Velvet Bean (Kapikacchu)

Velvet bean (Mucuna pruriens) is a nerve tonic and immunity booster, thanks to a compound called levodopa which is a precursor for dopamine, a mood-lifting hormone. Velvet bean also reduces the stress hormone cortisol and increases the happiness hormone serotonin. It also makes you feel energetic by driving the production of ATP, the body’s fuel,Continue reading “Velvet Bean (Kapikacchu)”

Maté (Yerba Maté)

Yerba maté (Ilex paraguariensis) is the herb that’s used to make the popular and energizing maté tea. It reduces the expression of genes that help in the formation of fat cells. It also decreases two appetite-boosting proteins called SOCS3 and neuropeptide Y, helping you in portion control. It helps reduce LDL cholesterol, keeping the heartContinue reading “Maté (Yerba Maté)”

Kantakari

The dried roots of kantakari (Solanum virginianum) are good for your respiration. They help the airways relax and make breathing easier when you have a cold or flu. They target certain immune cells to suppress the production of key inflammatory signaling molecules. Kantakari chemicals further activate immune cells called macrophages and neutrophils that eat upContinue reading “Kantakari”

Indian Tinospora (Guduchi)

Indian tinospora (Tinospora cordifolia) is an immunity booster. Polysachharides in it activate immune agents like macrophages and help release signaling molecules like cytokines. The herb could also tone down allergic reactions by putting a lid on the production of histamine. By stimulating insulin production and slowing down carbohydrate digestion, it helps maintain steady blood glucoseContinue reading “Indian Tinospora (Guduchi)”

Holy Basil

Holy basil (Ocimum tenuiflorum) is an adaptogen. It helps your body cope with stress by reducing the cortisol levels and increasing the release of happiness hormones like dopamine and serotonin. Stress dampens immunity, but holy basil flavonoids counter by increasing the number of immune agents like natural killer cells, neutrophils, and T helper cells. ItContinue reading “Holy Basil”

Green Tea

Green tea, considered a healthy tea worldwide, comes from the Camellia sinensis plant which also yields black and oolong tea. While a small amount of caffeine makes it a gentle pick-me-up, EGCG and L-theanine are the main weapons in its arsenal. The “jitters” characteristic of caffeine can be countered by L-theanine, which increases GABA levelsContinue reading “Green Tea”

Fenugreek Seeds

Fenugreek seeds (Trigonella foenum-graecum) are rich in healthful fiber, alkaloids, and saponins. The fiber turns into a viscous gel in the small intestine, inhibiting carb-digesting enzymes and reducing the absorption of glucose into the bloodstream. Other chemicals in the seeds help the pancreatic beta cells release more insulin and then nudge carrier molecules called GLUT4Continue reading “Fenugreek Seeds”

Eclipta (Bhringaraj)

The leaves and roots of Eclipta prostrata can do your liver a good turn by helping replace damaged liver cells and regenerating new liver cells. The herb can also regulate liver enzymes responsible for drug metabolism. It helps maintain blood glucose balance by slowing down formation of glucose from carbs and the conversion of glucoseContinue reading “Eclipta (Bhringaraj)”

Cyperus (Musta)

Nutgrass or musta (Cyperus rotundus) is more than a stubborn weed. It supports digestion by helping protect the stomach lining from corrosive acids and enzymes and by fighting disease-causing E. coli bacteria. It also curbs inflammation by blocking certain chemicals that expand blood vessels, the travel route of the inflammatory molecules. It helps the liverContinue reading “Cyperus (Musta)”

Cinnamon

The warm, rich, flavorful sticks of cinnamon (Cinnamonum verum) offer versatile health benefits. They check inflammation in the body before it escalates into a health threat. They also balance other parameters like blood pressure and blood glucose levels, the latter by slowing down glucose digestion and increasing glucose uptake in the cells. Cinnamon could alsoContinue reading “Cinnamon”