Sugar, spice, and everything nice; these are the ingredients professor Utonium used to create the Powerpuff Girls. The word ‘spice’ doesn’t distinguish which spice was used, but we can be sure that one main ingredient was the “queen of spices,” turmeric, also known as Curcuma Longa.
Turmeric has been used for centuries for medicinal and flavoring purposes. Over the years, the benefits of turmeric have been researched and proven, some of which we’ve discussed below along with ways you can use turmeric to gain those health benefits.
Nutrition Value of Turmeric
Following is a short summary of the vegetable’s nutritional value (100g):
Turmeric Vitamin breakdown of 100g Serving :
Turmeric has over over 300 naturally occurring components. These are a handful of vitamins found with the root.
|Vitamin C||25.9 mg||43%|
|Vitamin E||3.10 mg||21%|
|Vitamin K||13.4 µg||11%|
Turmeric Mineral breakdown of 100g Serving:
Check out the loads of minerals in naturally occurring in turmeric.
Fun Fact 1: Turmeric, because of its bright yellow pigments, is widely used as a fabric dye. On the other hand, you can also use it as a cupcake frosting!
11 Benefits of Turmeric
Turmeric has seen widespread use over the past millennium, with demand projected to reach 1.7 million metric tons in the US by 2027 because of the wide range of health benefits turmeric offers.
Turmeric contains anti-inflammatory properties; one of the most prevalent reasons behind its popularity. When compared to other compounds and fruits such as watermelon, apple, etc., turmeric has been known to have the most potent anti-inflammatory and anti-oxidation properties.
Turmeric has been known to have anti-oxidants that help the body reduce the number of free radicals in it. This process effectively cleans out the lungs and blood vessels, all while reducing the stress on your liver and kidneys.
A study conducted in Mahidol University in Bangkok supported this claim, indicating its potency rivaled that of ibuprofen. When given an 800mg capsule each day, its effect was more evident in people suffering from arthritis in their knees.
Among the more researched benefits of turmeric are its anti-carcinogenic properties.
A study conducted by Cytokine Research Laboratory in the University of Texas showed that regular use of turmeric shields the pancreas and prostate against cancer and multiple myeloma, a condition where unwanted cells do not die and form a tumor.
The fiber content of turmeric reinforces the intestines to push undigested food out faster.
Production of Bile
Turmeric stimulates the liver to produce more bile (up to 62% more), effectively improving your stomach’s capability of breaking down fat.
A study conducted by the Center for Gastroenterology in Hamamatsu South Hospital suggests that turmeric’s anti-inflammatory properties can help individuals suffering from ulcerative colitis by soothing ulcers.
Aids Skin Health
From enhancing one’s beauty to simply healing cuts and bruises, turmeric has been used widely in Indian households thanks to its anti-bacterial properties. The benefits of turmeric are no less potent when applied to skin as when taken orally.
Its anti-bacterial function kills off germs residing in the pores of your skin, while the anti-inflammatory function helps the skin cool down, significantly reducing the chances of acne.
Turmeric, when broken down, assists the digestive tract to break down lipids, thus reducing their impact on arteries. Not only that, when digested, curcumin has been known to clear arteries of lipids, thus reducing high cholesterol levels.
A study conducted in the Chung Shan Medical University Hospital showed that within 12 weeks, a significant decrease in cholesterol level was seen in people who had a 630mg curcumin tablet each day, thrice. This is known as turmeric’s lipophilic function.
Fun Fact 2: Turmeric has been used for nearly 4000 years as a culinary spice. It also used to have religious significance in the Indian continent.
Improved brain function
One of the lesser-known benefits of turmeric is its ability to improve brain function. Curry has been known to assist in Alzheimer’s disease prevention.
A study conducted by the National University of Singapore suggested that for adults aged from 60-92 year old, cognitive function was much better in those who regularly consumed curry. One of the most important ingredients in curry is turmeric.
How to Use Turmeric to Gain Health Benefits
- 1/2 cup milk
- 1 teaspoon turmeric
- 1-inch ginger or 1/2 tsp ginger powder
- 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon powder
- 1 pinch ground black pepper (freshly ground preferable)
- 1 teaspoon honey (optional)
- Grate the ginger if you don’t have powered ginger
- Mix all ingredients in a pot and stir on medium heat till it comes to a boil
- Once boiling, reduce the heat to simmer it for 10 minutes
- Strain the drink into cups
- Top with a pinch of cinnamon and enjoy!
Fun Fact 3: Turmeric is natural antivenom to a King Cobra’s poison.
Turmeric Salad Dressing
- 1/4 cup lemon juice
- 1-inch skinless ginger
- 1 garlic clove
- 2 teaspoon ground turmeric
- 3 tablespoons olive oil
- 1 tablespoon apple cider vinegar[h2]
- 1/4 teaspoon black pepper
- Blend all the ingredients together untilthoroughly combined
- Add black pepper and salt as per taste
- Pour over salad and enjoy!
Turmeric in a Smoothie
- 1 frozen banana OR 3/4 cup frozen mango chunks OR3/4 cup frozen strawberries
- 1/2 to 1 cup milk
- 1/4 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1/2 teaspoon ground turmeric
- 1/8 teaspoon ground ginger
- 1/8 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- Salt, black pepper, and sweetener as per taste
- Place your fruit, milk, vanilla extract, turmeric, ginger, cinnamon, salt, and pepper (to taste) in a blender and puree until smooth.
- Add your sweetener (to taste) and more milk to thin as per your liking.
- 3 full carrots (preferably peeled)
- 3 garlic cloves (minced)
- 1 inch fresh ginger (grated)
- 2 inch fresh turmeric (grated)
- 4 cups vegetable (or chicken) stock
- 1 white onion
- 1 tablespoon freshly squeezed lemon juice
- Sesame Seeds (optional)
- Dice the onion and carrot
- Place a large pan or stock on medium heat and pour in some olive oil
- Sauté the onion for 3 minutes until translucent
- Add garlic, turmeric and ginger. Sauté for another minute
- Add diced carrot and sauté for 2 minutes
- Add the vegetable (or chicken) stock.
- Bring the heat down to low and let it simmer for 20-25 minutes
- Keep stirring and ensure the carrot is soft throughout
- Add in the lemon juice
- Pour into cups and top it off with black sesame seeds
- 1/4 teaspoon turmeric powder
- 1/2 teaspoon honey (or one teaspoon of plainsugar)
- Lemon (optional)
- Mix turmeric and honey (or sugar) into a mug
- Pour in hot water and mix
- Squeeze lemon on top (to taste)
Fun Fact 4: In 1280, Marco Polo described turmeric as exhibiting qualities similar to that of saffron.
Side Effects of Turmeric
Despite the numerous health benefits of turmeric, excessive usage might have certain side-effects. Although there are no serious side-effects associated with this vegetable, people can experience the following in case of overuse:
- Upset stomach
The most severe case ever reported was that of a man who took over 1,500 mg twice daily, and experienced an abnormal heart rhythm.
Small amounts of turmeric can also settle the stomach of pregnant women with no side-effect to the baby.
If you’re wondering whether or not to add turmeric to your daily diet plan, you should definitely do so. The benefits of turmeric far outweigh the side-effects, and if taken properly, can be the perfect addition to your healthy diet plan.
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