If you know Indian food, it’s safe to say you know curcumin. This is the spice that not only gives so many curries their rich yellow colour, but also that gorgeous signature flavour that makes Indian food so unique and distinctive. Part of the ginger family, vast quantities of this spice are used to create delicious dishes every day, but what so few realise is that it also happens to be one of the single healthiest spices currently known to mankind.
For much of recorded history, there’s evidence to suggest that curcumin has been used in the treatment of thousands of different ailments. From skincare to digestive health and the warding off of serious diseases, mankind has had a strong affinity with this product pretty much forever. However, it’s really only as of relatively recently that modern science has stepped in and begun looking into the genuine and proven benefits of curcumin for human health. And while many of the OTT miraculous claims of centuries gone by have been quashed outright, it’s never been more apparent that curcumin is a spice we could all do with adding to a lot more of our recipes.
Digestive Tract Assistance
For example, high quantities of it are often credited with the fact that it’s possible for vast quantities of Indian food to be consumed without leading to an upset stomach. Over the years, tests have shown it to be an incredibly effectassistor for the digestive tract in general, helping those with digestive problems find the relief that eluded them. When taken during or after a meal, curcumin has the potential to minimise and even eliminate heartburn.
Heart Attack Prevention
Back in 2012, a study was carried out to assess the benefits or otherwise of curcumin as a heart attack prevention supplement. A measured dose was given to a group of post heart bypass patients on a daily basis, while a second group was provided with placebos. When the data was collated at the end of the study, it became apparent that while 30% of the placebo group had suffered a heart attack, only 13% of the curcumin-taking group had suffered heart attacks. This led to further research being carried out, which in every instance pointed to a direct correlation between heart-attack risk and consumption.
Prevent or Slow Diabetes
There are thousands of common treatments offered to those with pre-diabetes as a means by which to slow or even prevent the onset of the condition entirely. When tested on a large group of patients, 16% of those given a placebo over the course of nine months developed diabetes by the end of the study. By contrast, absolutely none of those given the curcumin supplements on a regular basis developed full-scale diabetes.
Exactly how beneficial curcumin can be in humans as a cancer fighter remains to be fully established, as tests are still in a comparatively early stage. However, dozens of studies have been carried out on animals and in pretty much every instance across the board, the results have been extremely reassuring. When introduced directly into the area of the body affected by cancer, it gets to work minimising growth and preventing the disease from spreading. In some cases the curcumin even led to shrinkage of the tumours and could therefore be an excellent addition or alternative to standard chemotherapy.
Another benefit of curcumin that’s only just starting to be explored right now is an apparent ability to help repair brain cells. In theory, this could make it an important supplement or treatment for those suffering from anything from traumatic brain injuries to Alzheimer’s disease. Again, research remains in its earliest phases, but the results of all animal studies carried out so far are extremely reassuring.
Last but not least, perhaps the most widely known, researched and so far proven beneficial effect of curcumin consumption is as a powerful combatant against the symptoms of arthritis. As a fantastic anti-inflammatory, it gets to work at the very heart of what causes the pain and discomfort of arthritis, offering genuine relief without the risk of any side effects or allergic reactions. Conventional arthritis treatments have the potential to be effective, but can at the same time be somewhat harmful for the patient’s overall health and present the risk of side effects. With curcumin, it’s a tale of wall to wall benefits without the attached risks.
Chances are it will be some time before the full ins and outs of what curcumin is capable of will become common knowledge, but for the time being there really aren’t many natural remedies out there that have shown such huge potential.