Plus Other Foods That Really Enhance Its Bioavailability
The Power of Curcumin
The secret to turmeric’s healing properties is curcumin, a chemical compound that has been used for medicinal reasons for centuries. Studies suggest that curcumin has anti-inflammatory, antioxidant, and neuroprotective activities. This means it could have a wide range of health benefits, ranging from improving cognitive health to preventing oxidative stress. (1)
Health Benefits of Turmeric
The compounds present in turmeric may provide diverse health benefits such as:
Curcumin can impact the way the neurotransmitters in the brain function. Because of the compound’s effect on the brain, it may be able to relieve some of the symptoms of depression. Studies suggest that curcumin may provide similar results to popular prescription anti-depressants. (2)
Improve Skin Health
Curcumin is often used in beauty products and skincare formulas because of its skin-boosting properties. This is largely because curcumin acts as an antioxidant and anti-inflammatory, which can minimize skin conditions like acne, psoriasis, and fine lines and wrinkles.
Excessive chronic inflammation is the root cause of many diseases, ranging from arthritis to chronic pain. Curcumin has anti-inflammatory effects because it can inhibit pro-inflammatory pathways. These anti-inflammatory properties may have myriad applications—curcumin may be able to help Alzheimer’s patients, people who suffer from colitis, and patients with high cholesterol.
Blood Clot Prevention
When blood platelets start to congregate in one area, it can lead to clots. This process, known as platelet aggregation, may be mitigated by curcumin. The anti-inflammatory compound helps to regulate internal biosynthesis, which may prevent platelets from congregating. Because of this, curcumin should be a must-try treatment for anyone at risk for cardiovascular events.
Thanks to its anti-inflammatory properties, turmeric is an effective way to manage arthritis symptoms while addressing the root cause- chronic inflammation. This condition is caused by the inflammation of the joints, which can cause pain and soreness. Curcumin works by attacking the sources of the inflammation, which helps minimize the associated pain. Studies suggest that adequate doses of curcumin may be just as effective as common OTC pain medications. The difference between pain medication and turmeric is that the latter has no side effects but tons of benefits(3)
How to Enjoy the Health Benefits of Turmeric
There are many ways to enjoy the health benefits of this healing spice. You could create your own golden milk, drink it in your tea, or use it as a seasoning on your food.
Ancient Golden Paste
For years, people across the world have been harnessing the spice’s anti-inflammatory properties. My Ancient Golden paste is one of the most effective recipes, as it combines the spice with ingredients that increase its potency, like black pepper and coconut oil. Check out this recipe (4) to make your very own golden milk!
If you don’t have time to mix up a batch of golden paste, don’t worry! There are other ways to enjoy this ancient spice’s myriad healing properties. One of the easiest ways is to brew turmeric-flavored tea. To brew the tea, simply boil water and then add half a teaspoon of the spice. Allow it to steep for about ten minutes, and then strain it to ensure it has a smooth texture.
When you’re whipping up a green smoothie, add a teaspoon of this golden-hued spice! This is a great idea for pre-workout smoothies, as the addition of curcumin can help to reduce muscle inflammation.
This is another popular way to add amazing Turmeric to your diet:
Heat your favorite nut milk until it is warm (or hot depending on how you like it). Then add a heaping spoonful of ancient golden paste, add honey or your favorite natural sweeteners like this one or this one (stevia and monk fruit). Blend with a hand blender or you favorite blender and enjoy!
Cook Some Curry
While spoonful’s of golden honey or paste are great ways to harness the health benefits of this spice, don’t forget its most popular use! Stir up some curry powder by combining the spice with oil, black pepper, coriander, cumin, and cayenne. Store it in the fridge, and use to make soups, stews, or this delicious crock pot curry chicken.
Ingredients That Optimize the Anti-Inflammatory Powers of Curcumin
When you’re concocting anti-inflammatory elixirs, teas, and meals, there are certain ingredients that will optimize the healing powers of curcumin.
Ginger is well known for its ability to relieve gastrointestinal discomfort. The gingerols found in this ingredient helps to inhibit inflammatory compounds before they form, which can help to protect against colorectal cancer, alleviate pregnancy-induced nausea, and prevent simple car sickness. When combined with curcumin, ginger helps to ward off the inflammation that can disrupt digestive function.
Present in black pepper is a compound called piperine, which helps to increase the potency of curcumin. The body metabolizes curcumin quickly; effective recipes need to include an agent that can forestall this process. Without an agent like piperine, the health benefits of the spice may not take effect.
Like black pepper, coconut oil increases the bioavailability of turmeric. Add it to your pastes, your smoothies, and your curries to ensure you get the most out of your curcumin use.
What is your favorite way to incorporate turmeric or any of the spices mentioned? Share below!