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If you enjoy Indian cuisine, you definitely know turmeric. The main spice in curry, turmeric has a warm, bitter taste and has long been regarded as having medicinal properties. Curcumin is the main active ingredient in turmeric, and this is what turmeric supplements mostly contain.

Thoughts about turmeric's medicine properties aren't unfounded as numerous studies have researched the effects of turmeric on a variety of health conditions.

Health Effects

Turmeric is a natural anti-inflammatory compound, which is important because it is believed that chronic inflammation plays a role in heart disease, cancer, Alzheimer's, metabolic syndrome and other various degenerative conditions. While most people take anti-inflammatory drugs such as NSAIDs like ibuprofen, turmeric can match the powerful effectiveness without any of the side effects.

In studies involving people with high cholesterol, turmeric was shown to lower levels of triglycerides. In addition, turmeric may help to reverse steps in the heart disease process by improving the function of the endothelium, which is the lining of your blood vessels. It has shown to reduce the number of heart attacks that bypass patients experienced after surgery.

For osteoarthritis, whose pain is usually fought with ibuprofen, turmeric reduced pain and improved function as well as that painkiller. It is useful for endurance athletes as well who are looking for a new way to manage the inflammation brought by long miles running or biking.

Turmeric can also help improve your food, especially if you suffer from depression. Taking turmeric in combination with an antidepressant has shown to greatly reduce symptoms in depression sufferers.


Turmeric's antioxidant activity has made it a popular herbal supplement since it would be difficult to reach beneficial levels just by using turmeric spice in your food. If you want to add it to your daily life, you should choose a 500mg dose of turmeric to take once a day that doesn't include any artificial ingredients or added dyes, etc. For the fullest effect, you will want a supplement that contains significant amounts of curcumin, as that is the main active ingredient in turmeric.

Curcumin is poorly absorbed into the bloodstream, so it helps to take it with a fatty meal, as it is fat soluble. Also, piperine, found in black pepper, enhances the absorption of curcumin by 2,000%. So, it would be beneficial to eat a fatty, peppery meal when you take your turmeric supplement.

Herbal supplements may or may not give you the results that you want. It is important to consult your physician before starting any new supplements, as they can cause unforeseen interactions with other medications.