Add flavor to your meals and boost your metabolism at the same time with spices and herbs! Here is a list of the 10 best best spices for weight loss.
Spices are a great way to add flavor and excitement into your meals. But did you know that they can also help you to lose weight and boost your metabolism?
If you’ve seen these nutrition tips for weight loss you’ll know it’s one of my top tips to keep things healthy and still add a “WOW” to your meals without adding additional calories.
Spices and herbs have virtually no calories, but because they all come from plants you can bet that they are filled with nutrients and antioxidants.
The best part is that spices are inexpensive and can turn even the most boring chicken breast into a culinary masterpiece!
I’ve compiled a list of the 10 best herbs and spices for weight loss, so you can stock up your spice cabinet to help you reach your health and fitness goals.
I’m also sharing a few ideas on how you can add each of them into our diet so that you can have MAXIMUM fat burning meals all day long!
The Best Spices for Weight Loss + Burning Fat
Garlic has long been known to help speed up your metabolism, but it also helps regulate blood sugar levels, which helps prevent sugar cravings. (Regulating blood sugar levels is KEY to helping with weight loss and a huge reason why the Nutrition Program is so successful!)
The high sulphur content in garlic gives it antibiotic properties, helping keep the digestive system clean by flushing out toxins. Garlic also helps to reduce inflammation in the gastric canal, and destroys harmful bacteria in your gut, while having no effect on the good bacteria.
The best thing about garlic is that it is so easy to incorporate into your diet. I love this in just about everything from these simple grilled shrimp all the way to this amazing pineapple mango salsa — the combo is INSANE!
Turmeric is seriously in the spotlight these days, and for good reason! This popular Indian spice has often been called The “Queen of Spices”. It’s even being studied in many medical communities for its inflammation fighting properties, and potentially even in cancer treatment.
Turmeric has been proven to promote liver function, helping to detox the body and break down fat. Along with fighting gut inflammation, turmeric also helps to with gut permeability — in other words, it helps prevents what’s known as “leaky gut” which has been linked to chronic disease.
My favorite way to enjoy turmeric is with Chicken Tikka Masala and Chana Masala, a tomato-based sauce with either chicken or chickpeas. I’ve even made it homemade before and it’s so delicious! Another very popular way to enjoy turmeric right now is with a Golden Milk Latte! YUM!
Cumin is mostly associated with Mexican and Spanish food, but is also popular in Middle Eastern foods as well.
Cumin contains thymoquinone, a naturally occurring chemical that has antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties. Thymoquinone can target free radicals in your body, assisting your body in cleansing itself of toxins.
Cumin also helps to decrease your blood glucose levels and helps your cells respond to insulin, which stabilizes your blood sugar.
It also produces energy and boosts your immune system. Ground cumin adds so much flavor to this simple slow-cooker turkey chili or in homemade taco seasoning! Try cumin seeds in Indian-inspired dishes or even with some brown rice.
Cinnamon is especially effective in stabilizing blood sugar levels, which again reduces appetite and hunger.
Studies show that a specific compound found in cinnamon can mimic the effects of insulin, which helps transport sugar from the bloodstream to your cells to be used as fuel. Cinnamon may also decrease levels of certain digestive enzymes to slow the breakdown of carbohydrates.
What is cinnamon not good in? Add it to yogurt, or some easy homemade granola, make some Ezekiel bread french toast on the weekends, or add it in heaps to your smoothies! There are so many ways to enjoy cinnamon.
Mint is like the queen of herbs when it comes to antioxidants. It is loaded with antioxidants that not only fight off allergies, the common cold, and help in pain relief, but antioxidants that also help with indigestion, constipation, and gas.
Mint also helps stimulate digestive enzymes. This can help with better absorption of nutrients from food, which in turn boosts your metabolism. A faster metabolism aids in weight loss.
One of the easiest ways to enjoy mint is with mint-infused water that you sip through out the day. You can even infuse mint in some green tea with citrus for a little caffeine boost if you need it. Or try throwing some mint into your smoothies or fresh juices.
My personal favorite way to enjoy all the benefits of mint is with peppermint tea — it’s great for digestion and soothing an upset stomach!
Turn up the heat with cayenne pepper! This spice helps raise body temperature boosting your metabolism and helps you burn more calories.
Capsaicin, the chemical compound that give cayenne its heat, may also help decrease levels of hunger, and increase your level of fullness — leading to fewer calories consumed.
It tastes amazing added to some scrambled eggs, or try making some healthy low-sodium cajun seasoning to make blackened fish or chicken. It even tastes amazing sprinkled over sweet treats as well like carrot apple ginger juice, or on top of watermelon or mangos and drizzled with some lime juice! YUM!
Probably the most common spice on the list, but it’s still a fat burner! It has natural diuretic properties to help flush out your system, as well as full of antioxidants to help keep your digestive system healthy. It also raises your bodies core temperature to help speed up your metabolism.
Black pepper is so versatile and tastes great on just about EVERYTHING. Try using a pepper grinder for fresh ground pepper to really up the fat burning benefits! 😉
This versatile spice can be used in so many ways. From sandwiches to salad dressings this is a perfect condiment to add for fat burning power!
Mustard seed, like most of the hot spices on the list, will boost your metabolism. Mustard also helps regulate blood sugar levels and helps fight inflammation.
If you don’t feel like going through the hassle of making your own mustard be sure to buy mustard that doesn’t have a lot of additives or added sugars — my favorite by far is Sir Kensington.
I love making Honey Mustard Salmon (from the Nutrition Program) or just squeezing some on roasted veggies for a little extra zing! 😉
Probably the least common on this list, Dandelion has been becoming more and more popular as people realize all of the great health benefits. From the root all the way to the flowers, they’re packed with antioxidants, minerals, calcium, iron, fiber, vitamins, beta carotene, and lutein.
Dandelion contains the prebiotic inulin, which can help decrease constipation. It acts as a natural and safe diuretic and get your intestines moving things along to help keep you regular. Dandelion may also help out your kidneys and liver by flushing waste from your kidneys and protecting your liver from oxidative stress.
Just know that Dandelion is naturally very bitter. So it does take a little getting used to. But my favorite way to enjoy it is in Dandelion Root Tea with fresh lemon juice and a teaspoon of honey. Or if you are lucky enough to find dandelion leaves in your produce section you can sauté them up with some kale or collard green, or add a handful into a green smoothie as tasty ways to enjoy all their benefits.
Fresh ginger is so lovely to add to dishes to get a little spice as well as add some freshness!
Ginger suppresses appetite and also aids digestion. Ginger helps the liver remove toxins from the body and slightly raises your core temperature to boost your metabolism.
I hope you enjoy adding a little bit of spice to your life now! 😉 What’s your favorite spice or herb?