Champion Herbs Daily

Champion Herbs Daily
Herbs have been used for centuries to add flavour, aroma, and nutritional value to dishes around the world. However, with the convenience of pre-packaged seasonings and the dominance of processed foods, many of us have lost touch with the vibrant world of herbs. I wanted to champion them in all their forms and offer some practical tips on how to do use them;

Amazing benefits of herbs;
  1. Rich in Antioxidants: Especially rich ones are oregano, rosemary, thyme, and sage. These antioxidants help reduce inflammation, support the immune system, and may even lower the risk of chronic diseases like cancer and heart disease.
  2. Natural Digestive Aids: For example, ginger is known for its ability to ease nausea and improve digestion. Peppermint has a soothing effect on the digestive system and can relieve symptoms of indigestion and irritable bowel syndrome (IBS). Additionally, fennel and chamomile can help calm stomach discomfort and reduce bloating.
  3. Anti-Inflammatory Powerhouses: Chronic inflammation is linked to numerous health problems, including arthritis, cardiovascular disease, and certain cancers. Turmeric and ginger possess anti-inflammatory properties that can help combat inflammation in the body.
  4. Immune-Boosting Properties: Herbs can play a crucial role in strengthening the immune system. Garlic, for example, has been traditionally used for its immune-boosting properties due to its antimicrobial and antiviral effects. Echinacea is another herb known for its ability to stimulate the immune system and reduce the duration and severity of the common cold.
  5. Blood Sugar Regulation: Maintaining stable blood sugar levels is essential for overall health, especially for individuals with diabetes or insulin resistance. Certain herbs, such as cinnamon and fenugreek, have been shown to help regulate blood sugar levels. These herbs can enhance insulin sensitivity, improve glucose metabolism, and reduce the risk of developing type 2 diabetes.
  6. Calming and Relaxing Effects: Several herbs are renowned for their calming and relaxing properties, which can help alleviate stress and promote better sleep such as chamomile, valerian root, lavender, and lemon balm.

Eat and drink herbs daily;
  1. Fresh Herb Toppings: Sprinkle freshly chopped herbs as a finishing touch on your dishes. Add them to salads, soups, roasted vegetables, omelettes, or even grilled meats and fish.
  2. Herb-infused Oils and Vinegars: Make your own herb-infused oils and vinegars to add a burst of flavour to dressings, marinades, and dips. Simply combine your favourite herbs with olive oil or vinegar and let them infuse for a few days. Strain the herbs and use the infused oil or vinegar in your cooking.
  3. Herbal Butters: Blend finely chopped herbs with softened butter or plant-based alternatives like coconut oil. Form the mixture into a log or shape it into individual pats and refrigerate or freeze. Use these flavoured butters on bread, steamed vegetables, or grilled meats for an extra kick of herbal goodness.
  4. Herbal Teas and Infusions: Enjoy the benefits of herbs through herbal teas and infusions. Experiment with different combinations or use single herbs like chamomile, mint, or ginger. You can also make iced herbal teas by brewing them and refrigerating them for a refreshing, hydrating option.
  5. Herb-packed Smoothies: Add a handful of fresh herbs, such as parsley, coriander, or mint, to your favourite smoothie recipes. Not only will it boost the nutritional value of your smoothie, but it will also provide a refreshing twist to your drink.
  6. Herb-infused Water: Elevate your water intake by infusing it with herbs. Drop a few sprigs of fresh herbs like mint, basil, or rosemary into a pitcher of water and let it infuse for a few hours in the refrigerator. The subtle herbal flavours will make drinking water more enjoyable.
  7. Herb Pesto: Make homemade pesto using herbs like basil, parsley, or coriander, combined with garlic, nuts, olive oil, and Parmesan cheese or nutritional yeast for a vegan option. Use it as a sauce for pasta, a spread for sandwiches, or a dip for vegetables.
  8. Herb-filled Salads: Introduce a variety of fresh herbs into your salads to add flavour and depth. Mix herbs like dill, chives, tarragon, or coriander with your greens and vegetables for a refreshing twist.
  9. Herb-infused Grains: When cooking grains like rice, quinoa, or couscous, add a handful of fresh or dried herbs to the cooking water. The herbs will infuse their flavours into the grains, giving them a fragrant and delicious taste.

Maybe start a herb garden or grow some on your kitchen window.  Choose herbs that are easy to grow, such as basil, mint, parsley, or thyme.  Experiment with new ones and try adding them in the ways suggested above.  By incorporating more herbs into your diet, you’ll not only enhance the taste and aroma of your meals but also reap the nutritional benefits they offer.  Enjoy!

GAYLE MERCHANT

It is my passion to support people in understanding what is at the root of the health conditions that they are facing. Functional medicine hand in hand with nutritional therapy helps me unearth the reasons for ill health and the obstacles that have been preventing recovery.

I wholeheartedly believe we are a blend of our histories; our food and lifestyle choices and our genetics – in fact, we are unique walking recipes ourselves. Finding the ingredients to help you make the best version of yourself is part of my work, so you can establish a loving friendship with your body and find balance in your life.