- Eases Arthritis Symptoms
- Eases Period Pains
- Lowers Cholesterol
- Protects Against Disease
- Increased bleeding tendency.
- Causes abdominal discomfort or diarrhea.
- If overdosed, may lead to cardiac arrhythmias or central nervous system depression.
- Sometimes, causes dermatitis (with topical use).
- Mouth or throat irritation.
Best time to eat ginger
For breakfast Ginger is good at all times of the day, but it is particularly refreshing in the morning.
How much ginger should I eat daily?
Doctors recommend consuming a maximum of 3–4 grams of ginger extract per day. If you’re pregnant, don’t consume more than 1 gram of ginger extract per day. Ginger is not recommended for children under the age of 2.
Ajwain is a seed-like fruit often used in Indian cooking as part of a spice mixture. It looks similar to fennel and cumin seeds and is highly fragrant, smelling like thyme. Its taste, however, is more like oregano and anise due to the bitter notes and strong flavor.
Here is the nutrition value of Ajwain Seeds per 100 grams of serving (3):
- Total Calories: 305
- Total Fat: 25 gm
- Sodium: 10 mg
- Total Carbohydrates: 43 gm
- Proteins: 16 gm
- Fiber: 21.2 %
- Instant Relief from Acidity and Indigestion
- Useful in Arthritis Pain Relief
- Anti-fungal and antibacterial properties
- Ajwain Water For Weight Loss
- Carom seeds help in treating cold and cough
- Carom seeds for ear and toothaches
- Carom seeds help fight premature greying of hair
- Helps in regulation of cholesterol Levels
- Help Manage Blood Pressure
- Aids in Digestion & Stomach Problems
- May Prevent Kidney Stones
- Helps In Curing Asthma & Boosts Respiratory System of Body
- Helps In Reduction of Gas & Flatulence
- Helps in Prevention of Acidity & Hyperacidity
- For Cleaning Wounds & Burns
- Helps in Cleaning The Skin & Make It Pimple Free
- Controls Migraine Problems & Headache
- Helps In Urination Problems
- Helps in Breastfeeding and Increases The Milk
- May Cause Liver Damage
- May Increase the Risk of Cancer
- May Cause Mouth Sores
- May Reduce Blood Sugar Levels
- May Cause Breathing Problems
Is it good to eat Ajwain everyday?
Chew a spoonful of raw ajwain seeds every day in the morning. Maintain a gap of half an hour between eating ajwain and having your breakfast. If you have these seeds the first thing in the morning, they help your body release digestive juices which can make digestion better.
Black pepper (Piper nigrum) is a flowering vine, which is usually dried and used as a spice and seasoning. Black pepper is one of the most commonly used spices in the world.
One teaspoon of black pepper contains:
- Calories: 6.
- Protein: 0 grams.
- Fat: 0 grams.
- Carbohydrates: 1 gram.
- Fiber: 1 gram.
- Sugar: 0 gram.
- Cholesterol: 0 milligrams.
- Sodium: 0 milligrams.
- Prevents Any Sort of Cancer:
- Relieves cold and cough
- Improves skin
- Helps in absorption of nutrients
- Aids weight loss
- Improves Digestive Health
- Lowers Blood Pressure
- Helps Treat Diabetes
- Helps Treat Dandruff
- Fights Infections
- Improves Oral Health
- Enhances Brain Health
- Improves Fertility In Men
- Improves Memory
- Can Cause Gastrointestinal Issues
- May Interact With Certain Drugs
- Several studies have claimed that it may affect Pregnancy
Best time to eat black pepper
It is good to consume black pepper every day before breakfast on an empty stomach. Even if you are planning to chew it then do it in the morning.
Black cumin, (Nigella sativa), also called black seed, black caraway, Roman coriander, kalonji, or fennel flower, annual plant of the ranunculus family (Ranunculaceae), grown for its pungent seeds, which are used as a spice and in herbal medicine.
The maximal nutritional value of black cumin can be linked to the presence of a substantial amount of vegetable protein, fiber and minerals, and vitamins.
Nutritional Values of Black cumin Seeds Per 100 grams (4):
- Calories 375kcal
- Protein 17.81 g
- Total Fat 22.27g
- Saturated Fat 1.5g
- Monounsaturated Fat 14.04g
- Polyunsaturated Fat 3.27g
- Carbohydrate 44.24g
- Fibre 10.5g
- Sugars 2.25g
- Sodium 168mg
- Calcium 931mg
- Phosphorus 499mg
- Iron 66.36mg
- Potassium 1788mg
- Vitamin A 64IU
- Vitamin C 7.7 mg
- Vitamin E 3.33mg
- Vitamin K 5.4mcg
- Prevent Diabetes
- Increase Memory and Concentration
- Rheumatoid Arthritis
- Asthma and Allergies
- Protects Liver
- Nasal Inflammation
- Promotes healthy skin and hair.
- Reduces Inflammation
- Lowers Cholesterol
- Aids Kidney Function
- It helps to keep Strong Teeth
- Taking Black cumin during chemotherapy may hamper the effects of chemotherapy drugs.
- Because it may further reduce blood pressure, it poses risk for those with hypotension.
Best time to eat Black cumin
Keep the cup under the sun and let black cumin seeds dry. It might take two-three days and once they are dried, consume 4-5 seeds with water in the afternoon and evening. You will see the results in one week. This remedy will help you reduce belly fat.
Cumin is a flowering plant in the family Apiaceae, native to a territory including the Middle East and stretching east to India.
According to the United States Department of Agriculture’s FoodData Central Database, one teaspoon of whole cumin seeds contains:
- 7.88 calories
- 0.37 g of protein
- 0.47 g of fat
- 0.93 g of carbohydrate
The same amount of cumin seeds also provides 19.6 mg of calcium, 1.39 mg of iron, and 7.69 mg of magnesium.
- Promotes Digestion
- Treats Haemorrhoids
- Fights cancer
- Good for Stomach
- Boosts Immunity
- Aids Respiratory System
- Boosts Energy
- Good for Liver
- Reduces the Risk of Diabetes
- Improves Cognitive Performance
- Jeera water is anti-inflammatory
- Helps to lose weight
- Not good for diabetics
- Jeera might hamper breast milk production
- Low blood sugar level
- Heavy Menstrual cycle
- Liver damage
How much cumin powder should I take daily?
Cumin is considered to be highly safe and generally nontoxic, even in larger doses. But there are some side effects to be aware of if you would like to use it. The typical dose of cumin as an herbal supplement is 300 to 600 milligrams per day.
Coriander is an annual herb in the family Apiaceae. All parts of the plant are edible, but the fresh leaves and the dried seeds are the parts most traditionally used in cooking.
One cup of raw coriander contains (5):
- Calories: 3.68
- Fat: 0.083 grams
- Carbs: 0.587 g
- Protein: 0.341 g
- Besides, it also contains Vitamin C, provitamin A, and K, folate, potassium, manganese, choline, and beta-carotene.
- May help lower blood sugar
- Treats Different Skin Diseases
- Cures Mouth Ulcers
- Promotes Healthy Vision
- Treats Liver Dysfunction
- Helps to control Blood Pressure
- Good for the Stomach
- Reduces Menstrual Cramps
- Good Source of Antioxidants
- It is an Anti-Allergic Herb
- Regulates Cholesterol
- Helps to manage Diabetes
- Strengthens hair due to vitamin K,C, and A
- The overdose may cause liver damage
- In some cases, it leads to allergic reactions
- Breathing Problem
- Sometimes, it may cause skin problems
- or lead to gastrointestinal issues
- In some ladies, it causes a lapse of menstruation
- Hypoglycemia Or Low Blood Pressure
Can we drink coriander water daily?
Drinking coriander water in the morning can help improve digestion throughout the day, and boost metabolism. Both these properties can help aid the weight loss process.
Chili peppers are considered fruit, not vegetables, and can be used for their medicinal properties.
The nutrition facts for 1 tablespoon (15 grams) of raw, fresh, red chili peppers are:
- Calories: 6
- Water: 88%
- Protein: 0.3 grams
- Carbs: 1.3 grams
- Sugar: 0.8 grams
- Fiber: 0.2 grams
- Fat: 0.1 grams
- Improves Digestive Health and Metabolism
- Reduce Risks of Cancer
- Fights Fungal Infections, Colds, and the Flu
- Promotes a Healthy Heart
- Mitigates Migraines
- Relieves Joint Pain
- Improves Metabolism / Promotes Weight Loss
- Prevents Allergies
- It may lead to digestion problems
Cardamom is a spice made from the seed pods of various plants in the ginger family. The pods contain a number of seeds, but the entire cardamom pod can be used whole or ground.
Cardamom, also known as the “Queen of Spices,” is the world’s most expensive spice after vanilla and saffron.
Nutrition facts (6)
- 100 grams of cardamom contains:
- Protein: 11 g
- Cholesterol: 0 mg
- Carbs: 68 g
- Total Fat: 7 g
- Calorific Value: 311 kcal
- Cures cough and cold
- Improve digestion
- Boosts blood circulation
- Reduces High Blood Pressure
- Corrects Digestive Ailments
- Fights Bad Bacteria
- Fights Asthma
- Aids In Diabetes Treatment
- Cardamom Benefits on The Skin And Hair
- Aids In Cancer Prevention
- Helps Fight Depression
- Cures urinary disorder
- Keeps dental problems at bay
- Alleviates joint pain
- Prevents Blood Clots
- For body detoxification
- Allergies Due To Cardamom
- Pain In Gall Bladder after consuming
- It may lead to drug interactions
- Increases Risks of Bleeding
When should you eat cardamom?
In some cultures, it’s common to freshen your breath by eating entire cardamom pods after a meal. The reason why cardamom can lead to minty fresh breath may have to do with its ability to fight common mouth bacteria.
It is one of the most widely used Indian spices for garnering health benefits because of its numerous nutritional score.
In one tablespoon of saffron, there are (7):
- Carbohydrates – 1.37 grams
- Fat – 0.12 grams
- Proteins – 0.24 grams
Vitamin C: 1.7 mg
Vitamin B9: .002 ug
Vitamin B6: 0.02 mg
Vitamin B3: 0.03 mg
Vitamin B2: 0.01 mg
Iron: 0.23 mg
Manganese: 0.6 mg
Magnesium: 6 mg
Copper: 0.01 mg
Phosphorous: 5 mg
Potassium: 36 mg
Kaempferol: 4.3 mg
- Powerful Antioxidant
- Protective against cancer
- May Promote Brain Health
- Promotes learning and memory retention
- Promoting weight loss
- Useful in wound healing
- Reduces blood pressure and improves heart health
- Digestive Issues
- Increases sexual drive
- Reduces depression
- May help fight inflammation and arthritis
- May boost vision health
- May help in insomnia treatment
- Promote digestive health
- Protective against cold
- Saffron cause miscarriage or lifter difficult calving:
- Decreased heart rate,
- Bleeding from the nose,
- Dry mouth
- Change in appetite
Best time to take saffron
Take a few strands — five or seven — and soak in hot water for some 10 minutes. After that, you can drink it, ideally on an empty stomach first thing in the morning. Do this regularly.
Cloves are a spice made from the flower buds of an evergreen tree called, appropriately enough, the clove tree (Syzygium aromaticum). They can be used whole or ground, and they have a very strong, pungent flavor and aroma.
One teaspoon (2 grams) of ground cloves contains:
- Calories: 6
- Carbs: 1 gram
- Fiber: 1 gram
- Manganese: 55% of the Daily Value (DV)
- Vitamin K: 2% of the DV
- High in antioxidants
- Good for respiratory and digestive health
- protect against cancer
- Helpful in reducing toothache and dental pain
- Helps in Blood Circulation and Relieves Stress:
- Preventive in Diabetes
- Bone Preservation and good for Joints
- Boosts Immune System
- Reduces Body Pain and Inflammation
- Cloves possess antibacterial properties
- May cause itching, rash; mild skin irritation;
- May lead to erection problems
- Causes liver problems–nausea, upper stomach pain, itching, tired feeling, loss of appetite, dark urine, clay-colored stools, jaundice (yellowing of the skin or eyes)
- Causes Respiratory Problems
- signs of infection–fever, chills, sore throat, mouth sores, cold or flu symptoms, cough, trouble breathing.
- Might Lower Blood Sugar Way Too Much
- Causes Seizures
- Loss of Sensation
- Makes The Skin Sensitive
Best time to eat cloves
For healthy living, you need a good digestive system. Consuming cloves in the morning helps you treat any digestive problems. Cloves increase the secretion of digestive enzymes which prevent digestive disorders like constipation and indigestion.
Cinnamon is a spice used mainly as an aromatic condiment and flavoring additive in a wide variety of cuisines, sweet and savory dishes, breakfast cereals, snack foods, tea, and traditional foods.
According to the U.S. Department of Agriculture, a teaspoon of ground cinnamon weighing 2.6 g contains:
- energy: 6.42 calories
- carbohydrates: 2.1 g
- calcium: 26.1 milligrams (mg)
- iron: 0.21 mg
- magnesium: 1.56 mg
- phosphorus: 1.66 mg
- potassium: 11.2 mg
- vitamin A: 0.39 micrograms
- It has anti-inflammatory properties
- Preventive against cancer
- Preventing Alzheimer’s disease
- Helps to manage type 2 diabetes and reduce cholesterol
- May cut the risk of heart disease
- Improve sensitivity to the hormone insulin
- Help fight bacterial and fungal infections
- Freshen breath
- Speed up hair growth
- May cause several allergies
- Reason for increased heart rate and makes blood thinner
- Could be a cause of liver damage
- Lowers blood sugar
- Hormonal Disruption
When should you eat cinnamon?
Morning: To help improve your digestion and metabolism, drink this wonder health tonic first thing in the morning and half an hour before having your breakfast. It will also keep your energy levels intact through lunch.
Mint or Mentha belongs to the Lamiaceae family, which contains around 15 to 20 plant species, including peppermint and spearmint. It is a popular herb that people can use fresh or dried in many dishes and infusions.
Nutrition facts (8)
- Mint (2 tbsp/3grams)
- Calories – 2
- Protein – 0.2gm
- Carbohydrates – 0.2gm
- Fat – 0 gm
- Fiber – 0.2gm
- Improves Digestion
- Promotes Respiratory Health
- Promotes Weight Loss
- Help with Common Cold
- Aids in Breast Feeding
- Reduces Nausea
- Gives you glowing and acne-free skin
- Boosts immunity
- Resolves Gastrointestinal Problems
- It has anti-allergic properties
- Improves Brain Functions
- Beats stress and depression
- Fight cancer
- Relieves Morning Sickness
- Good for Dental Health
- Unhealthy for Infants
- Causes heartburns
- Dry mouth
- Nausea and vomiting
- Unhealthy During Pregnancy
- Skin irritation
- Difficulty speaking and breathing (pediatrics)
- Inflammation of the kidney
Best time to eat pudina
Summer is the best season to consume mint and there are several ways in which we can use pudina, apart from just making chutneys. Mint is widely used in foods like ice-cream, chocolates, alcoholic and non-alcoholic beverages, cosmetics, medicines, inhalers, and mouth fresheners.
Spices are considered healthy and medicinal. Though the consumption of spices doesn’t cause ulcers, be careful if you have irritable bowel syndrome, dyspepsia, or inflammatory bowel disease (IBD). If the consumption of spices gives you belly pain, think before you eat.