If you are a health conscientious person who aims to live well into your 90s, while maintaining stellar control over your cognitive and physical abilities, then you are probably familiar with the wide-ranging benefits of Turmeric. Used throughout history as a textile dye, condiment and healing herb, turmeric has long been hailed as one of the most diverse and useful spices on the planet, and there’s good reason as to why.
What is Turmeric?
Turmeric is a spice that is derived from the root of the Curcuma Longa plant. Featuring brown skin and dark orange flesh, turmeric has a peppery and bitter flavor, as well as a slight fragrance that is similar to orange and ginger. This makes perfect sense since it is closely affiliated with the ginger family. Considered to be the central spice in curry, it tends to color food a shade of bright yellow – so it’s best to exercise maximum caution when handling the colorful spice.
What Are Some of the Benefits of Turmeric?
Turmeric has long been utilized as a powerful anti-inflammatory agent in both Chinese and Indian cultures. It was commonly used against a wide range of health conditions: from hemorrhage to bruises and menstrual pain to chest pain. But, one of the most notorious health benefits of turmeric seems to be its cancer preventing property, which is thought to be the reason some types of cancer are not as widespread in India as elsewhere in the Western world.
The orange and yellow pigment of turmeric is called curcumin, and it is this pigment that seems to give turmeric it’s pharmacological uses. Several studies have shown curcumin’s anti-inflammation effects to be comparable to over the counter medicines such as Advil or Motrin. What makes this effect particularly unique is the fact that curcumin produces little to no toxicity in the body, unlike standard medications that can cause intestinal bleeding, ulcer formation, or other unfavorable side effects. And, when used as an essential oil, turmeric can be used as a topical anti-inflammatory medicine.
However, it’s important to note that the benefits (as well as dangers) of turmeric have not been studied in children. Therefore, please consult with a physician before administering it to children under the age of 18. At Merkaela, your safety is our main concern.
Lower Your Cholesterol
Although science is still catching up with what herbal healers have known for a long time, evidence points to the fact that turmeric can be an effective tool in a fight against bad cholesterol. Researchers have found that small doses of curcumin can lower all kinds of cholesterol, including LDL cholesterol that is considered to be dangerous for our overall health.
Curcumin seems to act as a messaging molecule that is able to communicate with liver cells, thereby increasing the production of messenger proteins that are responsible for regulating LDL receptors. The more receptors are found in the body, the more our liver cells can clear out the bad cholesterol, which is one of the major benefits of turmeric.
Treat Cystic Fibrosis
Cystic Fibrosis is a fatal genetic disorder that attacks the lungs with extremely thick mucus, causing a slew of infections, diseases, and other negative side effects. Most people who have the disorder never live past the age of thirty, which makes this condition particularly heartbreaking. A study conducted in 2010 suggests that curcumin can help alleviate some symptoms associated with specific types of cystic fibrosis.
According to the findings: “Studies in CF mice using free curcumin have shown that curcumin is capable of correcting defects associated with the disease, but it has also been observed that some strains do not respond to curcumin treatment.” Though more research needs to be conducted to determine the effects of curcumin treatment on cystic fibrosis, those who are afflicted with the chronic condition see recent developments as hopeful.
Help Treat or Prevent Cancer
Although there is still a lot of research being conducted to understand if there is validity to the claim that curcumin can help treat or prevent cancer, it’s hard to dismiss the emerging information.
According to The World Healthiest Foods:
“Epidemiological studies have linked the frequent use of turmeric to lower rates of breast, prostate, lung and colon cancer; laboratory experiments have shown curcumin can prevent tumors from forming; and research conducted at the University of Texas suggests that even when breast cancer is already present, curcumin can help slow the spread of breast cancer cells to the lungs in mice.”
Much like anything else in life, turmeric can have negative side effects if used improperly, which is why it’s immeasurably important to consult with a medical professional before making it a regular part of your life. Those who are pregnant, have had surgery, or may have hormone sensitive conditions should exercise extreme caution when considering the spice for cooking or medicinal purposes.
When you think of Merkaela, we strive to empower our community by providing you with a comprehensive lifestyle guide, which in it’s own unique way educates, entertains, and engages the growing reader base. Because we are here to help you live better, feel free to request information about a particular essential oil, the healing properties of different meditation styles, or a guide about harmful chemicals found in cosmetics.
Our goal is to quip you with the tools, information, and products you need to take control of your life. But for now, we sincerely hope we have familiarized you with the wide-ranging benefits of turmeric.