Numerous civilisations have used different herbs and spices throughout history for their culinary and potent medicinal effects. Few exited for many years as well as turmeric, possibly the dietary ingredient with the most research in contemporary natural medicine.
Curcuma longa is a kind of ginger indigenous to Southeast Asia, and this plant produces turmeric root powder. It contains curcuminoids, which have potent anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties, as well as a wide range of applications, advantages, and adverse effects.
1. Anti-Inflammatory Properties
Curcumin helps reduce inflammation in the body. The root cause of inflammation is free radicals, which destroy cells and cause damage to DNA. Free radicals form when we expose ourselves to environmental toxins, pollution, radiation, and certain foods. When inflammation occurs, immune system cells activate and release inflammatory substances that help fight off infection. Many turmeric supplements are available out there, for example, turmeric capsules. However, these same immune cells begin attacking normal body tissue and organs when inflammation becomes chronic. Inflammation is associated with conditions like arthritis, asthma, eczema, psoriasis, heart disease, diabetes, cancer, Alzheimer’s disease, depression, and dementia.
Antioxidants protect cells from oxidative damage. Oxidative damage originates from exposure to harmful chemicals or radiation. These chemicals or radiation cause the production of oxygen radicals, which are highly reactive molecules that damage and kill cells. The antioxidants found in turmeric neutralize these damaging oxygen radicals. Turmeric contains compounds called polyphenols, which are potent antioxidants. Studies have shown that turmeric supplements may prevent cardiovascular disease, lower blood pressure, enhance liver function, and improve cholesterol levels.
3. Cancer-Fighting Properties
Studies show that turmeric may inhibit the growth of various types of cancers. It may slow down the spread of cancerous tumours and increase the effectiveness of chemotherapy treatments. Research shows that curcumin may help prevent breast, colon, lung, prostate, skin, stomach, and pancreatic cancers. It may also decrease leukaemia, lymphoma, and ovarian cancer risk.
4. Boost Immune System Function
The immune system defends the body against pathogens, including bacteria, viruses, fungi, parasites, and even cancer cells. Turmeric helps boost the immune system by increasing the activity of white blood cells. White blood cells are responsible for fighting infections in the body. Turmeric may also stimulate interferon-gamma production, stimulating T-cell proliferation and increasing antibody synthesis. Interferon-gamma is a cytokine (chemical messenger) that promotes cellular immunity and phagocytosis.
5. Digestive Health Support
Turmeric may promote digestive health by stimulating bile secretion and gallbladder contraction. Bile is produced in the liver and stored in the gallbladder. Bile aids digestion by emulsifying fats and breaking them into smaller particles. Turmeric may also aid digestion by helping break down protein. Protein breaks down into amino acids, which absorbs into the bloodstream. Amino acids are the building blocks of proteins.
6. Skin Healing
Turmeric may benefit the skin by preventing UV damage. Ultraviolet rays from sunlight can lead to wrinkles, age spots, premature ageing, and skin cancer. Turmeric may help prevent sunburn by reducing inflammation and swelling after exposure to ultraviolet rays. Turmeric may also help heal wounds by promoting collagen formation and tissue repair.
The root of a plant that belongs to the ginger family, turmeric, is a brilliant yellow, fragrant powder. Besides its gastronomic usage, turmeric has historically been recognized for its therapeutic benefits and has drawn attention from the scientific and medical communities.
You can intake turmeric in various forms, be it turmeric capsules as part of your regular supplements, mixing it with your tea or incorporating it into your food. The options are endless.