This yellow-orange root is a natural wonder. It has been used in Asia for over a thousand years, both as a coloring agent and for medicinal reasons. The most active element of turmeric is curcumin, which gives this herb its long list of healing properties. Several studies have shown that turmeric can be used as a strong anti-inflammatory in conjunction with chronic inflammations such as cancer, arthritis, cardiovascular diseases, diabetes, etc.
Another big advantage of turmeric is that it contains a lot of antioxidants. Antioxidants help us to fight against free radicals, excessive amounts of which can cause damage to our DNA and our cells. Curcumin is the most important component of turmeric, which gives it its antioxidant power.
Blood Sugar Levels
“The balancing effects of turmeric on blood sugar make it a good option for people with type 1 or 2 diabetes. It helps to reduce the amount of sugar in the blood and fight against insulin resistance.”
The health benefits of turmeric go beyond your internal health alone. The anti-inflammatory properties of turmeric can also boost your complexion when applied locally, making you look even more beautiful. It helps to control oily skin. Unfortunately, the solution is not to apply it lavishly directly to your face, as it can cause yellow spots on the skin. It’s better to look for a product that contains turmeric.
There is definitely hope that turmeric can help regulate moods, such as in the treatment of depressive disorders. A 2014 study tested the effectiveness of curcumin with a widely used antidepressant, fluoxetine. Subjects received either 1,000 mg curcumin and 20 mg fluoxetine, individually or combined. This showed that 1,000 mg of curcumin can only be used to treat patients suffering from major depressive disorder (MDD).
Turmeric is known for its anti-inflammatory properties, so it shouldn’t surprise you that it can also help to reduce joint pain. In a study published in The Journal of Alternative and Complementary Medicine, 107 respondents with osteoarthritis of the knee were given either curcumin or ibuprofen for their pain. Researchers found that curcumin is similar to the drug used to fight pain and improve the function of the joints.
A migraine is often caused by inflammation of blood vessels in the brain and curcumin may help to reduce that pressure, thanks to its anti-inflammatory properties.
The body naturally loses waste products, mainly with the help of the liver. But some experts think you can give the process a helping hand. “Turmeric helps support the body’s natural detoxification systems by diluting the bile. This allows bile to flow more freely through the intestines and it is eliminated by the body.”
A strong immune system can help your body to defend itself better against bacteria and viruses. Turmeric has been shown to stimulate the proteins that increase immunity within the body. Consider making a pot of curry soup and be sure to add some black pepper, as this will increase the body’s absorption of curcumin.
Cortisol is known as the “stress hormone.” And chronically elevated cortisol levels are linked to a wide range of mental and physical disorders, ranging from depression to obesity. This study suggests that curcumin can reduce cortisol and increase the level of positive neurotransmitters such as serotonin.
The use of turmeric is widespread in Ayurvedic and Chinese medicine. It helps with various physical ailments, including digestive and gas problems. In addition, there appears to be a scientific background for this. A double-blind, placebo-controlled study has shown that turmeric could reduce bloating and symptoms of gas formation in people who suffered from indigestion. However, it is important to be careful, because there is some evidence that it could increase the amount of heartburn.
Since the early 1990s, scientists have been studying the effects of turmeric in lowering LDL cholesterol levels, also known as ‘bad cholesterol levels’. There are studies published that suggest that curcumin can help increase the amount of LDL cholesterol that the liver removes from the body and could prevent the intestines from absorbing LDL.
Today, healthy eating and physical activity are still the best ways to keep your body fat at a healthy level, but Korean researchers suggest that turmeric could be another option. Their 2015 study suggests that curcumin could change the composition of fat cells in our bodies. They also noted that the anti-obesity effects of curcumin could be linked to its anti-inflammatory properties.
Heart and Blood Vessels
Another impressive feature of turmeric is that it can improve cardiovascular health. A study published in the 2012 Nutrition Research Daily showed that curcumin can be as effective in improving vascular function in postmenopausal women as average sports routines. Another study showed that combining sport and curcumin in a programme markedly delayed the age-related degeneration of the heart.
Eczema is linked to chronic inflammation and people with eczema know the frustration of suffering from dry, itchy skin. To date, a handful of clinical studies have studied the effectiveness of curcumin for both eczema and psoriasis, with positive results shown when curcumin has been ingested. Other studies suggest that when applied topically, curcumin can improve skin health.
Curcumin, which is in turmeric is a natural blood thinner that has the ability to cause the arteries to expand. As the blood vessels relax, the substance can reduce the risk of high blood pressure. The anti-inflammatory properties can also help with general cardiovascular function, which in turn helps to maintain healthy blood flow. Please note that curcumin can cause problems for some when used, as it can increase the risk of bleeding.
Getting seven or eight hours of sleep is crucial for good health, as a lack of sleep can wreak havoc all over your body, from your hormones to your appetite. A study on animals showed that curcumin could eliminate the symptoms of sleep deprivation in mice that had not been able to sleep for 72 hours.
Many studies carried out on the health benefits of turmeric have demonstrated its antibacterial and antifungal properties, making it very useful as a disinfectant for cuts and burns. A 2001 study also showed that it could promote the healing of wounds. For smaller abrasions and cuts, you can make a paste from mixing the powder with water as a quick home remedy.