Jun 24, 2015
Penn State University researchers found that adding spices to dishes doused in oil or fat can actually bring down triglyceride levels in the blood.
A Penn State study, the triglyceride levels of those who ate a meal spiced with two tablespoons of a blend of rosemary, oregano, cinnamon, turmeric, black pepper, cloves, garlic powder, and paprika dropped by 30 percent, compared to those who ate a similar meal sans spices.
"It was surprising," Sheila West, PhD, who led the study. "I didn't expect such a large decrease."
Dr. West’s next move is pinpointing precisely which spices, and at what amounts, pack the most benefit. Later this month she’ll present a second study that backs up her initial findings.
In a Penn State press release, West says scientists have linked oxidative stress to heart disease, arthritis, and diabetes. “Antioxidants, like spices, may be important in reducing oxidative stress and thus reducing the risk of chronic disease," she says.
Use this easy, spiced popcorn recipe as a way to test which spices your taste buds give the seal of approval.
Spiced Popcorn Recipe
1/2 teaspoon cumin, ground
1/2 teaspoon chili powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
dash(es) pepper, cayenne
dash(es) cinnamon, ground
12 cup(s) popcorn, air-popped
Indian Spiced Popcorn: Prepare Spiced Popcorn as directed, except substitute 1/2 teaspoon curry powder, 1/2 teaspoon garam masala, 1/4 teaspoon ground turmeric, and 1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper for the cumin, chili powder, cayenne pepper, and cinnamon. Nutrition Facts per serving: 31 cal., 0 g fat, 0 mg chol., 49 mg sodium, 6 g carbo., 1 g dietary fiber, 1 g protein. Exchanges: 1/2 Starch Carb Choices: 1/2
1. In a small bowl, stir together cumin, chili powder, salt, cayenne pepper, and cinnamon.
2. Spread popped popcorn in an even layer in a large shallow baking pan. Lightly coat popcorn with nonstick cooking spray. Sprinkle the cumin mixture evenly over popcorn; toss to coat.