Turmeric is famous for its use in Indian cooking, helping to provide curry with its flavor and color. But turmeric is also without a doubt, one the most powerful medicinal plants available to humanity! The list of ailments that Turmeric can help with range from depression, to autoimmune diseases and even cancer! Studies have shown that even healthy people have experienced an increased performance by consuming turmeric. There is clearly more to this plant than meets the eye, and this article breaks down the almost miraculous benefits of turmeric.
What is Turmeric?
For starters lets explain exactly what makes turmeric so powerful. This root from the ginger family has been used in Ayurvedic healing for thousands of years to treat many different afflictions. Science is only now discovering that it is curcumin, (the component of turmeric that gives it its strong color) that provides turmeric’s legendary health benefits.
Unfortunately, this compound is naturally only found in concentrations of three to four percent. That means for every gram you eat of turmeric, you only get at most 40 milligrams of curcumin. The levels needed to really start seeing benefits are around 500 milligrams, so you would need to eat an absurd amount of turmeric! Luckily turmeric can be standardized to levels where it is 95% curcumin, which can then be put into capsules for convenience!
The other problem with Turmeric is that curcumin has very poor bioavailability. This means that in its natural state it is very difficult for your body to absorb curcumin and to keep it in your body for a long time. That means that even if you were eating a mountain of turmeric, much of that curcumin would not even be absorbed. Luckily there is a solution! Piperine, which is the active ingredient in black pepper has been shown to increase bioavailability by up to 2000%! More on what Bioperine is here.
What can Turmeric Curcumin Help With?
Now that we know what Turmeric is and what its active compound curcumin does, let’s talk about where it can help. The list of things curcumin can help is very long and continues to grow. Below are some more common ailments that studies have shown curcumin helps with: *
Even generally healthy people can benefit from taking curcumin regularly. Studies have shown that healthy people see improvements in working memory, cognitive performance, and overall mood. Healthy people taking curcumin have also seen decreases in levels of fatigue and post workout soreness.
You may be thinking that it sounds suspicious that one little plant can help with so many western diseases, but there is a common element here. Almost all these diseases are related in some way to inflammation in the body, and many are on the rise due to an unhealthy western lifestyle (insert link).
Turmeric has a well-documented history of being a powerful anti-inflammatory. Without getting to technical let’s look at how it works. In your body, your cells release different chemicals that stimulate inflammation for a variety of reasons. While inflammation can be a healthy response, chronic inflammation has disastrous consequences. Curcumin works by blocking these inflammation inducing chemicals and thereby preventing an excessive inflammatory response.
Turmeric has also been shown to be a great antioxidant. It is very good at eliminating free radicals in the body, especially those produced form chronic inflammation. This why turmeric has been shown to be very helpful in preventing cancer and even helping those who are battling cancer.
In short, everyone can benefit from regularly taking a high-quality turmeric supplement. Its use in the western world is skyrocketing and for good reason! Its health benefits are well documented and continue to be reinforced by more and more studies. The FDA has recognized turmeric as generally safe and we believe in the coming decades it will become a common name in western households. Join the movement to better health and get turmeric in your life now!
*If you are interested in seeing the studies referenced in this article please check out this link. This site is an archive of medical literature from the U.S. National Institute of Health's National Library of Medicine. They provide a great summary of all the benefits of turmeric with the hard science to back it.
*While turmeric is an amazing plant, it is no substitute for proper medical care. If you have a medical condition you should always seek help from a doctor and consult with them before taking any supplements. This post is in no way intended to offer medical advice or to advise treatment for any diseases.
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