Curcumin is a polyphenolic phytochemical found in the yellow dietary spice turmeric.
Clinical trial studies over the last two to three decades have been done to evaluate it's effectiveness in preventing cancer or the mouth, colon and breast.
Anti-inflammatory effects of turmeric have been known for centuries, used in South East Asia and India to treat inflammation and skin wounds. Chronic inflammation underpins many health problems and disease states, this explains why curcumin demonstrates positive therapeutic effects on various diseases in various human based studies.
Due to the lack of side effects of eating turmeric, I suggested one of my clients try taking it for the arthritic pain in her knees. She shared with me this week that since taking Turmeric capsules every day for 2-3 weeks her knees haven't bothered her! Fantastic! She's not having to take painkillers anymore. This outcome for her perfectly reflects the findings found by researcher Chin in 2016 'Patients with osteoarthritis showed improvement in pain, physical function, and quality of life after taking curcumin. They also reported reduced concomitant usage of analgesics and side effects during treatment'.
As when looking at any food and wondering how good it is for us, you can ask the simple question
'How many processes has this food been through to get to my plate?'
This includes how you have cooked or preserved it. If the answer is many then the likelihood that it's not going to be so great is high. The same is true for Turmeric.
I hadn't seen the raw turmeric root until finding it at our local market this year, many of us know it as the bright yellow powder that you add to make curries. Unfortunately the process of making it into a powder does mean that the natural oil is lost and the key active ingredient curcumin is significantly reduced too. Therefore raw turmeric is what you want to be eating. The easiest way is to roast it with other root vegetables with coconut oil and fresh herbs. Dr Axe also has a Turmeric Tea recipe to try here.
If you have had a success story for using Turmeric do share it here.