Today’s concerns over salt, sodium, cholesterol, saturated fat and sugar in food put added concerns over spices.
With the exception of cholesterol, each of these factors involve flavor in one way or another. Reducing any of them reduces flavor impact. Eliminate the fat, salt and sweetening and you may well reduce the palatability and satisfaction in eating the food. Spices, on the other hand, can more than make up for the loss of flavor. In normal usage, spices make no significant contribution of fat, sodium or calories (and being plant products, no cholesterol at all), yet they have a tremendous flavor impact.