Inflammation occurs when our body reacts to an injury or an infection. There is a certain part in our body that may be swollen, reddened, feels hot or even painful.
Basically, inflammation serves as a defense mechanism in our body. It safeguards us against harmful agents that enter our body. When some parts of the body gets damaged or injured, inflammation will trigger our immune system to respond with its healing chemicals.
here are many factors that trigger inflammation in our body such as the pollutants in the surroundings as well as the food we take in the form of an allergy. TOur body reacts almost immediately if something feels wrong and this prompts our body to send chemicals with healing properties.
The inflammation in our body subsides when the harmful factors are controlled. Ideally, inflammation is the first step that our body needs to take in restoring our healthy condition.
Our immune system prevents an even more serious illness or injury from occurring by repairing the damage that infected our body.
Inflammation in our body should be controlled or reduced. If inflammation prolongs, it may affect the good cells in our body, thereby further damaging our body. It can even lead to chronic diseases when left untreated.
We can further improve our health by taking nutritious foods such as herbs and spices which are usually available everywhere. The herbs and spices we have at home can serve as an alternative in ensuring a healthier lifestyle, and helps us fight and protect our body against harmful agents.
Without further ado, let us discuss the 10 best herbs with anti inflammatory properties.
Table of Contents
Best Spices & Herbs – That Will Reduce Inflammation
Used as a spice for various home dishes, turmeric has a lot to offer when it comes to the healthy benefits. It has also been long used as one of the herbs used in Chinese medicines.
Turmeric contains a yellow substance called curcumin. Curcumin contains anti-inflammatory properties which have become a popular research topic in recent years. Additionally, the yellow-pigment property of turmeric may also fight cancer with its antioxidant properties.
Turmeric contains other active compounds which contributes to fighting oxidative stress. It also contains anti-aging properties which can reverse the signs of aging. Turmeric also helps with our sleep for those having sleep-related problems.
In terms of Oxygen Radical Absorbance Capacity (ORAC), Turmeric scores for about 102,700. This means that turmeric has a high chance to decrease the inflammation in our body, boost our immune system, fight cancer, protect our brain tissues which aids in enhancing our cognitive performance.
• Oxidative Stress – Curcumin generates reactive oxygen within our cell which reduces oxidative stress.
• Hay Fever – By taking curcumin, it reduces the chances of getting runny nose and other symptoms of fever.
• Depression – Curcumin reduces the symptoms of depression which helps people who already take some antidepressant medicine.
• Cholesterol – Turmeric aids in reducing the blood fats in our body.
• Osteoarthritis – By taking turmeric extracts alone or taken in combination with other herbs, it lessens the pain and improves the condition especially for people who suffered from knee osteoarthritis.
2. Green Tea
Green tea has been served by most Asian restaurants. It is widely known for its benefits for our body. Aside from that, it has been popularly used as a variation to desserts and other pastry dishes.
Drinking green tea is beneficial to your body as it contains anti-inflammatory properties. Some research shows that green tea reduces inflammation for people suffering from arthritis. A cup of green tea in every meal will be sufficient in relieving symptoms of inflammation in your body.
Green tea is rich in polyphenols which aids in treating and improving digestive problems. Aside from that, it also helps in lowering high blood pressure and bad cholesterol within our body as well as fighting endometrial and ovarian cancer.
It is said that green tea contains about four percent of caffeine. This helps in maintaining one’s alertness and may very well improve some brain functions. More importantly, the anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties of green tea can also protect the heart and the blood vessels of our body.
• Endometrial Cancer – Some research shows that drinking green tea reduces the risk of developing cancer in the lining of the uterus.
• Ovarian Cancer – Aside from endometrial cancer, research shows that women who regularly drink tea have lower risks in obtaining ovarian cancer. Unfortunately, it does not prevent women who already had ovarian cancer before from ever having it again.
• High Blood Pressure – Drinking green tea helps in reducing the development of high blood pressure, most especially to the elderly. This has been the reason why most Asian countries serves tea during their meals.
• Digestive Issues – The polyphenol antioxidants of green tea is called catechins which helps in aiding any digestive problems. It also reduces the inflammation in the digestive tract, further improving the condition of the body.
• Cardiovascular Diseases – It has been well established that green tea prevents cardiovascular diseases. Some research shows that drinking green tea reduces the risk of having your arteries clogged.
Ginger has been a part of every dish we make at home. It has also been incorporated as one of the home remedies available in treating certain conditions such as sore throat, nausea and vomiting. It has also been one of the remedies used to relieve menstrual cramps and migraine headaches.
Ginger is said to have a better therapeutic effect which elevates the pain as part of its anti-inflammatory properties. It also helps in activating several healing chemicals in our body which acts as an inflammatory response.
Because of its anti-inflammatory property, ginger can further improve one’s metabolism. Some research also shows that ginger assists in reducing inflammation found in kidney damage, cancer, osteoarthritis and diabetes.
To get the most out of the benefits from this herb, it has been suggested to consume ginger raw. Although, some people may find it difficult to do. Others may also prefer having their ginger boiled in order for them to make tea.
• Dysmenorrhea – Taking ginger for the first few days of the menstruation may reduce the pain women experience when going through their monthly periods. Others take ginger in a combination of taking mefenamic acid.
• Vomiting and Nausea – Pregnant women may reduce conditions such as vomiting and nausea by taking ginger as a remedy. However, before taking any medications, it is better to consult with your doctor as a precaution.
• Sore Throat – As one of the popular home remedies, ginger can help people relieve the inflammation that comes from having a sore throat. It drives away the toxins from our body and kills bad bacteria that causes pain and soreness in the throat.
4. Black Pepper
Dubbed as the King of Spices, Black Pepper is also packed with healthier benefits. It has an anti-inflammatory agent that aids in other conditions. Black pepper has a chemical component called piperine which supports in reducing inflammation in the body.
Piperine is also known for decreasing inflammation found in arthritis and even in chronic pain, and it neutralizes free radicals that are harmful to our body. It also supports our body in fighting any bacterial infection that may affect our body negatively such as sinus, diarrhea and even colds (i.e. stuffy nose).
Aside from piperine, black pepper also contains other beneficial nutrients such as vitamin A, vitamin C, iron, calcium, magnesium, potassium, manganese and zinc.
Some people also use black pepper for treating insect bites and itchiness. It relieves them from the pain, swollen and even feeling hot from the affected area.
Researchers have found that black pepper helps in increasing our brain function, primarily our cognitive performance. It also boost our immune system against ailments. Additionally, black pepper acts as an agent which detoxifies harmful components in our body.
• Insect Bites – Some people uses black pepper to help them reduce the redness of an insect bite. Ideally, black pepper is mixed with an aloe vera to ease itchiness that comes from an insect bite.
• Colds – With its antibacterial and anti-inflammatory properties, black pepper can act as a remedy for common colds which can be taken along with a teaspoon of honey. It is also rich in vitamin C, too.
• Stuffy or Runny Nose – Adding black pepper to your soup can immediately relieve you from your runny nose, allowing you to breathe easier.
• Toothache – Applying black pepper along with salt can help elevate the pain to people suffering from a toothache. Apply it to the affected area for a few minutes before rinsing. It works its wonders.
Rosemary is one of the herbs used for garnishing any dishes that comes to mind. But then again, rosemary may surprise you for being one of the best herbs that can protect you from inflammation. Rosemary is also included in the top spot along with ginger, cloves, and turmeric when it comes to its anti-inflammatory properties.
Rosemary contains rosmarinic acid which is commonly used as preservatives in supplements. Rosmarinic Acid aids in fighting free radicals which helps in suppressing inflammation present in the body. It is vital for treating allergic conditions a person has.
Rosemary can also be used in treating indigestion and other digestive problems such as heartburn, intestinal gas and loss of appetite.
Rosemary acts as a cognitive stimulant. It can help improve the quality of your memory performance. You can get the best of its nutrients by adding it to your dishes. Its two compounds known as apigenin and diosmin can induce an inflammation reaction in the body.
Rosemary alone is rich in antioxidants and other nutrients such as vitamin A, vitamin B6, vitamin C, iron and calcium. It supports our immune system by boosting and improving the circulation of the blood throughout our body.
• Digestive Problems – Drinking a rosemary tea can help prevent inflammation in the digestive system and reduce acidity. Try having a cup of rosemary tea every meal time, it will work its wonders.
• Memory – By taking rosemary, your cognitive performance will improve. It will also help in boosting your awareness, alertness and concentration which are vital when dealing with your daily tasks at home or even at work.
• Hair Growth – Rosemary oil can help prevent hair loss and improve hair growth. It also helps in dealing with dry scalp or even dandruff.
• Stress and other Neurological-Related Problems – As an essential oil, rosemary can improve your mood and relieve you from stress. Rosemary oil can also improve your neurological health as a whole. It contains carnosic acid which can prevent free radicals in the brain to cause damage.
Cloves come from the clove tree as flower buds. This is dried before using as a spice for any dishes. Cloves are popular as spice in soups and stews. It has been used in traditional Chinese medicine to treat common illnesses such as fever and digestive discomfort.
Cloves contain a compound called eugenol. Eugenol is responsible for causing an inflammatory response which then triggers our immune system to send its healing components, preventing foreign agents to further damage our body.
Cloves are abundant in terms of its anti-inflammatory and antioxidants components. It also contains nutrients such as flavonoids, vitamin A, vitamin C and polyphenols. Cloves are also known for boosting your immunity and enhancing organ functions.
This herb is most commonly used as a treatment for tooth decay – soothing the pain and swollen area a person suffers. It typically fights off the bacteria that causes the infection. Cloves are also used in manufacturing toothpaste.
Some research also shows that some compounds found in cloves, specifically eugenol, can help fight against cancer as it has anticancer properties. It may help reduce cancer cell growth within the body.
• Tooth Decay – Cloves contain an antimicrobial property which aids in fighting off the bacteria that causes tooth decay. Basically, cloves can further improve your oral health and hygiene.
• Oxidative Stress – With its anti-inflammatory component, cloves may reduce oxidative stress that causes damage to your cells and tissues.
• Digestive Discomfort – By taking cloves as a home remedy, it can help you reduce the inflammation and discomfort you may have in your digestive system. One of which may be stomach ulcers.
Sage has some similarities with rosemary. It is widely used as a herb for a variety of dishes. Aside from its strong aroma and anti-inflammatory component, sage has a lot of nutritional benefits in store for you. It typically contains protein, vitamin B6, vitamin K, iron, calcium and manganese.
Sage contains two compounds called carnosic acid and carnosol which are responsible for its unique flavor. It also eliminates free radicals harmful in your body. Basically, it fortifies the defenses of your body against harmful foreign agents.
Just like rosemary, sage also aids digestive problems such as loss of appetite, gastritis, heartburn and other digestion-related illnesses. Just like cloves, sage can also be used to support your oral health due to its antimicrobial properties.
For women undergoing their menstrual periods, sage can help sooth the pain that comes from menstrual cramps. It is also known for reducing hot flashes for those who are in their menopausal period.
• Dental Problems – Sage can support your oral health. It can reduce the pain present in the swollen area in either your gums or affected tooth. It also neutralizes the bacteria that harms your oral health.
• Menstrual Cramps – Using sage in the form of oil or cream may reduce the abdominal pain women go through when suffering from dysmenorrhea.
• Inflammatory Conditions – Sage contains rosmarinic acid which is similar to rosemary. It helps reduce the inflammation one suffer from arthritis and asthma.
• Digestive Problems – Using sage as a tonic can stimulate your appetite and helps in promoting a healthy digestive system, thereby treating intestinal cramps and indigestion.
Cinnamon has been known to add flavor for certain desserts and dishes. It is popularly used in baking cinnamon bread rolls. Others used cinnamon as a substitute for sugar. Additionally, cinnamon is also rich in anti-inflammatory compounds. It may lower your risk against chronic diseases.
Cinnamon can help protect your body against free radicals. It contains flavanols and antioxidants which are vital in reducing inflammation and decreasing blood clotting within the body. It promotes circulation improvement throughout the body.
Cassia, a type of cinnamon, is commonly used to aid diabetes. It may help in improving the blood glucose levels present in the body as well as increase insulin sensitivity.
• Diabetes – Cinnamon has been known for its effects in the body, specifically those who have diabetes. Some people take cinnamon along with insulin. As stated earlier, cinnamon can increase insulin sensitivity which is responsible for transporting blood sugar within the body.
• Oral Infections – Cinnamon can support your oral health. Its component called cinnamaldehyde has antifungal and antibacterial properties which may help prevent tooth decay or any other oral problems and kill of the harmful bacteria.
What comes to mind when you hear the herb spirulina? Everyone can associate it with food supplements. Spirulina is a type of blue-green algae that is loaded with antioxidants, anti-inflammatory content and various nutrients such as protein, vitamin B1, vitamin B2, vitamin B3, copper and iron.
An intake of spirulina can help reduce malondialdehyde (MDA) that is produced by the body as a response to inflammation. Ideally, lower MDA levels may mean lower inflammation in the body.
Because of its powerful anti-inflammatory content, spirulina can protect our body against oxidative damage. If not prevented, oxidative damage can contribute to chronic inflammation and may lead to cancer and other chronic illnesses.
Spirulina is good for the heart. It lowers “bad” cholesterol (LDL) while increasing the production of “good” cholesterol (HDL).
• Diabetes – With spirulina taken as a supplement, it may help lower the blood sugar in your bloodstream and increase insulin levels. It can help people control and manage diabetes.
• Cholesterol – As stated earlier, spirulina is good for lowering cholesterol levels in the body which prevents possible development of a heart disease. It can also help control one’s blood pressure.
• Weight Loss – Spirulina is good for managing weight loss. It has superb content of nutrients our body needs with lower calorie components. This is ideal for people suffering from obesity as well as for those who wants to lose weight without compromising nutrition. Spirulina is also good for boosting your metabolism.
In traditional medicine, oregano has been one of the useful herbs for curing any common ailments. Although it is used for culinary purposes, oregano has its fair share of health benefits.
Oregano contains vitamin A, vitamin C, vitamin E as well as other antioxidants and anti-inflammatory compounds. It helps the body eliminate free radicals that are harmful and prevent it from developing oxidative stress.
With its antibacterial properties, oregano could be vital in dealing with illnesses which had stopped responding to antibiotics. Having enough nutrients such as vitamin C, oregano also plays a key role in boosting the immune system.
Oregano also contains rosmarinic acid which aids in reducing any inflammation present in the body. This is similar to rosemary and sage, having been a part of its family.
• Cough – Oregano has been used traditionally in curing coughs. Drinking oregano can ease the inflammation around your throat and relieve you from pain.
• Asthma – The anti-inflammatory components of oregano act as a cleansing agent for the lungs and thereby prevents asthma from occurring. It typically reduces inflammation around the bronchial tracts of the respiratory system.
Each one of us strives to have a healthy lifestyle be it in the form of working out in a local gym or even undergoing a strict diet program. Unfortunately, there are cases when we get sick and have to take proper medication.
Inflammation is mostly linked to chronic diseases and knowing how to reduce it fairly is advantageous to us. Remember that traditional medicine had used herbs and spices for curing illnesses, some of which are discussed in this article. It won’t harm us from knowing such a golden knowledge. However, excessive intake of herbs may be harmful for the body. You may also consult with your physician before taking medicinal herbs.