Turmeric is a flowering plant of the ginger family. Native to India, the dried roots are powdered and used in Indian and Asian cooking, especially curries, where it lends its characteristic bright yellow color. Turmeric was probably originally imported to China from India, perhaps during the Tang Dynasty (618-907), a time of great international trade.
Turmeric has long been used as a medicine both in the Ayurvedic tradition of India and in traditional Chinese medicine. More modern research is showing that this ancient remedy is useful for many health problems. By far the biggest use of Turmeric has been for inflammation, so it is proving useful for the joint pains of arthritis and many other inflammatory illnesses like Crohn’s disease, as well as being a possible treatment and preventive measure for heart disease and cancer.
Turmeric may help improve endothelial tissue function. Endothelial tissue makes up the lining of blood vessels. It seems turmeric reduces endothelial tissue inflammation which in turn reduces the risk of cardiovascular disease.
Turmeric also appears to contribute to the death of cancer cells, reduces angiogenesis, which is the growth of new blood vessels in tumors, and even seems to reduce the risk of metastasis of cancerous tumors. It has been linked to improved brain function, perhaps delaying or even reversing aging in the brain, making it a useful treatment in dementia and Alzheimer’s. Turmeric also shows promise in helping with depression, with evidence suggesting it boosts the brain neurotransmitters serotonin and dopamine.
If you want to try Turmeric for your health, please make sure whatever product you buy includes black pepper ( Bioperine is the trademark name for black pepper). The Bioperine increases the bio-availability and absorption of turmeric by 2000%. The recommended dose is 1-4 capsules daily of 500 mg of Turmeric, but like everything else, the right dose varies widely, so start slowly and over time increase the dose to what fits for you. It can take several weeks to notice reduction in pain levels and improvements in memory and mood.
More on Turmeric
I noted in last month’s newsletter the many health benefits of taking Turmeric. The more I read about it, the more impressed I am. There are a few cautions however, mostly having to do with combining Turmeric with certain drugs.
Since turmeric is known to lower both blood pressure and blood sugar levels, if you are taking blood pressure medicine, it’s important to monitor your blood pressure if you take
turmeric, as it may reduce your need for your drugs. If you begin to feel dizzy or fatigued after starting turmeric, you may need to consult your doctor about lowering your medicine dose.
Similarly, turmeric can lower blood sugar levels and if you are diabetic and taking a
pharmaceutical, consult your doctor about monitoring or changing your medicine dose if
your blood sugar levels decrease. And turmeric has been shown to interfere with the action of acid reflux (GERD) medicines, so it may be inappropriate to take turmeric while on those medicines. And lastly, turmeric has blood-thinning properties, so exercise
caution if you are taking a blood thinner medicine.
I am selling a brand of turmeric that has black pepper in it that’s made by Pure Encapsulations. I take it and I use other supplements they make. A large bottle of 120
capsules is on sale now for $45 ( Amazon sells it for $65!). The usual dose is 2 capsules
per day, so one bottle lasts 2 month.