Wednesday, January 30, 2013

SpiceRack Superman: Turmeric


 Quietly waiting in your spice rack, collecting dust in the spices/baking section of your local market, Turmeric is one of those simple and oft-overlooked Super foods that, much like Cinnamon, should be a regular part of your diet.

  The active ingredient in turmeric is curcumin. Turmeric has been used for over 2500 years in India, where it was most likely first used as a dye.

 The medicinal properties of this spice have been slowly revealing themselves over the centuries.
 Long known for its anti-inflammatory properties, recent research has revealed that turmeric is a natural wonder, proving beneficial in the treatment of many different health conditions from cancer to Alzheimer's disease.

Here are a few good reasons to add turmeric to your diet:

1. It is a natural antiseptic and antibacterial agent, useful in disinfecting cuts and burns.

2. When combined with cauliflower, it has shown to prevent prostate cancer and stop the growth of existing prostate cancer.

3. Prevented breast cancer from spreading to the lungs in mice.

4. May prevent melanoma and cause existing melanoma cells to commit suicide.

5. Reduces the risk of childhood leukemia.

6. Is a natural liver detoxifier.

7. May prevent and slow the progression of Alzheimer's disease by removing amyloyd plaque buildup in the brain.

8. May prevent metastases from occurring in many different forms of cancer.

9. It is a potent natural anti-inflammatory that works as well as many anti-inflammatory drugs but without the side effects.

10. Has shown promise in slowing the progression of multiple sclerosis in mice.

11. Is a natural painkiller and cox-2 inhibitor.

12. May aid in fat metabolism and help in weight management.

13. Has long been used in Chinese medicine as a treatment for depression.

14. Because of its anti-inflammatory properties, it is a natural treatment for arthritis and rheumatoid arthritis.

15. Boosts the effects of chemo drug paclitaxel and reduces its side effects.

16. Promising studies are underway on the effects of turmeric on pancreatic cancer.

17. Studies are ongoing in the positive effects of turmeric on multiple myeloma.

18. Has been shown to stop the growth of new blood vessels in tumors.

19. Speeds up wound healing and assists in remodeling of damaged skin.

20. May help in the treatment of psoriasis and other inflammatory skin conditions.

Turmeric can be taken in powder or pill form. It is available in pill form in most health food stores, usually in 250-500mg capsules.

WOW!  Who Knew, right?

 Here's one last personal favorite:
  Having trouble sleeping? Tossing & turning?
     Mix about an eighth of a teaspoon of turmeric into a half-glass of warm/cool and down this at bedtime.  You will sleep like a baby with NO groggy side effects!

*  Nursing a head-cold last week, I was losing sleep and tried a sip of Nyquil. I slept a few hours, but woke sweaty in the middle of the night and T&T'd the rest.
 Not very restful, but they didn't lie: You will sleep...but just until the alcohol effect wears off in 3-4 hours.
 Last night I remembered the turmeric trick and did a ¼ tsp in a few sips of water.
  I slept a full 7 hours and woke up feeling Great!
Not only did I get the best sleep in 3 days, my cold is finally under control. (it's amazing what a good night's sleep can accomplish.)

So, this little story is the reason for today's post.
 Having just been reminded of the Turmeric trick for sleep, I figured it was time to open your eyes to this little miracle worker sitting in your kitchen.

 Be Well,

 § Copyright