Hope you watched my video on the 12 health benefits of turmeric? Lovers of Indian food will be aware of Turmeric’s bright yellow colour and somewhat sharp taste. This ancient herb has a long tradition as a food colouring and vegetable dye. It has been part of Ayurvedic and Chinese medicine for thousands of years, where it was primarily used to treat the liver and digestive problems. The active compound that gives Turmeric its healing power is curcumin. So lets look at the health benefits of Turmeric;
The first health benefit of Turmeric is on its cancer preventative effects. In Ireland an average of 30,000 new cases of cancer are diagnosed each year. Curcumin has been studied for its wide ranging effects on tumours in particular its and this preventative effect against cancers of the skin, stomach, colon, prostate and breast. (Gururaj et al., 2002)
2. Cardiovascular effects
Another health benefit of turmeric is in the area of heart disease. Approximately 10,000 people die each year from cardiovascular disease (CVD) in Ireland. Turmeric has been found to be effective in maintaining heart health by reducing plaque build-up and clot formation. Its also accredited with lowering blood pressure (Zahid Ashram et al., 2005).
3. Wound healing
Curcumin has also been found to help speed up the healing of wounds (Sidhu et al., 1999). Its easy to make a turmeric paste by adding some water and applying this to the external wound.
Turmeric is a natural anti bacterial and anti biotic – killing bacteria inside and outside of the body, thus promoting good health and preventing disease and illness it has also been used to preserve food (Jayaprakasha et al., 2005)
5. Alzheimers and Parkinson’s disease
Alzheimer’s and related dementia currently affects approximately 38,000 people in Ireland. Curcumin’s anti-inflammatory and antioxidant actions is being studied to see if it can help to prevent neurodegenerative diseases such as Alzheimers and Parkinson’s disease (Cole et al., 2005)
6. Inflammatory bowel disease
AROUND 20,000 PEOPLE in Ireland suffer from inflammatory bowel disease such as colitis and Crohn’s Disease. Research has found the use of curcumin to have some positive results in the treatment of Inflammatory bowel disease – Holt et al., 2005
It is estimated that psoriasis affects about 100,000 people in Ireland and is a common reason for people to visit their GP. Topical use of Turmeric helps to reduce the severity of active psoriasis (Heng et al., 2000)
8. Rheumatoid arthritis
Up to 40,000 people in Ireland have rheumatoid arthritis, a painful and disabling condition caused by the immune system attacking the joints. Curcumin was found to be effective in improving morning stiffness, walking time and joint swelling (Chandran and Goel 2012). Curcumin is one of the most promising natural ingredients in the treatment of arthritis (Henrotin et al., 2013).
Turmeric has been used for the treatment of diabetes in Ayurvedic and Chinese medicine for thousands of years (Zhang et al., 2013). The International Diabetes Federation Diabetes Atlas (2013) estimate that there are 207,490 people with diabetes in Ireland. Each year the state spends €350 million on diabetes care
10. Peptic ulcers
Research is also examining the benefits of Turmeric in helping to reduce abdominal pain associated with Peptic ulcers.
11. Irritable bowel syndrome (IBS)
Turmeric extract shows promise in the treatment of IBS according to one study involving 207 volunteers (Bundy et al., 2014).
12. Reduces alcohol intoxication
One study suggests that Turmeric can be effective in reducing intoxication after drinking (Sasaki et al., 2011)
Contraindications and precautions
Turmeric is contraindicated in Bile Duct obstruction and high doses are best avoided in couples wanting to conceive
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