What is turmeric curcumin good for?
Turmeric has been used as a spice and herbal medicine for thousands of years. Its rhizome, or root, is the source of yellow-orange powder spice loved in Indian cuisine. Its distinctive flavor gives dishes a warm and spicy characteristic while its color is used as a natural edible dye in many food items.
What gives the spice the bright yellow color is a substance called curcumin. Curcumin is the main active compound among curcuminoids found in turmeric. While both turmeric and curcumin may possess many common characteristics and benefits, there are differences when it comes to choosing supplements.
Turmeric and curcumin both are known to lower LDL (low-density lipoprotein) cholesterol that is considered as bad cholesterol. Both also help lowering triglycerides level that affects cardiovascular health. They also help reducing chronic inflammation that is related to obesity, and improving blood sugar levels and oxidative stress.
While it’s the most credited beneficial substance in turmeric, curcumin takes only 2 to 8 percent of turmeric preparations. Curcumin is proved to have more powerful anti-inflammatory property than OTC medicines such as ibuprofen and aspirin. It is especially helpful treating joint inflammations such as osteoarthritis and rheumatoid arthritis.
Curcumin’s another distinctive benefit is its ability to improve endothelial function which is linked to blood pressure and heart disease.
Curcumin also may help prevent various cancer such as prostate, breast, and gastric cancer.
Turmeric’s other compounds holds properties that are beneficial to human health.
Turmeric’s eight compounds including curcumin show antifungal properties which were magnified when all were taken at the same time.
In a study, turmeric was more effective in inhibiting the growth of cancer and tumor cells than curcumin alone.
While turmeric supplements consist of the effective compounds found in turmeric naturally, many curcumin supplements also contain piperine, a substance extracted from black pepper that helps with the absorption of curcumin. More research needs to be done to discover and compare the full benefits of turmeric and curcumin, but the choice between both supplements is up to personal preference.