Turmeric, an orange-colored spice imported from India, has been a staple in Middle Eastern and Southeast Asian cooking for thousands of years.
In addition, Ayurvedic and Chinese medicines utilize turmeric to clear infections and inflammations on the inside and outside of the body. But beyond the holistic health community, Western medical practitioners have recently come on board in recognizing the benefits of turmeric.
The following is a quote from Dr. Andre Weil:
“Here’s a quick roundup of recent research on both turmeric and curcumin.
Curcumin seems to delay liver damage that can eventually lead to cirrhosis, according to preliminary experimental research at the Medical University Graz in Austria…
Rodent studies at the University of Texas indicate that curcumin inhibits the growth of a skin cancer, melanoma and also slows the spread of breast cancer into the lungs.
Researchers from the University of South Dakota have found that pretreatment with curcumin makes cancer cells more vulnerable to chemo and radiotherapy.
Epidemiologists have hypothesized that the 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.
And at least one new study suggests curcumin’s value for arthritis treatment. Since arthritis is so common and the results so interesting, it’s worth a closer look.
This research, from Italy, was a three-month trial involving 50 patients diagnosed by x-ray with osteoarthritis of the knee. The Italian team was investigating the effect on arthritis symptoms of a curcumin-based preparation optimized for better absorption. Participating patients took the formulation in addition to standard medical treatment; those in the second group continued following their physicians’ recommendations.
After 90 days, the researchers found a 58 percent decrease in overall reported pain and stiffness as well as an improvement in physical functioning among the curcumin group compared to the controls. They also found, via a standardized testing procedure, a 300 percent improvement in the emotional well being of the curcumin patients compared with the others. And blood tests showed a 16-fold decline in C-reactive protein, a marker for inflammation. Patients in the curcumin group were able to reduce their use of non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs by 63 percent, compared to the other group.
The bottom line that the therapeutic advantages of turmeric and curcumin are almost too numerous to list. An overview published in Advanced Experimental Medical Biology in 2007 states that, “Curcumin has been shown to exhibit antioxidant, anti-inflammatory, antiviral, antibacterial, antifungal, and anticancer activities and thus has a potential against various malignant diseases, diabetes, allergies, arthritis, Alzheimer’s disease and other chronic illnesses.”
We at Tattva’s Herbs believe that Turmeric is one of the most important healing herbs on our planet. It has been shown that you can maintain health throughout life by incorporating a healthy daily routine based on Ayurvedic principles, diet, and recommended herbal supplements.