Turmeric possesses numerous biological activities including anti-inflammatory, anticancer, and anti-diabetic activities*
Turmeric is one of the most powerful natural medicines we can add to our food. From the same family as ginger, turmeric is a brilliant anti-inflammatory herb that can either be consumed as a supplement or used to spice up your food. While tablets and supplement manufacturers often claim their products are ten to a hundred times more potent than you would put in your homemade curry, if you are not a big fan of taking too many supplements, then heaping it on your chicken or beef is still very beneficial.
Supplements are made up of a compound found in turmeric called curcumin and not turmeric itself. There are more than 5,000 medical articles and pieces of research online, many claiming turmeric to be the most powerful herb on the planet.
The benefits of turmeric could fill an entire book (many books actually – Amazon alone has 301 books with turmeric in their title, I have so far just read the 9 above – so still have some way to go!).
Let’s look at some of the main benefits of this incredible herb:
- Reduces chronic joint pain
- Reduces the pain of arthritis
- Can boost low energy levels
- It can slow and even prevent blood clotting
- For those that suffer side effects from Ibuprofen, curcumin is a godsend
- In 2009, Auburn University of Alabama published a report that explored how taking turmeric supplements can help reverse type 2 diabetes**
- It is a powerful anti-inflammatory
- It helps decrease memory loss
- Medical studies have demonstrated that it helps to prevent certain cancers
- It has one of the highest antioxidant scores (see ORAC below)
Just as fatty fish offers the finest source of omega 3 and yellow bell peppers are the ultimate provider of vitamin C, turmeric is the richest source of the antioxidant substance curcumin. I personally love to cook lots of dishes with this heaven-sent spice, but at the same time I still take a daily supplement to make sure I am not missing out on the goodness that it packs.
After all, the spice is said to reduce the risk of prostate and skin cancer, brain tumours, leukaemia, multiple sclerosis and depression. It’s a natural painkiller that, for aches and pains in certain parts of the body, is said to be as effective as ibuprofen. And while I am a big believer that most research is misleading, as correlation rarely proves causation, I do believe turmeric is part of the reason why in India, where it is consumed by millions, Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s are extremely uncommon.
Oxygen Radical Absorbance Capacity (ORAC)
The Oxygen Radical Absorbance Capacity (ORAC) database was compiled by scientists in 2007 working at the National Institute of Health and Aging (NIH) in the US, run by the Department of Agriculture. It measures the antioxidant capacity of different foods (foods that best absorb free radicals).
Why don’t more doctors talk about this?
Because just like vitamins and minerals, as foods aren’t patentable, big pharmaceuticals can’t make money out of them. And if big pharma can’t make money, this type of research, even though it is hugely beneficial for our health, rarely makes it into medical journals. I also find it most interesting that the foods that are rich in antioxidants also seem to be rich in vitamins and minerals. This is particularly interesting if you are worried about dementia, Alzheimer’s or Parkinson’s, in fact any degenerative illness that relates to free radicals.
Author of 40 health books Patrick Holford told me during a podcast we recorded together,
“If you can eat the equivalent of 6,000 ORAC a day, the more you will protect your memory”.
While the Food and Drug Administration in America recommend 3,000 to 5,000 ORAC units per day for optimal health, I personally believe Patrick’s figure is much closer to where we need to be.
In the image above (taken from my book Fat & Furious), I have listed the gram weight needed to achieve an ORAC score of 3,000.
As long as we consume two or more of the listed foods each day, we will devour the necessary volume of antioxidants recommended by Dr Patrick Holford. But do bear in mind that the amount assumes the food is organic. If it is not, then to achieve the same antioxidant benefits, we will most likely need to consume considerably more. Notice how Turmeric has the third highest score of any food or drink.
While there have been several clinical trials about the benefits of turmeric, here are some that I feel you will find most useful.
*Research carried out in 2013 by Bharat Aggarwal and Wei Yuan suggested “Turmeric possesses numerous biological activities including anti-inflammatory, anticancer, and antidiabetic activities”
Read more here https://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1002/mnfr.201200838
** The trail by Auburn University was a blind placebo trial. It reported: “A 9-month curcumin intervention in a prediabetic population significantly lowered the number of prediabetic individuals who eventually developed T2DM. In addition, the curcumin treatment appeared to improve overall function of β-cells, with very minor adverse effects. Therefore, this study demonstrated that the curcumin intervention in a prediabetic population may be beneficial”.
Read the full research paper here https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3476912/
Research carried out in 2019 by the Department of Health Sciences at the University of Milan, concluded in their report: “Several studies have shown that curcumin improves the pathologic events in T2D through different mechanisms and multiple molecular targets. In particular, curcumin is involved in the regulation of lipid metabolism. Curcumin reduces the gene expression of transcription factors involved in hepatic lipogenesis”.
Read the full research paper here
About Primal Living's Turmeric:
Our unique formula contains patented Bioperine® which enhances absorption up to 20 times faster than the competition. While Turmeric in curries carries benefits, to deliver Curcumin (the active ingredient of turmeric) to the areas where the magic happens and truly see benefits, it's best consumed with black pepper. Even better, our patented technology delivers a powerful response, getting to work fast and arriving where the body needs it most! 5mg of scientifically backed Bioperine aids solubility, unlike regular turmeric which is limited by low bio-availability in the gut.
You can purchase our Turmeric here