Thursday, May 14, 2009

Spice up Your Life!

Eating spicy food can speed up your metabolism and decrease your food cravings. It has actually been found that jalapeno and cayenne peppers can raise your metabolism as much as 25% after eating! But the spices that are found in many spicy foods have many health benefits as well.

Curry’s is made out of many spices, but typically you will find a combination of turmeric, cinnamon, black pepper, allspice, chilli peppers, cumin, cloves, ginger, cayenne pepper – all of which have amazing health benefits that go along with their great taste! I will just mention a few:

Turmeric - the main ingredient in curry, has anti-inflammatory properties and can reduce symptoms of IBS (irritable bowel disorder) and rheumatoid arthritis. It is also an antioxidant and cancer fighter by inhibiting the growth of cancer cells.

Garlic – is an antioxidant and cancer fighter by destroys cancer cells.

Ginger - has long been known for its treatment of nausea and stomach irriation, but it also is a blood thinner and can help prevent blood clots.

Chili peppers – are high in Vitamin C and pro-vitamin A. Peppers are also a good source of most B vitamins. Increases metabolism.

Cumin – is a powerful immune booster and can fight off colds and flu. It can also aid in asthma relief and will encourage healthy hair and nail growth.

Cinnamon – is an antioxidant, can lower blood sugar, triglycerides, LDL, and total cholesterol in people with type 2 diabities and will aid with digestion.

Vegetable Curry with Rice

1 lg Onion, sliced
1 Green pepper, sliced
1 Red pepper, sliced
1 Cauliflower, broken into florets
1 Zucchini, sliced (optional)

2 tbsp curry paste
4 tsp Ginger, minced
6 cloves garlic, minced
4 tbsp curry powder
1 lime, zested and juiced
2 cans Coconut milk (regular or low fat – whatever your preference)
1 tbsp fresh mint (optional - basil)

Cut vegetables into strips. Sauté in curry paste (add additional vegetable oil if necessary). Add ginger, garlic and curry powder and heat though. Add lime and coconut milk and simmer till desired tenderness. When done, sprinkle with mint and serve with rice.

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