Turmeric is a rhizome that grows under the ground like ginger. It has a rich, bright orange color and is used in many foods. Originally used in Southeast Asia, it’s a vital component for traditional curries. You can find dried powdered turmeric in the spice aisle of just about any grocery store. Sometimes they carry the fresh rhizome too (it looks like ginger root, but smaller).
Turmeric contains an amazing anti-inflammatory, antioxidant compound called “curcumin.” The amount of this bioactive compound is around 3-7% by weight of turmeric. Curcumin has been studied like crazy for its health benefits. Many of these studies test curcumin at up to 100x more than that of a traditional diet that includes turmeric.
Health Benefits of Turmeric
There are dozens of clinical studies using curcumin extract (which is way more concentrated than ground turmeric).
Curcumin is an anti-inflammatory compound. It fights inflammation at the molecular level. Some studies even show it can work as well as certain anti-inflammatory medications (but without the side effects).
Curcumin is an antioxidant compound. It can neutralise free radicals before they wreak havoc on our biomolecules. Curcumin also boosts our natural antioxidant enzymes.
These two functions of reducing inflammation and oxidation have amazing health benefits. Chronic inflammation plays a major role in so many conditions. Including heart disease, cancer, metabolic syndrome, dementia, mood disorders, arthritis pain, etc.
Curcumin has other amazing functions too:
Do you think these make turmeric deserve the “miracle spice” title?
How to get the most out of your turmeric
Curcumin is not easily absorbed by your gut. For one thing, it’s fat soluble. So, as with fat-soluble nutrients (like vitamins A, D, E, and K), you can increase absorption by eating it with a fat-containing meal.
The second trick to get the most out of your turmeric is eating it with pepper. Interestingly, a compound in black pepper (piperine) enhances absorption of curcumin, by a whopping 2,000%!
Turmeric is a delicious spice, and it’s “active ingredient” curcumin is a great health-booster.
Curcumin has anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties which are great to bust chronic inflammation. It also has other amazing health benefits, like brain- and heart-boosting properties, and even cancer-fighting properties.
Curcumin supplements can be great for your health, but they’re not for everyone. Check the label or speak with your practitioner before taking it.
I want to know: What’s your favourite turmeric recipe? Try my golden milk recipe and let me know in the comments below.
1 can coconut milk
100ml hot water
1 ½ tsp turmeric, ground
¼ tsp cinnamon, ground
½ tsp honey
Add all ingredients to a small saucepan. Stir to combine.
Warm over medium heat, stirring frequently. Heat until hot, but not boiling.
Serve & enjoy!
Tip: You can substitute 2 cups of almond milk instead of the 1 cup coconut milk and 1 cup water.
One of my clients came up with this idea! She was looking for a way to make a healthy dessert. So she combined Coyo Vanilla Coconut yoghurt with flaxseed and blueberries to create this tasty and healthy treat! This dairy-free blueberry cheesecake recipe takes 5 minutes to put together and only has 4 ingredients! It is a great solution for a tasty dessert for those with lactose intolerance. It is also gluten-free!
2 tbsp Ground Flaxseed
6 tbsp Coyo Vanilla Coconut Yoghurt
Firstly place the ground flaxseed into a 3 inch dessert dish. Smooth down with the back of a spoon until the flaxseed forms the flat base of the cheesecake.
Now add in the coconut yoghurt. Again flatten down the top of the layer with the back of a spoon.
Now place the blueberries on top of the coconut yoghurt until the whole top layer is completely covered.
Next drizzle the honey over the blueberries to sweeten the cheesecake.
Finally place the cheesecake in the fridge to set for 30 minutes. Enjoy!
You can make this water kefir recipe at home. If you are intolerant to lactose in dairy, this water kefir recipe is a good option to get your daily dose of probiotics. It will save you money buying probiotic supplements or kefir yoghurts as you can make it yourself. This water kefir recipe is simple to make but requires you to strain it every 2-3 days.
2tbsp Kefir grains
500ml Filtered water
2tbsp Brown sugar
Firstly in a large 1 litre glass jar, dissolve the sugar in 100ml hot water. When the sugar is dissolved add the remaining cold water. make sure the water is room temperature.
Now add the kefir water grains into the jar and cover the top of the jar with a muslin cloth. The kefir grains are living organisms and feed on the sugar to ferment it.
Leave the jar in a warm, dark place such as an airing cupboard for 2-3 days. Do not leave it for too long or it can starve the grains if there is no sugar left. The longer you leave it, the more acidic the taste is.
After 2-3 days strain the mixture through a small sieve into another glass jar. You can now drink the kefir liquid and store it in the fridge. Try a small glass to see if you like it and if it agrees with you. Keep the kefir grains to reuse.
Wash the fermenting jar and repeat the process again.
If you are going away you can freeze the kefir grains and defrost them to start the process again on your return.