Welcome back to Health and Fridays! Thank you Lord for seeing us through another week. Today, we’re going to be listing some of the possible health benefits of using turmeric.
Turmeric or Curcuma longa comes from the turmeric plant. It is a culinary spice used to add flavour and colour to a variety of dishes. It is also used in herbal medicine and fabric dye. It is native to India and Southeast Asia. In its unprocessed form the root resembles the ginger root. On the inside however, it is yellow in colour. Turmeric is rich in iron and manganese. It is also a good source of vitamin B6, dietary fiber, copper, and potassium.
Turmeric can be obtained in many forms – some forms include natural root, ground powder form, as a supplement even as an essential oil. According to the World’s Healthiest Foods, most of the studies done on turmeric tend to focus on its main active ingredient, curcumin.
Some of the studies done suggest the following benefits:
- Boost brain function
- Lower the risk for brain disease such as Alzheimer’s and dementia
- Lower risk of heart disease
- Lower cancer risk
- Help with depression
- Treatment of gastrointestinal issues such as constipation and cramping
- Ease menstrual symptoms
- Cystic Fibrosis
- Detoxifying the liver
- Natural antiseptic and antibacterial agent
- Alleviate pain
- Slow the aging process
- Rejuvenate the skin
- Reduce the appearance of wrinkles
Here are some ways to use turmeric:
- Add it to your meals along with black pepper. Most of the curcumin that is ingested gets metabolized before it can get absorbed. Piperine present in black pepper is said to help make curcumin more bio-available.
- Add fat when consuming turmeric. Turmeric is fat-soluble and thus much better absorbed when taken with fat. Use healthy fats like olive oil, coconut oil, etc.
- Drink it in tea. You can use either the powder or the fresh root. Add it to boiling water and allow it to simmer for 10 minutes. I sometimes add a small piece of fresh ginger. Strain into a cup and add a little honey to taste.
- Apply on the skin in the form of a mask. Using some honey, yogurt or milk with a teaspoon of turmeric in a bowl. Mix ingredients in a bowl until it forms a smooth paste. Apply to clean skin. Leave this mask on for at least 20 minutes before washing off.
Precautions and warnings:
- If consumed in large quantities turmeric can have the following side effects on the body such as nausea, dizziness and diarrhea.
- Turmeric might promote a menstrual period or stimulate the uterus, putting the pregnancy at risk as such it is suggested that it not be used in medicinal amounts during pregnancy.
- Turmeric can make gallbladder problems worse. Do not use turmeric if you have gallstones or a bile duct obstruction.
- Turmeric might slow blood clotting and might increase the risk of bruising and bleeding in people with bleeding disorders.
- The Curcumin might decrease blood sugar in people with diabetes. Use with caution and moderation. Be sure to monitor your blood sugar.
- Turmeric can cause stomach upset in some people. It might make stomach problems such as GERD worse. Avoid turmeric if it worsens symptoms of GERD.
- Turmeric might lower testosterone levels and decrease sperm movement when taken by mouth by men. This might reduce fertility. Turmeric should be used cautiously by people trying to have a baby.
- Taking high amounts of turmeric might prevent the absorption of iron. Turmeric should be used with caution in people with iron deficiency.
- Turmeric might slow blood clotting. It might cause extra bleeding during and after surgery. Stop using turmeric at least 2 weeks before a scheduled surgery.
As always remember, moderation is key and always consult your doctor. I can’t stress that enough.
Thanks for stopping by. Have a great weekend! 😉