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The ginger-turmeric-curcumin mystique (Part III)


By Nelly Favis-Villafuerte

Nelly Favis-Villafuerte

Nelly Favis-Villafuerte

Many consider turmeric (a perennial herbaceous plant that reaches up to one meter tall and belongs to the ginger family) to be the most effective nutritional supplement in existence. Not many know that turmeric is used as an agent to impart a golden yellow color (luyang dilaw).  For thousands of years, turmeric has first been used as a staple in Middle, Eastern, and Southern Asian cooking.

Let me share some interesting and revealing information about turmeric and curcumin: (References:  Internet reports and other publications on herbal remedies/products)

  • Do you know that there have been 6,235 peer-reviewed articles published proving the benefits of turmeric as well as the benefits of curcumin, one of its popular healing component;
  • Do you know that turmeric is considered holy in India, and is also popular for Indian weddings and religious ceremonies;
  • Do you know that curcumin, the main active ingredient in turmeric has powerful anti-inflammatory properties and is a very strong antioxidant. Strangely, however, the curcumin content of turmeric is not high – it’s about 3% only by weight;
  • Do you know that to enhance the absorption power of curcumin (which is poorly absorbed into the bloodstream) curcumin is consumed with black pepper – which contains piperine, a natural substance that enhances the absorption power of curcumin by 2000%. Without piperine, most of the curcumin just passes through our digestive tract;
  • Do you know that the anti-inflammatory properties of curcumin is so powerful that it matches the effectiveness of some anti-inflammatory drugs;
  • Do you know that most turmeric is used in the form of rhizome powder (powder made from the roots of turmeric);
  • Do you know that the most important chemical components of turmeric are a group of compounds called curcuminoids, which include curcumin;
  • Do you know that turmeric, one of the most potent natural anti-inflammatories available – has shown that taking turmeric (in extract form) can ease the pain of osteoarthritis. On the other hand, the most popular aspect of curcumin is its ability to control inflammation;
  • Do you know that there are many diseases today that are the result of inflammation such as cancer, ulcerative colitis, arthritis, high cholesterol, and chronic pain;
  • Do you know that one of the most powerful advantages curcumin has over the traditional medicine is its lack of side effects;
  • Do you know that of the long list of health benefits of turmeric, some studies and researches show that turmeric benefits go beyond these ten (10) drugs, namely: Anti-inflammatory drugs; Anti-depressants (Prozac); Chemotherapy; Anti-coagulants (Aspirin); Pain killers; Diabetes drugs (Metformin); Arthritis medications; Inflammatory bowel disease drugs; Cholesterol drugs (Lipitor); and Steroids;
  • Do you know that turmeric has relatively no known side effects unless taken in extremely excessive amounts;
  • Do you know that curcumin kills cancer cells and reduce tumor size. It has the best anti-cancer effects on breast cancer, bowel cancer, stomach cancer, and skin cancer cells;
  • Do you know that a 2007 American study show the combined curcumin with chemotherapy to treat bowel cancer cells in a laboratory showed that the combined treatment killed more cancer cells than treatment by chemotherapy alone;
  • Do you know that there is no better natural treatment than turmeric into your diet to lower blood sugar and reverse insulin resistance and hyperglycemia. This was the result of a report published in 2009 by Biochemistry and Biophysical Research Communication out of a study in Auburn University in Alabama, USA;
  • Do you know that the study published in 2009 by the aforementioned entity also discovered that curcumin in turmeric is literally 400 times more potent than Metformin, a common diabetes chemical drug;
  • Do you know that there are studies that show curcumin’s ability to manage inflammatory bowel disease (Crohn’s disease, Irritable bowel syndrome (IBS), and ulcerative colitis) is effective and in fact, the condition of many patients taking prescribed corticosteroids improved so dramatically by taking curcumin;
  • Do you know that there are studies showing that statin drugs (like Lipitor) which are widely known to harm kidneys and liver while lowering blood cholesterol level never address the actual cause of the ailment which is oxidative stress due to high blood sugar levels and inflammation. The good news is that many medical doctors are now getting more aware of the dangerous side effects of statin-drugs and are now more open to prescribing natural alternatives like curcumin and fish oil instead;
  • Do you know that there are talks of Big Pharma coming out with a synthetic form of curcumin. But whether or not it will be effective as the real thing – this is the dilemma.

More and more people all around the world are now realizing that turmeric and other curcumin-rich plants have been displacing conventional medical treatments – and proving to be effective, if not more effective than conventional treatments.  Like in the case of being a potent natural pain killer, only a few know that curcumin has the ability to cure chronic inflammation of the eye.

Have a joyful day! (For comments/reactions please send to Ms. Villafuerte’s email:

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