Is Seasoning Good or Bad For You?
We all add seasoning to our food from time to time to make it tastier or more flavorful, but how much is too much? Some people swear by the health benefits of adding seasoning, while others warn of the potential cardiovascular dangers of a heavily-salted diet. Let’s take a look at the true health perks and drawbacks of adding seasoning to your food.
Salt and MSG
Certain populations respond more drastically to high levels of sodium in their diet. Some may experience high blood pressure or heart palpitations as a result of heavy sodium intake, life-threatening consequences of over-salting your food. But if adding a pinch of salt will encourage you or your young ones to eat more vegetables, don’t fuss too much. Moderate salting is harmless.
There are broad misconceptions regarding MSG, too. The chemical additive often found in American-style Chinese food has been accused of causing headaches and stomach discomfort, but most of these reports have been debunked over time. There is little scientific evidence to prove that MSG is harmful to the human body, if ingested in moderation.
Herbs and Spices
If you Google the health benefits of herbs and spices, you’ll be flooded with blog posts claiming these seasonings to be miraculously high in antioxidants and vitamins. But let’s be real. How much seasoning do you actually put into your food? A mere sprinkle of dried basil contains hardly any nutritional value.
The good news is that herbs are easy to grow, and you can get substantial nutritional benefits from eating a large portion of fresh herbs. Consider replacing the romaine lettuce in your salad with half a bowl of basil and half a bowl of spinach.
At the end of the day, seasoning your food is not going to magically give you a chiseled body, nor will it send you straight to the hospital with high blood pressure. The hype around seasoning, both positive and negative, is generally overblown, which should encourage you to add flavor to your food. Just remember to show restraint and eat foods that are nutritious in the first place.