Supplement companies spend billions of dollars marketing expensive pills, drops, creams, and powders meant to fill our nutritional needs, round out our diets, help us lose weight, detoxify, and improve our health. Despite their pervasive message that food alone is insufficient, the reality is that you can gain impressive health benefits simply by adding potent herbs and spices to your food. We live on a planet awash in dangerous chemicals, from toxic pesticides to birth control hormones finding their way into our water supply, industrial waste, smog, and more. Our bodies are in constant battle, fighting the onslaught of water, food, and air pollution, and, ironically, many of the expensive supplements and nutrition bars are made with toxic substances like soy protein and petroleum products.
Our food, water, and air are full of chemicals that wreak havoc in our nervous and endocrine systems. These substances act like estrogen in our body. They cause estrogen disorders in women, the feminization of men, and deadly cancers. Not only do these toxic chemicals come from the industrial world (i.e. petroleum bi-products), but there are naturally occurring estrogenic substances in plants, such as soy, called phytoestrogens. “Infants exclusively fed soy-based formula have 13,000 to 22,000 times more estrogen compounds in their blood than babies fed milk-based formula, the estrogenic equivalent of at least five birth control pills per day” (www.soyonlineservice.co.nz). Even meat is treated with estrogen in order to make it more tender.
The incredible excess of estrogen in our food and water is critically dangerous, throwing our hormonal balance out of whack and causing deadly diseases, even sterilization. The only answer is eat foods that fight estrogen and to incorporate anti-estrogenic, detoxifying herbs and spices into every meal to help your body combat the onslaught of chemicals. Reducing body fat is also important. “The reduction in the size of fatty tissues is associated with the lowering of estrogen levels,” states Ori Hofmekler in his book, . Here are 7 of the most potent herbs and spices to help you lose weight , detoxify your body, and declare war on excess estrogen:
Garlic – Quercetin, a compound found in garlic and also onions, is anti-estrogenic. Garlic also contains adenosine which helps break down fibrin, a blood-clot-promoting protein, which may be one reason that including garlic in your diet is associated with a reduced risk of atherosclerosis. It’s a rich dietary source of sulfur and selenium, which helps repair cells damaged by oxidative stress. It has also been demonstrated to be effective in lowering cholesterol.
Ginger – Ginger is commonly used around the world in food and medicine. Ginger helps to detoxify the liver, which is critical to neutralizing estrogenic chemicals and metabolites. A healthy liver is essential to create an environment where fat can be metabolized, and as we mentioned earlier, reducing body fat combats estrogenic substances. Ginger also contains zinc, an essential nutrient for mental development, healthy reproductive organs, protein synthesis, and collagen formation. Zinc also balances blood sugar and can protect against diabetes. Studies conducted in Denmark demonstrated ginger’s distinct ability to reduce inflammatory pain, including pain from rheumatoid arthritis. Patients receiving daily doses of ginger reported great improvement in their mobility, swelling, and over-all stiffness. Ginger inhibits cholesterol production in the liver, which makes up to 85% of the cholesterol in circulation in the blood stream.
Chamomile – A serious cause of weight gain is stress. Chronic stress causes the production of certain hormones that promote fat storage, especially dangerous abdominal fat. Chamomile causes deep relaxation and sleep, stops spasms in the smooth muscles lining the stomach and intestines, and is anti-inflammatory. It also contains a substance called apigenine that has demonstrated anti-cancerous and anti-metastatic effects on tumor growth. Drinking a cup of chamomile tea before bed can promote deep, relaxed sleep and enhance the body’s ability to deal with stress.
Thyme – Thyme is extremely antiviral and antibacterial. In fact, oil of thyme is the main ingredient in the powerful mouthwash, Listerine. It’s a fantastic liver detoxification aid. Incorporating thyme in your daily cooking can help promote healthy liver function.
Cilantro – Cilantro is actually two spices that you are probably familiar with. The first is the green leaves that somewhat resemble parsley often found in Mexican food dishes. The second is the seeds, which are dried and sold as coriander. The leaves are rich in calcium, iron, carotenes, and Vitamin C. Yoshiaki Omura, a Japanese researcher, discovered that cilantro has the ability to mobilize mercury and other toxic metals from the central nervous system. This is revolutionary because, while there are many ways to detoxify bodily tissues, mercury can stay lodged in the central nervous system permanently. The cilantro leaves must be fresh – dried cilantro doesn’t work. There is speculation that the mercury detoxifying properties of cilantro may also make it effective in treating depression, Alzheimer’s, poor concentration, and other nervous system related disorders.
Turmeric – Curcumin, a group of antioxidant compounds and the active ingredient in turmeric, has been shown to suppress carcinoma cells in breast cancer. Since pesticides that find their way into our water and food generally promote high levels of estrogen, researches have concluded that the anti-cancer properties of curcumin could also help inhibit the estrogenic effects of these toxins in our bodies. Turmeric seems to have an especially profound effect on the liver, and Ayurvedic medicine has traditionally used it to treat liver conditions. Turmeric is also a powerful anti-inflammatory spice, helping to relieve pain from bursitis, tendonitis, and arthritis. Dietary intake of turmeric helps increase enzymes that digest fats and sugars.
Sage – An anti-estrogenic herb, sage also treats digestive discomfort. Modern research has shown that sage helps reduce blood clots from forming. Sage is classically used to season meat and poultry dishes.
Have fun using these tasty, healthy additions in your meals! If you have any great recipes to share, don’t be shy, leave me a comment below. And if you found this info helpful, please share it with your friends and family using the links below or the “Tweet This” button above!