Culinary Herbs

Ethnic Cuisine – Getting A Lot More Than You Thought


The popularity of Italian, Mexican, Greek, Chinese, Indian, Thai, and other ethnic cuisine has introduced us to a variety of unique flavors.

Herbs and spices, which are derived from different parts of plants (bark, leaves, seeds, rhizomes, buds, stems, roots, and fruit) have long been used to preserve food and provide flavor to soups and salads, pasta and vegetable dishes. This enables one to prepare tasty food without having to use oil and salt freely to enhance the flavor of food.

Culinary herbs and spices not only provide a unique aromatic quality to food but also provide health-promoting properties.

For example:

  • Garlic can lower cholesterol and triglyceride levels and lower the risk of cancer.
  • Onions diminish the risk of blood clots and assist in the relief of bronchial problems.
  • Herbs of the mint family (basil, oregano, thyme, sage, rosemary) and the parsley family (dill, fennel, cumin, coriander, cilantro) all provide a measure of protection against cancer.
  • Ginger inhibits the formation of blood clots, and decreases the risk of various cancers.
  • Turmeric, used in Indian dishes, has powerful anti-inflammatory and anti-cancer properties.

A variety of culinary herbs can be used to flavor your favorite dishes and at the same time they will keep you healthy.

Author: Winston Craig, MPH, PhD, RD.

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