Turmeric, sometimes called Indian saffron or the golden spice, is a plant that grows in Asia and Central America. The turmeric on shelves and in spice cabinets is made of the the ground roots of the plant. It is also a major ingredient in curry powder.
Capsules, teas, powders and extracts are some of the turmeric products available commercially.
Curcumin is the active ingredient in turmeric, and it has powerful biological properties. Curcumin is natural antioxidant. Ayurvedic medicine system of treatment recommends it mainly for chronic pain and inflammation.
Health benefits of Turmeric –
• Anti inflammatory –
One of the turmeric main claim to fame is that it’s commonly used to fight inflammation, and the bulk of turmeric’s inflammation -fighting powers can be credited to curcumin.
In fact, in the right dose, curcumin may be a more effective anti – inflammatory treatment than common inflammation-fighting medications such as ibuprofen and aspirin.
As chronic inflammation contributes to many chronic diseases, curcumin may help treat conditions like inflammatory bowel disease, pancreatitis and arthritis.
• Protect against Heart disease –
Curcumin present in the turmeric may improve endothelial function, or the health of the thin membrane that covers the inside of the heart and blood vessels. This membrane plays a key role in regulating blood pressure. Lower endothelial function is associated with aging and an increased risk of heart disease. Thus, curcumin may help protect agerinst age related loss of function and reduce you likelihood of developing heart disease.
• Prevent cancer –
As inflammation is linked to tumor growth, anti-inflammatory compounds such as curcumin may play a role in treating and preventing a variety of cancer types, including colorectal, pancreatic, prostrate, breast and gastric cancers.
• Make ease in Osteoarthritis –
Turmeric may be a safe and effective long term treatment often for people with osteoarthritis.
• Help treat or prevent Diabetes –
Curcumin may help prevent diabetes through its anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties, and improve many of the factors that contribute to diabetes including insulin resistance, high blood sugar and hyperlipidaemia.
• May help delay or reverse Alzheimer’s disease –
It may even protect your brain against common degenerative diseases like Alzheimer’s. Curcumin increases the levels of brain-derived neurotrophic factor(BDNF), a protein found in the brain and spinal cord that plays a key role in keeping nerve cells healthy, as well as regulating communication between nerve cells, which is necessary for learning and memory.
• Play a role in treating Depression –
Like Alzheimer’s, depression is also associated with lower levels of BDNF. Thanks to turmeric’s ability to boost levels of BDNF, the spice shows promise as an effective antidepressant.
• Treats Rheumatoid Arthritis(RA) –
RA causes a painful swelling of the joints that can cause the bones to erode over time and ultimately lead to deformities and physical disabilities. Curcumin shows promise in the treatment of RA.
• May improve skin health –
Turmeric may be an effective treatment for a variety of skin conditions, including acne, eczema and psoriasis.
• Protects your body from free radicals –
Antioxidants help protect your body against damage caused by free radicals, a class of highly reactive alone that are generated in our bodies, as well as in environmental pollutants like cigarette smoke and industrial chemicals.
Too much free radicals can mess with the fats, proteins and even DNA in your body which may lead to number of diseases and health conditions such as cancer, heart disease, arthritis, Alzheimer’s etc.
• May work as an Anti-Aging supplement-
As a result of turmeric’s ability to fight inflammation, protect your body against free radicals and ultimately delay brain degeneration and other age related diseases, it may be effective as anti-aging supplements.
• May prevent eye degeneration –
Glaucoma, a group of eye conditions, is one of the Ieading cause of blindness in people over age60. Topical curcumin treatment may help protect the eyes against degeneration.
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