February 16, 2017

5 Incredible Benefits of Turmeric

5 Incredible Benefits of Turmeric

Turmeric, that humble spice which sits in the spice jar and only comes out for special curry occasions at home?  Well, it is much much more than just a humble spice, it has incredible health benefits many of which are largely unknown to the likes of the curry consuming connoisseur!

First off, the Ayruvedic College in India has found that turmeric contains hundreds chemical compounds and each of these has very different effects on the body.  But these compounds can be grouped into several key activity areas which include antibiotic, anti-inflammatory, anticancer, anti-tumour and antioxidant.  These already sound pretty impressive.  But what effects have actually been researched?
Here are just 5 effects which scientists have been researching over recent years.
  1. Anti-inflammatory 

Over recent years there has been much said around inflammation and its impact on the body.  It’s believed that inflammatory processes can lead to a whole host of conditions from neurological conditions, to heart disease.  A number of studies have looked at the use of turmeric for the treatment of inflammatory conditions.  Most of these in auto-immune conditions such as inflammatory bowel disease and osteoarthritis.  Study results have shown that in patients who regularly take turmeric there was a significant reduction in pain and a subsequent lowering in conventional medication dosing too.

  1. Antioxidant

To begin with a quick lesson on oxidants - Oxidants are free radicals some of which we produce naturally in our bodies but most of which we introduce into our bodies through the foods we consume and products we use.  Too many oxidants trigger unhealthy chemical processes to occur and these can be harmful to our bodies causing damage to cells and even DNA.  Some of these processes are precursors to more common diseases such as heart disease, inflammatory conditions and even type II diabetes,  So, antioxidative agents are essential if we want to redress the balance of oxidants in our bodies and prevent long-term conditions.  

Turmeric has been found to be a potent antioxidant agent and effective at mopping up free radicals, thus helping us redress oxidants levels in our bodies.

  1. Immune Boosting

Turmeric has been used for centuries in India as a common ailment for preventing coughs and colds.  From my own experience, taking turmeric daily has certainly helped me fend off coughs and colds.  There has been some really interesting research which has shown that turmeric has the ability to inhibit many common bacterial, viral and fungal agents.

  1. Mental Health/Mood Boosting

The main active compound in turmeric is known as curcumin and in clinical studies it has been shown numerous ways of regulating mood.  It can affect the neurochemical processes which can lead to conditions such as depression and alter these pathways.  A recent clinical reviewed showed that curcumin has the greatest benefit in major depressive conditions. There has also been increasing research into the effects of turmeric in preventing and treating Alzheimer’s Disease too, and early studies show that that it can significantly improve memory in some patients.

  1. Anti-cancer

The value of turmeric in cancer treatments has been widely researched, and evidence shows that it can kill cancerous cells in certain types of cancers whilst protecting non-cancerous cells. But more interestingly there are early studies which suggest that turmeric can affect some of the early chemical processes in the body which are precursors to cancer tissue from growing. It’s also believed that overall cancer rates in India are much lower compared to that of western countries because of the almost daily intake of turmeric there.

So, this super spice is not just a pretty colour, it’s pretty awesome!

Cautionary advice: If you are pregnant, breastfeeding, taking medication or under medical supervision, please consult your healthcare practitioner before taking any food supplement. We advise taking your supplements a minimum of 2 hours from the time of taking any medication. Food supplements are not to be used as a substitute for a varied, balanced diet and healthy lifestyle.

Other userful articles

1. https://pdfs.semanticscholar.org/565b/820f68abef148635c3fdb2417d61e0aa8018.pdf 2.  http://nutritionfacts.org/video/carcinogen-blocking-effects-of-turmeric/

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