How turmeric can help you feel better and look better
Curcumin, the yellow-orange chemical found in high concentration in turmeric, is an important anti-inflammatory agent. It works by blocking the production of pro-inflammatory enzymes called COX-2 and LCP-1 (prostaglandin E2). When the body has less inflammation, it can heal itself better and fight off disease more effectively. But people who are often exposed to high levels of inflammation—such as patients with arthritis— may find that taking curcumin supplements doesn’t do much to help them feel better or look better. That’s because curcumin is water-soluble and not very well absorbed by the body. In fact, curcumin has a low bioavailability — meaning it is poorly absorbed into the body — making it even less effective against disease than people think. Fortunately, there are ways to boost your intake of this potent natural spice without having to take supplements. Let’s explore how you too can benefit from this magical yellowish substance…
Get turmeric nutty
If you think you might be prone to high levels of inflammation, you might want to consider taking a turmeric supplement. But how exactly does turmeric get nutty? It’s actually a result of the strong smell of the root that comes from the ingredients combined. The smell of the root isn’t the only smell that surrounds turmeric — it also has a strong taste that many people don’t like. So, how is turmeric made nutty? By adding in the right type of spices! Spices are added to turmeric to give it more flavor, as well as make it more effective against disease. You can try adding paprika and cayenne pepper to your soups and stews, as well as your curries and casseroles. You can also try adding freshly ground black pepper to your coffee or tea, or using Himalayan pink salt instead of sea salt.
Make turmeric dishes yourself
If you’re not the kind of person who likes to head to the grocery store every time they feel like eating an Indian dish, you can try making your own curries at home. It’s actually really easy — all you need is a pressure cooker, a supermarket curry paste, and a few basic ingredients (like vegetables and spices). You can check out our how-to for making your own curry at home for more details.
Don’t be afraid to ask for curcumin
Many people are put off by the idea of taking a supplement because they feel like they will probably feel worse than they already do. But, as anyone who’s ever tried to self-diagnose themselves or treated someone else’s disease has found, curcumin is widely misunderstood. People often assume that because it is bright yellow, it will make them look sick. But that’s not the case at all. In fact, the color just gives it a more appealing look, which can be a positive! Most people think that because turmeric is yellow, it will only help them feel better. But it actually has a lot of benefits, both for your health and for your appearance. One study even found that taking curcumin twice a day for six months led to a significant increase in blood flow to the face, making your skin appear fresher and more youthful.
Turmeric is even more effective when taken with meals
If you’re not getting enough turmeric from just one supplement in the morning and evening, you might consider taking it along with other foods. The combination of turmeric and other vegetables and legumes can be very effective, as can be seen in this example: One study found that consumers who added a cup of mixed vegetables to their daily diet experienced a 49% decrease in the level of a harmful enzyme called “SOD-1” in their bodies. Another study found that taking a combination of broccoli, cabbages, and cauliflower along with 1/4 tablespoon of turmeric reduced levels of “DOPA”, which is found in the liver and is responsible for forming enzymes that cause aging and free radicals.
In truth, turmeric is one of the most beneficial and versatile spices you can add to your kitchen. From treating acne and skin blemishes, to fighting off diseases such as cancer and heart disease, it has a myriad of uses. The color and smell of the root is what make turmeric so valuable, and its anti-inflammatory properties make it a great addition to any diet. Turmeric is also extremely easy to take, and you can easily make yourself a cup of tea or use it in a 10:1 stock conversion for a more powerful curcumin-based sauce. Turmeric is a natural and proven health enhancer, and can help you feel better and look better. People who are often exposed to high levels of inflammation — such as patients with arthritis — may find that taking curcumin supplements doesn’t do much to help them feel better or look better. That’s because curcumin is water-soluble and not very well absorbed by the body. In fact, curcumin has a low bioavailability — meaning it is poorly absorbed into the body — making it even less effective against disease than people think. Fortunately, there are ways to boost your intake of this potent natural spice without having to take supplements. Let’s explore how you can benefit from this magical yellowish substance…