The Amazing Benefits of Turmeric
Nowadays, in this crazy modern world, it may come as a surprise to many of you that the simple spice Turmeric has so many incredible healing properties. Of course, Eastern cultures have valued Turmeric for its medicinal properties and warm, peppery flavor for more than 5,000 years.
Over the years this medicinal root has been revered in India as the “holy powder.” Commonly found in Indian recipes, it boosts appetite, lowers blood pressure, reduces pain, has been shown to have powerful anti-inflammatory, anti-biotic, anti-viral, anti-tumor and antioxidant properties. It has been used for centuries to treat wounds, infections, and other health problems.
It has been extremely helpful in treating a wide range of inflammatory conditions considered the root of most coronary, chronic and autoimmune diseases. Arthritis, acute sports injuries, irritable bowel syndrome, Chron’s disease and other inflammatory bowel disorders, tendonitis and various autoimmune conditions have been successfully treated with this wonder spice from the east.
More recent research has shown that it alleviates asthma and very importantly even cancer can be treated favorably.
Curcumin, the pigment that gives turmeric its yellow-orange color is the magic ingredient.
Why should we take Turmeric daily?
1) Turmeric the Anti-Inflammatory
Reduce Inflammation and you reduce disease! – Many of the conditions associated with our modern life are associated with excess inflammation – asthma, allergies, autoimmune disease, heart disease, cancer and many other diseases depending on which organs are inflamed. There is no doubt that inflammation, if left untreated, can become a chronic health issue. In fact, more and more health practitioners and clinical researchers are now realizing that inflammation is the source of most disease.
Of course, Inflammation is a normal and necessary protective mechanism. Unfortunately however, it is increasingly common for this inflammatory response to get out of hand, and this is why there is a growing body that believe we should take Turmeric daily to help protect ourselves.
Turmeric is 100% natural – Unlike aspirin or ibuprofen, it reduces the body’s inflammation naturally, without damaging the liver or kidneys. It is comparable to large doses of ibuprofen (800 mg daily) without the side-effecs. In fact, rather than damaging the liver it actually helps protect the liver.
Turmeric against Heart Disease – We know that inflammation is the root cause of heart disease, not cholesterol or fat. It is the eating of too much sugar and HFCS (high-fructose corn syrup), toxic processed trans-fats, processed low fat foods, and an omega-3 to omega-6 imbalance that causes the systemic inflammation that creates the atherosclerosis or arterial plaquing. Turmeric therefore, taken daily, is a highly effective means to reduce the risk of this highly prevalent disease process.
Turmeric slows and helps reverse the onset of Alzheimer’s disease– Recent research has been consistently showing that systemic inflammation is a trigger for alzheimer’s disease. Turmeric therefore is an effective means to help prevent the cognitive decline normally attributed to “old age.”
Turmeric aids digestion– It has been used successfully to ease the agony from and help heal inflammatory bowel disease.
Turmeric for Joint Pain – Inflammation is seen by many of us in our joints and tissues, characterized by pain, redness, swelling and heat, such as is often experienced by people with osteoarthritis, the so called ‘wear and tear’ arthritis. Turmeric’s anti-inflammatory effects have been found to reduce these symptoms. A recent study found that osteoarthritis patients who took 200 mg of curcumin a day had reduced pain and increased mobility, whereas the study control group, which received no curcumin, had no significant improvements.
So, it seems that the good news about Turmeric’s anti-inflammatory properties just seems to get better and better.
2) Turmeric the Anti-Oxidant
Turmeric is a powerful antioxidant that helps promote heart health, a sharp memory, and boosts the immune system.
It is 5 to 8 times stronger than vitamins C and E as an antioxidant and even strong enough to scavenge the dangerous hydroxyl free radical, considered by many the most dangerous oxidant.
The curcumin actually inserts into your cells’ membranes where it seems to make them more orderly such that the vital flow of information through is more efficient.
This vitally improves the cells’ resistance to both infection and malignancy, and generally is highly effective in preventing the disease process.
3) Turmeric against Cancer
In India, where turmeric is widely used, the prevalence of four common cancers; colon, breast, prostate and lung is far lower than most ‘advanced’ countries. In fact, prostate cancer, which is the most frequently diagnosed cancer in western men, is rare in India and this is attributed, to an extent, to large amounts of turmeric used in their cooking.
How does curcumin help prevent and even cure cancer?
It is thought that it:
a) Stops the mutation of cells from normal to tumor and inhibits their proliferation. b) Assists your body to destroy any mutated cells. c) Enhances liver function. d) Stops the synthesis of tumor creating proteins. e) Prevents the proliferation of blood vessels that is necessary for cancer growth.
4) Turmeric reduces weight gain and improves skin
If, for some reason, all the previous facts aren’t enough to make you include Turmeric in your diet, then perhaps the fact that it also appears to reduce weight gain and improve your skin quality, may tip the balance!
Yes, curcumin suppresses the growth of fat tissue. I know that may be hard to believe when one looks at the exploding obesity problem in the Indian communities but without the yellow-gold spice the problem would surely be worse.
And yes, all these mentioned benefits add up to serving as a valuable anti-aging agent, with direct results also manifesting in the skin after daily use over an extended period of time.
Turmeric is available for sale in our office, in the spice aisle of most grocery stores and is also sold as a tablet in health food stores. The usual dosage is between 250 and 500 mg. Because it stimulates the uterus, it is not recommended for pregnant women. It is also not advised for those with gall bladder disease or gallstones.