You may be familiar with turmeric as the bright orange spice which gives Indian curries their distinctive and vibrant color. But did you know that this popular spice also brings with it a host of health benefits, both mental and physical? Here we’ll outline some of the most interesting benefits of turmeric. We’ll also discuss how you can ensure that you make the most of this amazing ingredient in your daily diet.
The Benefits Of Turmeric
Firstly, scientific testing of Asian populations has found a link between those who consume more turmeric-containing curries and higher scores in cognitive function tests. Studies have also proven that curcumin, one of the active compounds in turmeric, possesses anti-inflammatory properties. Many experts think that this may provide some protection against diseases of the brain (for example, Alzheimer’s).
As mentioned above, one of the better-known benefits of turmeric is its anti-inflammatory quality. As we know, much of the discomfort caused by irritation of the body’s various tissues can be soothed effectively by reducing inflammation. Whether someone ingests it in its spice form or as a turmeric or curcumin supplement, there’s plenty of evidence which suggests that turmeric is an effective and natural anti-inflammatory.
People in India have long been aware of the benefits of turmeric for the stomach. In addition to serving as a color and flavor enhancer, this spice also imparts a protective effect on the digestive system. Therefore, the evidence suggests that turmeric protects the delicate cells of the stomach lining from ulcer-causing chemicals. Furthermore, certain data indicates that turmeric has a calming and soothing effect on common stomach ailments.
Balances Sugar Levels
Blood glucose levels are an important indicator of overall health. Too much variance can lead to serious health conditions such as Type 2 diabetes. A 2014 study published in the Journal of Endocrinology found that preparations of turmeric, including curcumin, had a positive effect on insulin-producing cells within the pancreas. These cells serve to regulate the body’s blood glucose levels.
With over 30 million sufferers in the U.S. alone, osteoarthritis is a concern for many people worldwide. Examinations have comprehensively demonstrated the benefits of turmeric for sufferers of this disease. A 2016 research review showed that a month-long course of the turmeric extract curcumin had a positive effect. Patients reported reduced pain at a level similar to the traditional use of NSAIDs or glucosamine.
Adding Turmeric To Your Diet
If you’re a fan of Indian and South Asian cuisine, there are a wide range of recipes available which use turmeric as a key ingredient. These include meat dishes, vegetarian or vegan dishes, and even desserts and drinks.
It’s important to remember though that many of the benefits of turmeric described above focus on the active compound curcumin. While curcumin is present in raw turmeric, it makes up only about 3% by weight. This means that it can be difficult for a person to ingest the levels needed solely by consuming powdered turmeric.
A curcumin supplement allows higher levels of the active compound to be consumed at a standardized dose. This is the best route for those wishing to access the many health benefits associated with turmeric and curcumin. You can find supplements at most health food stores and they are relatively inexpensive.
Whether you’re interested in turmeric because of the unique color and flavor it brings to food, or you like the benefits associated with taking a standardized supplement, there’s no doubt that it’s an extremely versatile and valuable natural resource.
You may also enjoy reading an additional Off The Grid News article: How To Grow Turmeric Indoors (The Secret Is In The Watering)
What are your thoughts on the amazing benefits of turmeric? Let us know in the comments below.