Turmeric is a spice that has been used for thousands of years to add flavour and colour to food. It’s also effective in treating different health conditions, including arthritis and digestive problems. Before buying turmeric powder, learn its benefits.
Arthritis and Indigestion
Turmeric is a spice used for thousands of years in cooking and medicine. Turmeric has many health benefits, including antioxidant properties, anti-inflammatory effects, and the ability to lower cholesterol levels. The main ingredient in turmeric is curcumin which may be responsible for some of the spice’s medicinal properties.
It’s thought that curcumin, one of the main ingredients in turmeric, may be responsible for some of the spice’s medicinal properties. Curcumin can help fight inflammation and prevent cancer from spreading throughout the body or growing back after treatment.
This is because it targets several pathways in cancer cells — including those involved in cell growth and death — that can make tumours less likely to grow or spread.
Other research suggests it helps fight inflammation.
Turmeric can fight inflammation, a significant indicator of disease and discomfort in the body. Inflammation can cause pain, redness and swelling in joints or muscles—symptoms most people recognise as signs of getting sick or hurt.
Turmeric may help relieve stress and reduce the risk of certain diseases, including heart disease. In one study from 2010, researchers found that women taking a curcumin supplement for four months had lower levels of cortisol (the “stress hormone”) than women taking a placebo. Another study showed that taking a curcumin supplement for eight weeks helped people cope with stressful situations better and improved their moods.
While some research suggests that curcumin may help with stress-related problems like headaches or depression, it’s important to remember that these studies have been small and have not been done on humans very often.
A study from the Journal of Medicinal Food found that curcumin, a compound in turmeric, may help people with Alzheimer’s disease by reducing symptoms. The researchers looked at 20 previous studies and found that patients who took curcumin had improved memory and slower cognitive decline than those who did not. One study showed that curcumin reduced inflammation associated with Alzheimer’s disease by nearly 50%. Another study showed it could reduce amyloid plaques (a buildup of proteins) by as much as 60%.
Research suggests that turmeric may help prevent cancer from spreading throughout the body or growing back after treatment.
- Before a tumour is found and removed, some cancer cells may have already spread to other parts of your body. They can then grow into new tumours. This process is called metastasis. Turmeric has been shown to inhibit the growth of cancer cells in lab rats by stopping them from dividing (a property called “anti-proliferation”). It may also prevent new blood vessels from forming around tumours (a property called “anti-angiogenesis”). This makes it harder for metastatic cancer cells to take hold in different areas of your body — reducing their chance of survival outside their original tumour site.
- People with advanced prostate cancer often receive radiation therapy after surgery to lower their risk for disease recurrence and improve survival rates. One study found that curcumin helped control inflammation following radiation therapy — supporting its use as adjuvant therapy after surgery.
Tips for Buying Turmeric
When purchasing turmeric powder, you should consider the following points:
- Buy organic turmeric powder. Organic turmeric is not only better for you, but it’s also better for the planet. When you buy organically grown foods, you’re helping to protect the environments that produce them.
- Buy fresh and vibrant-looking turmeric powder. Turmeric that has lost its colour or has an off smell may have gone stale or rancid, indicating that the product was old when it was packaged and brought to market. Stale or rancid turmeric can cause digestive issues in certain people, so if you notice these qualities in your purchase, opt instead for fresher options!
- Buy a finely ground powder with no additives or fillers (like cornstarch). This will ensure maximum absorption by your body when consumed because all key ingredients are present in one easy-to-ingest package.