The Little Things That Help You Stay in Good Health
No doubt you’ve had your fair share of health advice on a daily basis if you spend any time surfing the Web and no doubt you’ve mostly come across the same things: eat more freshly made meals, favor the greens over the steak and cut down on the junk food. These are all good, but how about the little things that can make your food tasty and at the same time benefit your health in ways you’d hardly think about? Herbs and spices are these little things, the foundation of modern medicines. It’s our mistake that we have come to think of them almost exclusively as flavor-giving additions to our food.
Take oregano, for example, this indispensable ingredient of the classic Italian pizza is actually used in pharmaceutical products for its anti-inflammatory and anti-microbial properties. It’s especially good for digestive problems and conditions affecting the lungs and throat, plus it can help with skin irritations and has a generally beneficial cosmetic effect because it’s packed with antioxidants, those major soldiers in the battle against aging. And all at the same time it can give a dish that special flavor that will make your mouth water. In fact, most common herbs are a great source of antioxidants – basil, sage, rosemary, thyme, and garlic as well, although it’s not really an herb – and are packed with vitamins and chemical compounds that counteract the destructive affect free radicals have on the cells in our body. Of course, the amount you use when cooking won’t suddenly cure all of your ailments, but a cup of oregano infusion may very well stop heartburn. It’s just something that’s good to know — tasty food is not necessarily bad for your health if it has some herbs in it. Most of these herbs, by the way, are versatile and can be used in all sorts of dishes, so you can freely experiment with no fear of failure.
Rosemary, for example, although usually associated with meat dishes, goes very well with potatoes, too. Sage, similarly, goes equally well with turkey breast and with cheese and tomatoes. Basil is considered a must in Italian-style tomato-based sauces and dishes, but it gives a great flavor to vegetables and white meats, as well. And how about black pepper? It can make any meal that little bit more exciting and at the same time improve digestion and supply you with some vitamin K, which protects against osteoporosis and heart conditions, and iron.
And a couple of things about beauty, since we already touched on the subject. Creams and cleansers, lotions and tonics are all well and good, but there’s no reason to ignore what nature supplies. Rubbing a slice of lemon on your face will tone it and energize it, and a slice of raw potato will help you get rid of the puffiness under your eyes if you haven’t slept particularly well lately. In fact, you can give yourself a facial mask every time you reach for a fruit — all fruit are good for you, as you know, and there’s no reason why you should limit yourself to internal use. The vitamins that fruit is packed with will work great on the skin, as well. Just rub a slice all over your face, wait for the mask to dry and rinse off, it’s as easy and quick as that.