Turmeric is a spice known for being more than just a unique and flavorful food ingredient, a popular one at that. This spice has a range of proven health benefits, and it stands out as a preventative remedy and lifestyle aid. Here is a look at turmeric and its most prominent benefits.
The Background on Turmeric
Scientifically known as Curcuma longa, turmeric is a spice native to China, southeast Asia, and India. It has an ancient heritage of medicinal uses in these regions of the world. Its most prominent utility has historically been for relieving disorders of the skin, joints, and digestive system.
The turmeric plant is known for its vivid golden hue. This hue appears in foods that are most commonly made using turmeric: curries (Indian dishes containing turmeric) and mustards. Among other compounds contained in turmeric, curcumin is the most important compound for human health. It has strong anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties.
In modern medicine, turmeric is recognized for its knack for effectively addressing many different conditions, such as those discussed below. Turmeric is consumed freely as a spice added during cooking or meal preparation. It is also taken as an oral supplement. Dietary turmeric supplements are usually made from dry rhizomes (a type of root) of turmeric plants.
The Benefits of Taking Turmeric
Turmeric is touted for a range of different uses. The following list contains such uses for which turmeric has been proven most efficacious of most popular, or both. Medical attention and/or treatment are typical for some of the conditions mentioned below. Therefore, while turmeric is and should be regarded as a mere spice, we recommend talking to your physician before taking turmeric for health-related reasons.
Fighting inflammation: This is one of, if not the, most prominent and proven benefits of turmeric. Turmeric has been scientifically proven to combat and reduce inflammation in the human body. In fact, it is one of the most effective natural anti-inflammatory compounds in the world. Reducing inflammation is good for the body in a very basic way, because inflammation corresponds with many kinds of ailments. Turmeric’s anti-inflammatory properties contribute to most of the benefits attributed hereafter.
Mitigating chronic disease risk: Turmeric’s antioxidant benefits make it an effective treatment compound in mitigating the chances of multiple types of chronic disease. Antioxidants in turmeric help combat free radicals, which are particles produced in the body that play a role in the development of Alzheimer’s, diabetes, high blood pressure, and other chronic illnesses. Free radicals are produced as a result of environmental factors, such as pollution from cigarette smoke.
Reducing depression: Supplementing with turmeric has been shown in multiple studies to have a positive effect in alleviating depression. It has been considered in at least one of these studies as a worthy factor in standard care for adults diagnosed with major depressive disorder. In another study, it was shown to be just as effective as the antidepressant medication fluoxetine.
Pain management: Turmeric can be helpful in reducing pain due to arthritis, namely osteoarthritis. This is because of turmeric’s anti-inflammatory effect.
Supporting memory: One study has shown that turmeric can bolster memory and neurocognition in adults without dementia. Reducing inflammation in the brain, as well as its antioxidant properties, are thought to be the reasons turmeric bolsters memory.
As a means to bolster your memory, reduce the chances of chronic disease, or combat inflammation and its associated effects, look to turmeric. The powers of this natural spice allow it to merit a spot in the supplement cabinet for most people. Talk to your doctor about trying turmeric.