15 of the Best Anti-Inflammatory Herbs and Spices on the Planet

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Although inflammation is not easy to deal with, it is actually your body’s autoimmune response to things it finds threatening or dangerous. Inflammation frequently occurs when we are exposed to things such as allergens, chemicals, toxins, and other types of microorganisms. Since we typically encounter things like this on a daily basis, is it any wonder that most people experience some inflammation somewhere in the body from time to time? The problem is that when inflammation becomes chronic, the body can actually end up damaging its own tissues.

If you or someone you know is suffering from chronic inflammation, it’s best to get it under control. Most doctors will prescribe prescription anti-inflammatories, but many of these come with their own set of side effects, such as overloading your liver, so it’s best to look to Mother Nature’s own anti-inflammatories.

Up until now you might have only thought of herbs and spices as a means of bringing out the flavor of food but they are so much more than that! There are many herbs and spices, some common and others not so much, that will really make an impact on inflammation in the body. Try some of the ones on this list of the best 15 anti-inflammatory herbs and spices Mother Nature has to offer and see for yourself.


1.  Cinnamon

This super common and much loved spice has been used for centuries now, both for flavor and for its therapeutic properties. In fact, one study in 2008 found that the essential oil inside cinnamon sticks had superb anti-inflammatory compounds.  Studies done with animals have shown that cinnamon is effective in fighting both inflammation and bacteria.  If you are currently taking blood thinners, diabetes drugs, or heart medications, you should consult your doctor before taking cinnamon supplements.


2.  Turmeric

A close relative of ginger, this spice has a long history of use in both Ayurveda medicine as well as Indian cuisine. Although native to southern Asia, turmeric has been used as a spice as well as a coloring agent for many foods including sauces, popcorn, cereal, and cheese.

Used as medicine for thousands of years, turmeric is still used by those who practice naturopathic medicine and is often prescribed for those suffering from tendonitis, arthritis, and auto-immune diseases. It’s the volatile oil inside turmeric, called curcumin, which gives this spice its anti-inflammatory effects. Science has been actively studying this spice recently and they have found that it can often be used in place of (or sometimes in addition to) prescription drugs. Read more about wonders of turmeric.


3.  Parsley

Bet you thought parsley was just there to pretty up your plate, didn’t you? Well, before you toss that little sprig aside, you should know that parsley is full of nutrients such as vitamins K, C, A, and the B complex vitamins. It’s often thought of as a means to treat digestive problems, but parsley can also prevent and treat inflammation with its wide array of immune supporting nutrients.

A study published in the 2008 issue of Phytotherapy Research showed that parsley consumption can dramatically bring down inflammation due its ability to seek out and kill free radicals that cause both cell damage and inflammation.  Important note: It is possible to consume too much parsley, so be pay attention to your dosage. Also, pregnant women should not consume anything more than a sprig or two of fresh parsley each day as consumption of parsley seeds and oils have been associated with miscarriage. If you are pregnant or taking prescription medication, always consult your doctor before consuming any herbal product.

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