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The spice comes from the dried fruit of the pimento tree. It is native to Central America, Mexico and parts of the Caribbean. The name allspice is because the dried brown berries smell and taste like a mixture of cinnamon, nutmeg and cloves.
Allspice contains eugenol which has been found to reduce digestive issues such as nausea, vomiting and diarrhea. Eugenol can also reduce constipation. Research has found that allspice can help to reduce bloating and excessive flatulence. More research is needed but studies have found that the anti-inflammatory aspect of the spice can ease stomach cramps.
Research has found that allspice can help you get a good nights sleep. Allspice contains magnesium which is a mineral that helps to improve the quality and duration of sleep. Some studies have found that allspice regulates metabolism which is known to reduce sleep disorders and occurrences of insomnia.
Studies have found that allspice contains a novel compound called ericifolin, which has been found to help fight prostate cancer. More research is needed but allspice may prove useful in the battle against this common cancer.
Allspice may kill disease-causing germs on food. Research suggests that allspice oil has an antimicrobial effect against salmonella, E. coli and listeria monocytogenes. Research is finding that the oil produced activity against the food born pathogens. Researchers believe that the essential oils can help protect food against pathogenic bacterial contamination.
Allspice creates a hypotensive effect and may reduce elevated blood pressure. The potassium found in allspice also acts as a vasodilator and increases blood flow throughout the body. Allspice can help to reduce the strain on your heart, promote better cardiovascular health and reduce risks of strokes and heart attacks.
Research suggests that allspice is safe in regular food amounts for pregnant and breastfeeding women. Some suggest avoiding allspice in medicinal amounts until more is known.
Allspice got its name because of its aroma. It smells like a combination of many spices such as ginger, cloves, cinnamon and nutmeg. In many places of the world, it is called pimento because the Spanish believed it was black pepper which they called pimienta.
For most people, allspice is safe to consume. Some people may have an allergic reaction when allspice paste is applied directly to the skin. Allspice can slow blood clotting, therefore some suggest to stop using allspice at least 2 weeks before a scheduled surgery.