Turmeric seems to be popping up a lot in our sistr chats! So we thought we’d unravel a bit of info on its benefits so you can all get cracking with it and pop it in your lattes.
Medics, nutritionists, and all others who seem to be in the know have referred to turmeric as the most effective nutritional supplement in existence. We’ll take their word and happily run with it.
Studies have shown it has major benefits for your body and brain. Let’s have a look at how and why we should all embrace it into our daily routine.
- Turmeric Contains Bioactive Compounds with Medicinal Properties
Turmeric’s common use is the spice that gives curry its yellow colour. India has embraced this spice for thousands of years both as a spice and for its compounds with medicinal properties.
The compounds are called curcuminoids of which curcumin is the most important and the main active ingredient in turmeric. Its powers lie within its use as a powerful anti-inflammatory and antioxidant.
- Curcumin is a Natural Anti-Inflammatory Compound
Inflammation helps your body fight foreign bodies as well as repairing damage. In absence of inflammation, pathogens would envelop your body and eventually kill you. So whilst short term inflammation can be beneficial, the long term becomes chronic. Anything that can help in the fight against chronic inflammation, especially natural remedies is important.
Curcumin has been proved in some instances to match the effectiveness of some anti-inflammatory drugs by suppressing many molecules that contribute to inflammation, without the side effects. Conditions such as arthritis, a common condition involving inflammation of the joints have sown that curcumin has proved an effective anti-inflammtory.
- Turmeric Boosts Brain-Derived Neurotrophic Factor, Linked to Improved Brain Function and Lower Risk of Brain Diseases
Brain neurons can form new connections as well as in some areas of the brain, multiply and increase in number. One of the main drivers behind the process is a brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF), a type of growth hormone in your brain. Brain disorders can commonly be linked to decreased levels of this hormone.
Curcumin has been known to increase levels of BDNF. This could be seen as an effective process to delay age-related decreases in brain function.
- Curcumin Should Lower Your Risk of Heart Disease
Heart disease is the number 1 cause of death in the world. Whilst there are so many contributing factors to the disease, curcumin may help reverse steps in the process.
- Turmeric Can Help Prevent Cancer
Whilst there are many forms of Cancer, it is characterised by uncontrolled cell growth and some forms have many things in common. Curcumin supplements appear to have some effect on some forms of Cancer. It’s been shown to contribute to the death of cancerous cells affecting the growth, development, and spear at the molecular level.
Whilst curcumin hasn’t been embraced as a conventional cancer treatment as yet, there is evidence that it may prevent it from occurring in the first place and its inclusion as a future treatment is looking promising.
- Curcumin has Benefits Against Depression
Curcumin can act as effectively as an antidepressant. A study conducted amongst a group of 60 suffering from depression showed that curcumin acted as effectively as Prozac in helping with symptoms.
How Should You Consume Turmeric?
Its recommended that you take it as a supplement or use it as a spice. Here are a few tips if you’re taking it as a supplement.
- Look for “phytosome technology” on the label – this type of curcumin has 29 times greater absorption in the body compared to standard extracts.
- Check your dose – doctors would recommend taking 500 milligrams twice a day with food.
- Start low and build up – as with everything new, let your tummy adapt!
- Be picky – find a supplement with as few inactive ingredients as possible.
- Listen to your body – turmeric may cause bloating so stop taking it if you notice negative side effects.
Here’s Our Recipe for the Perfect Turmeric Latte!
350ml almond milk (or milk of your choice)
¼ tsp ground turmeric
¼ tsp ground cinnamon
¼ tsp ground ginger
½ tsp vanilla extract
1 tsp maple syrup
Grind of black pepper
- Pop all the ingredients in a saucepan and whisk over a gentle heat – with a milk frother if you have one. Once hot pour into a mug, sprinkle with cinnamon, and enjoy!
So there you have it! A little summary of why this natural herb can be so effective. With its potent anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties, it can touch conditions from depression to arthritis to heart disease.
Why not enjoy your morning latte on our next sistr coffee morning!