What to Read Next

Spice things up: Protect your heart with cinnamon and paprika

Nadine Bells
Shine from Yahoo! Canada
August 13, 2011

Sprinkle a little paprika on your eggs. Add cinnamon to that coffee. Order the curry. A new study published in the Journal of Nutrition has found that a diet rich in spices like turmeric, cinnamon and paprika can counter the damaging effects of fatty foods.

Penn State University’s research team saw blends of antioxidant spices reducing the heart stress triggered from high-fat foods.

“Normally, when you eat a high-fat meal, you end up with high levels of triglycerides, a type of fat, in your blood. If this happens too frequently, or if triglyceride levels are raised too much, your risk of heart disease is increased,” study leader Professor Sheila West told Science Daily.

[See also: 10 health-boosting spices]


“We found that adding spices to a high-fat meal reduced triglyceride response by about 30 per cent, compared to a similar meal with no spices added.”

The research team prepared two test meals for six men ages 30 to 65, all overweight but otherwise healthy. The meals were identical, save for the addition of two tablespoons of culinary spices — an antioxidant dose equivalent to 1.4 ounces of dark chocolate — to one of the meals.

“In the spiced meal, we used rosemary, oregano, cinnamon, turmeric, black pepper, cloves, garlic powder and paprika,” said postdoctoral fellow Ann Skulas-Ray.

“We selected these spices because they had potent antioxidant activity previously under controlled conditions in the lab.”

After each meal — chicken curry, Italian herb bread, and a cinnamon biscuit — the test participants had blood drawn every 30 minutes for three hours. The results: antioxidant activity was up 30 per cent and insulin response decreased by 20 per cent after the spice-infused meal. (High insulin levels can be toxic over time, contributing to heart disease, arthritis and diabetes.)

Skulas-Ray says that none of the participants experienced any gastrointestinal discomfort from the spicy foods. In the future, West and her team will investigate if smaller doses of antioxidant spices can produce similar results.

Shape has a great list of heart-healthy spice-generous recipes. It’s time to spice things up in the kitchen!

More from Shine on Yahoo! Canada

Cooking with herbs and spices

How to make healthier Indian food

Healthy breakfast ideas

Stop Paying Too Much For Your Prescriptions.

Drug prices vary wildly between pharmacies. GoodRx finds the lowest prices and discounts. Compare prices, print free coupons & save up to 80%.

Reconnect With Your High School Friends

Classmates® has the largest directory of high school class lists. Remember the good times and reconnect to create new memories.

What Are The Pros & Cons Of A Reverse Mortgage?

More Americans are accessing their home equity to support their retirement years. Speak with a professional and see what you may qualify for today.

How Older Men Tighten Their Skin

Men, reduce the look of wrinkles, sagging skin and fine lines with this affordable and effective skin tightening treatment without leaving your home.

Is your insurance comp Laughing Behind Your Back?

New Studies Show that if you drive less than 55 miles a day you can save a ton on auto insurance.

Banks Are Worried Homeowners Will Do This.

Homeowners are surprised and furious. If you owe less than $625,000 on your home, you better read this.

Toddler tantrum email series for moms

We get it. We’ve been there. Sign up for our email track for advice on how to handle different situations that may arise with your little one.

Switch and save!

Switch to Progressive and you could save an average of $548.

VA Mortgage Rates In 2016

VA Rates as Low as 2.75% (3.028% APR) 15 Year Fixed. Exclusive For Veteran & Military Takes 1 Min!

Missed Open Enrollment? You can still buy Medigap!

The Medicare Open Enrollment Period isn't the only time to buy Medigap coverage. You can actually buy at any time of the year.

Insane Navy Seal Flashlight, should it be banned?

The Military has recently released technology that is now available to the public. Get yours before they run out - Limited Supply!

Heartburn During Pregnancy

Dealing With Pregnancy is Hard Enough. Getting Heartburn While Pregnant is a Pain. Learn What Causes Heartburn During Pregnancy.

How To Make Sagging Skin Look Tight and Lifted

[Watch] The easy and effective way consumers across the country are improving the look of their wrinkled and sagging skin without cosmetic procedures.

“It works. Officers were at my home in minutes."

Built by the leading engineers in the country with revolutionary wireless technology... Engineered to make your home feel like a fortress...