What is so serious about turmeric? If you are an Indian probably this is what you would be thinking right now. Turmeric has always been an integral part of Indian cuisine. The bright yellow color of Indian curries plays a major role to trigger our appetite for sure. We mostly consider turmeric as a natural coloring agent for cooking. However, in Ayurveda turmeric has been used as medicine to cure multiple health issues for centuries. These indigenous traditional knowledge has been backed up by science to some extent these days. Turmeric has become one of the favorite spice for the medical researcher for the past few years. Turmeric benefit will leave you surprised for sure.
Benefits of turmeric
Are you thinking what has made turmeric so special? It’s curcumin, the main active compound in turmeric. Curcumin has great anti-inflammatory properties. That means it has the ability to fight against foreign invaders in our body and can also repair the damage. Curcumin also acts as a potent antioxidant, can neutralize the free radicals from attacking the cell wall and also stimulate the body’s own antioxidant enzymes to work better to delay the aging process. WOW!! Turmeric and beauty treatment – are you getting the connection now? Apart from beauty alert, curcumin also plays a crucial role in lowering the risk of heart disease and also for preventing as well as curing Alzheimer disease. Apart from this, curcumin can work wonders for arthritis by reducing the symptoms. There are studies where curcumin worked even better than anti-inflammatory drugs. Research has shown a significant role of this magic for the treatment as well as prevention of cancer by reducing the size of the tumor and in some cases by inhibiting the tumor growth in test animals. It is evident that curcumin helps to improve brain function and also reduce the risk of brain diseases. Therefore if you want to improve your memory and become smarter, turmeric is the spice that you may need.
Turmeric and black pepper are the best friends
But turmeric contains only around 3% of curcumin by its weight. Shocked? Don’t be. I have more for you. Curcumin doesn’t even get absorbed well into our bloodstream. But, curcumin can be absorbed 2000% better when mixed with piperine present in black pepper. Curcumin is fat soluble, therefore turmeric should always be taken along with black pepper and with some fat to get the maximum benefit.
Okay, we get it..… Now, what to do?
Include turmeric as a regular ingredient in your diet. You must be thinking what’s the big deal in it as already you are using it for regular cooking. Is that fine to get the turmeric benefit? No that’s not enough until you are absolutely sure of the quality of turmeric you are using. It is needless to say that an abundance of food products has actually made the food quality inferior. It is unfortunate that adulteration of almost everything is the hard reality today. Even turmeric powder is also not an exception. Mixing of metanil yellow, lead chromate to bring the bright yellow color and addition of chalk powder, rice flour, sawdust, starch etc to enhance the volume of the turmeric powder is a common practice. So pick your turmeric carefully to ensure all the medicinal benefit. It is better if you can get the fresh raw turmeric and use them in making turmeric tea, turmeric milk etc. But don’t forget to add a pinch of black pepper and some ghee/oil in it. Try this out.
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