Turmeric is indigenous to Southeast Asia, most likely originates from India. Today it is commercially grown across Southeast Asia with India the major producer of this herb. The plant is part of the ginger family, displaying dark green leaves and pale-yellow flowers. As well as being one of the oldest plants used for health, it is also valued for use in ritual practices and is still part of traditional Indian wedding ceremonies: haldi, the yellow powder of turmeric is applied to both the groom and bride for good luck.
Benefits & Uses
There is a lot of research being conducted on turmeric and curcumin, which have been shown to have many positive effects on health because of the support it provides the immune system. But the curcumin content of turmeric powder is not that high - only about 3% - and it is not easily absorbed, so it is difficult to get high enough amounts just from using ordinary turmeric powder added to food, like curries.
Many supplements with turmeric in them will include things to increase the absorption of the curcumin, including black pepper, or fats as liposomal or micellar form. Curcumin supports the body to neutralise free radicals and to balance the immune system in its response to inflammation, discomfort and tissue health:
- Curcumin assists joint health, easing discomfort and helping mobility and flexibility
- It supports healthy brain function and good memory
- Curcumin also provides nutrition for the heart and healthy blood vessels by assisting normal blood lipid balance
- It is a powerful helper for digestive health, soothing digestive discomfort and helping normal liver function, including supporting detox processes and health of liver cells.
Turmeric is available as a powder to make a ‘latte’ with. This delicious golden drink just needs milk added to provide a lovely afternoon pick-me-up. For best results, supplemental form with technology to enhance absorption is the best way to go, but nutritionally, turmeric makes a healthy and colourful addition to many meals.