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A Healing Spice – Turmeric

A Healing Spice – Turmeric

Have you ever heard of turmeric? This is one of my FAVORITE spices, not because of taste, but because of the healing properties that are attached to this special spice. I was first introduced to turmeric when I ate curry chicken. I realized that the curry powder was a blend of spices and I noticed that turmeric was one of them. I always heard that Indian dishes, like curry, were always very healthy for you. When I went into research mode, dozens of research studies confirmed my questions about turmeric being a healing spice. I can’t wait to share these benefits with you & teach you how to use turmeric in your daily meals.

Where Does Turmeric Come From?

Turmeric is native to the surrounding areas of India. Which is why you will see lots of turmeric in many Indian dishes. Turmeric is also in the family with ginger, which is another powerful plant.

Turmeric is a great source of iron, magnesium, manganese, potassium, and omega’s.

What Are The Benefits of Turmeric?

In the Journal of Natural Science, Biology, and Medicine, there was a study done that explained the therapeutic effects that turmeric has on the body.

Turmeric’s special healing property comes from curcumin, which is an active constituent in it. The curcumin can inhibit the growth of bacteria, fungi, and parasites, so it’s a known antimicrobial. It can also help increase heart health in a positive way by lowering triglyceride levels and inhibiting platelet aggregation, which helps improve cardiovascular circulation. There was also a study that showed how turmeric helps with gastric ulcers. In this study, patients were taking a strong dose of turmeric 5x a day. In only four weeks, half the patients were ulcer free. By the end of the whole 12 week treatment, there was over 75% of the patients that were ulcer free.

Turmeric is naturally an anti-inflammatory and can help with acute inflammation or chronic body inflammation that happens over time with wrong nutrition, inflammation from food intake when someone has a food sensitivity, etc. A study in the Alternative Medicine Journal talks about how the anti-inflammatory properties can be a therapeutic agent to inflammatory bowel disease, pancreatitis, arthritis, and certain types of cancer. A study that was done showed that curcumin had more potent anti-inflammatory properties than conventional NSAIDs, like ibuprofen or aspirin.

It’s also a strong antioxidant that kills free radicals in your body. Turmeric brings the strength back in the cells to promote cellular resistance to damage the free radicals may cause. My favorite benefit from ingesting turmeric is the property of it being anti-mutagenic, AKA fights against cancer. The study from the Journal of Natural Science, Biology, and Medicine state how curcumin has the ability to inhibit cancer at three stages – tumor promotion, angiogenesis, and tumor growth. Because of the strong anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties this spice has shown to put a stop to the ‘uncurable’.

Another study linked that curcumin can boost brain-derived neurotrophic factors. Increasing these brain factors can help decrease your chance of getting Alzeheimer’s, depression, and other neurological disorders.

Where To Get Turmeric?

Turmeric is becoming a very popular spice, so you should be able to get it any major supermarket! For a quality organic turmeric, I usually have to go to Whole Foods to get it. If you are interested in DIY, you can also find normal turmeric root at farm stores or your local produce section in a grocery store and you can grind it up yourself to make fresh turmeric powder. Whatever works for you, just get it in your diet today!

How To Use Turmeric?

I love to use turmeric for extra spices in whatever I’m making. I love to use it to season chicken, sauteed greens, roasted broccoli, soups, salmon, etc. There really are no rules to what it can go on. I also love taking a turmeric supplement for the extra nutrients and anti-inflammatory properties. In quite a few medical journals, there have been studies that taking turmeric with black pepper can help increase the absorption of turmeric by 2000%, like this study shows! This spice is a must-have in your diet.

Lahana Vigliano
lahana@thrivalnutrition.com

Lahana Vigliano is a Certified Clinical Nutritionist and CEO of Thrival Nutrition. She has her Bachelor's Degree in Nutrition Science and currently pursing her Masters Degree in Nutrition Science and Functional Medicine. Lahana and her team help support women who struggle with weight loss, hormonal imbalances, digestive issues, chronic fatigue, and many other lingering issues that leaves women not feeling their best. She uses food as medicine, as well as herbs and supplements when needed, to support her clients. She looks at the whole body holistically making sure women are understanding how nutrition, sleep, stress, and their environment impact their health. Connect with her on Facebook + Instagram (@thrivalnutrition).