Excerpt from and article by Dr Mercola
Turmeric has been used since biblical times for digestion and health, but we are only now starting to understand the many bennefits of this wonder spice.
Turmeric has a broad spectrum of actions, mild but certain effects, and is beneficial for long term and daily usage. Though it is a common spice, few people, including herbalists know of its great value and are using it to the extent possible. It is an herb that one should get to know and live with.
1. Strengthens and improves digestion
2. Reduces gas and bloating
3. Maintains and improves intestinal flora
4. Supports healthy liver function and detox. Turmeric helps increase bile flow making it a liver cleanser that can rejuvenate your liver cells and recharge their capability to break down toxins.
Helps to prevent alcohol and other toxins from being converted into compounds that may be harmful to your liver.
5. Supports formation of healthy tissue
6. Purifies your blood. Stimulates formation of new blood tissue.
7. Anti-inflammatory: Helps to reduce irritation to tissues characterized by pain, redness, swelling and heat
8. Contains curcuminoids that fight cancer, arthritis, and Alzheimer’s
Most notably turmeric is known for its potent anti-inflammatory properties, which come from curcumin — the pigment that gives turmeric its yellow-orange color, and which is thought to be responsible for many of its medicinal effects. There are an estimated three to five grams of curcumin in 100 grams of turmeric.
Turmeric’s Cancer-Fighting Properties
Numerous studies have looked into Tumeric’s potential cancer-fighting link, with promising results. For instance, curcumin has been found to:
*Inhibit the proliferation of tumor cells
*Inhibit the transformation of cells from normal to tumor
*Help your body destroy mutated cancer cells so they cannot spread throughout your body
*Enhance liver function
*Inhibit the synthesis of a protein thought to be instrumental in tumor formation
*Prevent the development of additional blood supply necessary for cancer cell growth
Turmeric’s Essential Role for Your Liver
Poor diet, allergens, pollution and stress can cause your liver to become sluggish, and this can impair its vital functions. This is where turmeric can be a very useful part of your liver support system. Studies have shown that it may increase important detoxification enzymes in your liver and it induces the formation of a primary liver detoxification enzyme, glutathione S-transferase (GST) enzymes
Turmeric is also a natural cholagogue, a medicinal agent that promotes the discharge of bile from your system. Increased bile flow is important to help your liver detoxify and to help your body digest fats.
Turmeric for Your Heart, Brain and Overall Health
Turmeric inhibits free radical damage of fats, including cholesterol. When cholesterol is damaged in this way, or oxidized, it can then damage your blood vessels and lead to a heart attack or stroke. Therefore, research suggests that turmeric’s ability to prevent the oxidation of cholesterol may be beneficial for your heart. It’s also rich in vitamin B6, high intakes of which are associated with a reduced risk of heart disease.
Meanwhile, turmeric appears to be highly protective against neurodegenerative diseases. In fact, in India levels of neurological diseases such as Alzheimer’s are very low, and studies have shown that curcumin can slow the progression of Alzheimer’s in mice. The compound has also proven capable of blocking the progression of multiple sclerosis.