FOOD. IS. MEDICINE. (One more time for the people in the back!)
Ladies, gents, and everything in between, let me present to you turmeric.
Turermic is a rhizomatous herbaceous plant of the ginger family Zingiberaceae. Yeah, I had to look up all of those words, too. Turmeric comes from the Curcuma longa plant grown in India and Southeast Asia; and as it turns out, Hawaii! My friend Adam Hay from Secret Beach Organics recently sent me a box of red turmeric and I could not be happier. I quite literally struck delivery gold.
Turmeric has been called “liquid gold” among the juicing community because of its many benefits. In fact, it is believed to be the reason why India has almost no cases of Alzheimer’s Disease due to the use of turmeric in Indian cuisine. Based on my family’s history, that was a major selling point for me. (Sorry not sorry mom and dad for forcing turmeric shots on you whenever I’m home.) To read more about Alzheimer’s and turmeric, click here.
The MVP of turmeric’s composition is curcumin. This antioxidant rich compound decreases swelling and inflammation, which is the cause of the majority of diseases. In fact, laboratory research suggests that curcumin may prevent or slow the spread of cancer as well as aid chemotherapy and protect healthy cells from damage from radiation therapy.
Here are even more benefits:
- Reduces Symptoms of Depression: Several studies conducted on laboratory animals (we’ll table that rant for later) prove that turmeric is effective in reducing depression symptoms by affecting neurotransmitter function. (click here for more) Another study by journal Phytotherapy Research in 2014 found that curcumin was equally effective as PROZAC in treating the symptoms of Major Depressive Disorder (MDD). (click here to read more)
- May Slow/Prevent Blood Clots: Curcumin modifies eicosanoid biosynthesis, an internal process associated with the natural inflammation process. Thromboxanes, one of the four eicosanoids, is responsible for clotting and is affected by curcumin. This is also why turmeric is an anti-inflammatory substance.
- Fights Inflammation: Remember when that study was all over Facebook about how turmeric was over double as effective as aspirin and ibuprofen in treating inflammation? Here it is. Inflammation is HUGE, you guys. Literally (had to). Did you know that cancer, arthritis, high cholesterol, and ulcerative colitis are all associated with inflammation?
- Skin Heath: “Maybe she’s born with it, maybe it’s that 16 pounds or turmeric she’s working through”. Yes, that is also why my hands are stained bright orange. BUT… IDGAF because I feel amazing! Turmeric speeds up wound healing, decreases acne and acne scarring as well as controls psoriasis flares.
Are you sold yet? I know I am about to go back to the kitchen for round two of turmeric shots!
Where to buy: You will spend a fortune buying it from Whole Foods. You can buy in bulk and save a ton by going to secretbeachorganics.com. Get 20% off your order when you use the code JUICE8 at checkout! I’m not sponsored by them (#goals), I just really believe in what they’re about and can speak to the quality of the product.
How to optimize turmeric absorption
- Black pepper enhances the bioavailability of curcumin. Sprinkle some on your shot or in your food.
- Turmeric is fat soluble, so take it with some healthy fat. Here are a few ways to match the two:
- turmeric milk (see below)
- splash a drop of flax seed oil in your turmeric shot
- Use your fresh turmeric to make curry with coconut milk.