• »
  • 8 good reasons to take curcumin

8 good reasons to take curcumin

Highlighting the many health benefits of this super spice

It's one of the most powerful medicinal plants in the world and the benefits keep on coming. When it comes to powerful effects, curcumin that’s derived from the Indian spice turmeric is considered highly potent with health-boosting properties.

The deep orange-yellow Indian spice that’s grown in India or Pakistan has been used for thousands of years both as a cooking spice and within Ayurvedic and ancient Chinese medicine. The Western world is only just beginning to discover the amazing benefits of this wondrous spice and how it can heal the body from within.

8 good reasons to take curcumin

New evidence is being uncovered all the time, suggesting that curcumin’s anti-histamine, anti-inflammatory, anti- microbial and anti-mutagenic properties are beneficial to health. Even Big Pharma cannot disagree with the 4,000-plus turmeric-related studies and the scientific research suggesting that it’s beneficial for more than 600 health problems.

Here are some of its many health benefits:

1) Boosts heart health. Curcumin can improve the lining of the blood vessels, regulate blood pressure and reduce blood clotting. One study in particular found that curcumin was just as effective as exercise at improving blood flow to the heart. Curcumin can also reduce oxidation or inflammation within the body.1

2) May improve stomach cancer and ulcers. A 2002 study into curcumin found that it inhibits the growth of bacteria that are linked to the development of ulcers that can become cancerous. This indicates that curcumin could offer protection for stomach ulcers and stomach cancer.2

3) Prevents arthritis and relieves joint pain. Curcumin has been shown in studies to prevent arthritis and relieve joint pain in people who have these diseases. This is because curcumin contains anti- inflammatory compounds that studies have shown to have a positive effect on joint swelling and pain-reduction in rats.3

4) Improves depression. Studies have shown that curcumin can boost certain brain chemicals.4 Ultimately this means improving or even reversing depression.

5) Improves Alzheimer’s disease. Curcumin is known for its anti-inflammatory properties that can pass through the blood- brain barrier, unlike other substances. One study from 2006 involved six subjects diagnosed with Alzheimer’s disease who were given curcumin supplements. The results showed improved plaque uptake and ingestion.5

6) Could slow down the ageing process. Inflammation and oxidative damage are underlying causes of the ageing process. As the body ages, highly reactive molecules called free radicals react to, and damage, organic substances such as fatty acids, proteins and DNA. Once this DNA is damaged, cancer is sure to follow. Curcumin can boost the activity of the body’s antioxidant enzymes, thus fighting free radical damage.

7) Could provide protection from cancer. Research from 2012 has shown that curcumin may help to slow down the progress of various types of cancer and mediate its development.6 Research has also shown that the curcumin root can play a protective role in fighting prostate cancer and arresting the metastasis of prostate cancer cells in vivo by stopping the expression of CXCL1 and CXL2 cytokines. This same type of inhibitory process can result in the diminished capacity of metastasis in breast cancer cells.7

8) Improves brain function. Supplementation with curcumin can help brain function as curcumin is able to get past the blood-brain barrier to work more effectively. There are relatively few substances in the world that can do this. Many kinds of brain disorders have been linked with decreased levels of the hormone Brain Derived Neurotrophic Factor (BDNF) and curcumin has been found to increase BDNF levels in the brain, delaying or reversing age-related dysfunction.8

 

Sources
1. Wongcharoen, W. and Phrommintikul, A. (2009). The Protective Role of Curcumin in Cardiovascular Diseases. Int J Cardio. 133 (2) pp. 145–51.
2. Koo, J. Y., Kim, H. J., Jung, K. O. and Park, K. Y. (2004). Curcumin inhibits the growth of AGS
human gastric carcinoma cells in vitro and shows synergism with 5-fluorouracil. J Med Food. 7 (2) pp. 117–21.
3. Chandran, B. and Goel, A. (2012). A Randomized Pilot Study to Assess the Efficacy and Safety of
Curcumin in Patients with Active Rheumatoid Arthritis. Phytotherapy Research. 26 (11) pp. 1719-25.
4. Kulkarni, S. K., Bhutani, M. K. and Bishnoi, M. (2008) Antidepressant activity of Curcumin:
Involvement of Serotonin and Dopamine System. Psychopharmacology. 201: 435.
5. Zhang, L., Fiala, M., Cashman, J., Sayre, J., Espinosa, A., Mahanian, M., Zaghi, J., Badmaev,
V., Graves, M.C. Bernard, G. and Rosenthal, M. (2006) Curcuminoids enhance amyloid-ßuptake by macrophages of Alzheimer’s disease patients. Journal of Alzheimer’s Disease. 10 (1) pp. 1–7.
6. Wang, Z., Zhang, Y., Banerjee, S., Li, Y., and Sarkar, F. H. (2006) Notch-1 down-regulation by curcumin
is associated with the inhibition of cell growth and the induction of apoptosis in pancreatic cancer cells. Cancer Journal. 1;106(11) pp. 2503–13.
7. Teiten, M. H., Gaascht, F., Eifes, S., Dicato, M. and Diederich, M. (2010) Chemopreventive potential of curcumin in prostate cancer. Genes Nutr. 5 (1) pp. 61–74.
8. Huang, Z., Zhong, X-M., Li, Z. Y., Feng, C-R., Pan, A-J., Mao and Q-Q. (2011). Curcumin reverses Corticosterone-induced Depressive-like Behaviour and Decrease in Brain BDNF Levels in Rats. Neuroscience Letters. 493 (3) p. 15.