Turmeric root has been used for thousands of years in Asia and India. You may be familiar with the use of this traditional spice in curry dishes, but were you aware that it also offers tremendous health benefits?
Curcumin is the yellow pigment in turmeric, which acts as an important active compound and is responsible for its many beneficial qualities. Although curcumin is the best known medicinal and therapeutic ingredient in turmeric root, it does contain other curcuminoids which are thought to have some health benefits as well.
Curcumin acts as a powerful antioxidant for the entire body and only a small amount is needed to exert its many health benefits, assuming that the curcumin is able to be absorbed. Here is a review of the main uses and benefits of this incredible ingredient.
INFLAMMATION RELIEF - >
Due to recent research, curcumin has been nicknamed the “master off-switch for inflammation.” It has been shown to help relieve pain and inflammation by modulating the inflammatory pathways that affect heart, joints, liver, gastrointestinal tract, brain, cellular health and the immune system! This makes curcumin useful for relieving the pain in osteoarthritis, rheumatoid arthritis and bursitis as well as in digestive conditions such as ulcerative colitis, Crohn's disease, celiac disease, gastritis and gastric ulcers. Curcumin has the ability to block more than 30 different inflammation pathways!
Curcumin also protects against inflammatory calcium loss from our bones and has been shown to slow prostate cell proliferation in addition to supporting healthy cholesterol and blood pressure levels.
LIVER HEALTH - >
Curcumin has liver-protective effects and is a powerful liver detoxifier. It helps to prevent the build-up of toxins, enhance glutathione levels, supports bile production and solubility as well as improve digestive function.
Curcumin may help reverse certain forms of liver cirrhosis to some degree, and is thought to be especially helpful for people who regularly drink alcohol or use common painkillers, both of which damage cause liver damage. Studies suggest that curcumin can also reduce the severity of liver injury induced by iron overdose, cholestasis and carbon tetrachloride intoxication.
In addition to supporting the liver processes, managing inflammation is also vital in aiding detoxification. Inflammation control is needed because the detoxification process involves the release of toxic metabolites from our cells and tissues in order to expel them from the body. On the way to being eliminated, these toxins can trigger inflammatory reactions and cause tissue damage.
BRAIN SUPPORT - >
Curcumin, was originally researched for Alzheimer's disease because studies found there is a much lower incidence and prevalence of Alzheimer's in India than in North America. The association between curry consumption and cognitive level in certain populations were researched and it was found that those who ate curry foods performed better on a standard test than those who never or rarely ate curry!
Alzheimer's disease degrades the nerve cells in the brain through inflammation in glial cells, the formation of beta-amyloid plaques, metal toxicity, and oxidative damage. Curcumin acts as a powerful anti-inflammatory and antioxidant in the brain. It can also break down plaques and has the potential to guard against their development, plus it supports healthy neurotransmitter function, improving memory and helping to prevent cognitive decline.
Including organic turmeric in the diet is highly recommended. Try it in dressings, soups, hot drinks (see recipe below), smoothies or as a natural food coloring! In addition, consider a supplemental form that has been created for maximum absorption and digestibility in order to better experience its therapeutic effects.
Golden Turmeric Milk Recipe (Serves 2):
- 2 cups of dairy-free milk
- ¼ tsp fresh ginger
- 1 tsp. fermented organic turmeric
- pinch of black pepper
- ¼ tsp. cinnamon
- 2 tbsps. raw honey
- 1 tsp. vanilla
- 1 tsp. coconut oil
Blend all ingredients together. Add to a pot over medium heat and bring to a simmer for a few minutes. Serve & Enjoy!
-This article is sponsored by Good N Natural in Steinbach -