Scientifically named Curcuma longa, turmeric is also highly regarded as one of the top spices in some countries due to it’s popularity in the culinary industry. This powerful seasoning is widely used all over the globe commonly to spice up a curry with a few similarities to ginger and to add color to the food.
Aside from gastronomic use, turmeric is likewise famous in Indian ancient medicine for relief of ringworms, liver disorders and many kinds of ailments during the olden times. Research has been conducted to prove the efficiency of this herb as part of modern-day health supplements with antiviral, anticarcinogenic, antibacterial and anti-inflammatory properties.
On top of that it also contains the following; Niacin, Vitamin C, Vitamin E, Protein, Potassium,Copper, Calcium,Vitamin K, Iron, Fibre, Magnesium and Zinc
Turmeric’s main active component responsible for helping the body boost the immune system is curcumin. However, the curcumin contents from turmeric spices are not really abundant; that’s why pure curcumin extracts incorporated in supplements are more recommended than the usual herb.
Here are the top extraordinary health benefits of turmeric:
Research on Alzheimer’s disease, the leading cause of dementia, are still on their way to finding a treatment for this condition. Aromatic turmerone or ar-turmerone, a compound found in turmeric, has been recently discovered to stimulate the repair of brain cells. Neurodegenerative diseases like Alzheimer’s and stroke may find the help of stem cells beneficial which could also be used for treatment in the future as the study recommended. Amyloid plaques, key feature present on Alzheimer’s, are basically made up of protein tangles.
Another helpful compound, curcumin, also aids in increasing Brain-Derived Neurotrophic Factor (BDNF) – a kind of growth hormone established in the brain. This hormone when deficient may lead to various diseases such as depression and Alzheimer’s. Curcumin has the ability to clear the amyloid plaques and slow down the development of the disease. With turmeric, there is a possibility to boost your brain activity.
The major color contributor responsible for turmeric’s color is curcumin. This compound also helps in the risk for heart attacks in patients who undergo coronary artery bypass surgery.
Curcumin improves the lining of the blood vessels, which is endothelium’s function as well since its dysfunction may lead to blood clotting and unregulated blood pressure. One study showed its similarity to the drug Atorvastatin’s action.
Cancer manifests in many forms yet all tumors share things in common proven as curcumin greatly decreases the growth and development of cancer cells. The studies conducted were done on test animals in the laboratory, generating a promising outcome of preventing the spread of cells and growth of new blood vessels in tumors that could even lead to the death of cancer cells.
Many researches also backed up the anticarcinogenic property of turmeric as its components were found to prevent radiation-induced tumors, T-cell leukemia and carcinomas of breast, colon and prostate.
Turmeric is helpful to diabetic patients for its property to regulate insulin and controlling glucose levels as it enhances the effect when combined with regular medications. A study done last 2012 provided a strong back-up to this property with people who are considered to be in prediabetic stage. The participants were given curcumin capsules while some took placebo capsules. Not a single person from the curcumin group developed Type 2 diabetes at all, while more than 16% from the placebo group were diagnosed as diabetics.
However, be sure to consult your attending physician first before taking curcumin supplements together with your normal medications since it greatly decreases blood sugar falling below the normal range termed as hypoglycemia.
A common disorder among inhabitants of Western countries, arthritis demonstrates various forms. People who repeatedly consume turmeric have experienced relief from moderate to mild joint pain and inflammation. Studies showed improved conditions of patients after taking up curcumin supplements.
Due to powerful anti-inflammatory properties, turmeric helps improve conditions such as rheumatoid arthritis and osteoarthritis. Another study proved its effect to be similar to that of ibuprofen and even more effective than some anti-inflammatory drugs.
Functions as the body’s detoxifier, the liver purifies the blood by producing useful enzymes to limit and minimize the harmful toxins in the circulation. By the use of turmeric, the blood circulation is being improved and restored. However, it is not advisable for people with bile obstruction or gallstones as this could complicate the disease.
Unknown to many, inflammation could be beneficial to one’s health on short-term or acute phase for helping the body combat the foreign harmful pathogens such as bacteria and viruses. It also plays a role in repairing damage. Nonetheless, it could shift to long-term inflammation which results to complications like heart ailments, Alzheimer’s, cancer and some degenerative conditions.
At the molecular level, curcumin as a bioactive substance targets numerous stages in the inflammatory pathway.
The causative agent for early manifestations of aging is oxidative damage. This involves the presence of free radicals that interferes with vital organic substances in the body thru fatty acids and proteins. It is also combined with highly reactive molecules possessing unpaired electrons.
Potent antioxidants like curcumin have the ability to neutralize the effect of free radicals whilst increasing the volume of natural antioxidants in the body.
With the help of lipopolysaccharides, turmeric manages to boost the immunity by means of its active antibacterial, antiviral and antifungal properties. Through this, the body creates a strong solid foundation against diseases that could start from simple cough, colds and flu.
Turmeric’s active compounds improve digestion by making the gallbladder yield more bile while decreasing the signs of bloating and gas in the stomach. Some inflammatory bowel disorders could also be treated by the herb including ulcerative colitis.
A precautionary tip, turmeric or curcumin supplements shouldn’t be taken by people suffering from gallbladder ailments to avoid complications. On the other hand, it is still advisable to ingest raw turmeric for people under digestive conditions. Always consult your attending physician first for a healthier body response with turmeric.
How To Take Turmeric?
The best method would be to take in the capsule form as that is the most concentrated, but failing that the second best option would be to drink it as a tea or juice the fresh root with other vegetables or even add to a smoothie, it has quite a strong flavor so take care with how much you use….