Turmeric, that flavorful yellow spice, has long been known as a powerful natural healer surprise throughout much of Asia and India.
But amongst traditional western medical practitioners, turmeric is a relatively new find. Since its discovery, the National Institutes of Health (NIH) has posted more than 1,000 research-based articles related to the various health benefits of turmeric and its main active ingredient, curcumin.
The easiest way to take in turmeric, of course, is to add it to dishes you enjoy as a part of your regular daily diet. However, unless you want to consume only turmeric-flavored foods day in and day out and you never get tired of this, a supplement can also be a good choice to ensure you receive all of the benefits of turmeric daily.
In this article, find out the major benefits of turmeric and why you should add it to your diet right away.
Benefit 1: Turmeric has anti-inflammatory properties
Healthline highlights turmeric’s measurable impact as an anti-inflammatory agent.
The body is constantly combatting inflammation from both internal and external sources. Any time the body’s defenses are breached by invading pathogens (bacteria, fungi, viruses, germs, et al), one of the first reactions of the immune system is to capture the invaders using inflammation.
However, over time, chronic stress, a poor diet, inadequate sleep, too little hydration and exercise and other factors can cause inflammation to remain in the body on a chronic basis. This weakens the immune system and leaves the body wide open to more serious health issues.
Turmeric combats inflammation right at the cellular level, alleviating chronic inflammation at its source and freeing the immune system to replenish itself and get back to work.
Benefit 2: Turmeric combats depression
Health expert Dr. Axe explains how turmeric’s active ingredient, curcumin, has been proven to be effective in combatting serious depressive illness, including major depressive disorder and manic depression.
In some cases, results from these studies show that cur cumin performs better than leading anti-depressant drugs.
Benefit 3: Turmeric helps repair and replenish healthy skin
Before spending a small fortune on the latest anti-aging skin care technology, Organic Facts suggests giving turmeric a try instead.
The spice, topically applied or ingested, can help reduce the appearance of surface skin scars, reduce skin inflammation, ease irritation and restore the skin’s healthy glow.
Benefit 4: Turmeric can aid in weight loss efforts
Weight loss is nobody’s favorite pastime. Yet, according to Boston Medical Center (BMC), more than 45 million people in the United States alone will go on at least one diet per year.
Dieting behaviors continue in spite of the fact that much of the newer weight management resources suggests dieting isn’t effective at maintaining weight loss. However, turmeric can be.
Turmeric not only has metabolism-boosting properties, but it also acts as a natural detoxifier, cleansing the liver, reducing inflammation and sending fat cells packing. All of this can help improve results from any weight management plan.
Benefit 5: Turmeric can soothe the savage digestive system
The American Nutrition Association (ANA) reports that a staggering 70 million people are currently living with some type of gastrointestinal (GI) health issue.
For some of these people, the issue may be relatively mild – perhaps some occasional diarrhea and constipation or bloating. For others, the chronic nature of their distress may be truly life-limiting.
Turmeric contains both fiber and anti-inflammatory agents that can ease both cases of simple stomach cramps and the more complicated symptoms of Irritable Bowel Disease (IBD).
Benefit 6: Turmeric is the healthy heart’s friend
Heart disease is one of the leading causes of death for adults today. In fact, as the American Heart Association (AHA) tells it, approximately one out of every three deaths annually can be traced back to cardiovascular disease, including heart disease and stroke.
There is a combination of factors at work that puts people today at such high risk of cardiovascular conditions. But turmeric can bind to “bad” (LDL) cholesterol and carry it safely out of the body, which can prevent atherosclerosis, or plaque in the arteries, from forming. This is a significant factor in reducing risk of heart disease.
Benefit 7: Turmeric is a natural detoxification agent
Lots of people are interested in detoxification programs as the planet’s limited natural resources becomes increasingly more polluted. Turmeric contains strong anti-oxidant powers, and can serve as a consistent natural source of whole-body detoxification.
Of particular note is turmeric’s ability to detoxify the liver by galvanizing the body’s lymphatic system to identify toxins and carry them outside the body for elimination.
Benefit 8: Turmeric can ward off diabetes
Diabetes has become a significant threat to health for people of all ages today. According to the American Diabetes Association (ADA), an estimated 9.4 percent of the current population is suffering from some form of diabetes. Every year, 1.5 million people find out for the first time that they have diabetes.
At its heart, diabetes is an issue with blood sugar balance in the body. Diabetes 1 is heritable, but diabetes 2 arises from issues relating to lifestyle and diet. It wish ere that turmeric can really help, by naturally detoxifying the body and reducing inflammation.
Benefit 9: Turmeric can ease the pain of arthritis
The Centers for Disease Control (CDC) states that approximately 22.7 percent of Americans are currently suffering from some type of arthritis-related pain.
Here, turmeric’s anti-inflammatory powers can really be a benefit. In some studies, turmeric performed as well as over-the- counter ibuprofen at reducing arthritis pain.
Benefit 10: Turmeric is the brain’s bodyguard
With its potent anti-inflammatory and anti-oxidant properties, turmeric is now being hailed as a protector of brain health. Its powers include aiding in stem cell neuro-generation.
This can protect the brain from the full effects of stroke and combat mental diseases such as Alzheimer’s and dementia.