Looking for ways to lose weight and be healthy? Well, we’ve got the good stuff! This year, try adding a kick to your diet by introducing more spicy ingredients to your meal plan. There are no shortcuts but studies have shown that a spicy dish can provide a temporary rise in metabolism. The benefits don’t end there because many spices reduce appetite, have anti-inflammatory properties and can lighten your mood.
There are many benefits to adding spice to your diet. Adding ginger, chili peppers, turmeric or cinnamon to your diet can boost your metabolism for hours after you’ve finished a meal. Spices also make you feel happier, according to studies, as these types of foods activate pain receptors, which release endorphins. A food that can increase your metabolism and make you happy? Sounds like a win-win to us!
Here are a few quick ways to add spice to your dishes:
- Add hot sauce to eggs and cooked vegetables
- Enjoy a bit of hot salsa with whole grain tortilla chips
- Add sliced ginger to your hot tea in the morning
Ready to heat up your menu? Here are a few recipes to get you started:
Studies indicate that ginger promotes digestion and increases our metabolism. It promotes a feeling of fullness and is calming to our digestive tracts. It has anti-inflammatory benefits and gets our blood flowing. You can take supplements, use ginger powder or fresh ginger to get the benefits.
Strawberry Ginger Smoothie (exclusive to The Good Stuff!)
- 1 cup frozen strawberries
- 1 tablespoon fresh ginger
- 1 tablespoon apple cider vinegar
- 8 ounces almond milk
- 1 scoop protein powder
The directions are quite simple since we’re just making a smoothie. All you need to do is add all the ingredients together into a blender and then blend until smooth. Pour into a glass and enjoy! Here are a few other ginger options:
Cinnamon is high in antioxidants and effective in stabilizing blood sugars. Packed with anti-inflammatories it is most effective in dishes that have sugar, helping our bodies digest them.
Honey Cinnamon Sweet Potatoes
Source: The Good Stuff
Turmeric is like the super spice and been around for centuries. Curcumin is the main active ingredient and the benefits have been compared to drugs like hydrocortisone and over the counter anti-inflammatory. It has been linked to weight loss and the prevention of obesity and diabetes. Ideally we would add 1 1/2 teaspoons to our diet each day.
Turmeric is bright yellow in color and is usually found in curries and indian dishes. Drinking turmeric tea is a popular way to add this spice to your daily routine.
Quick Tangine-Style Chicken
Capsaicin, found in cayenne, increases your body’s ability to burn fat and calories by stimulating body heat. Some research indicates the heat raises our body temperature temporarily increasing our metabolic rate by 15 to 20%. The hotter the pepper, the higher the metabolic burn. Cayenne pepper, jalapeño peppers and habanero peppers are high on the Scoville scale.
Capsaicin is also believed to suppress your appetite and help cut cravings for fatty, salty food. One caution: cayenne can decrease effectiveness of certain drugs like antacids, aspirin and blood thinning drugs.
Chili Lime Chicken Kabobs