From food preservatives to natural medicines, cosmetics and personal drugs, spices can be used for numerous different purposes. As natural medicines and homemade remedies, spices have played a pivotal role in the health care of many cultures, both ancient and modern. The Indian system of holistic medicine known as “Ayurveda” uses mainly plant-based formulations to treat various ailments. Certain spices such as turmeric has a very long history of medicinal use, dating back nearly 4000 years. The healing power of spices is a holistic treatment that has been passed down through many generations in many cultures. The cover photo of this issue shows a spice shop at the famous Morocco’s Jemaa el-Fna Market Square in Marrakech. Jemaa el-Fna dates back to the founding of Marrakesh by the Almoravids in 1062. Today, the historic square attracts the entire spectrum of life in Marrakesh: locals and tourists from across the world. The cultural importance of Jema el-Fna has inspired UNESCO to create its “Masterpieces of the Oral and Intangible Heritage of Humanity.”

Text: Md Sidin Ahmad Ishak | Cover Photo: ©Marcin Jucha/

Published: 2019-12-18