Turmeric has been used in Ayurveda for the last 6,000 years, most of us have a little in our curry and if you are a health advocate or foodie you will have at some point read a health article somewhere about the powers of turmeric – turmeric latte is a frequently suggested popular choice.
Last month, there was mainstream media skepticism about the reputed healthy benefits so I wanted to put out some of the research for this powerful spice that has stood the test against many drugs but more importantly without side effects.
The main healing component of turmeric is curcumin which makes up 2-5%, this is often used in supplemental form for treating conditions.
There are now over 2,000 studies on pubmed looking at its use for various conditions..
Anti-depressant – this study showed that turmeric could be used as a treatment for depressed patients when compared against and in conjunction with Prozac. The study also showed no side affects with using turmeric.
Anti-inflammatory – here is a meta analysis of curcumin affects on patients with high degrees of systemic inflammation
Pain Management – this study found turmeric to be as effective as ibuprofen for treating osteoarthritis but with less abdominal pain and discomfort following treatment.
Cancer Prevention – Here curcumin and resveratrol (antioxidents in berries) were found to have an anti-prolific affect on tumour cells and there are many studies like this one. Cancer UK has discussed that curcumin can stop precancerous changes becoming cancer.
How do we use turmeric?
For most of us there is no harm and certainly many benefits to using turmeric as a spice in culinary dishes – just make sure you go organic!
A good guide would be to add 1/2 -2 teaspoons of turmeric to your daily routine. I find this very easy to do, it has a pleasant earthy taste to it when added in small amounts. It is worth noting for maximum health benefits you need to combine turmeric with black pepper and some fat. Black pepper enhances it’s bio-availability because it contains a natural drug inhibitor called pepperine so it stops the liver clearing the turmeric too quickly, 1 study has shown it increases the bio-availability of turmeric by 2000% and because turmeric is fat-soluble you need to add a fat too.
Great article! I kind of knew all these things anecdotally but it’s great to see the actual studies, and have them compiled here. Turmeric is such a crazy, intense and unique flavour too! (But man, it stains eeeeverything!)
Lemon essential oil is the secret! It takes the yellow fingers away instantly!
I’ve been adding a 1/4 to 1/2 tsp to my smoothies!
Good shout, very easy to do.
I LOVE turmeric and am always trying to find ways to get more of it in my diet. I drink Golden Milk almost every day.
Love turmeric milk
I love tumeric and knew it was good for inflammation and depression but didn’t know about the cancer part. That’s awesome! And great to know there are so many studies about it now. I think it’s clear, but I know many need those studies to feel like it’s ok. Great article!
Thanks Michele youre right we could all do with adding some and for many that need the confirmation, the science is now proving pretty conclusive!
YES!! I love turmeric. I do so much better when I incorporate lots of it into my diet with plenty of fats and of course black pepper.
so do I Cristina, great to hear
I love turmeric. I put them in eggs, curry, sometimes even tea ! Thanks for sharing such a wonderful article. I learned a lot !
haha we sound very similar in our approach
I love to use turmeric in cooking, baking, drinks and DIY beauty potions. It is a magical spice with super powers!
you’re right Stacey it is truly magical.
One of our favorite drinks is bone broth with grated turmeric, black pepper, and coconut oil. I always end up with orange hands but it’s worth it!
sounds like the perfect combo, I use lemon essential oil now, that seems to do the trick at removing yellow stains 🙂
I love all the powerful research that has been conducted in recent years.
Yes there is so much and most people are not aware.
Thank you for writing this powerful blog, I hope information this is more and more widely accepted by the masses soon.
So do I!
Thank you SO much for making a blog post about this issue. Tumeric is such a powerful medicine, yet, so undervalued in society.
so powerful and so easy to add it food!
Turmeric is so awesome! We use it most in savory dishes but my favorite way to use it in Golden Milk. I also like it in tropical smoothies.
Oh yes Emily, we do the same!
I’m glad you mentioned the black pepper making turmeric more bioavailable as most people are unaware of this! I love turmeric I use it in absolutely everything.
Thanks Georgina, has to have fat and black pepper that’s critical for the nutritional power!!
Turmeric is one of my favorite spices. Love this roundup of all the good things it does!
I love putting a little into my smoothies, you don’t even taste it and it’s a great way to make sure you’re getting some into your diet everyday!
so many ways to add it into your diet 🙂