Fragrant and tasty, aromatic herbs enrich your recipes. And there is nothing more beautiful and fascinating than going out into the garden or on the balcony, collecting the herbs that you personally have grown and adding them to the different preparations, spaghetti dishes, sauces or salads. Aromatic herbs not only bring flavor to dishes but also powerful healthy and anticancer properties, as evidenced by a recent scientific research published in the journal Antioxidants by a Dutch and Greek team (Fitsious et al, 2019).
Scientists have evaluated the essential oils present in the various aromatic plants that grow spontaneously in the Mediterranean basin but that can be found almost everywhere or, in any case, can be easily grown in your own garden. Based on the type of essential oils contained, it was possible to trace the specific anti-tumor action of the different plants. In particular, rosemary, or rosmarinus officinalis, seems to act against breast, liver and colon cancer, just like other plants of the same family of Lamiaceae such as savory, thyme or wild lavender. Oregano, thanks to its active ingredients such as thymol, shows a protective action for prostate and colon while, thanks to the essential oil carvacrol, it protects the larynx. The same action is also carried out by the sideritis syriaca tea, or Greek mountain tea, and by an infusion of chamomile. Typical of the island of Chios but available online now without difficulty, masticha is a resin extracted from the Pistacia Lentiscus tree, has an anti-tumor action on the colon, lungs and skin. Spearmint, or mentha spicata, thanks to its carvone content, protects the liver, the colon and the blood. Basil counteracts cancers of the blood, ovaries and uterus.
Certainly other studies will follow to deeply investigate the effectiveness of aromatic herbs but for sure it is a pleasure to know that a mince of basil, sage, thyme, mint or other herbs that you have in the garden is not only able to make the recipe that you are preparing even tastier but also healthier.