Can’t you just smell the crisp fall air outside? Fall is one of my favorites seasons – and for good reason! The weather is cool, but not yet cold enough to hamper our outdoor activity. The days are usually sunny, the nights cool and crisp, the evenings perfect for hotdogs over bonfires. And the other lovely part of fall? The spicy smells and tastes, of course! Who doesn’t love cinnamon, pumpkin, nutmeg, and a little spicy clove or mace mixed in? Did you know that many of these spices have some AMAZING health benefits, also? I don’t think it’s a coincidence that the very flavors we love during the beginning of flu season are also the ones that will help boost our immune system. Let’s discuss the health benefits of spices and how to use them beyond apple pie.
Cinnamon, nutmeg, allspice, clove, mace, and ginger are the usual players in “pumpkin pie spice” seasoning. They all have many different health benefits and can be delicious additions to many many different dishes. We’re going to add one more thing, though. Have you heard about the health benefits of turmeric? It’s becoming a big player in the natural health world. I always add it into my spice considerations, and we’re going to add it into our spice mix today. It has a very mild flavor, so you won’t even know it’s there, and it will add a lot of great health benefits and lovely golden color to your cooking.
Why Fall Spices?
Cinnamon: can help lower blood pressure and heart rate, regulate the digestive system, reduce inflammation, encourage healthy insulin levels, and contribute lots of antioxidants
Clove: cloves are highly studied for their effects against cancer and infection as well as aiding in circulation and digestion. They are one of the most potent herbs in existence, have been traditionally used as medicine in many cultures for many generations, and are also included in Young Living’s well known “thieves” oil products
Mace: mace is actually another part of the nutmeg plant (the outer casing of the seed that we already know so well), so it shares most of the same health benefits. It is also very high in vitamin A & C, calcium, iron, copper, and manganese, making it a worthy consideration to your vitamin regime
Turmeric: turmeric is being widely studied as a cancer treatment and is even starting to be recommended by some of the big cancer treatment centers for certain types of cancer. It also helps overall circulation, reduces inflammation, and has many many other uses.
Ginger: ginger is recommended for weight loss, digestive health, and reducing inflammation which can help with joint and arthritis pain as well as headaches. It is widely known for helping with nausea and is an ingredient in many nausea medicines such as dramamine and most infant colic remedies.
As if that’s not enough, all of these contain high levels of many different vitamins, minerals, and micronutrients. A mix of these spices is a supplement for almost every vitamin and mineral that you need to stay healthier this winter!
What do I use them in?
These spices are great in tea (use the whole spices in a loose leaf tea ball or bag), coffee (sprinkle them on top of your grounds before brewing), oatmeal or any breakfast porridge, muffins and breads, any fall baking, apple cider (just add spices to apple juice and heat up!), baked apples, pies, crisps, tarts, and anywhere else that you want a dash of flavor. The health benefits of spices as well as their warming and beautiful flavors make them a great addition to anything! Keep a shaker of your spice mix next to your salt shaker so you remember to use it, and you’ll be amazed at all the places you can add them in.
The essential oils of many of these plants are also great to diffuse in the fall and winter. Putting them into the air will help the atmosphere of the home as well as smelling absolutely heavenly even when you don’t have time to bake a pie!
How do I remember them all?
That’s a great question! Instead of having to add 7 bottles of spices to every dish you make, let’s make our own mix! You’ll save yourself the effort of having to find, open, measure, and put away so many different things. It will only take a minute to make, so let’s go!
Beware: stores sell things like “pumpkin pie spice”, but those only contain a few spices and have other additives. It will only take 5 minutes to mix our own and have it for the rest of the season.
1 cup cinnamon (we buy ours at costco)
1 Tblsp nutmeg
2 tsp clove
1 Tblsp allspice
2 tsp mace
1 Tblsp turmeric
1 Tblsp ginger
Measure all your dry ground spices into a bowl. Whisk until combined. Pour into an old spice bottle or a mason jar. You can get shaker mason jar lids here, or you can simply place a tsp in the jar of mixed spices and you’ll have your measuring device right on hand with your spices. Taste the mix and feel free to adjust flavors to your own liking 🙂
Let us know how we can help you be healthier each day in a delicious and tasty way!