Turmeric, the bright yellow spice that you have probably seen all over the interweb lately, is a powerful anti-inflammatory that has been used for centuries in the Chinese and Indian systems of medicine.
Curcumin is the main active ingredient in turmeric and quite frankly the main reason you want to include turmeric into your diet.
Top 5 Health Benefits of Turmeric:
- Anti-inflammatory – curcumin has been shown to be as effective as many anti-inflammatory drugs, without the nasty side effects of pharmaceuticals. Reducing inflammation in the body is key to aid in disease prevention and improve overall health.
- Anti-oxidant – curcumin’s antioxidant properties destroy free radicals in the body that damage blood cells.
- Anti-microbial – curcumin contains anti-microbial properties that help to fight off unwelcome pathogens.
- Wound healing – turmeric is a natural antibacterial agent and can be beneficial if used topically to help speed wound healing.
- Cancer Prevention – multiple research studies have found that curcumin can suppress cancerous tumor growth and also suppress the effects of cancer causing environmental and
How to Increase the Healing Properties of Turmeric
We know turmeric has massive healing properties, the trouble is that many studies regarding absorption, assimilation and transportation have revealed that due to turmeric’s rapid metabolism it has relatively low absorption and bioavailability.
The best way to increase the bioavailability of turmeric’s active compound, curcumin, is by ingesting turmeric with two very important sidekicks:
- Piperine, the active compound in black pepper can increase curcumin absorption by as much as 2000%!
- I also recommend consuming turmeric with a healthy fat like coconut oil, because curcumin is fat-soluble it needs to be dissolved in fat in order to make it into the intestines where it can then be absorbed into the bloodstream.
Also, turmeric + black pepper + coconut oil happen to taste amazing together.
A few of my favorite recipes with turmeric:
Lantz, R. C., Chen, G. J., Solyom, A. M., Jolad, S. D. & Timmermann, B. N. 2005. The effect of turmeric extracts on inflammatory mediator production. Phytomedicine, 12, 445-52. PMID 16008121
Midura-Kiela, M. T., Radhakrishnan, V. M., Larmonier, C. B., Laubitz, D., Ghishan, F. K. & Kiela, P. R. 2012. Curcumin inhibits interferongamma signaling in colonic epithelial cells. Am J Physiol Gastrointest Liver Physiol, 302, G85-96. PMID 22038826
Patial, V., Mahesh, S., Sharma, S., Pratap, K., Singh, D., & Padwad, Y. S. (2015). Synergistic effect of curcumin and piperine in suppression of DENA-induced hepatocellular carcinoma in rats. Environmental toxicology and pharmacology, 40(2), 445-452.
Singh, S., Jamwal, S., & Kumar, P. (2015). Piperine enhances the protective effect of curcumin against 3-NP induced neurotoxicity: possible neurotransmitters modulation mechanism. Neurochemical research, 40(8), 1758-1766.
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