Turmeric, a main Indian spice, is one of the most powerful spices you could possibly consume in your diet.
If you’ve read my book then you’ll already be aware of some of the health benefits turmeric can provide for us. However, because of it’s many benefits I felt the need to share them with you all so that you too can love (or learn to love) the spice as much as my family and I do. We try to consume the powerful spice at least everyday!
Many argue that Turmeric, also known as Curcuma longa, is the most powerful spice when it comes to fighting diseases and illnesses. Now I know a lot of research can be misleading, but the said benefits of Turmeric is something I personally believe to be true myself. Especially when we think about how Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s is extremely uncommon is India, where it is consumed by millions daily.
For those wondering, there are currently more than 10,000 reviewed articles found on PubMed.com, which discuss and proves the benefits of Turmeric and it’s healing compound, Curcumin (the active substance found in turmeric). Some of the articles are a great read so definitely have a look if you have a spare minute or two.
Curcumin (the secret of this wonderful spice), just like turmeric, is also a compound that’s well-studied for it’s amazing health benefits. Turmeric actually contains up to 3% Curcumin by weight and Curcumin is believed to stop enzymes that may be responsible for producing carcinogens in the body by turning environmental toxins into them.
Curcumin has similar benefits to turmeric but is more known to improve digestion and help inflammation cause in the digestive system.
So now you’re probably wondering, are turmeric and Curcumin the same? Well in some ways yes, and in some ways, no. Let me explain…
Curcumin is only a mere 3% of weight and it’s actually a compound found in turmeric – rather than it being the same. Turmeric however, is the bright yellow spice root and comes in whole form.
As you previously read, Turmeric is also known as Curcuma longa as it’s the plant that it’s extracted from. Curcuma longa grows in India and other Southeast Asian countries, however it’s more popular in India which is probably where we associate the spice with the most. To make turmeric you simply ground the dried root of the Curcuma longa plant. Once grounded it will then turn into the vibrant yellow turmeric spice we all know.
So what are the many benefits of Turmeric? To be honest, there really are quite a lot of them but here are the most important one’s you should know about…
- It’s a natural anti-inflammatory compound
- Reduces chronic joint pain
- Can boost low energy levels
- Great for your complexion (mix it with raw honey!)
- Improves brain function and lowers the risk of brain disease
- Can slow and prevent blood clotting (for those that suffer side effects from Ibuprofen, curcumin is a godsend).
- Decreases your risk of heart disease
- Can help with obesity
- It helps us grow new brain cells and decrease memory loss.
- Effective in treating depression
- Pain reduction (thanks to it’s anti-inflammatory compound)
- Studied to manage arthritis
- Medical studies have demonstrated that it can naturally help to prevent certain cancers
While tablets and supplement manufacturers often claim their products be 10 to 100 times more potent than you would put in your homemade curry, if you are not a big fan of taking too many supplements, then heaping it on your chicken or beef is still mighty beneficial. Or if you’re like me and are a fan of homemade Primal curries, then I like to add a tsp or two to my favourite chicken, chickpea and sweet mango curry.
Supplements of turmeric however, are actually made up of Curcumin and not turmeric itself. So really it depends on your personal preference as to how you’d take turmeric – naturally or through a supplement. Either way, both provide you with amazing health benefits that fortunately, are becoming more known in the media.
So should you be taking turmeric? Yes, absolutely. Whether that’s naturally or by taking a supplement. With all of it’s amazing health benefits you’d be a fool not to really! Here are a few ways you can start taking turmeric…
- Homemade curries (see my chicken, chickpea and sweet mango recipe here)
- Turmeric broth
- Turmeric latte
- In curry powders
- Turmeric rice
- Turmeric face mask – for complexion benefits
- Turmeric honey
- In baking (brownies, cookies, cakes, the list is endless!)
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