Turmeric, also called haldi, is one of the oldest and most widely used spice in the Indian kitchen primarily for its health benefits :
- It has been shown to promote balanced mood when taken as part of a regular diet. So guess, that yellow sunshine color works after all!
- Turmeric mixed with hot milk has been a long standing recipe for reducing body pain in Indian households. Need to get over that taste though...
- Having diabetes or sugar cravings? This power-food is known to help regulate the blood sugar level. Apple or cupcake?
- Body feeling stiff? A diet with turmeric can help you get on the right path to avoid or lower the effect of arthritis.
- Even the most frightful disease...Cancer (certain types) can be prevented through a regular intake of turmeric in your diet.
A golden spice with hordes of benefits! Wow, that sounds like a golden treat! That is turmeric for you; a bright orange-yellow spice, a must in Indian cooking. Turmeric has a peppery warm taste and a mustard-like aroma; it is widely used to color or flavor recipes, curry powders, beverages, and also cosmetics.
Turmeric is rich in a highly beneficial naturally occurring compound, curcumin, known to fight cancer, Alzheimer’s, and heart disease. This compound imparts a bright yellow color to turmeric and is also responsible for its healing properties.
The turmeric plant belongs to the ginger family and grows in tropical Southeast Asia. While the eastern world has long been using this special spice, it is quite new in the west.
Also known as “Indian Saffron”, Turmeric has been used for nearly 4000 years in India. However, in the last two decades, turmeric has gained extensive recognition in modern medicine.
Benefits of turmeric
- A powerful antioxidant- Curcumin is a potent antioxidant. It protects our body from free radicals that are known to cause cancer and heart disease.
- Known for its anti-inflammatory properties- Uncontrolled inflammatory conditions cause many disorders such as arthritis, obesity, heart disease, and many more. Curcumin present in turmeric has great anti-inflammatory properties.
- Good for digestion- Turmeric boosts bile production in the liver. It also encourages the gallbladder to release more bile into the digestive tract. Bile breaks down fats and makes them easily digestible.
- Boosts immunity- Turmeric helps the body fight infections because of its anti-bacterial, anti-fungal, and anti-viral properties. It is a common sight in Indian households of people drinking a glass of warm milk with a pinch of turmeric powder to fight off infections and improve immunity.
- Enhances mood- According to scientific studies, this spice also has antidepressant properties.
How to increase turmeric intake?
- The best way is to add turmeric to soups, curries, or stir fry dishes while cooking.
- You can also add turmeric to scrambled eggs.
- A pinch of turmeric can also be added to smoothies and shakes.
- One can also make turmeric tea.
How to make turmeric tea?
- Turmeric Powder (preferably organic)- 3/4 tsp
- Freshly grated ginger- 1 inch
- Cinnamon powder- 1/4 tsp
- Black pepper powder- 1/4 tsp
- Water- 1.5 cups
- Honey- optional
- Boil water. Add grated ginger and turmeric powder.
- Let it boil for 5 minutes.
- Pour the tea into a cup. Add cinnamon and pepper powder.
- Stir well and relish the golden concoction.
It is recommended to drink this turmeric tea on an empty stomach or after a light breakfast every morning.
Is it recommended to take turmeric daily?
As per the recommendations of the World Health Organization, 1.4 mg of turmeric per pound of body weight is okay for daily intake. It is not advisable to take high doses of turmeric for long.
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Learn more about Turmeric Curcumin here.