The world is crazy for spices, and no dish can be complete without a few spices. But it is not just food – people started to use spices to treat and prevent severe conditions, which is good news, considering the numerous diseases out there. Spices have become essential in every home, and things are getting better. In this article we will focus on the benefits of turmeric.

Historical records show that spices have been appreciated for their flavor and some of them were used as a treatment.

Most spices have extraordinary healing benefits, and turmeric is among the most beneficial. You’ve probably heard about its use in numerous treatments.

People say it is great for diabetes, arthritis, heart disease, Alzheimer’s, psoriasis and some also believe that it destroys cancer cells. If you want to find out more about its powers and abilities, you are at the right place.

Additionally, if you want to know whether it is enough to consume only turmeric, keep reading, since you will discover if supplements are essential for your diet.

Even though they both seem the same, curcumin and turmeric are taken in a interchangeable manner. But what makes them different? In this article you will discover everything you should know about turmeric.

Traditional health benefits

Turmeric is extracted from Curcuma longa, a tropical plant originating from India. For some people, this plant has the most extraordinary flowers. Turmeric is an important ingredient in Ayurveda, a system of natural healing that comes from India that has been used for centuries.

Historical findings reveal that this spice was used as a cooking ingredient 4,500 years ago. It is used in curry spice mix, an essential spice in the South Asian cuisine.

Turmeric is usually used dry, but sometimes Asians use it fresh, like ginger. It was commonly used to help, digestion, relieve arthritis, disintegrate gallstones and alleviate cold or allergies.

Turmeric was used topically to treat skin issues and wounds, and women used turmeric as a beauty product. Nowadays, turmeric enriched creams and soaps are extremely popular.

Brides and grooms from India, Bangladesh and Pakistan are still getting turmeric massages before their wedding. It is believed that these ‘pithi’ ceremonies make their skin healthy and beautiful and bring them luck.

Curcumin and Turmeric

People often confuse curcumin, turmeric and even curry. Powdered curry is a blend of spices that contains turmeric. Turmeric is the spice, and it has numerous chemical compounds.

Every chemical compound has great health benefits. Curcumin is the strongest and it is the most examined. Curcumin can be also found in ginger, which is another spice that has amazing healing abilities.

However, may websites may mislead you with their unrealistic turmeric facts. Some websites claim that turmeric can treat 600 ailments. But, most of the scientific studies were conducted regarding isolated curcumin, not turmeric.

As the National Centre for Complementary and Integrative Health explains: there have been little evidence supporting the use of turmeric for treating health conditions, since few clinical trials were conducted.

Why there haven’t been more clinical studies on turmeric? It is easier to examine standardized and isolated compound. Curcumin acts like a medicine. However, the main reason is that there is a little financial interest to conduct studies about a spice that is present in almost every kitchen in the world, unless they isolate the substance and then patent it.

Proven health benefits

Most studies are about curcumin, not about turmeric, and it looks like there is no health problem that curcumin can’t relieve.

As many scientific studies proved, curcumin can alleviate allergy symptoms, ease arthritis pain, control diabetes, treat depression and lower the risk of heart attack. So probably you are asking this question.

But what about turmeric? What makes this spice so great?

Turmeric has twenty antibiotics, twelve anti-tumor compounds,fourteen cancer preventatives, twelve anti-inflammatory compounds, and at least ten powerful antioxidant compounds. And turmeric has potent anti-inflammatory, antioxidant, antibacterial, anticancer and antiviral effect. Some studies focused on some of the specific problems it can be used for.

Turmeric for Alzheimer’s disease

The most amazing benefit of this spice is the ability to prevent Alzheimer’s. Statistics show that old Indians who ate turmeric every day have the lowest likelihood of developing Alzheimer’s worldwide.

There are over 200 compounds in turmeric, and apart from curcumin, there are numerous other compounds that have effects in the treatment of Alzheimer’s. Turmerone is a compound contained in turmeric that stimulates the formation of neurons.

This compound enhances the ability of the brain to repair itself. So it is an ideal treatment for many degenerative brain problems apart from Alzheimer’s disease, such as sudden stroke, Parkinson’s and traumatic brain injuries.

                                                                                 Turmeric for arthritis

Americans spend more than $650 million annually for natural treatments for arthritis and chronic inflammations.
Turmeric has strong anti-inflammatory properties and it offers great benefits for patients with arthritis. The Arthritis Foundation claims that turmeric offers a semipermanent reduction of the pain and improved condition of the patients that suffer from osteoarthritis.

Turmeric for cancer

Curcumin enhances the anticancer treatments, however, we need more clinical trials. It can selectively kill off tumor cells, without damaging the healthy cells. It works together with radiation and chemo, and enhances their efficacy.
Dr Saraswati Sukumar was part of numerous studies to determine the anticancer properties of this spice. He found that including turmeric to your diet is much more effective than supplementing it.

Also, turmeric is more effective, compared to Prozac, for treating depression. It has amazing antidepressant effects.

How does turmeric work?

Turmeric lowers the levels of cortisol, simultaneously increasing the production of serotonin. This is great for everyone who regularly take antidepressants.

This goes for everyone who experienced intense side-effects. Patients can use curcumin and turmeric supplements whenever they want or include it in their favorite meal. Turmeric doesn’t have side effects in combination with other remedies.

Naturally enhance the effectiveness of turmeric

Unfortunately, our body cannot completely absorb the curcumin. If you don’t consume it properly, it passes through the intestines without being utilized. Enhance its efficiency by consuming it with black pepper.

Black pepper contains the compound piperine, which improves curcumin absorption by 2,000%. Curcumin is fat-soluble, so its bioavailability is enhanced by cooking turmeric using oil.

Turmeric tea

Boil the turmeric in water for about 10 minutes to enhance the solubility of curcumin up to twelve times.

The citizens from Okinawa have the longest lifespan, and statistical data show that the average person lives 81.2 years. You know why? These people drink turmeric tea in great amounts.

To prepare basic tea, stir half a teaspoon of turmeric powder in one cup of water. Boil the liquid for about 10 minutes, and your tea is done.

Most people don’t enjoy its taste, but that doesn’t mean you won’t, since everyone have different taste. Turmeric tea has a bitter flavor. Experts tried to create a recipe that would be tasty and healing at the same time.
We offer a tasty recipe that has the greatest bioavailability. It involves adding organic coconut oil.

Liquid gold tea

Ingredients:

• Half a cup water
• Half a tsp of turmeric powder
• Half a cup of coconut milk
• One tbsp of coconut oil, stevia or honey

Preparation:

Boil the water. Add half a teaspoon of turmeric powder and boil it on a low temperature for about ten minutes. Add coconut oil and coconut milk. Add honey or stevia to taste.

Use organic and raw produce to avoid undesirable pesticides and chemicals. Experiment with the ratio until you find the best for you.

Use regular or almond milk instead of using coconut milk. In India, people add ghee, which is a traditional clarified butter since it gives the tea a buttery and rich flavor.

Turmeric dosage

The dried turmeric is the most popular kind of turmeric. But, you can also find turmeric root.

The University of Maryland made a list of the recommended dosage for adults:

• Fresh root – 1.5 to 3 gr. a day
• Dried root (powdered) – 1-3 gr.a day
• Fluid extract – 40-90 drops a day
• Turmeric tincture – 15 to 30 drops, four times a day

The recommended doses for curcumin supplement is 400-600mg, three times a day. Always choose products that contain 95% of curcuminoids. Choose a product that contains added black pepper or piperine extract.

Side-effects of turmeric supplements

All health experts agree that the usage of turmeric is safe.It does not cause any side-effects, except for the possibility to activate the formation of kidney stones in people prone to developing kidney stones.

But, turmeric supplements can cause side effects. Curcumin and turmeric are not the same thing. Experts agreed that curcumin and turmeric supplements aren’t suitable for:

— Pregnant women. Curcumin triggers the uterine function and may increase the likelihood of miscarriage. Also, there is no evidence about the safety of turmeric for breastfeeding women.

— People who are trying to conceive. Turmeric can only aggravate the problem.

— People with sensitive hormonal levels. This spice has the same impact as estrogen, so you should avoid it if you have uterine fibroids, reproductive cancer or endometriosis.

— Patients with gallbladder disease and gallstones. Turmeric can aggravate the issue.

— People scheduled for a surgical procedure in two weeks. Turmeric is a natural blood-thinner and increases the risk of bleeding. It increases the likelihood of bleeding and bruising.

— Patients wit ulcers, GERD or other stomach problems. Turmeric aggravates GERD and may cause upset stomach, gastric irritation, diarrhea and nausea.

— Individuals who take medications for stomach acid. Turmeric interferes with the impact of Tagament, Zantac, Nexium, and triggers the stomach acid production.

— Diabetes patients. Turmeric increases the risk of hypoglycemia.