Not only is a Cajun diet delicious, it is also nutritious and helps promote health and healing. Most traditional Cajun dishes contain a number of healthful ingredients and spices, such as garlic, onion, and pepper. While these ingredients give Cajun food is tang and kick, they also pack it with disease-fighting nutrients, helping you to keep your kick for much longer!
Here are just some of the delicious ingredients found in traditional Cajun cuisine, with information about their health benefits:
Onions get a bad rap for making your eyes water and your breath smell. However, they also help you to fight disease with their anti-inflammatory properties. Onions have been shown to protect against heart disease, cancer, and ot
her harmful diseases by helping to lower blood pressure, inhibit the formation of clots and the growth of tumors, and improve digestion.
Onions also have anti-viral and anti-bacterial properties, helping to prevent or treat colds and flu, as well as infection. They have even been shown to help with breathing problems, like asthma.
Garlic is onion’s smelly cousin. Garlic is part of the same family of vegetables, and it gets the same bad rap for creating smelly breath. However, it also shares onion’s protective health properties, including anti-bacterial and anti-inflammatory agents.
Garlic has been shown to help lower blood pressure and cholesterol, protecting against heart disease. It also has anti-clotting properties that can be helpful in reducing the risk of heart attack or stroke.
Garlic’s antioxidant powers have been shown to reduce
inflammation in the body, protect against free radicals, and even reduce the signs of aging. Like onion, garlic has also been shown to help prevent and treat the common cold and other minor infections.
Cayenne pepper is the star in Cajun cooking, and its health benefits are almost as strong as its flavor. The pepper has some of the highest concentrations of vitamins and minerals.
Capsaicin, the property that gives cayenne its strong burning flavor, has been found to be both anti-bacterial and anti-carcinogenic (protecting against cancer). Cayenne helps to protect against the cold and other minor infections, and it helps reduce inflammation in the body, protecting against disease and the effects of aging.
Though not as noticeable as their spicy cousin, bell peppers are also often used in Cajun cooking and have a number of health benefits, including similar anti-oxidant, anti-carcinogenic, and anti-clotting properties to protect against health problems such as heart disease and cancer.
Cajun cooking is well-known and well-loved for its strong flavors and its spicy punch. With big flavor comes big nutrition. The same bold ingredients that give Cajun cooking its name have properties that help fight against deadly diseases like cancer, protect against illness and infection, and fight aging. So pile on the cayenne pepper and add an extra dose of garlic to your next meal!
Dana Vicktor is the senior researcher and writer for duedatecalculator.org. Her most recent accomplishments include graduating from Ohio State University with a degree in communications and sociology. Her current focus for the site involves pregnancy tests and fetal development.