What are the benefits of eating fresh herbs? You probably only think of herbs as being a way of seasoning food, and may only have dried herbs in your kitchen. But herbs have been used for centuries as a way of treating medical problems. It's certainly worth including them in your diet as a boost to your health. Here are some of the benefits of eating fresh herbs …
One of the benefits of eating fresh herbs is that rosemary is good for your brain. It helps enhance your memory and may even help prevent your brain from aging. This fragrant herb has many other benefits as well. It's rich in antioxidants, and contains a component that is believed to help protect the eyes against macular degeneration (age-related deterioration).
You may have bought cilantro to use in curries and other Indian dishes. But did you know that this herb can be good for your health as well as tasty? Cilantro is actually rich in many vitamins including vitamins A, C and K. Vitamin K helps build bone mass, and vitamin A is good for the eyes. Cilantro also contains many useful minerals.
Do you have a tendency to suffer from minor digestive problems? Reach for the mint and make yourself an herbal tea. Mint has long been known to help with digestive upsets. It can also be effective in treating Irritable Bowel Syndrome. Mint may also help alleviate cold symptoms and possibly seasonal allergies. What a great excuse to make yourself a mint tea (or mint julep!).
You're probably used to throwing oregano into Italian dishes such as pasta sauces. But it isn't just useful for its taste. Oregano has health benefits as well; it actually contains anti-bacterial and anti-fungal properties. Plus there are antioxidants as well. It can also treat menstrual cramps and respiratory problems.
It's time to add some thyme to your diet! Thyme is another herb that is good for your digestion. It can also help with respiratory problems and skin disorders. Like other herbs, thyme contains various minerals and vitamins - it's a great source of potassium (helps control your blood pressure), manganese, and iron. Studies are looking into the potential use of thyme in preventing Alzheimer's disease.
If you have some basil for your pasta sauces, you'll be pleased to know how good it can be for your health as well. Basil has anti-inflammatory properties, so can be a good herb for people with arthritis. Then there are its anti-bacterial and antioxidant uses. When you add its potential to treat asthma, colds and sinus infections, you'll be tossing fresh basil into every meal!
You may be familiar with sage through the stuffing served with a Sunday roast - if you're British, anyway. But what can it do for your health? Sage is beneficial for your memory - who doesn't wish they had a better memory! Sage may also have potential in treating asthma and painful periods.
Although you shouldn't try diagnosing yourself, or treating yourself with herbs, it's certainly worth including them in your diet. Anything that helps your health is worthwhile. Fresh herbs are better, so try growing some (dried herbs are a useful standby, but won't be as beneficial). Do you have any unusual recipes using herbs?