Indian spices! They not only up the ante when it comes to conjuring lip-smacking gourmet meals, but also helps us lose weight too. Says who we cannot gorge on our favourite daal makahanis and naans, and still not lose that flab? Read on and know how our Indian spices make us shed weight!

1. Cumin

Three months with two groups of individuals at the esteemed Iran's Shahid Sadoughi University of Medical Sciences taught researchers testing the Indian spice as a weight loss catalyst. Eighty-eight obese women were chosen and divided into two groups - A and B. Group A had meals that were made with cumin as an active ingredient, while Group B was given cumin-free meals. Along with nutrition tips and counselling, and a strict check on the calorie intake for both groups, with a teaspoon of cumin powder added to the meals, the results were stunning at the end of ninety days. Group A, lost more weight consuming cumin in their daily diet and meals than Group B.

2. Garlic Powder

If all your life you have been hating garlic for its smell, remember it the power to mange our waistlines and keep it from expanding, say experts at Mount Sinai Hospital, London. With garlic pods or powder used in cooking meals, individuals tend to eat smaller portions and with slower bites, because of the initial aroma it brings to the nostrils when a dish is served. Garlic as studied upon helps with the thermogenic effect in the body. When the body temperature rises, the metabolism levels of the body increase and fat storage cells are burnt off.

3. Turmeric

Every Indian kitchen has a bowl of turmeric, raw or in powder form, in their kitchen as it is used in most culinary dishes as well. The spice is a popular one and has plenty of beta-carotene in it. Along with that, turmeric has antioxidant properties, which fights the perils of ageing, skin tumours and cancers too. Turmeric also keeps the liver safe and protected from the onslaught of free radicals running amok. While the liver heals, the fats in the body are metabolised and the fat storage cells are brought down to a minimum as well. Apart from weight loss, turmeric can help keep the brain safe from Parkinson's and Alzheimer's too.

4. Cinnamon

The research team at the United States Department of Agriculture studied the uses of cinnamon, an Indian spice that helps bring down the ill-effects of sugar in the body. Around twenty times more says the research, when a teaspoon of cinnamon is used, fat storage in the body can be brought down. The sugars in the blood are metabolised and the sugar levels are balanced as well, giving the body more energy to work with and stabilizing the mood too.

5. Chilli Powder

Chillies, raw or powdered, aren't only the best way to increase the spice quotient of a dish, but also helps to flush out fat from the body. Fat storage cells and chillies are loggerheads at one another, and reason enough for the thermogenic effect of the body that raises the heat and temperature too. While chillies make you eat less, they have capsaicinoids in them, which makes you burn more fat and eat slower.