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Curry is a popular spice mix that has a number of valuable health benefits, including the prevention of cancer, protection against heart disease, reduce Alzheimer’s disease symptoms, ease pain and inflammation, boost bone health, protect the immune system from bacterial infections, and increase the liver’s ability to remove toxins from the body.
Curry is made up of numerous ingredients, and depending on the region of the world, they can change slightly, which can also alter the specific health benefits that may be derived from the powder. The most common and advantageous ingredients of curry powder are turmeric, coriander, cardamom, cumin, sweet basil, and red pepper. Some other ingredients that are occasionally added, depending on the specific recipe, are fennel seeds, ginger, garlic, cinnamon, or mustard seeds, all of which have individual health benefits. We will focus on the benefits from the most traditional form of curry powder.
Curry powder is native to South Asian cuisines, but was popularized in the 19th and 20th century to the tables of the western world due to the mass exportation of the powder as a condiment after it was discovered by troops and other colonial visitors to the East. In the mid-20th century, Indian cuisine became more globally popular, so curry, and subsequently curry powder, became widely available.
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