Antimicrobial Effect of common Spices

Indian foods are better known for its spiciness.

Spices- a part of Indian culture for 3,000 years.  And that is not only because of its taste but also for their medicinal properties. And one of them is an antimicrobial property of these spices, which helps to inhibit disease causing microbes, and give us natural immunity.

Some common spices with antimicrobial properties are as follows-

1) Turmeric


Turmeric is a well known widely used spice in the India. It contains an important constituent which is known as curcumin.  Curcumin help to kill various bacterial genera like, Staphylococcus aureus, Escherichia coli, and Pseudomonas aeruginosa.


2) Cinnamon

It’s a commonly used spice but cinnamon is famous for its medicinal properties. It has ability to stop the growth of bacteria, fungi, including the Candida. Other uses of cinnamon are rich in antioxidants and help in to control diabetes.



3) Garlic

Garlic is a powerful natural antimicrobial spice. This has properties like antifungal, antiviral, and antibacterial. So by taking a few cloves of garlic each day, you can rid yourself of infection. Garlic has a proven track record for being an excellent spice to fight bacterial, fungal, viral and parasitic infections. Garlic has also been found to be helpful for condition including- Diabetes, high blood pressure, allergies, tooth aches, cancer, cold & flue, heart disease and high cholesterol.


4) Ginger


Ginger has great antimicrobial properties. It even helps to kill influenza viruses in some extend. It inhibits the other microorganism by increases the immune system’s ability to fight with infection.




5) Onion


Onion flakes and onion oil is used as spice. It contains antibacterial and antiseptic properties. Its have been used to treat many microbial diseases and inflammation.

By placing some cut up onions in kitchen we can protect against unwanted bacteria and make whole house healthy.


 6) Cardamom


Cardamom contains cineole which is major component that shows antiseptic property to kill oral bacteria producing bad breath and other infections.


7) Cumin


The recent research shows the antifungal and antibacterial effect of cumin. This helps to kill fungus like aspergillus, Penicillium, Yeast, and bacteria like Pseudomonas aeruginosa.


8) Cloves


Cloves have shows great antimicrobial properties against bacteria and fungus. Cloves oil used as an antiseptic in oral infections and it inhibits bacteria as well as yeast.


Priyanka Negi
Faculty of Medical Microbiology

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