Health Benefits of Turmeric

Turmeric is known as ‘queen of the spices’ its been used throughout Asia for centuries. Turmeric and its powerful ingredient, curcumin, have a wide range of health benefits.  The antioxidants in turmeric have the potential to prevent heart disease, eye conditions and Alzeimers. Its anti-inflammatory properties can be helpful for people with arthritis not only this but turmeric can even reduce the risk or spread of cancer.

Turmeric is a natural anti-inflammatory:
Inflammation is a necessary for our bodies, it fights with the harmful invaders and repairs the damage thats caused by the bacterias, viruses and injuries. However, long term inflammation  has been implicated in most serious conditions such as heart disease and cancer, so this must be controlled. The curcumin in turmeric has proven, strong anti-inflammatory properties that block the action of inflammatory molecules in the body. Studies haven shown positive effects of curcumin on people suffering from conditions such as rheumatoid arthritis and inflammatory bowel disease, amongst others.

Turmeric has anti-cancer effects:
Turmeric has been influence on cancer according to studies , and many have found that its helpful in stopping the cancer formation, growth and development . Also the Research has shown that it can reduce the spread of cancer and can contribute to the death of cancerous cells. Turmeric and curcumin also counteract the effects of some carcinogens, such as certain additives used in processed food.

Turmeric can help with Skin conditions:

Turmeric contains antioxidants and anti-inflammatory properties. Turmeric’s characteristics are helpful in providing glow and luster to the skin. Turmeric may also revive your skin by bringing out its natural glow. You may want to try a turmeric face mask at home to see if the spice has any positive effects on your skin, for best results you can add milk to the mask as well

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Turmeric might be brain food:

There is growing evidence that curcumin can cross the blood-brain barrier and may help to protect against Alzheimer’s disease. It works to reduce inflammation as well as the build-up of protein plaques in the brain that are characteristic of Alzheimer’s disease sufferers. Another study of 60 patients showed that curcumin was as effective as an anti-depressant in treating depression, by boosting levels of brain-derived neurotropic factor (reduced levels of this chemical are associated with depression).

While most of the current research is being carried out in a lab or on animals, the results are encouraging, and this wonderful spice will continue to be investigated as a powerful tool in improving our health. And it’s a great excuse to make a curry!

Getting the most from turmeric:

The key to consume health benefits of Turmeric may depend on how you consume it.

Recently a study showed various ways of consuming turmeric. The results showed that cooking turmeric with oil could help your body absorb more curcumin.  When curcumin blends in with fat, like the natural fat, which are found in olive or coconut oil, it’s more easily absorbed by the gut. And it may be that even small daily amounts consumed in this way could be beneficial for your health.

So as there have been alot of claims about the healing properties and health benefits of Turmeric, we still want to find out how true are these. Extravagant claims such as ‘Turmeric can cure Cancer’ should be taken with a pinch of salt. If it sounds too good to be true, it probably is.

What we do know is that cooking turmeric with oil, as part of a balanced diet, could be the best way to get the most from this spice.

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Aiman Imran

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