Turmeric

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Turmeric/Curry Powder ★★★

This spice and spice blend may be the healthiest thing on earth. Curry power contains Turmeric, which is what gives the powder its yellow color. Turmeric contains special antioxidants called curcuminoids. These compounds along with a host of others in Turmeric are responsible for a range of things from lowering your cholesterol to fighting and even killing several different types of cancers in both lab studies (in vitro) and in humans.

Turmeric and Ginger (a close cousin of Turmeric) are probably the most powerful anti inflammatory foods in the world. This means that if you are suffering from things like digestive disorders, heart disease, Alzheimer’s disease or cancer, Turmeric and Ginger should be at the top of your food list.

Here is a list of some of the health benefits from Turmeric:

  • Slows down the onset of Alzheimer’s
  • Ease arthritis pain, especially rheumatoid arthritis
  • Ease gastrointestinal problems like IBS (Irritable Bowel Syndrome)
  • Improve your mood
  • Reduce insomnia
  • Kill bad bacteria, parasites and worms in your gut
  • Detoxifies your liver
  • Heal wounds
  • Lower LDL cholesterol levels
  • Helps dissolve gallstones
  • Helps protect the skin from UVB radiation from the sun when taken at high doses
  • Stop, reverse and prevent several types of cancers

 

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Mood Booster

What makes turmeric unique as a mood booster is that it can stop the brain from naturally breaking down  neurotransmitters like dopamine that your body releases when you feel happy. As a result, you may begin to build up more of these neurotransmitters in you system and your mood improves. This is especially useful in the winter time to help deal with seasonal awareness disorder (SAD). Studies are showing that the curcumin in turmeric is almost as effective as antidepressants when it comes to improving your mood. This is great because turmeric doesn’t have any side effects. The downside is that you would have to take up to 7 teaspoons of turmeric per day to see significant results. In this case, your best bet is to take a curcumin supplement. Look for Curcumin supplements that say standardized 95% curcuminoids. The supplement should also contain black pepper extract. Piperine, a compound in black pepper, helps our body absorb curcumin. Take 500 mg twice per day and give it a few weeks to stark kicking in. It’s best to have some black pepper even when you eat turmeric as part of your diet since the body has a hard time absorbing it on its own.

 

Turmeric vs Cancer

Not only is Turmeric good at fighting cancers but it has been proven in many different studies. Here is a list of cancers Turmeric has been shown to fight off. The list was obtained from an article in the American Association of Pharmaceutical Scientists journal (AAPSJ).

Hematological cancers
Leukemia
ALL (Acute Lymphoblastic Leukemia) 1 cited study
ATL (Acute T cell Leukemia) 4 cited studies
AML (Acute Myelogenous Leukemia) 1 cited study
Promyelocytic leukemia 6 cited studies
Erythromyeloblastoid leukemia 1 cited study
Lymphoma
Burkitt’s Lymphoma 2 cited studies
Hodgkin’s lymphoma 2 cited studies
Non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma 3 cited studies
Follicular lymphoma 1 cited study
Primary effusion lymphoma 1 cited study
Multiple myeloma 3 cited studies
Gastrointestinal cancers
Esophagus 1 cited study
Intestine 1 cited study
Liver 8 cited studies
Pancreas 2 cited studies
Colorectal 18 cited studies
Genitourinary cancer
Bladder 2 cited studies
Kidney 1 cited study
Prostrate 13 cited studies
Brain tumors 14 cited studies
Breast cancer 10 cited studies
Gyneoncologic cancers
Cervix 1 cited study
Ovary 2 cited studies
Thoracic/Head & Neck cancers
Lung 7 cited studies
Melanoma 6 cited studies
Normal cells
Endothelial cells 2 cited studies
Lymphocytes 3 cited studies
Hepatocytes 3 cited studies
Fibroblasts 7 cited studies
Thymocytes 1 cited study
Mammary epithelial cells 1 cited study

 

 

Ravindran J, Prasad S, Aggarwal B. Curcumin and cancer cells: how many ways can curry kill tumor cells selectively? The AAPS Journal. September 2009;11(3):495-510.

 

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Please note that although some cancers listed here have no cited studies, it does not mean that Turmeric cannot help fight off these cancers. It only implies that the authors could not locate a study that effectively shows cancer cells destroyed or slowed down by turmeric. It may also mean that a study has not been done yet.

Also, note that Turmeric does not kill normal cells. In fact, it does quite the opposite. Turmeric helps make normal cells stronger by neutralizing free radicals inside them

As amazing as Turmeric can be, it may interact with some medications that you may be taking. Click here to see a list of some medications that Turmeric may interact with.

To get the best out of Turmeric, take 1 teaspoon per day. If you have cancer and want to take Turmeric as a part of your diet you may, and perhaps should, take even more than 1 teaspoon per day. However, clear this with your doctor as Turmeric may interfere with some chemotherapy medicines.

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