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Benefits of Turmeric and Curcumin

Turmeric, is commonly known to relieve from indigestion or heart burn; this wonderful spice has many other benefits for us up its sleeve and might be one of the most beneficial supplement around with lots of major benefits for body and brain! Turmeric contains Curcumin Recent studies have demonstrated  that turmeric’s main active ingredient curcumin, responsible […]

Turmeric, is commonly known to relieve from indigestion or heart burn; this wonderful spice has many other benefits for us up its sleeve and might be one of the most beneficial supplement around with lots of major benefits for body and brain!

Turmeric contains Curcumin

Recent studies have demonstrated  that turmeric’s main active ingredient curcumin, responsible for its bright color, is also the reason why turmeric has powerful anti-inflammatory as well as very strong antioxidant effects.

However, turmeric’s curcumin content (around 3% per weight), is not enough if we only rely on the food spice to benefit from its properties.  Therefore, you need to take a supplement that contains a significant amount of curcumin to get the amount of 1 gram a day used in the scientific studies. To be absorbed fully by the bloodstream, curcumin needs to be partnered with black pepper, which can enhance curcumin absorption up to 2000%. Also recommended: taking curcumin with a fatty meal as it is fat soluble as well.

Use a good supplement and swallow it with a few peppercorn of whole grain peppers.

Curcumin in Turmeric : Natural Anti- Inflammation Medicine

Short term inflammation plays a major role to fight off invaders and even repair the body. However, chronic, long-term inflammation is detrimental to our health and is believed to be a major cause for most western diseases like cancer, heart disease and other degenerative illnesses, such as alheimer’s.

Curcumin is a very strong natural anti-inflammatory, which actually acts at molecular level and matches the effectiveness of pharmaceutical anti-inflammation drugs, without the side-effects. Curcumin can inhibit molecules playing a role in inflammation.

Turmeric as an Anti-Oxidant

Oxidative damage, caused by free radicals, is one of the main cause of ageing and degenerative diseases. Anti-oxidants are important to the body as they neutralise free radicals. Turmeric is a powerful antioxydant adding to the natural antioxidants stock of the body. It also act as a booster of the body’s antioxydant enzymes.

Curcumin in Turmeric Improves Brain Function

Neurons can form new connection, multiply and increase in the brain. This process is driven by Brain Derived Neurotrophic Factor (BDNF), a growth hormone in our brain responsible for neurones, particularly vital to mental processes such as learning, memorising and thinking.

Studies demonstrated that curcumin can increase the levels of BDNF  and could be effective at reversing brain diseases and age-related regressions in brain functionality.

Evidence have shown that turmeric can increase levels of serotonin and dopamine. A study conducted on 60 patients who took curcumin and Prozac (a popular anti-depressant) concluded that the first one works just as well as Prozac as an anti-depressant and even better as it is All-Natural!

Curcumin in Turmeric can lower the risks of heart disease and Diabetes

Heart disease, the biggest killer in the USA, has many causes, one of which is thought to be dysfunction of the endothelium’s, the lining of the bood vessels, to regulate blood pressure, clotting and some others factors.

Curcumin seems to improve the endothelium’s function and ward off heart disease. Some studies even consider that curcumin is as effective as exercise in improving cardiovascular function; or even the drug Atorvastasin to lower the body’s production of  “bad” cholesterol, thereby reducing the risk of stroke and heart attack, without having the side effects common to the drug.

Curcumin can also delay the onset of Type 2 Diabetes as shown on a study conducted on people with Type 2 Diabetes. For 9 months, participants were asked to take either a placebo pill or curcumin supplements. At the end of the study, 16% of the placebo group still shown Type 2 Diabetes while none of the curcumin group was diagnosed with the disease.

Curcumin in Turmeric can relieve Arthritis pain

Arthritis involves some kind of inflammation in the joints. As we know, turmeric has powerful anti inflammation properties. A study on Rheumatoid arthritis patients showed that Curcumin was more effective than Ibuprofen to relieve joint pain.  The effect was also the same on knee ostheoarthritis sufferers. Other studies have also looked into the effects of curcumin in turmeric and reported improvements in various symptoms of joint pain.

Turmeric and Cancer

Research demonstrates that cur cumin may affect cancer growth and development at cellular level. It could even prevent some forms of cancer to happen in the first place such cancers of the digestive system.

According to the American Cancer society, Curcumin in turmeric “interferes with several important molecular pathways involved in cancer development, growth and spread” and even shrink tumours and kill cancer cells boosting chemotherapy effects in animals. In a study: 44 men with colon lesions, which could lead to cancer, took 4 grams of curcumin for 30 days. After the time period, the lesions decreased by 40%. At present, scientists are intensely studying its effects on human cancer but the results on animals so far have been very promising.

Turmeric and Alzheimer’s

The biggest fear nowadays is undoubtedly loss in functionality, physical and mental. Alzheimer’s certainly sounds as a death sentence and there is no medical treatment. Prevention is probably our best bet. It is proven that inflammation and oxidation both play a role on the onset of this terrible disease. As mentioned turmerics has an effect on both and therefore it absolutely recommended as a beneficial preventive supplement. Also turmeric has the ability to cross the blood brain barrier and bring improvement in this disease pathological process.

Caution please…

As wonderful as the numerous benefits that you can get from this natural medicine, still, be careful when you take Turmeric and curcumin as sometimes it may interact with the current medication that you are taking. See a doctor before undergoing any changes in your supplements or medication.

There are numerous good supplements of turmeric. I recommend that you take one including bioperine which is the compound that enhances its absorption and avoid to simply by-pass it through your digestive system.

Sources:

http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3633300/

http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/18588355

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2014/10/18/turmeric-health-benefits-curcumin_n_5978482.

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Vina Buenaflor

Written by Vina Buenaflor

Writes about nutrition, health and wellness. Currently on an Action Plan to place in a triathlon by 2016.


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