600 Reasons Turmeric May Be The World’s Most Important Herb
There is a medicinal spice so timelessly interwoven with the origins of human culture and metabolism, so thoroughly supported by modern scientific inquiry, as to be unparalleled in its proven value to human health and well-being.
Indeed, turmeric turns the entire drug-based medical model on its head. Instead of causing far more side effects than therapeutic ones, as is the case for most patented pharmaceutical medications, turmeric possesses hundreds of potential side benefits, having been empirically demonstrated to positively modulate over 160 different physiological pathways in the mammalian body.
While no food or herb is right for everyone, and everything has the potential for unintended, adverse side effects, turmeric is truly unique in its exceptionally high margin of safety vis-à-vis the drugs it has been compared with, e.g. hydrocortisone, ibuprofen, chemotherapy agents. Furthermore, nothing within the modern-day pharmaceutical armamentarium comes even remotely close to turmeric’s 6,000 year track record of safe use in Ayurvedic medicine.
Despite its vast potential for alleviating human suffering, turmeric will likely never receive the FDA stamp of approval, due to its lack of exclusivity, patentability and therefore profitability. Truth be told, the FDA’s “gold standard” for proving the value of a prospective medicinal substance betrays the age old aphorism: “he who owns the gold makes the rules,” and unless an investor is willing to risk losing the 800+ million dollars that must be spent upfront, the FDA-required multi-phased double-blind, randomized clinical trials will not occur. For additional details on this rather seedy arrangement read our article on the topic: Why The Law Forbids The Medicinal Use of Natural Substances.
Here at GreenMedInfo.com, we have reviewed over 5,000 study abstracts from the National Library of Medicine’s bibliographic database known as MEDLINE and have discovered over 600 potential health benefits of turmeric, and/or its primary polyphenol known as curcumin. These can be viewed on our turmeric research page which is dedicated to disseminating the research on the topic to a larger audience.
Some of the most amazing demonstrated properties include:
- Destroying Multi-Drug Resistant Cancer
- Destroying Cancer Stem Cells (arguably, the root of all cancer)
- Protecting Against Radiation-Induced Damage
- Reducing Unhealthy Levels of Inflammation
- Protecting Against Heavy Metal Toxicity
- Preventing and Reversing Alzheimer’s Disease Associated Pathologies
Again, what is so amazing is not that turmeric may have value in dozens of health conditions simultaneously, or that it may improve conditions that are completely resistant to conventional treatment, but that there are over six hundred additional health conditions it may also be valuable in preventing and/or treating. Consider also the fact that turmeric grows freely on the Earth, and you will understand why its very existence threatens billions of dollars in pharmaceutical industry revenue.
Learn more about this research in the video below (keeping in mind that it is several years old and needing some updating), and please spread the information to others who may benefit from learning more on the topic.
6 Health Benefits Of Turmeric
It’s a quintessential spice in curry, a relative of ginger and one of the healthiest waysto add flavor — and color! — to a home-cooked meal.
Turmeric has been used to relieve everything from liver problems to depression to ringworm in folk medicine, but, like many alternative therapies, there’s not always much research to back up the ancient wisdom.
But that doesn’t mean turmeric’s powers are to be discredited altogether. Here, a look at what we do know about this powerful seasoning.
Turmeric can tame heartburn and an upset stomach.
In a small 1989 study, supplements made from the turmeric plant were found to bemore effective at curbing heartburn and indigestion symptoms than a placebo, possibly because of the plant’s known powers to fight inflammation, Everyday Health reported.
A compound in turmeric may ward off heart attacks…
Curcumin, the compound in turmeric responsible for that bright hue, is behind a whole host of the health benefits attributed to the spice. A 2012 study examined one perk of curcumin in particular: the ability of the extract to prevent heart attacks among bypass patients. The study followed 121 patients who had bypass surgery between 2009 and 2011. Three days before surgery through five days after, half of the patients took curcumin capsules, while the other half took placebo pills. During their post-bypass hospital stays, more people in the placebo group experienced a heart attack (30 percent) compared with those in the curcumin group (13 percent), Reuters reported. While not a substitute for medication, the researchers pointed out, the antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties of curcumin may contribute to as much as a 65 percent lower chance of heart attack among bypass patients.
… Delay diabetes…
Among people with prediabetes, curcumin capsules were found to delay the onset of Type 2 diabetes in a 2012 study. Over nine months, study participants were given either curcumin supplements or placebo capsules. Just over 16 percent of people taking the placebo pill were diagnosed with Type 2 diabetes by the end of the study, while no one taking curcumin was. Again, researchers chalk these results up to the anti-inflammatory and antioxidant powers of the compound.
… And even fight cancer.
While studies in humans are still in very early stages, lab and animal studies have shown promising effects of curcumin in the fight against cancer. Curcumin “interferes with several important molecular pathways involved in cancer development, growth and spread,” according to the American Cancer Society, even killing cancer cells in the lab setting and shrinking tumors and boosting the effects of chemotherapy in animals.
Another compound in turmeric may protect the brain.
Aromatic turmerone or ar-turmerone is not as well-studied as curcumin, but it also likely plays a part in the turmeric puzzle. In a recent study, researchers found ar-turmerone promotes repair to stems cells in the brain. The study examined the effects of the compound in rats on a type of stem cell that is also found in adult brains. These stem cells are involved in recovery from neurodegenerative diseases like stroke and Alzheimer’s. The compound could potentially be used in the treatment of these diseases in the future, the findings suggest.
The new study builds upon a larger body of research suggesting curcumin may improve overall memory in Alzheimer’s patients, due to a wide range of possible pathways, according to a 2008 review.
Turmeric may curb joint pain.
Curcumin has been definitively deemed to carry anti-inflammatory powers, although its exact pathways still aren’t completely understood. However, that knowledge has led to a number of studies examining the benefits of turmeric to people with joint pain or arthritis. One of the most promising found that turmeric extract supplements worked just as well as ibuprofen in patients with knee osteoarthritis.
A few words of caution.
The FDA doesn’t regulate dietary supplements the same way it regulates food or conventional medication, so not every supplement is created equal. Also, certain supplements, including those made from turmeric, can interact with other medications. Turmeric may slow blood clotting, for example, so people taking drugs with the same effect, like anticoagulants, should be cautious about taking turmeric supplements, according to the National Institutes of Health. And of course, it’s always a good idea to talk to your doctor before starting any kind of supplements.
Turmeric (Curcuma longa) is a culinary spice, a major ingredient in Indian curries, and the source of American mustard’s bright yellow color. Used as both medicine and food for centuries, accumulating evidence suggests that this relative of ginger is a promising preventive agent for a wide range of diseases, probably due largely to its anti-inflammatory properties. Curcumin is the chief active component of turmeric, and is usually taken as a supplement. Research indicates that:
1. Curcumin seems to delay liver damage in some instances that can eventually lead to cirrhosis.
2. Turmeric reduces levels of heterocyclic amines – carcinogenic compounds that are formed when meats are barbecued, boiled or fried – by up to 40 percent.
3. Curcumin inhibits the growth of a skin cancer (melanoma) and also slows the spread of breast cancer into the lungs.
4. Turmeric that is part of daily curries eaten in India may help explain the low rate of Alzheimer’s disease in that country. Among people aged 70 to 79, the rate is less than one-quarter that of the United States.
Some Americans may find straight turmeric powder bitter or otherwise off-putting, but when a teaspoon or two is added to a pot of soup or stew, the flavor disperses and adds a subtle depth and complexity that most people find appealing. If even that’s too much for you, both turmeric and curcumin supplements are now widely available – just take one along with your daily multivitamin. Note, however, that turmeric and curcumin are poorly absorbed from the G.I. tract. Absorption is enhanced in the presence of piperine, a constituent of black pepper. Indian cuisine commonly uses turmeric and pepper together. I suggest using only turmeric and curcumin supplements that contain piperine or black pepper extract.