10 Turmeric Benefits That Will Improve Your Quality Of Life In 2018 & Beyond
It's time to stop thinking of turmeric as simply a delicious ingredient in curry. According to hundreds of peer-reviewed medical studies, this golden spice provides a myriad of surprising health benefits. Indeed, it's sometimes more effective than pharmaceutical drugs!
Why is turmeric so good for you? The spice's active ingredient, curcumin takes most of the credit here. Comprising 3% of turmeric's weight, curcumin is a chemical compound with astounding antioxidant and anti-inflammation properties. It has been linked to improving organ function, lessening the symptoms of various illnesses, promoting weight loss, and even brightening your mood.
There are a few ways to consume turmeric and curcumin. Unsurprisingly, the most practical way to ingest turmeric is by adding it to food or beverages. While your mind might immediately jump to your favorite Indian dishes, turmeric is also popularly used in Golden Milk, which is essentially a turmeric latté, and savoury, aromatic soups. Just grab any cookbook off your shelf and you'll likely find turmeric in a handful of yummy recipes.
Curcumin, on the other hand, is often taken in pill form. This medicinal method is thought to heighten the compound's potency and effectiveness, thus augmenting its therapeutic potential. To learn more about curcumin's amazing, healing properties, just keep on reading.
Here are the top 10 benefits of turmeric and how this mighty spice can improve your life.
1. Lifts Mood and Depression
Turmeric is thought to lift mood levels and alleviate depression. In a recent study of 60 patients with major depressive disorders, such as bipolar disorder, curcumin was shown to be as effective as Prozac in treating the symptoms of depression. Similar results have been gathered in laboratory studies with animals. However, until more research is conducted, curcumin isn't officially considered equivalent to antidepressants, especially in severe health cases.
2. Powerful Anti-Inflammatory Properties
Chronic inflammation within the body can cause excruciating, long-lasting pain and discomfort. If you experience inflammation-based health conditions, turmeric can potentially help. Curcumin has potent anti-inflammatory properties and works by decreasing swelling at the molecular level by inhibiting their activity. Just something to consider next time you reach for that Tylenol bottle!
3. Improved Brain Function
Looking to protect your brain's long-term function? Incorporating turmeric into your health regime is a great step. Curcumin is known to increase Brain-Derived Neurotrophic Factor (BDNF) levels within the brain. BDNF hormones are believed to ward off a number of degenerative diseases, and they also promote neuron growth to keep your neural pathways firing at full capacity. Consuming turmeric can also potentially slow down the natural, age-related decreases in brain function that happen in later life.
4. Treats Skin Conditions
Due to its antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties, turmeric is thought to improve the skin's appearance. Various ailments that turmeric is currently used to treat include current acne outbreaks, past scarring from acne, psoriasis symptoms, and the healing of open wounds. Since turmeric can stain the skin, or sometimes lead to an allergic reaction, you're encouraged to test a small amount on a forearm first, before applying it to your face.
5. Reduces Risk of Heart Disease
The heart is another major organ that benefits from turmeric consumption. Turmeric contains two ingredients that promote cardiovascular health: vitamin B6 and curcumin. Vitamin B6 blocks homocysteine production, which is known to weak cell walls, leading to heart-related complications. These complications are often even worse if the patient is already afflicted by plaque build-up or elevated blood pressure. Meanwhile, curcumin helps by eliminating excess LDL from your body's blood vessels and arteries, which in turn can improve your cholesterol levels. So, your ticker can keep on ticking for many years to come.
6. Reduces Arthritis & Joint Pain
Rheumatoid arthritis patients can profit from turmeric as well. Since curcumin offers both anti-inflammatory and pain-reducing properties, certain individuals find it helps to lessen their main arthritis symptoms, such as joint inflammation. In fact, recent research shows that curcumin's benefits might outweigh those of Diclofenac sodium, one of the leading drugs for the illness. Pretty amazing, right?
7. Powerful Natural Antioxidant
Want to slow down the visible signs of aging? Since turmeric has powerful antioxidant features, it's believed to impede oxidative damage. Curcumin works two-fold by neutralizing free radicals and blocking them, and then it also naturally increases the body's antioxidant enzymes.
8. Metabolism Booster
Turmeric speeds up your metabolism. A fast metabolic rate leads to more calories being burned, which can facilitate weight loss. When you're trying to shed a few pounds, curcumin helps by lowering cholesterol levels, detoxifying the liver, and decreasing inflammation levels. After all, a body that isn't fighting half a dozen internal battles is more likely to lose weight.
9. Reduces Risk of Alzheimer's Disease
While Alzheimer's disease is still sadly without a cure, research has shown that prevent steps do exist. One of these steps just happens to be--you guessed it--turmeric! As a devastating, neurodegenerative disease, Alzheimer's is thought to be partially caused by inflammation and oxidative damage. Curcumin provides therapeutic properties for both these issues, hence it could be consumed as part of a preventative regime. Also, studies indicate that curcumin can help clear the body's Amyloid plaques, which are heavily linked to Alzheimer's degenerative process.
10. Helps Stop Growth of New Cancer Cells
Numerous studies have been conducted between curcumin and its effect on cancer cells. Certain laboratory research suggests that curcumin works as an anticancer agent, slowing the growth of cancer cells and even decreasing their numbers. Another benefit of food-based botanicals, like curcumin, is they don't have the toxicity of traditional cancer treatments. The most promising results have been shown with breast cancer, colon cancer, and skin cancer, although additional studies continue to revel new findings.
Remember to consult with your doctor before beginning to take curcumin supplements. It's also not advised to abruptly discontinue any medications in favor of curcumin. We encourage you to read the clinical studies online, which discuss turmeric and curcumin in more depth, to form a fuller picture of their benefits. On that note, have a happy and healthy 2018! The New Year is a time for fresh beginnings, and investing in your well-being is always a wonderful resolution.