Superherb! No, it’s not the latest comic book to be made in to a movie, (shot on location in Nimbin or Woodstock). We have all heard of superfoods and the benefits they can have on our health, well some herbs have some impressive health effects, so if a food can super why can’t a herb?
Herbs contain a power house of superhero benefits such as antioxidants, vitamins, minerals, essential oils, and an array of wonderful health benefits.
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My top Super herb picks:
One of the most commonly used herbs is rosemary or rosmarinus officinalis to use its proper name. Growing wild in the Mediterranean, rosemary has been referenced since Greek mythology. Health benefits include:
– The aroma of rosemary has been used to relieve stress and improve mood. Rosemary oil is a main stay of aromatherapy.
– Immune support. Antioxidant, anti-inflammatory and anti-carcinogenic active compounds in rosemary which help support or immune system.
– Blood stimulation. Rosemary acts a body stimulant and aids in red blood cell production and flow.
– Stomach soother. Traditionally used to remedy upset stomachs and support the gastrointestinal tract.
– Rosemary is an effective fighter of bacteria.
– Memory booster. Traditional uses for rosemary include cognitive stimulation.
– Rosemary extract has also been shown to improve omega-3 rich oils shelf life and heat stability protecting against rancidity. Rosemary extract applied as paste topically has also been used for pain relief.
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Originating from India thousands of years ago, turmeric has been well known as a medicinal herb. Turmeric contains Curcumin as the main active ingredient, which has antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties.
As an anti-inflammatory curcumin is powerful, matching the effectiveness of some drugs. Low level inflammation is involved in almost every chronic condition; cancer, Alzheimer’s, metabolic syndrome as examples. Curcumin actually targets the inflammatory pathway at a molecular level.
In addition to protecting against free radical damage (antioxidant) and chronic inflammation (anti-inflammatory), curcumin has shown promise in treating depression and could be considered an anti-ageing supplement.
Curcumin is not well absorbed in the blood stream, so it is recommended to take black pepper with turmeric as the pepper acts as a penetration enhancer.
Coriander (or cilantro) has deep green leaves contain high amounts of antioxidants, vitamins, dietary fibre and essential oils.
– Dietary fibre may help reduce LDL or “bad cholesterol”.
– Vitamin C. Coriander is high in Vitamin C the powerful antioxidant. 100g of coriander leaves equate to 30% of Vitamin C RDI.
– Vitamin A. Coriander is rich in Vitamin A which helps maintain vision and health skin. 100g of coriander leaves has 225% of Vitamin A RDI.
– Vitamin K. Coriander is one of the richest herbal sources of Vitamin K, which is essential in bone mass building and has a role in treating dementia.
– Anti-oxidants. Leaves and stem contains high levels of quercetin, which helps fight free radical damage and the effects of ageing.
– Coriander also contains niacin, beta carotene, riboflavin to name a few vitamins needed for optimal health.
Along with the leaves, coriander seeds also have health benefits. For examples, the seeds have antiseptic properties that can help fight off skin problems like eczema and rashes when applied topically as a paste.
This Mediterranean herb has been around for over 2,000 years and is packed full of vitamins and minerals; in particular, calcium, iron, folate, Vitamin C, K and A.
Like coriander in health properties, parsley has been found to help with the following:
– Anaemia treatment due to the high iron content.
– Joint pain, due to anti-inflammatory properties.
– Cancer fighting compounds such as Apigenin which has been shown to have anti-cancer properties.
– Kidney function support although as parsley contains oxalates it can cause issues for those with existing kidney and gall bladder issues.
– Free radical damage, due in part to the high levels of beta carotene.