Curcumin is a bright yellow (orange) chemical produced by curcuma long plants which are extensively cultivated in the tropical and subtropical regions of Southeast Asia including China, India, and Indonesia. Curcumin is the main active ingredient in turmeric, a spice that has long been recognized in the scientific and medical community for its health benefits. Curcumin is sold as an herbal supplement, cosmetics ingredient, food flavoring, and also food coloring. Below are the all the benefits of curcumin.
Curcumin has extremely powerful antioxidant and anti-inflammatory effects. Unfortunately, ingesting curcumin by itself does not lead to the health benefits often associated with it because of its poor bioavailability, thought to be from poor absorption, rapid elimination and rapid metabolism. The good news is there are several studies that show certain components can increase the bioavailability of curcumin such as piperine. Piperine is the main active ingredient in black pepper and when ingested with curcumin has shown to increase the bioavailability of this powerful substance by 2000%.
The amount of curcumin in turmeric is not that high—typically only around 3% by weight. Therefore, if you would like to experience the full benefits of curcumin it would be wise to take a supplement or a bionutraceutical that contains a significant amount of curcumin and components like piperine that dramatically increase its bioavailability. You can shop for products that increase their effectiveness here.
Curcumin is a polyphenol which are micronutrients that we get through certain plant-based foods with anti-inflammatory properties primarily found in turmeric. Inflammation happens through age and contributes to a lot of western diseases. Curcumin can suppress molecules known to play major roles in inflammation. Amazingly, curcumin is such a powerful anti-inflammatory that it even matches some anti-inflammatory drugs effectiveness—without the side effects.
Inflammation refers to your body's process of fighting against anything that may harm it such as infections, injuries, and toxins in an effort to heal itself. Research has shown that chronic inflammation is often associated with diabetes, heart disease, arthritis, cancer, and bowel disease like Crohn's disease.
Curcumin can help prevent cancer and in fact, some some studies show it may even help treat it. Multiple scientifc studies indicate that curcumin can reduce the growth of cancerous cells in the laboratory and inhibit the growth of tumors in test animals. Furthermore, studies have shown that curcumin can contribute to the death of cancerous cells and reduce angiogenesis (growth of new blood vessels in tumors) and metastasis (spread of cancer).
In a 30-day study that included 44 men with lesions in the colon that sometimes turn cancerous, 4 grams of curcumin per day reduced the number of lesions by 40 percent. Whether high-dose curcumin (preferably with an absorption enhancer like piperine) can help treat cancer in humans has yet to be studied properly. However, there is evidence that curcumin may prevent cancer from occurring in the first place, especially cancers of the digestive system like colorectal cancer. Perhaps one day curcumin will be used along with conventional cancer treatment.
Curcumin has shown great promise in treating depression. In a recent controlled, randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled study, 60 people with depression were randomly divided into three different groups. One group took Prozac, a common anti-depressant, the second group supplemented with 1 gram of curcumin per day, and the third group took both Prozac and curcumin.
After 6 weeks, the researchers found that supplementing with 1 gram of curcumin per day had led to improvements that were similar to Prozac. The group that took both Prozac and curcumin fared best, however.
Similarly to Alzheimer’s, depression is also associated with lower levels of BDNF (brain-derived neurotrophic factor) and a shrinking of the hippocampus—an area in the brain that plays a significant role in learning and memory. Studies show curcumin boosts BDNF levels, potentially reversing some of these changes. There is also evidence that curcumin can boost the brain neurotransmitters serotonin and dopamine. One study found that injecting rats with 50, 100, or 200 mg/kg of curcumin for 10 days led to a dose-dependent increase in BDNF, with the higher dose of 200 mg/kg showing greater antidepressant effects.
Curcumin has recently become a very popular anti-aging supplement and for good reason. Aging is defined as the "time-related deterioration of the physiological functions necessary for survival and fertility." Curcumin has shown powerful anti-aging properties and the ability to slow aging by activating certain proteins and protect against cellular damage.
Research has shown that curcumin activates certain proteins, including sirloins and AMP-activated protein kinase (AMPk), which can delay cellular senescence and promote longevity. Cellular senescence refers to, "a state of stable cell cycle arrest in which proliferating cells become resistant to growth—promoting stimuli, typically in response to DNA damage."
A recent study titled, "Anti-aging Role of Curcumin by Modulating the Inflammation Makers in Albino Wistar Rats" concluded, "Findings of the study suggest that curcumin exhibits favorable influence in slowing down of the aging process by suppressing age-related changes in inflammatory indices."
Curcumin is a bright yellow (orange) chemical produced by curcuma long plants which are extensively cultivated in the tropical and subtropical regions of Southeast Asia including China, India, and Indonesia.
Curcumin is the main active ingredient in turmeric, a spice that has long been recognized in the scientific and medical community for its health benefits. Curcumin is sold as an herbal supplement, cosmetics ingredient, food flavoring, and also food coloring. Here are the all the benefits of curcumin.
1. Curcumin has powerful medicinal properties
2. Curcumin has strong anti-inflammatory properties
3. Curcumin can help prevent cancer
4. Curcumin has shown the ability to help treat depression
5. Curcumin may delay aging by activating certain proteins and protect against cellular damage
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