Food For Healthy Bones

Irma Jennings - INHC - Holistic Bone Coach

Spice Up Your Bones

July 6, 2018
Irma Jennings

Last week Skelly and I did a little dejunking in the kitchen. We went through all of those dusty, old spice jars hiding here and there in the cabinets. They must have been there for years!

YOU know what I’m talking about.

We started fresh with a brand new wooden spice rack that we keep on the counter.

I love it! And it speaks to my need to be organized.

And keeping my spices in full view reminds me to use them at every meal. I love how they bring even the simplest food to life. They add a flavor kick that takes my cooking to a whole new level. And the best thing is these spices love my Skelly right back.



You see, spices are full of vitamins and minerals that help build and strengthen your bones. Here’s a peek at what’s in my Skelly’s spice rack:

  1. Turmeric. This is one of the spices in Indian curry. And an Italian study just found it may boost your bone density.

Scientists worked with a group of fit, healthy, slim, older people with an average age of 70. Some took a tablet containing turmeric while the others took a placebo. After six months the turmeric group boosted their bone density by seven percent compared to the placebo.[i]

  1. Cinnamon. This popular spice is known for its ability to lower blood sugar. But it can also reduce bone breakdown and help prevent bone loss.[ii] Just make sure you buy the right kind…

Look for Ceylon cinnamon also known as “true cinnamon.” It might be more expensive than the others (like Cassia cinnamon) but it has more benefits.

  1. Cumin. These seeds are similar to caraway seeds. They’re popular in Mexican, Indian, Chinese, Middle Eastern, and North African cuisine.

Cumin is a great source of fiber as well as bone minerals like magnesium, zinc, selenium, manganese, potassium, calcium, copper, and iron.

A recent study showed that cumin could reverse osteoporosis in mice. Researchers gave the credit to cumin’s high levels of unsaturated fatty acids as well as its antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties.[iii]

  1. Coriander. This spice comes from the seeds of the herb known as cilantro or Chinese parsley. It’s packed with bone-building minerals like calcium, potassium, manganese, magnesium, and iron.

Even if you’re one of those people who hate cilantro, you may love coriander. It has a sweet and toasty aroma. I like to pair it with cumin and cinnamon.

  1. Cloves. This spice always makes me think of Christmas. Cloves are rich in calcium, magnesium, vitamins C and K, and omega-3 fatty acids. And just two teaspoons of ground cloves give you over 60% of your daily required manganese, a mineral needed to make bone tissue and cartilage.

The right spice can transform your cooking in seconds. Add spices to chili, curries, stews, and soups. Also add them to salad dressings, eggs, cooked rice and vegetables. Mix several together as a rub for meat or fish.


Here are a few tips on buying, storing, and using spices:

  1. Always buy organic spices when possible.
  2. I recommend buying herbs and spices online from Mountain Rose Herbs, Spices, Teas and Botanical Sundries (
  3. Buy your spices in small amounts so they’re always fresh. If they’ve been in the cabinet since the Bush administration (either one), throw them out! Mountain Rose Herbs estimates the shelf life for leaves, flowers, and powders is 1 to 2 years. Roots, barks, and berries will last 2 to 3 years.
  4. Keep your spices tightly sealed in an airtight glass container. They should be stored somewhere:
  5. Cool - Keep them at 65 degrees Fahrenheit or lower. But don’t store them in the refrigerator or freezer.
  6. Dry - Humidity can cause mold and bacteria to grow.
  7. Dark - Sunlight will leach the color and aroma from dried herbs and spices, and make them lose their potency. You can keep small jars out on the counter for spices you use every day. But store most of them in the cabinet.

From my spicey bones to yours!

Irma Jennings, INHC, Holistic Bone Coach

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[i] A. Riva, et al. “Effects of a curcumin-based supplementation in asymptomatic subjects with low bone density: a preliminary 24-week supplement study.” Eur Rev Med Pharmacol Sci2017; 21(7):1684-1689.

[ii] Tsuji-Naito K. “Aldehydic components of cinnamon bark extract suppresses RANKL-induced osteoclastogenesis through NFATc1 downregulation.” Bioorg Med Chem. 2008 Oct 15;16(20):9176-83. doi: 10.1016/j.bmc.2008.09.036.

[iii] Seif AA. “Nigella Sativa reverses osteoporosis in ovariectomized rats.” BMC Complementary and Alternative Medicine. 2014;14:22. doi:10.1186/1472-6882-14-22.

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From my bones to yours,
Irma Jennings, INHC
Your Holistic Bone Coach
[email protected]

30 Essential Foods for Bone Health
30 Essential Foods for Bone Health
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