Health Benefits of Bay Leaves

bay leaf benefits

Bay leaves are a crucial staple in many soups and sauces. When dried, they can take on a complex flavor that is slightly bitter with notes of mint and spice. Generally, the term “bay leaf” refers to the laurel leaf, a small leaf from the sweet bay tree called Laurus nobilis. The following are the varieties of bay leaves used to flavor food and the scientific names of their trees: One thing worth noting is that these leaves may come from different species, which yields slight chemical differences in their flavor profiles.

Health Benefits

There is no conclusive evidence on the health benefits of bay leaves. It is generally believed that bay leaves have benefits for humans in some contexts but not for others and that their effectiveness varies depending on how they’re used.

Antibacterial effects

The natural properties of bay leaves make them a great source of good bacteria. Bay leaves can also inhibit the growth of Staphylococcus aureus (the bacteria behind staph infections) and E. Coli. Studies have shown that they fight off H. Pylori and cancer, too!

Blood sugar health

Including ground bay leaves in your meals or adding them to smoothies are the newest and most scientifically-proven options for managing diabetes2 diabetes. However, more research is needed to determine if the effect is present when people consume much less of them. People with healthy blood sugar levels have found that they experience a drop when their meal also includes bay leaves.

Cancer prevention and treatment

Bay leaves have shown early effectiveness against breast and colorectal cancer cells. However, more studies are needed to understand how to sell test strips effective or safe bay leaves are for cancer patients.

In recent laboratory studies, Bay leaves have been shown to slow down the development of breast cancer and colorectal cancer cells. It’s important to note, though, that these preliminary studies only show specific effects of bay leaves on certain types of cancer cells. More research is needed before we fully understand if they are effective at helping patients.

Nutrients per Serving

While bay leaves are typically used in culinary dishes, dried crushed leaves are not commonly consumed. However, the nutrients from the cartilage of these leaves can be better absorbed and, thus, may provide health benefits more often when cooking with this form of bay leaf instead of the traditionally found persevered leaf.

Bay leaves are typically used to flavor foods, but they’re also beneficial when crushed and used as a spice. When eaten in the form of dried leaves, nutrients are more easily absorbed than when the leaves are cooked with.

How to Prepare Bay Leaves

Bay leaves are most commonly used to season dishes by placing thoroughly dried leaves inside a container before cooking. Unfortunately, that method could be more nutritious because people rarely eat whole bay leaves. The best way is to use crushed bay leaves to flavor food. Dried, crushed bay leaves can be found in the spice and seasoning sections of most grocery stores and can also be prepared at home by grinding whole dried bay leaves. Blended fresh bay leaves can also be used if you prefer a more robust flavor but only use a smaller amount.

Bay leaves are used most commonly by adding them to food before it’s cooked to absorb the flavor. However, this preparation method could be more nutritious because people don’t typically eat whole bay leaves. A better way to benefit from the nutrients in bay leaves is by seasoning foods with ground-up, dry crushed leaves. Dried, crushed bay leaves can be taken from your local grocery store’s spice and seasoning aisle, or you can grind them at home with a spice grinder. If you opt for fresh bay leaves, a smaller amount should suffice.ByIdly blended, new bay leaves still have a more robust flavor so they are best used when less is more than pureeing dried ones in food.



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