Pass the Pumpkin Spices, Please!
by Shannyn Caldwell
Pumpkin spice ‘everything’ seems to be everywhere these days. It has been for months and will be for months to come. It’s not just for Thanksgiving anymore. So let’s get to know this cozy flavor profile a little bit better.
Pumpkin Pie Spice. What are we actually talking about here? Well, once you get past the obligatory scoop of pumpkin, that is where you find the “spice.”
Pumpkin pie spice is a standard blend with many variations that look something like this:
*4 TSP Ground Cinnamon
*2 TSP Ground Ginger
*1 TSP Ground Cloves
*½ TSP Ground Nutmeg
The spices above are a blend of
very powerful medicines indeed!
When combined with pumpkin (an amazing comfort food in and of itself), we are looking at a potentially healing as well as delicious food.
Obviously, if you create a cake, pie, or smoothie of sugar-laden pumpkin spices, you will be working against medicinal properties of the spices, BUT you CAN find and create some very healthy recipes out like custards, pancakes, cookies, lattes, smoothies, and shakes that taste 100% like you are cheating the brains out of your diet. However, you are really feeding your body healthful nutrients.
Here’s what we know about the healing properties of Pumpkin Pie Spices:
First, they are all warming spices which fight the cold and the damp. All forms of herbalism (Western, Ayurveda, and Traditional Chinese Medicine) use these spices to balance out cold and damp conditions.
In addition to their warming qualities these spices have actions that go far beyond their mouthwatering scents and flavors.
Cinnamon is one of the healthiest spices on the planet. It can lower blood sugar levels & reduce heart disease risk!
Ginger aids digestion and helps upset stomach.
Clove is incredibly high in antioxidants. One-half teaspoon contains more than one-half cup of blueberries). There is compelling research pairing clove with cancer and diabetic conditions.
Nutmeg aids an upset stomach and also helps with sleeplessness. It is interesting to consider the new research utilizing nutmeg and its effects on cancer and kidney disease.
So, maybe just maybe, the “Pumpkin Spice EVERYTHING” people are onto something. Hmmm, I think I might go make a latte…