Turmeric, also known as Indian saffron or the golden spice, is one of the most commonly used ingredient in Indians diet and in curry powder.
It is consumed as vegetable and also in powder form during food preparation.
Ayurveda system use turmeric to treat variety of health conditions such as chronic pain and inflammation and healing agent.
It is used to treat in ancient India, inflammatory conditions, skin issues, wounds, digestive ailments, and liver conditions.
Recently, medical science has started to support what Indians have known for a long time about its medicinal properties.
Curcumin is the main active ingredient in turmeric and it has strong anti-inflammatory effects and is a very strong antioxidant. It helps human body fight foreign invaders and also has a role in repairing damage.
Inflammation can become a major problem when it becomes chronic and attacks body’s own tissues. So anything that can help fight chronic inflammation is of potential importance in preventing and even treating major diseases.
Curcumin is strongly anti-inflammatory and matches the effectiveness of some anti-inflammatory drugs but without the side effects.
Many studies confirms that turmeric can reduce inflammation and help reduce arthritis pain in their joints.
Turmeric is also considered as a pain reliever. Studies support turmeric for pain relief,for people suffering with arthritis in their knees.
Improving liver function
Turmeric has strong antioxidant abilities and it is these antioxidant effect that may stop liver from being damaged by toxins. This could be good news for people who take strong drugs for tuberculosis because in TB people may end up taking strong medicine anywhere from 6 month to 2 years.
Reducing the risk of cancer
Curcumin shows promise in cancer treatment. Studies suggest that turmeric can provide protection against pancreatic cancer and prostate cancer.
Turmeric play an important role in digesting food because of its antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties. It is even being explored as a treatment for irritable bowel syndrome (IBS).
Side effects of turmeric
Upsetting the stomach
The same agents in turmeric that support digestive health can irritate if taken in large amounts.
People who take blood-thinning drugs, should avoid consuming large doses of turmeric, although taking small amounts of turmeric to food as a spice should not cause any health problems.
Nutrition of turmeric
As per United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) National Nutrient Database, one tablespoon (tbsp) of turmeric powder contains:
0.91 grams (g) of protein
0.31 g of fat
6.31 g of carbohydrates
2.1 g of fiber
0.3 g of sugar
That same 1-tbsp serving provides:
26 percent of daily manganese needs
16 percent of daily iron
5 percent of daily potassium
3 percent of daily vitamin C