Complete Guide to the Benefits of Turmeric (Curcumin)

Powder of Turmeric roots

Turmeric is a colourful, rhizome-based herb that grows in tropical and subtropical climates. It has been used for thousands of years in Ayurvedic medicine and has been shown to have many health benefits. Also known as Curcuma Longa, it is used to treat a number of health conditions.

It is also believed to have anti-inflammatory, anti-oxidant, anti-carcinogenic, and Hepatoprotective properties.[1]

Characteristics of the Turmeric Plant

Turmeric is a perennial plant that is part of the ginger family (Zingiberaceae). It is native to tropical and sub-tropical climates but is cultivated in many other regions, mainly in South and Southeast Asia. The root of the plant is the part commonly used, though the leaves, flowers, and stems are edible as well.

Turmeric has a very strong, pungent aroma and bitter taste. It is usually a bright yellow/orange colour and has a thick, fibrous rhizome. It is rich in antioxidants, carotenoids, and phenolic compounds. These compounds are thought to be responsible for many of turmeric’s health properties.

It is believed to have been cultivated in India since the 6th century BCE. It is used in cooking in many parts of the world but is most famous for being a staple in Indian and South Asian cuisine.

Turmeric extract - Curcumin in powdered form

What is the relationship between Turmeric and Curcumin?

Turmeric is a plant that is used for cooking and medicinal purposes. The active and most beneficial compound found in turmeric is curcumin. These two terms are often used interchangeably, and it is important to understand that they do not mean the same thing.

Since the plant has a low concentration of curcumin, methods of extraction and processing are necessary to create a concentrated product. The majority of its health benefits can be attributed to curcumin.

The curcumin compound found in turmeric has many health benefits, believed to have anti-inflammatory, antioxidant, anti-carcinogenic, and anti-ageing properties. It can also be used to treat digestive problems and may aid in promoting weight loss.

Turmeric buy button

What is curcumin extract?

Curcumin is the main curcuminoid found in turmeric, and it is the most active and beneficial compound of the plant. It is a yellow resin that can be extracted from it. Over the years, researchers have studied curcumin extract for its potential to treat a variety of health conditions including inflammation, cancer, heart disease, and more.

There are two main ways to extract curcumin from turmeric:

1. Turmeric can be dried and crushed into a powder. The powder can then be dissolved into hot water and extracted with an organic solvent like ethanol or ethyl acetate (the latter being preferred in most cases).

2. Turmeric can be finely ground and cooked in water until it releases its volatile components, like curcumin and other aromatic compounds. Then the solids can be separated from the liquid using filtration or other methods. The solids are then dried and powdered, which results in a more concentrated extract containing up to 90% curcumin by weight.

You can take either ground Turmeric roots or curcumin extract as a health supplement per your preference.

Using Turmeric with Black Pepper

Turmeric contains less than 4% curcumin by weight, which is the most active and beneficial component of the plant. Studies that have shown curcumin to be an effective health supplement use a dosage exceeding 1 gram every day.

With a low concentration of curcumin in Turmeric, it becomes difficult to achieve the desired dosage by using it as a supplement. This is why Turmeric supplements usually contain curcumin extract instead of whole roots.

Still, curcumin has a poor absorption rate in the human body. In order to reap its benefits, the rate of its absorption needs to be increased. This is where black pepper can be an excellent catalyst.

Piperine, a natural substance that is contained in black pepper, has been shown to increase the absorption rate of curcumin in the bloodstream by more than 20 times. Therefore, it is recommended to take turmeric or curcumin extract with black pepper.[2]

What are the benefits of using Turmeric?

Ayurveda reveres Turmeric as it has not one but several health benefits that boost the body’s immune system response and vitality. It can be helpful in the following ways:

  • Anti-inflammatory property: Inflammation is a natural process and an essential part of healing. The body detects a pathogen or an injury in an area and sends inflammatory cells. Chronic inflammation happens if these cells stay in the same place for too long. Curcumin can be effective in fighting inflammation and acting as an excellent anti-inflammatory agent. [3]
  • Anti-oxidant property: Oxidative stress is caused by an imbalance of free radicals in the body. While our cells are capable of clearing them, chronic or excessive imbalances can cause damage to the cell membranes. Studies indicate that turmeric benefits the body in its fight against free radicals as it possesses anti-oxidation properties.[4]
  • Anti-carcinogenic property: Cancerous cells are characterized by unusual and uncontrollable growth. Turmeric supplement appears to affect many forms of cancer, acting as a beneficial aid. Research has indicated that it exhibits anti-cancer abilities by targeting different cell signalling pathways and genes. [5]
  • Promotes cardiovascular health: Heart ailments are one of the leading causes of death in the UK. Scientific research shows that curcumin can help delay and reverse the progression of heart diseases.[6] The anti-oxidant and anti-inflammatory properties mentioned above can also aid in maintaining good heart health. 

Turmeric benefits for joint care and arthritis

According to the NHS, millions of people suffer from Arthritis in the UK. Rheumatoid Arthritis as well as Osteoarthritis can be chronic and painful. They are conditions that result from the inflammation of joints.

Acting as a potent anti-inflammatory agent, turmeric can be helpful in providing relief to arthritis patients. Some studies suggest that curcumin can be more effective than some anti-inflammatory drugs.[7]

Ageing can also result in weakened and inflamed muscles and joints. It can be useful in general pain experienced in the joints and muscles due to old age. Owing to its healing and anti-inflammation properties, it can be a great supplement for joint care.

Turmeric for weight loss and management

Maintaining a healthy weight is important to keep ailments and diseases in check. Curcumin, the active compound in Turmeric, has been shown to suppress inflammatory markers that are responsible for obesity. [8]

Scientific research also indicates that apart from curbing weight gain, it may also help promote weight loss. This action is achieved by reducing fat tissue growth in the body and enhancing the body’s sensitivity to insulin. [9]

Is Turmeric good for the skin and acne?

Turmeric has been used for hundreds of years for its cosmetic benefits. It can have many uses as a skin-care product. It contains natural anti-acne-inducing bacteria that can be helpful in preventing acne on the face.[10] It can help with other skin conditions as well, such as eczema and psoriasis.[11]

Apart from skin conditions, exposure to UV rays and pollution can also disturb the natural oil balance in our skin. This can result in signs of ageing, such as wrinkles, age spots, and fine lines. With its high antioxidant content, it may be beneficial for boosting collagen production in the body and potentially delaying signs of ageing.[12]

Traditional Use of Turmeric in Ayurveda

In Ayurveda, it is considered to be one of the most important plants and is used as an important ingredient in many concoctions. Ayurveda provides the following specifications for Turmeric:

Rasa (taste): Bitter and Pungent
Vipaka (post-digestion taste): Pungent
Virya (action): Hot/Warming

Ayurvedic practitioners believe that turmeric has the ability to balance all three doshas (Vata, Pitta, and Kapha). Ayurvedic supplements use the root of the plant in powdered form. You can also take curcumin extract instead of the whole root, as both of them are easily available in powder and capsule forms.

With its soothing properties, it is also believed to help the cells in the lymph, blood, and plasma, owing to its beneficial effect for rakta dhatu and rasa dhatu.

Turmeric is considered sacred and auspicious in Indian culture, signifying purity, fertility, and sound health in marriages. Owing to its health benefits and aroma, it is also used as a popular spice in the Indian subcontinent.

Research on benefits of curcumin

Modern Scientific Research on Turmeric

Ayurveda has advocated the use of Turmeric for its health benefits for centuries. Recently, scientific studies have also been conducted to determine the impact and benefits of Turmeric.

How to take Turmeric as a supplement

Over the years, a number of ways have been discovered to use Turmeric as a health supplement internally as well as externally.

Using Turmeric Powder

The traditional way to use Turmeric has been in a powdered form. The best way to take the Turmeric powder is in the form of Turmeric tea. You can blend 1 to 2 teaspoons of Hesh’s Turmeric powder in milk and then bring it to a boil. The result is a delicious and healthy drink that you can allow to cool before drinking. This drink, known as Haldi tea in India, is used to treat a number of ailments.

Given its benefits for the skin and face, you can also use it as a skincare supplement. Mix 2 teaspoons of our turmeric powder with Multani Mati (clay) and either milk or rosewater. Blend the mixture until it turns into a consistent paste, free of any lumps. You can then apply the paste as a facemask or on the skin. Let it try for about 15 minutes, and then rinse with lukewarm water.

Amba haldi powder with buy button

Using Turmeric Tablets

Tablets can be a convenient way of taking any supplement. Turmeric tablets are easily available in the market and can be a great way to take your daily dose. You can also get curcumin extract tablets instead if you are looking for a concentrated form of the compound.

Using Turmeric Capsules

Capsules usually contain Curcumin Extract in a shell that can be taken orally. They tend to act faster than tablets and are tasteless.

Turmeric capsules can potentially have a higher bioavailability, making it easier for the ingredients to be absorbed into your bloodstream. You can take Hesh’s Turmeric (Curcumin Extract) Vegan Capsules twice a day after meals for the best results.

Is it safe to take Turmeric?

Turmeric has been safely used as a supplement in Ayurveda for centuries. Turmeric and curcumin extracts are generally safe when used in recommended amounts, internally as well as externally.

As a precaution, you should be careful of any side effects that may show up. The most common side effects are stomach upset, nausea, dizziness, or diarrhoea.

Added To Bag :
Add To Bag Failed :
prouduct successfully added to wishlist !