Herbs or spices are plants with a sweet aroma that are typically used to flavour food. Herbs also serve as therapeutic agents in natural medicine. Hence there is nothing to worry about the edibility of these plants as they are safe.
Your idea of a weight loss diet plan for fighting obesity should not be restricted to your regular dishes like fish, chicken, brown rice and fruits.
It would be best if you went beyond doing what everyone else does for maximum weight loss results. Another natural and fast way to lose excess body fat is by incorporating herbs into your meals!
Certain herbs have been scientifically proven to help with weight loss. The herbs, as listed in this article, combat obesity. These herbs are effective for people who want to lose body fat.
Science has backed up the effectiveness of these herbs. Also, studies have shown that they are effective for fat burning and weight loss and thus might help prevent obesity. Another good thing is that you can eat the herbs in different ways.
1. Cinnamon herb
The cinnamon spice is a constituent of the inner bark of trees belonging to the Cinnamomum genus. It is an aromatic herb rich in antioxidants. This cinnamon herb is one of the scientifically proven best herbs for weight loss.
Cinnamon offers an array of health benefits. One of such health benefits of cinnamon is to increase or fasten weight loss.
One of the ways cinnamon works to induce weight loss is by stabilizing blood sugar levels. In turn, this reduces hunger and appetite.
According to research, cinnamon contains a compound that mimics insulin (a hormone responsible for transporting glucose from the bloodstream into the cells to be utilized as fuel). This also means people who have diabetes mellitus might benefit from this herb.
Another study showed that cinnamon inhibits some digestive enzymes, thus slowing down carbohydrates’ breakdown.
Combining these effects makes cinnamon a good herb of choice for people looking to lose bodyweight and belly fat fast and easily.
2. Turmeric herb
Turmeric is respected amongst spices for its vibrant colour, distinct flavour and health benefits. It is one of the scientifically proven best weight loss herbs.
If you are a curry fan, you most definitely would love turmeric as it is somewhat similar to curry in colour.
Turmeric contains curcumin, a chemical that has been touted for its many medicinal properties, including reducing inflammation and inducing weight loss. Eating spices like turmeric might help in obesity or weight gain prevention.
A study with 44 overweight participants indicated that consuming curcumin twice daily enhanced fat loss and decreased belly fat.
Also, a study carried out on mice found that adding curcumin to the animals’ feed as a supplement for 12 weeks caused a reduction in body weight and fat by inhibiting fat synthesis.
Curcumin interacts with certain signal transduction pathways in the body leading to improvements in inflammatory conditions associated with obesity and metabolic disorders.
3. Ginger herb
Who hasn’t heard about the medicinal properties of ginger? Ginger stands as a great home remedy for inflammatory problems and is helpful for soothing and relaxing the intestinal tract.
The Ginger herb is from the rhizome of the ginger plant, Zingiber Officinale. If you seek herbs to help you on your weight loss journey, do not skip ginger, as it is one of the best weight loss herbs out there.
Studies have shown the high potentials of ginger to help with weight loss. One such study is the review of 14 human studies, which showed that ginger as a supplement caused a significant decrease in belly fat and overall body weight.
Ginger can be consumed in different ways. You can blend it into your smoothie or use it to spice up your food. The good thing is that when used in the right quantity, it adds a pleasant flavour and aroma to food.
4. Garlic herb
Garlic is a weight-loss inducing herb. Just like ginger, garlic has amazing health benefits. It belongs to the Allium genus and can be found in different parts of the world.
Garlic serves as a cooking ingredient. However, science has shown that this herbal spice has many medicinal properties. It is one of the best herbs for weight loss.
One downside to eating garlic and ginger is that both can cause stinky breath; however, consuming these herbs might help you burn body fat.
You don’t have to chew garlic raw, especially if you find the smell nauseating. You can add it to your meals. It gives food a distinct aroma and delicious taste.
Aside from being a remedy to obesity, other health benefits of garlic include reducing blood pressure, improving bone health, acting as an antioxidant, improving blood cholesterol level, and reducing heart disease risk.
Dandelions are one of the most beautiful herbs out there. The good thing is that they are also edible. These plants are one of the scientifically proven best herbs for weight loss.
Dandelions can help with weight loss by slowing down digestion. In this way, you stay fuller for a longer time, eat less often and less food quantity.
Dandelions are a rich supply of fibre, minerals, antioxidants and vitamin K. Its constituents enable the absorption of fat molecules.
Another constituent of dandelions is beta-carotene which launches an attack on free radicals and protects the liver.
6. Cayenne pepper
Cayenne pepper adds doses of spicy flavouring to meals. It is a type of chilli pepper. So you will have to be careful when adding to your meals, especially if you are not used to eating hot, spicy foods.
Cayenne pepper is a scientifically proven herb for weight loss. It contains capsaicin, a compound that gives it that unique heat it is known for and offers many nutritious health benefits.
Some studies have shown that capsaicin improves metabolism, increasing the number of calories an individual burns daily.
It might also reduce hunger and appetite, which can help with weight loss. It can increase the fullness level and decrease calorie intake.
One particular study indicated that consuming food containing capsaicin reduced ghrelin levels. Ghrelin is the hormone responsible for inducing hunger. This shows that cayenne pepper can help you lose weight.
Ginseng herb can be found in grocery stores. They are helpful herbs for maintaining weight and body fitness
Ginseng is quite common in Chinese communities. Ginseng is one of the herbs that can help you lose weight. This plant has medicinal properties that promote health.
Ginseng is seen as a staple in traditional Chinese medicine. It can be categorized into- Chinese, Korean, American etc. Each type belongs to the same genus of ginseng herb.
Studies of the ginseng herb show that it is a powerful plant that can help with weight loss. One study showed that taking the Korean type of ginseng twice every day for two months caused a significant reduction in body weight.
Another animal study found that ginseng altered fat formation and caused a delay in intestinal fat absorption, thus fighting obesity.
8. Black pepper
One of the major constituents of black pepper is piperine, a substance that gives its pungent flavour. Piperine also inhibits the formation of new fat cells.
A study found that when combined with capsaicin (found in cayenne pepper) and other substances, black pepper caused the burning of as many calories as taking 20 minutes to walk.
Black pepper is a healthy spice of choice for almost every meal as it increases the bioavailability of other foods.
One study on rats found that using piperine as a food supplement helped reduce body weight in the rats even though they were on a high-fat diet.
Cumin is a spicy herb made from the ground seeds of a flowering plant called Cuminum cyminum. This plant is of the parsley family.
Many consumers like cumin because of its unique nutty taste. However, there is more to this spice. It has numerous health benefits, including helping weight loss and promoting fat burning.
A study carried out for three months showed that women who consumed yoghurt drinks containing 3g of cumin twice every day lost more body fat and weight than the control group.
Science has proven that cumin is of the best weight loss herbs, as another study reported that individuals who took cumin as a supplement three times a day lost about 1kg more than those who didn’t.
Today, you will find cumin mostly grown in the Indian sub-continent, Mexico, Northern Africa, China and Chile. It is more affordable to buy cumin seeds in international markets in these regions.
However, irrespective of your location, you will likely find cumin in the spice section of grocery stores around you. It is readily available both in seed and powdery form.
Cardamom is not as common as other herbs for weight loss enlisted here. It might also be a little pricey. However, it is a highly valued herb.
Cardamom is widely used as an ingredient for cooking and baking. However, studies have shown that it may promote weight loss.
An animal study showed that black cardamom helped reduce total body fat and belly fat in rats placed on a high-fat diet.
Unfortunately, the effect of cardamom on weight loss in humans is yet to be fully determined. However, it can’t be ruled out as speculations are that if it can promote weight loss in animals, it would likely do the same in humans.
Cardamom might not be as popular as ginger and garlic however studies have shown that it has the potentials to reduce body fat
As of 2019, Guatemala was the largest producer of cardamom. Some other major producers of this herb include Nepal, India, Indonesia and Sri Lanka.
Recently, the demand for cardamom in Europe and other parts of the world has increased. Thus, efforts are being made to export more to meet demand.
Check the spice section of groceries stores or international markets around you for cardamom. You can also order this herb online.
Other herbs that help you lose weight
Scientists estimate that there are more than 20,000 species of edible plants in the world that are delicious and nutritious.
However, you’d be surprised to find out that we consume only a small fraction of these world’s edible plants. In fact, fewer than 20 of these plant species form part of our food.
Perhaps we need to find out more about these edibles plant species, experiment more and find out how they can benefit human health, given their high nutritious contents.
Aside from the top 10 common herbs for weight loss listed above, other herbs can also help you lose weight. Some other recommended herbs and spices for weight loss include:
- Hibiscus tea
- Gurmar leaves
- Aloe vera
- Gotu Kola
- Fenugreek seeds
- Mustard seeds
- Coriander seeds
- Fennel seeds
- Caralluma Fimbriata
- Green coffee bean extract
- Gymnema Sylvestre
Other health benefits of herbs and spices
Asides from helping with weight loss, there are other numerous health benefits of herbs and spices. Herbs contain some of the most potent antioxidants needed by the body.
Herbs like cinnamon help lower blood glucose levels by improving insulin sensitivity and slowing down the breakdown of carbohydrates. This means it can help manage type 2 diabetes mellitus conditions.
Turmeric, which contains curcumin, has powerful anti-inflammatory effects. This makes this herb useful in fighting oxidative stress or damage, which plays one of the key roles in ageing and disease development.
Aside from reducing appetite, which can promote weight loss, animal studies have shown that capsaicin in cayenne pepper has anti-cancer effects.
Herbs like ginger have anti-inflammatory properties and can help treat nausea. It might also help with pain management.
We could go on and on to list the numerous benefits of herbs, but it would be a very lengthy list. The fact is that herbs can help combat most of the serious health conditions people are battling, such as cancers, diabetes, obesity, heart diseases, high blood pressure etc.
When purchasing herbs and spices for your consumption, it is often better to go for natural and fresh organics. This ensures that you are feeding on healthy foods that are not irradiated or preserved with harmful chemicals.
Also, adding these weight loss herbs to food alone might not be sufficient to achieve most people’s set weight loss goals.
If you are serious about losing weight, you first have to get the right tips for setting out on a weight loss journey. You have to draw a comprehensive weight loss plan. Your weight loss plan should include:
- Eliminating meals containing high calories, unrefined or artificial sugars
- Following an ideal meal regimen or weight loss diet plan
- Reducing your food portion sizes
- Engaging in high-intensity exercises will promote fat burning as well as an increase in muscle mass
- Making it a habit of eating enough fruits and vegetables
- Addressing the issue of emotional eating