top of page

Healing Herbs & Spices - Your Guide to your Medicine Cabinet in the Kitchen

Updated: Nov 26, 2021

"Let food by thy medicine & medicine be thy food."

We bet you didn't realize that you likely have a medicine cabinet right in your kitchen! Yep, that's right! But you probably more commonly call it the spice rack! Herbs and spices have been used for natural remedies for centuries. However, sadly with more focus being put on conventional medicine these herbs and spices are being overlooked for their powerful medicinal properties, and to be honest, we think that is a shame, so we decided to put them in a blog post for you! Alrighty, here we go!

(If reading this is a little like dejavu to you that is because it is! We shared these amazing herbs and spices in our Herbs & Spices of the week series but we wanted to put them all together in one convent location for you to access them so we hope you enjoy it! )

1) Ginger

You might recognize this spice because it is famous for treating nausea, upset stomach, diarrhea, and motion sickness. But I bet you didn't know that next to turmeric, ginger is the world's most potent cancer-fighting spice. Yep, it's true! In addition to its anti-inflammatory, immunomodulatory (just a fancy word to say it strengthens the immune system) properties it is also shown to prevent tumour development! We won't get into all the scientific mumbo jumbo but the long and short of it is that ginger may play an important role in regulating not only inflammation but also various processes that affect cancer cells. It has been shown to inhibit the growth of colon cancer, as well as simulate the cell death of ovarian cancers.

2) Garlic

It turns out it doesn't just keep vampires away! It has also been shown to kill some cancer cells and slow the growth of tumours in the prostate, bladder, colon, and stomach tissue! If those weren't reasons enough to incorporate these delicious herbs then perhaps we should also mention that garlic contains allium which is a compound that helps support a healthy immune system.

3) Basil

This herb has been used in kitchens around the world for hundreds of years. Basil contains robust phytonutrients that have anti-oxidant, anti-inflammatory, anti-cancer, antimicrobial, and wound healing properties. Wow! Who knew such a common herb packed such a powerful punch! The phytonutrients in basil appear to help reduce oxidative stress and triggers cell death of some cancer cells. If you don't already you can begin to include this awesome herb in your diet. You can add it to soups, tomato sauces, and stir-fries, or add fresh leaves to salads.

4) Cinnamon

One spice that we love to include in our diet that is also sweet is cinnamon! Not only is it a delicious addition to any dish but it is also a potent antioxidant, anti-inflammatory, cholesterol-lowering, and anti-cancer spice. Cinnamon contains polyphenol compounds that help to prevent the growth and spread of cancer cells. All and all this spice has so many amazing properties and it is delicious so what is not to LOVE!

5) Oregano

Did you know there are over 40 different varieties of Oregano but the most common is Oregano Vulgare. Oregano has been shown to have many useful properties from fighting bacteria, relieving inflammation, to regulating blood sugar and lipids but what we want to talk about is its amazing benefits for helping fighting cancer. Oregano contains antioxidant properties that prevent DNA damage in cells due to oxidative stress. Also, the substances carvacrol & thymol found in oregano may help to prevent melanoma cells from not only growing but also spreading. Finally, this amazing herb may also help slow the spread of breast cancer. Oregano can be used in its fresh or dried, it makes a great pesto, or throw a few leaves in your favourite soups or stews!

6) Turmeric

Turmeric is a root that besides bringing vibrant colour to curries and other dishes, it has also been linked to a number of health benefits. Curcumin is the main active ingredient in turmeric, it has powerful anti-inflammatory effects and is a very strong antioxidant. On top of that many studies have concluded that it is an excellent cancer fighter. It inhibits the growth of various cancer cells and forces cancer cells to die (through the process of cell suicide, known as apoptosis). Be sure to pair turmeric with a pinch of black pepper and a healthy oil this helps it to pass through the intestinal barrier and increases the body's absorption by 2000 percent!! Turmeric is also available in capsule form as well for a quick and convenient way to boost curcumin consumption be sure to buy one that has piperine (the active ingredient in pepper) included. However, we highly suggest consuming it in its natural form.

7) Cilantro

This herb is probably one of the most versatile herbs around, it can be used on everything from curries to salsa. It is also one of those things that people either love or hate. Thankfully we happen to love it!! Whether you love or hate the taste of this impressive herb you have to give it credit as it has many powerful benefits! We can't cover them all here today but we will point out some of our favorites! First and foremost of course we have to talk about its anti-cancer properties. Quercetin a flavonoid found in cilantro is an antioxidant helping to protect against oxidative stress which we know can contribute to the development of cancer. There are also studies that suggest that cilantro may help protect against the development of colon cancer. In addition to protecting against cancer, cilantro may also help lower blood sugar levels, support a healthy heart, and reduce anxiety symptoms.

8) Cayenne Pepper

These chili peppers are closely related to jalapeno. 🔥In addition to helping lower your blood pressure, and improve digestive health, they also contain a powerful antioxidant, capsaicin, that may help reduce the risk of cancer as well as help slow the growth of cancer cells.

9) Milk Thistle

This traditional herb has been used for thousands of years to aid in detoxification, and liver disorders. But recently it has been studied for its effects on chemotherapy, specifically its ability to help prevent liver toxicity during chemotherapy. This is super important in our opinions as detoxification is one of the 4 pillars that we teach when healing from cancer.

10) Cumin

This is a common spice you probably already have in your cupboard! Not only does cumin contain some powerful antioxidants but it also has anti-cancer properties. Cumin has been studied for its ability to keep cancer cells from multiplying which is a pretty big deal. In fact, cumin and basil are actually considered to be the most anti carcinogenic plants. Pretty cool right?

Well, there you have it your guide to your medicine cabinet in the kitchen! We hope you enjoyed this blog and if you did share it with someone who you think would love it!

Until next time,