This article was in the New Living Magazine last month, in case you missed it – Read it here!
The weather is getting better, spring is here and you have spent the last 4-5 months working on building the body of your dreams. You might have tried a few different diets and the many miracle supplements that others have suggested worked for them. Then you find their suggestions really do not work for you. What do you do? Who do you turn to? What is the right information? This article is for the ladies looking to get their bodies trim and fit in time for the official “grand unveiling” we know as Memorial Day Weekend. Here I am again separating fact from fiction to bring you the truth on some of the best fat burning herbs and spices you can add to your diet TODAY to make a difference in your life! Here they are the top 4 fat burning herbs and spices to turn you into a Badass Wonder Woman.
1) Dandelion Root – The dandelion has unique properties that improve a number of the body’s basic functions. It is used in herbal traditions all over the world including American Indians, European, and Chinese culture. At the top of the list of Dandelion’s benefits are its fat loss properties due to its profound effects on the liver. According to a number of naturopathic doctors, Dandelion ranks right alongside milk thistle as the most frequently recommended herb to help patients with liver detoxification. The chemical component found in dandelion called taraxacin is traditionally thought to stimulate the digestive organs and prompt the liver and gall bladder to release bile. Another component of Dandelion is inulin, a naturally occurring type of soluble fiber known to have a positive effect on blood sugar levels. The improvements to digestion alone are enough to stimulate fat loss in women when encompassed in a sound strength training and nutrition plan. This herb can be eaten in a salad, made in a tea, or you can take the root extract in pill form to reap the full benefits.
2) Garlic– One of the oldest medicinal foods on the planet, garlic has been known to fight everything from toothaches and chest pain to fighting leprosy and deterring vampires. This wonder herb has some highly beneficial properties that can help women stay healthier, leaner, and looking better than ever when its time for shorts and tank tops. In a recent study lab rats were given allicin (the main active ingredient in garlic) after being fed a high-fructose diet to make them fat and hypertensive. The group given the allicin lowered their blood pressure, insulin, and triglycerides. Even though the rats were consuming the same amount of food, the allicin group stopped gaining weight. Although these studies were done on rats there are definite implications for adding garlic to our diets to help not only with general health but also with fat loss and weight control because of the dramatic improvement to our internal functions.
To gain the maximal health benefits of garlic, it must be crushed or chopped, the more finely the better. To create the allicin component of garlic there are compounds inside the clove that must react with compounds on the outside. Allicin degrades fairly quickly after the garlic is crushed, so the fresher the better. Microwaving garlic destroys all health benefits. The best use is to add a little crushed garlic to cooked food before serving it. As far as supplements just make sure they are a high quality supplement like Allicidin by Designs for Health. They absolutely work to give you the most benefit out of garlic.
3) Chia Seeds- Chia is a plant in the mint family whose seeds have a very solid nutritional profile. They have been marketed as a nutritional powerhouse or “superfood” because they have benefits that might improve heart health, help prevent diabetes and promote weight loss. Each ounce of dried chia seeds contains almost 5g of omega-3 fatty acids, which promote heart health and improve the rate at which the body uses fat for fuel. In addition to omega-3 fats, each ounce of chia seeds contains 17% of the daily requirements for calcium, over 4g of protein and almost 11g of fiber. The healthy dose of fiber and omega-3 fats make this a product that women must add to their diets to see physical changes. I am a big believer in higher fiber and omega-3’sfor fat loss, and chia seeds are an easy way to get these nutrients. Just add a tablespoon to a shake, or to top a salad.
4) Cinnamon – One of the most common household spices, cinnamon has been known to have a plethora of health benefits dating back for centuries. The hottest buzz on cinnamon comes from new research due to its uncanny ability to moderate blood sugar. C. Leigh Broadhurst, a researcher for the USDA has identified newly found phyto-chemicals in cinnamon called chalcone polymers that increase glucose metabolism in the cells by twentyfold or more. For fat loss, the ability to control blood sugar and its effect on the body is one of the most important factors. By adding cinnamon to teas, other hot beverages, and throughout your cooking, you can get all the benefits of this spice to help you lose fat and look better.
Now get to work and start using these power herbs to get your body in some kick ass shape for the summer!