Many reliable studies have shown that turmeric is very good for the body and brain. Here are the scientific evidence-based health benefits of turmeric.
1. Turmeric contains powerful bioactive compounds
Curcumin is the main active ingredient in turmeric with very strong anti-inflammatory and antioxidant effects. However, the curcumin content in turmeric is not high, about 3%.
Curcumin is not easy to absorb so people often use black pepper because piperine, a natural substance in black pepper increases curcumin absorption up to 2000 times. It is also fat-soluble, therefore, it is often used with a fatty meal.
Turmeric brings many benefits to our health.
2. Curcumin is a natural anti-inflammatory and antibacterial compound
Inflammation is extremely important to help the body fight off invaders and repair damage. Without inflammation, factors that cause diseases such as bacteria can easily attack the body and kill us. Although short-term inflammation is beneficial, it can become a big problem when the inflammation turns long-term and there are reactions not against the body’s tissues.
Low-level long-term inflammation plays a huge role in most chronic conditions including cardiovascular disease, cancer, metabolic syndrome, Alzheimer’s, and many different degenerative conditions. So anything that can help fight long-term inflammation is of importance in the prevention and even treatment of these conditions. Recently, curcumin has been proven to inhibit the growth of Helicobacter pylori, a bacterium with an important role in gastroduodenal pathologies.
3. Turmeric significantly increases the body’s antioxidant capacity
Curcumin has a powerful antioxidant effect. It directly neutralizes free radicals itself, then stimulates the body’s antioxidant enzymes, thereby preventing pathogens and aging.
4. Curcumin helps improve brain function and reduce the risk of brain diseases
It was previously thought that neurons could not divide and multiply after childhood. However, this can happen. Neurons are capable of forming new connections, but in some regions of the brain, neurons can multiply and increase in numbers. One of the key elements of this process is the brain-derived neurotrophic factor, a growth hormone in the brain. Many common brain disorders are associated with a decrease in these hormone levels. These disorders include depression and Alzheimer’s disease.
Curcumin increases the concentration of brain-derived neurotrophic factors and the growth of new neurons and fights various degenerative processes in the brain.
5. Curcumin may reduce the risk of cardiovascular disease
Heart disease is the biggest killer in the world according to WHO. It has been shown that heart disease is extremely complex and many different factors contribute. Curcumin can help to reverse many steps in the formation of heart disease. It also reduces inflammation and oxidation, which play a very important role in cardiovascular pathology.
In one study, 121 patients were randomized to two groups: placebo or 4g curcumin/day before and after surgery for a few days. The curcumin group had a 65% reduced risk of heart attack in the hospital.
6. Turmeric can help prevent and even treat cancer
Scientists have studied curcumin as a useful medicinal material in the treatment of cancer. It can affect the growth, development, and spread at the molecular level of cancer. Studies have demonstrated that it can reduce angiogenesis, and the spread of cancer, as well as contribute to the destruction of cancer cells.
Numerous studies have proved that curcumin can reduce cancer cell growth in the laboratory and inhibit tumor growth in experimental animals. Whether high doses of curcumin can help treat cancer in humans has not been fully studied. However, there is some evidence that it may help prevent cancer at an early stage (primary cancer), especially cancers of the digestive system such as colorectal cancer.
In one study of 44 men with colon lesions that can sometimes turn into cancer, 4g of curcumin per day for 30 days reduced the amount of this lesion by 40%.
Curcumin in turmeric is a useful medicinal material in the treatment of cancer.
7. Curcumin helps prevent and treat Alzheimer’s disease
Alzheimer’s disease is the most common neurodegenerative disease in the world and the leading cause of dementia. Now, there is no good treatment for Alzheimer’s disease. Therefore, it is extremely important to prevent the disease for the first time.
Curcumin has been shown to cross the blood-brain barrier. On the other hand, it is a strong anti-inflammatory and antioxidant that plays an important role in Alzheimer’s disease. Furthermore, an important feature of Alzheimer’s disease is the accumulation of protein tangles called Amyloid plaques. Studies have shown that curcumin can help “clear” these plaques.
8. Arthritis patients respond very well to curcumin supplementation
It is thought that curcumin is a strong anti-inflammatory which means that it may be useful in arthritis. Many studies have clearly shown this.
In a study of rheumatoid arthritis patients, curcumin was even more effective than other anti-inflammatory drugs. Many other studies have looked at the effects of curcumin on arthritis and recorded improvements in a variety of symptoms.
9. Many studies prove that curcumin is very beneficial against depression
In a controlled study, 60 patients were randomized into three groups. One group used Prozac, one group used 1g of curcumin, and the third group used both Prozac and curcumin. After 06 weeks of treatment, curcumin provides the same improvement as Prozac. The group used both Prozac and curcumin for best results. According to this small study, curcumin is as effective as an antidepressant.
Depression is also associated with brain-derived levels of neurotrophic factors. Curcumin increases brain-derived neurotrophic factor levels, potentially reversing some of these changes. In addition, there is some evidence that curcumin increases the neurotransmitters serotonin and dopamine.
10. Curcumin can help slow down the aging process and fight age-related diseases
If curcumin can help prevent cardiovascular disease, cancer, and Alzheimer’s disease… then it will have a clear benefit for longevity. For this reason, curcumin has become popular as an anti-aging supplement. People say that oxidation and inflammation play an important role in aging, so curcumin can have a direct effect, not just prevent disease./.