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  • Writer's pictureTeam Bombay

The Best Indian Spices to Fight Off a Cold

Updated: Jan 8, 2021

We are living in some uncertain times. Taking care of yourself and boosting your immunity could be your best bet against all forms of a global viral attack or even the common cold.

Indian spices for thousands of years have not only amplified the taste of our food, but also helped boost our immunity levels. Known for its range of intricate ingredients, tongue licking flavors, and abundance of health benefits, Indian cuisine has become one of the worlds most popular cuisines.

The diverse range of spices available across India are viewed as a sacred aspect of the Indian diet and draw upon ancient Ayurveda traditions.

From London to Dubai, Hong Kong to LA, you can find an Indian restaurant just about anywhere these days. Bombay Mahal in Brunswick, Maine has been helping its customers taste India’s love of spices for over 30 years.

So, prepare to raid your pantry as we run through some of the best Indian spices that can help prevent infections, ease sore throats and keep that common cold at bay.

1) Turmeric

Used for hundreds of years in both Indian and Chinese medicine, turmeric is rich in curcumin; a scientifically proven compound that can help to prevent heat disease, Alzheimer’s and cancer. It also holds strong anti-inflammatory and antioxidants making it ideal for those with depression and arthritis.

Used for over 4,000 years, turmeric is a vital aspect of Indian cooking and used by millions as a medicine in Ayurveda practices. Traditionally many across the sub-continent used turmeric for its healing purposes for wounds, inflammation, and release of mucus. It is also viewed to help combat infections and boost overall health. Studies has also shown turmeric can help prevent Alzheimer’s disease and joint inflammation.

As turmeric is brilliant at boosting a body’s immunity, it helps to keep illnesses at bay and simply adding half a teaspoon to your daily diet can promote a healthier lifestyle. If you’re looking at something for colds and flu, why not drink a turmeric tea which has been known to help with colds, congestion and headaches?

2) Ajwain

Another staple in Indian cooking, you’ll most likely find ajwain seeds right at home in your kitchen pantry. Also known as carom, ajwain seeds are super effective in helping with several various health issues.

For digestion issues you can simply add ajwain seeds to warm water and salt and swallow it to help alleviate stomach aches, flatulence and acidity.

Ajwain contains Thymol which gives it antimicrobial properties. Simply add some ajwain seeds to hot water, let them infuse for a few minutes and inhale the steam. This will help to clear any congestion and provides some relief for blocked noses and sinus pressure.

For coughs you can mix ajwain and one teaspoon of jaggery powder which can help to clear your throat and mucus.

3) Star Anise

Shaped like a literal star, star anise is another popular ingredient found in Indian cuisine and is rich in Vitamin C, Vitamin A and antioxidants. It can help to fight a sore throat, boost immunity and even aids digestion.

By simply adding star anise into boiling water for 15 minutes can help with sore throats and coughing.. Drinking star anise infused tea a couple of times a day with honey can help to infuse your body with its immunity boosting benefits and help get rid toxins within the body.

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