Turmeric is a bright yellow or orange root which is often ground into a fine powder and used as a spice in curries. This spice, which originally came from Southeast Asia, has many surprising benefits to your health as well as being a delicious addition to food. There are numerous ways of incorporating turmeric into your life. Turmeric can be made into a delicious tea, added to smoothies or you can take it in pill form. Why should you, though? Let’s find out!
Here is a list of 7 benefits associated with turmeric:
1. Reduces Inflammation
One of the active ingredients in turmeric is curcumin, which has proven to be highly effective at reducing the occurrence of swelling and inflammation. This is very useful for treating certain conditions such as arthritis and ulcerative colitis. Turmeric reduces swelling by inhibiting certain enzymes which are responsible for inflammation. The results of recent research studies have shown that curcumin may be more effective at treating rheumatoid arthritis than most prescription medications.
2. Boosts Your Immune System
Using turmeric on a regular basis can help you fight any colds or flu before you get sick. The amazing anti-inflammatory properties couple with its antimicrobial properties means that turmeric is a powerful immune booster. Although turmeric is sometimes poorly absorbed, if you consume it along with black pepper you can ensure that it is fully absorbed in the body. The good news is that those two ingredients make an excellent addition to a pot of chicken soup which will also help you feel better.
3. Good For Your Gut Health
There has been significant research on the impact of your gut health on your overall health. Certain illnesses such as ulcerative colitis and Crohn’s disease wreak havoc on the healthy bacteria which are necessary for your digestive system to function properly. Although it is classified as a spice, its gentle flavor means that it is easy to digest and will not do any further damage. Additionally, turmeric stimulates the production of bile which helps to digest food and it also relieves gas and bloating.
4. Turmeric Can Be Used To Treat Depression
This vibrant yellow powder can be used to effectively treat certain factors which lead to the development of depression. A recent study found that people who suffer from depression often have raised levels of inflammation as well as decreased levels of serotonin and dopamine. Continued use of turmeric may allow certain neurotransmitters in the brain to repair themselves and return to their optimum functionality.
5. Helps You Stay Young
Turmeric has proven to be highly effective at neutralizing the effects that free radicals in the environment have on the human body. This means that there is less damage to your skin, hair, and nails. Additionally, turmeric can be mixed with coconut oil to create a face mask which combats the appearance of wrinkles, dark circles under the eyes as well as puffiness. Turmeric can also reduce the appearance of scars, large pores, and inflamed skin.
6. Turmeric May Help You Deal with Pain
There are a number of studies (1, 2, 3) that demonstrate turmeric’s potential to help with pain. The curcumin which is found in turmeric may trigger certain natural processes in the body that activate the body’s pain relief response. It does this by lowering histamine levels which can be used to treat pain from wounds, burns, sciatica, post-operative pain as well as neuropathic pain. However, it is important to remember that if you choose to use turmeric as a source of pain relief it does not work the same way as traditional painkillers. Turmeric works well if it is used consistently over an extended period of time.
7. Turmeric Supports Brain Function
Other studies (4, 5) show how turmeric can support brain function. Due to the amazing anti-inflammatory qualities of turmeric, it may be beneficial in preventing certain disorders associated with the brain. This includes disorders such as Alzheimer’s disease and dementia. Alzheimer’s disease is caused by plaques which form in the brain and then cause a significant decrease in brain function. Continued use of turmeric may prevent the growth of new plaques and slow the growth of existing plaques. This is astounding as it may provide new hope for individuals who suffer from these kinds of disorders.
Turmeric and its curcumin content have reported beneficial effects in arthritis, allergy, asthma, atherosclerosis, heart disease, Alzheimer’s disease, diabetes, and cancer. They have an amazing ability to modulate the human immune system. Together, these findings provide a conclusive proof that turmeric should be a part of your diet.
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