Fenugreek is native to the Middle East but is cultivated and used widely in India. It is a significant ingredient in Ayurvedic medicines. Fenugreek leaves are used as vegetable while the dried seeds are used as spice. The leaves are rich in beta carotene, iron, calcium, magnesium, potassium and vitamin C while the seeds are a good source of protein, fibre and omega 3 fatty acids. Fenugreek water is easy to prepare (just a teaspoon of seeds soaked in a cup of water) and its regular consumption aids in weight loss, boosting immunity, regulating blood sugar levels and maintaining healthy liver and kidneys.
Widely appreciated for their aroma and distinctive flavour, curry leaves are mentioned in ancient Tamil literature and the word curry originates from the Tamil word ‘kari’ which means spiced sauce. These leaves are packed with essential nutrients that are beneficial for health including minerals like copper, calcium, phosphorus, magnesium and iron, fibre, carbohydrates, amino acids, antioxidants, and vitamins A, B, C and E. They are widely used in Ayurveda for conditions like blood pressure, anaemia, diabetes, indigestion and obesity.
Black pepper originated in Kerala and has been exported since ancient times. It was recommended by ancient Indian physicians as a treatment for various ailments and is popular not only in South Indian cuisine but also in cuisines all over the world. It is rich in minerals like manganese, copper, magnesium, calcium, phosphorus, iron, potassium, and vitamins like riboflavin, vitamin C, K, and B6. Some of the key health benefits of this spice include providing relief for cold, cough and chest congestion, stimulating digestion, increasing metabolism to enable weight loss and the prevention of cancer.