Spices are currently making an entry into the human health management arena in the form of health foods. Many spices have health benefits capable of providing nutraceutical benefits for the prevention of many human ailments, especially against the lifestyle diseases that are plaguing affluent society in all countries. Spices have played a very colourful role in human history. Now it is difficult for us to appreciate the vast influence that spices had on people and nations during the chequered history of humankind. Wars were fought, kingdoms were built and demolished, cities grew, flourished and declined, and the destiny of humankind was influenced so much, all for the sake of spices. An example of such war is the Dutch–Portuguese War also known as the Spice War.

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