Whatever you put on your plate plays a central role in weight loss. But what you keep in your spice cabinet may also be very important.
Many herbs and spices have been shown to fight food cravings and enhance fat burning and weight loss.
Essential Herbal Extracts
Here are some amazing herbs that may be helpful in weight management.
Fenugreek is a common household spice derived from Trigonella Foenum-Graecum, a plant belonging to the legume family.
Several studies have found that fenugreek may help in controlling the appetite and minimise food intake to support weight loss.
A small study found that taking fenugreek seed extract reduced daily fat intake by 17%, compared to a placebo. This resulted in a lesser number of calories consumed during the day.
Ginger is a spice derived from the rhizome of the flowering ginger plant, Zingiber officinale.
Often used in medicine as a natural remedy for a variety of ailments, some research shows that ginger extract could help in weight loss as well.
A review of 27 human, animal and test-tube studies concluded that ginger may help reduce weight by boosting metabolism and fat burning while simultaneously reducing fat absorption and appetite.
Ginseng is a plant that is often considered a staple in traditional Chinese medicine due to its health-promoting properties.
Many studies have suggested that this powerful plant could help in weight loss.
One small study found that taking Korean ginseng 2 times a day for eight weeks showed quantifiable reductions in body weight, as well as alterations in gut microbiota composition.
However, more quality and large-scale studies are required to examine ginseng’s impact on weight loss in humans.
Turmeric is a spice known for its flavour, vibrant colour and potent medicinal properties.
Most of its health benefits are due to the presence of curcumin, a chemical known for its effects on everything from inflammation to weight loss.
One study in 44 overweight people showed that taking curcumin 2 times a day for one month was effective in increasing fat loss, reducing belly fat and boosting weight loss by up to 5%.
Similarly, an animal study found that supplementing mice with curcumin for 12 weeks decreased body weight and fat by blocking the synthesis of fat.
However, keep in mind that these studies use a concentrated amount of curcumin, far more than the quantity present in a typical dose of turmeric.
More research is required to examine how turmeric itself may affect weight loss.
Cinnamon is an aromatic spice extracted from the inner bark of trees in the Cinnamomum genus.
It’s rich in antioxidants and offers various health benefits. Some studies have even found that cinnamon could help to lose weight.
It’s very effective in stabilizing blood sugar, which may help reduce hunger and appetite.
Cinnamon may also reduce levels of certain digestive enzymes to slow down the breakdown of carbohydrates.
While these effects could potentially reduce appetite and lead to weight loss, more research is needed to study the effects of cinnamon directly on weight loss.
Green Coffee Bean Extract
Green coffee bean extract is mainly seen in several weight-loss supplements.
It’s made from coffee beans that haven’t been roasted and are high in chlorogenic acid, which is considered to be a potential weight-lowering effect.
One study found that consuming green coffee reduced body mass index and belly fat in a few participants, even with no alterations in calorie intake.
Another review of three studies concluded that green coffee bean extract may reduce body weight by 5.5 pounds on average. However, researchers noted that the quality of available studies was somewhat very limited.
Cardamom is an expensive spice, made from the seeds of a plant in the ginger family.
It’s used worldwide in both cooking and baking but may also aid in weight loss.
One animal study found that cardamom powder helped lessen belly fat in rats on a high-fat and high-carb diet.
Similarly, another animal study showed that black cardamom in particular was very effective in decreasing both belly fat and total body fat in rats on a high-fat diet.
Cardamom’s benefits on weight loss in humans are yet to be investigated.
Cumin is a spice made from the dried and ground seeds of Cuminum cyminum, a flowering plant of the parsley family.
It’s known for its distinct nutty flavour and is also packed with various health benefits, including the potential to speed up weight loss and fat burning.
One small study found that women who eat yoghurt with 3 grams of cumin twice daily lost more body weight and fat than a control group.
Black pepper is a common spice derived from the dried fruit of Piper nigrum, a flowering vine native to India.
It consists of a powerful compound called piperine, which provides both its pungent flavour and potential weight-lowering benefits.
One study found that supplementing with piperine helped decrease body weight in rats on a high-fat diet, even with no alteration in food intake.
More studies are required to determine how piperine and black pepper may influence weight loss in humans.
Besides adding amazing flavour to your favourite foods, many herbs and spices have been shown to enhance metabolism, boost fat burning and promote feelings of fullness.
Diversifying your spice cabinet with different useful spices is a simple and easy way to lose weight with minimal effort.
Make sure to combine these herbs and spices with a well-balanced diet and a healthy lifestyle to get the most benefits with weight loss. You can also try supplements for weight loss with the herbal extract present in them.