Make Time for Turmeric: A Super Spice with Enormous Health Benefits
Turmeric is nothing new. In fact, the ancient spice dates back nearly 4,000 years to the Vedic culture in India. Indians have been using turmeric from everything to flavoring food to relieving gas to improving energy for thousands of years, but it’s not until recently that modern medicine has caught on. It’s clear that researchers are becoming aware of the health benefits that turmeric provides based just on the number of scientific studies available on its effects. If you do a Google search for the health benefits of turmeric, you’ll be hit with hundreds of different articles and studies telling you why turmeric should be a regular part of your diet. As you know, we’re big fans of making your life a little easier, so we’ve compiled a summarized list of those health benefits.
Benefits of Turmeric
- The main ingredient in turmeric, called curcumin, has powerful anti-inflammatory properties and is an extremely strong antioxidant. Combining turmeric with black pepper, which contains a compound called piperine, enhances the absorption of the curcumin by 2000%.
- Curcumin has been shown to increase levels of a hormone called Brain-Derived Neurotrophic Factor in the brain. Because of this, it may help delay or even reverse brain-related diseases like Alzheimer’s disease and depression.
- The curcumin in turmeric may help improve the health of the lining of the blood vessels, called the endothelium, which can reduce the risk of heart disease. Some studies show that regular consumption of curcumin may be as good for the heart as regular exercise.
- Several studies have shown that curcumin may help reduce the growth of cancer cells and the growth of new blood vessels in cancerous tumors.
- Because of its anti-inflammatory properties, curcumin has been shown to greatly improve symptoms in those with arthritis. Some studies comparing curcumin to anti-inflammatory drugs show that it’s just as, if not more, effective.
- The curcumin in turmeric also aids in the proper metabolism of fat and may help with weight maintenance and/or loss.
How to Enjoy Turmeric
Now that you know the benefits of turmeric, the next step is to make it a regular part of your diet; but the task can seem daunting, especially if you’re not familiar with the spice. The good news is that there are several ways to consume the super spice that go beyond food.
- On Your Food.
Turmeric has a very distinct flavor, so this is a wonderful opportunity to try some new, authentic Indian-inspired recipes. You can also keep things simple by sprinkling turmeric on top of eggs or adding it to the water when boiling rice.
- In a Smoothie
One of our favorite ways to enjoy turmeric is in a morning smoothie. We add a turmeric mix that contains black pepper, along with our Skip-a-Meal, a handful of berries, a handful of spinach, and just enough coconut milk to allow it to blend.
- As a Supplement
If you’re not a fan of the taste of turmeric, you can take it in supplement form. There are many different options available – from capsules to tinctures. Just make sure the supplement you choose contains black pepper, or piperine, in addition to turmeric.
*These statements have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. Nothing mentioned here is intended to cure, diagnose, treat, or heal any disease.
November 16, 2016
Nutrition, General Health, Health Tips, Supplements