I am crazy about spices. Spices of all kinds are natural preservatives for food, but better yet, they contain LOADS of antioxidant properties. All the pungent flavor from spices actually is derived from compounds that act as antioxidants, preventing chronic diseases.
But here's something I didn't know. Apparently, spices like turmeric can also prevent fat cells from growing.
Researchers from my Alma Mater, Tufts University, recently published a study in the Journal of Nutrition showing a substance found in turmeric called curcumin prevents growth of new fat tissue in mice. In addition, mice receiving curcumin had lower cholesterol levels and less fat in their livers when compared to mice eating the same amount of food.
Now, before you go out and buy more turmeric, please know that this particular spice has been studied more than most. I believe many spices contain similar properties as turmeric, which is why I am a proponent of consuming "ethnic" foods, which traditionally contain many herbs and spices.
If you haven't already heard about my favorite source for recipes with spice, it's Jennifer Brewer. Visit her at www.NourishingNutrition.com.