Health Benefits of Tumeric

ground tumeric in a dish

Turmeric is a spice that has been used for its medicinal purposes for centuries. It has been used across Asia as the health benefits of turmeric are numerous however, it’s also been used in everything from rituals to medicine to a dye for Buddhist monks robes. Turmeric has also been found in Tahiti, Hawaii and even Easter Island before there was contact with Europeans. This makes turmeric one of the most popular spices in the world with a rich history and cultural significance.

So it’s no surprise that there has been a resurgence in turmeric’s popularity. There has now been scientific research done to back up these traditional claims around how turmeric can have a positive impact on your health. Turmeric contains compounds called curcuminoids, the most important one of which is curcumin. Curcumin is the main ingredient in turmeric and has been shown to have strong anti-inflammatory effects. Let’s look at the top ways adding more turmeric into your diet can help you and your health.

Top health benefits of turmeric

There are many benefits of turmeric being added into your diet including:

1.Natural anti-inflammatory benefits – the curcuminoid curcumin that sits within turmeric contains anti-inflammatory benefits. This helps us fight off infections and helps our body repair itself after illness or injury.

2. Increase antioxidant capacity – antioxidants are important as they fight off free radicals in the body. These free radicals are charged molecules that cause havoc in the body damaging cells which makes fighting them off all the more important. If you’d like to learn more about antioxidants, you can check out our blog on them here.

3. Improve your BDNF or brain-derived neurotrophic factor – this part of your brain is used for memory and learning new things making it imperative for your cognitive health. This area of the brain is also responsible for issues such as depression and Alzheimer’s meaning that one huge benefit of turmeric is improving this part of your brain health. However, more studies are needed to clarify how this is done.

4. Ease the symptoms of arthritis – another health benefit of turmeric is that it can lessen the pain felt by arthritis sufferers. In studies for both rheumatoid arthritis and arthritis there was evidence that taking curcumin supplements were either just as effective or more effective than an anti-inflammatory drug.

5. Delaying age-related illnesses – there is evidence that turmeric could be used as an anti ageing supplement due to the high levels of curcumin. Although the health benefits of turmeric are numerous, there are no current human studies to support this hypothesis on delaying age-related illness.

Turmeric foods

Turmeric is a spice and therefore isn’t found within other foods; however, you can add turmeric to lots of different foods and beverages to make sure you’re getting enough in your diet. Whether you’re into curries or a comforting cup of tea, there’s a way for everyone to experience the healing properties of turmeric foods.

  • Add it to your eggs – whether you like your eggs scrambled or in a frittata, you can add a sprinkle of turmeric to them for some added flavour and of course, all the health benefits.
  • Blend it into your smoothie – if you’re feeling adventurous, you could add turmeric root to your smoothie for a strong flavour. However, if you’re looking for something a bit more subtle, you can always add a pinch of turmeric powder to your smoothie for a little kick.
  • Make a soup – nothing makes a soup warmer or more flavoursome than adding a teaspoon or two of turmeric. This will give your soup and extra pizazz of flavour and you’ll have the added health benefits of turmeric as well.
  • Add some to your rice – although rice is a great supplement to a dish, it’s never seen as the main event. However, adding some turmeric to your rice dish will give it that all important uniqueness as well as the added benefits of turmeric in your diet.
  • Sprinkle some on your veggies – we all know how important it is to get our five a day and especially those green veggies. Making vegetables exciting can seem like a challenge but adding a sprinkle of turmeric onto them will make your veggies exciting again!
  • Make a curry – as turmeric is a spice, it seems only natural to make a curry out of it. Turmeric can be added to coconut milk and other spices of your choice to make a fragrant and delicious curry sauce – perfect for the winter months!
  • Create a turmeric tea – use any non-dairy milk of your choice, add a sprinkle of turmeric and a spoonful of honey for a warming and soothing hot drink.

If you don’t fancy any of these turmeric foods, you can always take a turmeric supplement instead and still get all the goodness your body needs.

Adding turmeric to your diet is super simple and makes your food and drink options even more exciting! The health benefits of turmeric are extensive and have long term benefits too. If you’re interested in more wellness ideas, why not take a look at How to Strengthen Your Immune System or How to Get a Good Night’s Sleep.

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