Spice up your life: the benefits of turmeric

Spice up your life: the benefits of turmeric

Author -  Good Health

A Little History

Turmeric comes from the root of the Curcuma longa plant and is native to Indonesia and southern India, where it has been harvested for more than 5,000 years. It was first used as a condiment and a natural food dye due to its beautiful bright colour before it became recognised for its superstar health benefits.

Traditionally used in Chinese and Indian medicine, turmeric owes its healing power to the naturally occurring chemical compound, curcumin, which has been linked to all manner of healing properties.

Turmeric’s Health Benefits

Luckily for us, the brightest shade from the spice rainbow has gained popularity in the Western World too. Clinical evidence has shown that turmeric helps treat a wide range of illnesses, ranging from digestive and liver disorders to menstrual issues, urinary tract problems, sore throats and colds, toothaches, bruises, chest pain, and even colic. This is due to its powerful anti-inflammatory, antioxidant and antibacterial properties.

An Anti-Inflammatory Superstar
The key element of turmeric is curcumin, which has been proven to be an effective remedy to support inflammatory conditions like sore painful joints as well as digestive issues like inflammatory bowel disease (IBD), Crohn's and Ulcerative colitis. As well as being a powerful antioxidant, it is able to inhibit major inflammatory chemicals within the body. Some research suggests that curcumin might ease symptoms of uveitis (long-term inflammation in the middle layer of the eye), while other research shows that taking turmeric daily for several months may improve kidney function for people with kidney inflammation. Amazing stuff!

Spice up your life: the benefits of turmeric

The Power of an Antioxidant
Curcumin has powerful antioxidant effects that have been found to neutralise free radicals. Free radicals are chemicals that can travel through the body and cause great amounts of damage to healthy cells. This can be really beneficial for many diseases such as arthritis, where free radicals cause painful joint inflammation and lead to joint damage.

Turmeric also helps your liver to function - curcumin is an amazing natural liver detoxifier, enhancing digestion by toning the stomach and improving the function of the gallbladder.

Spice up your life: the benefits of turmeric

Turmeric and Heart Health
Turmeric is also essential when it comes to cardiovascular health. Studies have suggested that curcumin may help prevent the build-up of plaque that can clog arteries and lead to heart attacks and strokes. Turmeric reduces the amounts of bad cholesterol (LDL cholesterol) in the blood, preventing atherosclerosis. Turmeric can also improve cardiovascular health due to its anti-platelet action. By preventing platelets from sticking together, turmeric prevents blood clot formation and can therefore reduce the risk of a heart attack or stroke.

Spice up your life: the benefits of turmeric

Protecting Your Brain

Last but by no means least, growing evidence suggests that turmeric may help protect against neurodegenerative diseases. Studies have shown that in the elderly Indian population - whose diet is high in turmeric - there are lower incidences of neurological diseases such as Alzheimer's. It has been suggested that curcumin protects against Alzheimer's disease by removing amyloid plaque build-up.

Spice up your life: the benefits of turmeric

How to Make the Most of Turmeric

An easy way to get turmeric into your daily routine is by taking Good Health Turmeric 15800 Complex, and although not as potent health-wise, adding it to your food whenever you can also helps. Some of our favourite turmeric inspired recipes include Annabel Langbein’s Fish Curry, Monday’s Turmeric Scented Pilaf and these 7 quick tips from The Kitchn.

Spice up your life: the benefits of turmeric

If you are going to use the spice in your food, raw is best, so try sprinkling it on your vegetables or mixing it into dressings. If you cook it, make sure to use a small amount of healthy fat like coconut oil to maximise its amazing flavour. Rub it on meat and add it to your curries and soups for a healthy, spicy zing. You could even bust open a capsule of our Good Health Turmeric 15800 Complex and add it to your meal!


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