The spices are the first thing we smell from our food and this actually plays a key role. Olfaction (the sense of smell) is not technically a part of digestion, but it is an important part of eating. Smelling food before we eat it not only tells our GI tract that food is coming, it helps us decide whether we eat something in the first place. Retronasal olfaction (smelling the food from behind the nose) seems to be very important for fullness, because it tells our brain we get enough nutrients. This is probably why slow and mindful eating leaves us feeling more satisfied with less food. Furthermore, if we don’t smell food we cannot taste properly. You probably remember that when you have a cold, food is not so appealing. Now we know that smelling our food is a big part of eating, which means that condiments do matter a lot. But if you are reading this blog, you probably have a sensitive stomach or IBS, and experience digestive issues like bloating and flatulence. In order to avoid such discomfort, you must follow a low FODMAP diet and exclude many condiments from your menu. Eating food without spices is definitely not what you want, if you aim to feel full and satisfied after having a meal, so…
Which condiments are low FODMAP approved and safe to consume?
Here is a full list of which condiments are safe and which ones must be avoided. Those condiments make cooking easier and food tastier. But which ones are the very best for the low FODMAP diet that are not only tasty, but very healthy as well?
- Turmeric – this magical root is probably the most effective nutritional supplement of all. It contains curcumin, which has powerful anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties and can suppress many molecules known to play major roles in inflammation. Curcumin increases the growth of new neurons and fights various degenerative processes in your brain by boosting the levels of the brain hormone BDNF. It can also contribute to preventing cancer, depression and leads to improvements in the process of Alzheimer’s disease.
- Ginger – a flowering plant that originated from China and is very closely related to turmeric. Ginger lowers blood sugar levels and cholesterol levels, improves heart decease risk factors. Like turmeric, it has powerful anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties. The active ingredients in ginger help fight infection, significantly reduces menstrual pain, and can help with osteoarthritis. People with indigestion and related stomach discomfort could also benefit from ginger because it appears to speed up emptying of the stomach. It is no surprise that ginger is considered “superfood” since it delivers so many benefits.
- Coriander – it is an herb that could be used to flavor many different dishes. Like turmeric and ginger, it can lower blood sugar levels too, but it is so powerful that people with low blood sugar levels should use it cautiously. It is full of antioxidants that deliver anticancer, anti-inflammatory, neuroprotective and immune-boosting effects. Coriander also protects the brain health and promotes healthy digestion.
- Cumin – a very special spice, known for its power to reduce symptoms of IBS and aid digestion by increasing the activity of digestive proteins. Cumin is very rich in iron and antioxidants that stabilize free radicals. It could also reduce food-borne illness by restricting the growth of infectious bacteria and fungi.
- Oregano – an herb with strong flavor that brings warmth and a little bit of sweetness to dishes. It is very rich in antioxidants and neutralizes disease-causing free radicals, which prevents damage. It is very effective against certain strains of bacteria, reduces inflammation and could even have anti-cancer properties.
- Basil – favorite spice to put on various dishes, especially dishes with tomatoes. Not only that basil brings amazing taste to your food, but it also brings many benefits to your health. It reduces depression and memory loss that are related to stress and increases mental alertness. Similar to aspirin, basil might relax blood vessels and thin your blood.
- Rosemary – very outstanding herb for its aroma and rich flavor. Rosemary contains compounds rich in antioxidant, anti-inflammatory, and antimicrobial effects. Those compounds might also reduce anxiety, improve memory and concentration, and boost mood. This herb protects the vision, brain and eye health. It also supports digestion and a healthy balance of gut bacteria.
- Thyme – an herb from the mint family with impressive range of use. It is a great source of vitamin C and vitamin A, which makes it a great tool to boost your immunity. Thyme can also lower blood pressure, boost your mood and it definitely makes your food taste better.
- Asafetida (hing) powder – the spice is used as a condiment in food, and as digestive aid. It can act as onion and garlic substitute and is probably a must in the kitchen of people, who have IBS and/or experience digestive issues. Hing powder helps reduce bloating and stomach problems, and relieve menstrual pain. It also reduces headache and can heal insect bites and sting. Asafetida reduces acne and if you have dry and fizzy hair, it does a wonderful job as a hair conditioner.
In case you are wondering how to add those spices to your dishes, simply take a look at our herbal mixes and start using them daily when cooking! The spice mixes by Casa de Sante contain all of those healthy herbs and many more! It would not take long until you start experiencing some of the benefits yourself and your food will always taste great. Check out our recipes cookbooks and meal plans, if you are not sure which condiment or herb fits best your dish. With those tasty low FODMAP spices and sauces, the final result from your cooking is most likely guaranteed to be amazing! Just because you are preparing low FODMAP meals it does not mean that they have to be boring or not rich in flavor. Stack your kitchen shelves with those healthy condiments , sauces, dressings, spices and salsa mixes by Casa de Sante and say goodbye to tasteless low FODMAP food! If you want to read more tips for living on the low FODMAP diet, check out our blog!
Which one is your personal favorite spice or sauce? Let us know in the comments below!