Antioxidant Herbs and Antioxidant Spices

Herbs and spices are used all over the world, and in all different cultures, to add to our culinary experience. Without them, our foods will be blend.

Herbs and spices, are often used to create our gastromonical pleasures - creating alluring aroma, teasing our taste buds, tempting our sights, and making us wanting more ... creating food cravings, as we associate foods with pleasure.

Before we launch into talking about antioxidant herbs and antioxidant spices, I ask the question "what's a herb?" and "what's a spice?". While it is not necessary to clearly define them as both herbs and spices are known to contain a lot of antioxidants, but so that folks find it easier to search through this site, I thought it may be best to define them for the purposes of this site ...


So, what are Herbs?

Interestingly, herbs are categorized/defined a few ways:

  • General definition:
    - any plant with leaves, seeds, or flowers used for flavoring, food, medicine, or perfume.
  • Botanically:                                                                                                                       - any seed-bearing plant that does not have a woody stem and dies down to the ground after flowering. (has to have non woody stem, and seed bearing)
  • Culinary World:                                                                                                              - herbs come from the leafy/green part of the plant (to distinguish them from the spices, which are the roots/stem/bark/seeds of a plant, and can be from the same plant that which is called herb, but more distinctly, spices are usually in a dry form, so I read ...)
  • Medicinal definition                                                                                                       - any part of the herbal plant that can be used for medicinal purposes (can have woody stem or no woody stem, can be dry-powdered or otherwise, can be seed-bearing or otherwise)

As you can see, the definitions in various categories can be specific/precise, but they can also overlap (especially, the medicinal definition).


For the purposes of this page and website, herbs shall be defined:

  • partly botanical - any leafy/green part of the herbal plant
  • partly culinary - the other parts of the herbs plants (seeds/stem/bark/roots) shall be categorized as spices
  • mostly medicinal - it is usually the antioxidant qualities of the herbs that cures (plus other nutrients, too)


What about Spices, then?

Not as difficult as herbs ...


For the purposes of this page, we will just use :

  • Culinary World's definition                                                                                         -  which are the roots/stem/bark/seeds of a plant, and of the same plant that which is called herb, usually in a dry form.


What about Salt?

What about salt? Is is a herb? Is it a spice?

Technically, it is classed as a mineral, but it functions gastronomically, to add to our culinary experience, too. It would be difficult to try call it a herb, but maybe we can "smuggle" it into the spices category.

For the purposes of this page and website ... and after all, salt, though technically a mineral, adds to our culinary experience, its mineral contents has some antioxidants effects.


What about Garlic?

Garlic? Onion? Shallot?

Based on some write-ups, technically, garlic is not a herb but a "green"/vegetable.

For the purposes of this page, we shall sneak these 3 (and their likes) into the category of herb:

  • after all, they are a type of "greens",
  • and although, we tend to think of the root/bulb part of the garlic, onion, and shallots, they should more closely "related" to spices, but they are seldom consumed in the dry form (I note that there are garlic powder available, but it is usually consumed in its "green" form)

The same reasoning is applied to other "greens" in the same family, when we write about them in the future ... otherwise, we won't be able to get on to the more important purpose for this page ...


Herbs or spices, we are interested in their antioxidant benefits, for health.


Examples of Herbs and Spices

Examples of herbs - of the more commonly ones:

  • Rosemary
  • Thyme
  • Oregano
  • Basil
  • Garlic
  • Onion
  • Shallots
  • Ginger


Examples of spices - of the more commonly known ones:

  • Clove
  • Allspice
  • Cinnamon
  • Tumeric
  • Salt (for the purposes of this page)


More on the Herbs and Spices ...

Herbs and spices are not just about gastromonical sensations; they have been used as nutritional and medicinal values, since the ancient times.

The practice of herbalism, the use of herbs for its medicinal values based on write-up in Wikipedia, goes back to 60,000 years ago!

There is no equivalent term for spices, that I could find. It could simply means that while it may be called "herbalism", spices are included in the cures. After all, many of the spices are just the the stem/root/seeds/stalk of these herbs, in the dry form - causing them to be classified as "spices".


While herbal remedies are used all over the world, their use is more prominent in Asia and Africa. In the same article, it says that World Health Organization (WHO) estimates that as high as 80% of Asia and Africa is still dependent on herbal medicines as the primary cure.

Other than for cost reasons, it could well be that theses herbal cures have been tested through time.That said, there are still many skeptics around.

As I always believe, sometimes it is  so much not the medicine, but the diagnosis has to be correct in the first place before the right prescription can be applied. 

Diagnosis is just as important as the cure, if not more important. With a wrong diagnosis, even the best "cure" may not produce the good results anticipated.


Herbs and Spices ... and the different antioxidants they contain

While herbs and spices are said to contain loads of antioxidants, each of them, however, have one or a couple of more prominent antioxidants, and sometimes unique to them only.

Let's look at a couple ...


Herbs

We hope you enjoyed browsing through these herbs pages.


We intend to add more other herbs' stories, in the near future, and also to create a section for spices ... after all this page is about "Antioxidant Herb and Antioxidant Spices"


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