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Did you know that simple spices you might use in your cooking every day can help with ailments like hypertension and headaches? It’s true! So, what are these healing spices? Read on to find out more.

1: Bay

Bay leaves (or the fragrant leaves of the Laurus nobilis) are a healing spice rich in parthenolides, which are pain-killing compounds. They also contain a compound that boosts insulin’s ability to control blood sugar. So, eating foods seasoned with bay leaves can help to prevent Diabetes and help keep Type II Diabetes from becoming worse. It also helps ward off migraines. For general health benefits, bay leaves are rich in vitamins A and C, iron, calcium, magnesium, and potassium.

2: Cayenne

Cayenne, a cultivar of Capsicum annuum, contains capsaicin, sometimes used as an analgesic in topical ointments, nasal sprays, and dermal patches to relieve pain. Capsaicin has long been used for temporary relief of minor aches and pains in joints and muscles, such as those resulting from strains and sprains, or related to conditions associated with arthritis or backache. Cayenne has also been effective in treating other conditions like psoriasis for reduction of itching. Cayenne pepper dilates blood vessels, improving circulation of nutrients and oxygen throughout the body. Cayenne contains vitamins A, B6, E, and C, as well as riboflavin, potassium, and manganese.

3: Celery Seed

Celery seed has been known as a pain relief treatment for thousands of years. Celery seed contains anti-inflammatory compounds that reduce blood pressure. You can find the same compounds in the stalks of celery. Eat more celery or add celery seed to dishes to help combat arthritis and hypertension. High levels of sedanolide in celery oil have been shown to have a positive impact on rheumatism and even gout!

4: Garlic

Garlic is one of nature’s most powerful antibiotics. It can prevent the growth of bacteria, yeast, and fungi. This includes strains that have become resistant to antibiotics. Garlic also has allicin, a substance that works to thin the blood. Eating raw garlic is one of the best ways to take advantage of its healing powers. Adding just one clove of garlic to your dishes each day gives you all its benefits.

Eating a balanced diet of healthy foods and adding in some illness-fighting spices can really go a long way in keeping you well and help you recover if you do get sick. Try adding some new flavors to your dinner tonight and you may find the benefits affect more than just your taste buds.