Asalamu alaykum my lovely readers, I hope this piece meets you in peace (hah, see what I did there?). So the other week, when I called home, my mother was complaining about how my dad had insisted on taking over the menu by insisting that certain spices be added to his food. She told me that he even went to the extent of goggling the effects of those spices on the body for her so that she would stop complaining.
So when the editor asked me do a special issue on healthy spices and ingredients, it was relatively easy to streamline my research and guess what? I found out that my dad was on the right path. Some of these spices even have hadiths backing them up.
Surah An-Nahl 16:68-69
“And your Lord inspired the bee, saying: “Take you habitations in the mountains and in the trees Sand in what they erect. Then, eat of all fruits, and follow the ways of your Lord made easy (for you).”
There comes forth from their bellies, a drink of varying color wherein is healing for men. Verily, in this is indeed a sign for people who think”
If I start to list the health benefits of honey, I would probably continue to list for a very long time. Honey has many benefits, some of which include:
It aids with regulating fluctuating periods
It also provides relief for painful menstrual cramps
It helps reduce cholesterol level
If taken in moderate proportions, it doesn’t harm diabetics
If drunk regularly even chronic arthritis can be cured.
In a recent research done at the Copenhagen University, it was found that when the doctors treated their patients with a mixture of one tablespoon. Honey and half teaspoon cinnamon powder before breakfast, they found that within a week out of the 200 people so treated practically 73 patients were totally relieved of pain and within a month, mostly all the patients who could not walk or move around because of arthritis started walking without pain.
Abdullah bin Ja’far said: “The Prophet (saw) used to eat Qith’tha (wild cucumbers) with ripe dates.” [At-Tirmidhi]
Cucumbers are made up of about 95% water. This makes them especially nutritious on sunny days. But, there are many other reasons to eat cucumbers as well. They are a good source of vitamin A, C, B vitamins, potassium, iron and magnesium.
Cucumbers are also high in antioxidants and beneficial plant compounds that can help protect the brain, fight against certain cancers and may have anti-inflammatory properties. The best benefit, they give off fresh breath. Now you don’t have to be scared of bad breath if you eat that tasty garlicky fish. You don’t have to wait until you make coleslaw before you add cucumber, you can also use it to garnish your food.
The prophet (S.A.W) said; “make yours the seed of coriander, for it is a cure for all disease”.
Coriander contains Potassium, Iron, folic acid, magnesium, calcium and vitamins A, K and C.it was contains anti bacteria properties. It aids digestion, prevents anemia, regulate menstrual flow and facilitates hair growth. It also cures skin diseases including pimples.
“Eat the Zait (olive oil) and use it as an ointment, because it is produced by a blessed tree.” [At-Tirmidhi and Ibn Majah]
Olive oil is very beneficial in nature. The Mediterranean diet, which is well known for its liberal use of extra virgin olive oil, is associated with low cholesterol, few instances of heart disease and very low obesity rates. It is filled with essential fatty acids that not only protect your heart but your brain as well. What’s more, you don’t have to ingest olive oil to reap its benefits. Rubbing olive oil on the skin and hair is great for moisturizing, softening and nourishing. It may be slightly expensive but it is totally worth it.
Jabir narrated, “The Messenger of Allah, peace be upon him, took me one day with him to his house. He was served some bread. He asked: ‘Is there any dip?’ They replied ‘No, only some vinegar.’ He said, ‘Vinegar is a good dip.’
Vinegar contains very low calories, for example, 100g of vinegar contains just 16 calories. It also contains protein, starch, sodium, potassium, calcium, magnesium, phosphorous, iron, zinc and chlorine but it has no vitamins.
Cider vinegar is known for the following health benefits:
It helps in treating rhinitis (inflammation of the nose)
It helps cure acute asthma
It cures gastric disorders.
It helps with weight loss (trust me I have tried it and it works)
It aids digestion and acts as an expectorant
It also acts as appetizer
It is handy to always have some vinegar around the house because it also helps with household accidents. This is because it is a powerful clotting agent and when poured on wounds, stops the bleeding and prevents swelling. It acts quickly on burns too.
So this brings us to the end of the list. Most of these things can easily be found in markets or the local supermarket. I hope you find good use for them in your daily cooking.