Health Benefits of Curcumin (Turmeric Extract)
Curcumin is an extract from the Turmeric plant. Turmeric is an ancient Indian spice and a traditional remedy that has been used as a medicine, condiment and flavoring. As per Indian Ayurvedic text, turmeric can be taken on a daily basis to improve body immunity.
|– Curcumin is very useful in joint related concerns|
|– Curcumin helps maintain a normal cholesterol and a healthy heart.|
|– Curcumin is very helpful as a digestive support.|
|– Curcumin is extremely helpful in liver protection.|
|– Curcumin is also used in controling obesity.|
|– Curcumin induces the flow of bile, which breaks down fats.|
|– Curcumin acts as an anti-inflammatory agent that relieves the aches and pains associated with arthritis.|
Curcumin C3 Complex® enjoys a special place among curcumin extracts. The name C3 Complex has reference to its three main chemical compounds – Curcumin, Demethoxycurcumin and Bisdemethoxycurcumin – collectively known as Curcuminoids. Patented for its unique composition ratio, Curcuminoids is described as a bioprotectant. Perhaps better understood as a “super anti-oxidant,” C3 Complex provides optimal protection and integrity to biological systems.
A. Botanical Information: Curcumin (Turmeric Root Extract)
Family : Zingiberaceae
Genus : Curcuma
Most common species : Curcuma longa
Number of Curcuma Species : 70
Part used : Rhizome (Root)
Names in Other Languages : Habitat : Southern Asia and Polynesia
|:||Samoan, Tongan Ago, Ango|
Literal English Translation: Yellow Ginger
Maude Grieve provides the following botanical information:
“A perennial plant with roots or tubers oblong, palmate, and deep orange inside; root-leaves about 2 feet long, lanceolate, long, petioled, tapering at each end, smooth, of a uniform green; petioles sheathing spike, erect, central, oblong, green; flowers dull yellow, three or five together surrounded by bracteolae. It is propagated by cuttings from the root, which when dry is in curved cylindrical or oblong tubers 2 or 3 inches in length, and an inch in diameter, pointed or tapering at the end, yellowish externally, with transverse, parallel rings internally deep orange or reddish brown, marked with shining points, dense, solid, short granular fracture, forming a lemon yellow powder.”
B. How Curcumin Works in…
Curcumin‘s potential benefits are so comprehensive and extensive, that we should all be taking it. A recent search of the GreenMedInfo database found hundreds of studies referring to the medical benefits of curcumin. Studies show it inhibits prostaglandin production and stimulates the creation of cortisol which relieves inflammation. Studies concluded that curcuminoids significantly suppress TPA-induced oxidative stress via both interference with infiltration of leukocytes into the inflammatory regions and inhibition of their activation. Studies conducted found that curcuminoid extract inhibits activation of NF-KB suggesting that curcumin shares the same mechanism of action as anti-arthritic pharmaceuticals under development that target NF-KB. It also suggests that turmeric may have a use in other inflammatory disorders, such as asthma, multiple sclerosis and inflammatory bowel disease.
In addition to preventing joint inflammation, Dr. Funk’s study shows that the curcuminoid extract blocked the pathway that affects bone resorption. Noting that bone loss associated with osteoporosis in women typically begins before the onset of menopause, she has begun work on another NIH-funded study to determine whether turmeric taken as a dietary supplement during perimenopause can prevent bone loss and osteoporosis. Both of the studies are supported by the National Center for Complementary and Alternative Medicine (NCCAM) and the Office of Dietary Supplements (ODS), both of the NIH. One study found that Curcumin can prevent the progression of degenerative diseases such as atherosclerosis. Atherosclerosis is characterized by oxidative damage which affects lipoproteins, the walls of blood vessels and subcellular membranes. Thus the ethanol water extract of Curcuma longa (containing curcuminoids), is potentially useful in the prevention of atherosclerosis.
Turmeric has been traditionally used in wound healing. Tissue repair and wound healing are complex processes that involve a series of structural changes in the tissue. These include inflammation, granulation, and remodeling of the tissue. The effect of curcumin on wound healing was studied and found to heal more rapidly as compared to untreated controls. Several areas within the dermis showed extensive development of new blood vessels, and greater collagen deposition in curcumin-treated wounds, especially when used in conjunction with ginger. Cell injury by oxidative stress has been implicated in renal epithelial cell destruction during the progression of kidney diseases.
Many of the beneficial actions of natural compounds may be attributed to their immunomodulating effects. The effects of dietary curcumin on three major types of immune function were examined in rats. Cell proliferation was reduced by almost 50% after 24 hrs. A significant study suggested that curcumin may have a potential effect on controlling allergic diseases. These results have relevance in the potential use of curcumin in the management of bronchial asthma.
Curcumin has been studied in several models for Alzheimer’s and found that it not only reduces oxidative damage and inflammation (as expected), but also reduces amyloid accumulation and synaptic marker loss and promotes amyloid phagocytosis and clearance. Curcumin worked to prevent synaptic marker and cognitive deficits caused by amyloid peptide infusion and abeta oligomer toxicity in vitro. Research on curcumin indicates that curcumin stimulates immune cells to clear Alzheimer’s plaque. UCLA/VA Researchers found that curcumin may help the immune system clear the brain of amyloid beta, which form the plaques found in Alzheimer’s disease. Studies have further found that the effectiveness of curcumin increases significantly when combined with a Vitamin D supplement.
It’s a relief to know that you don’t have to rely on pain-reducing drugs that are irritating to the stomach and may have other side effects. With so many health benefits from curcumin supplements, why don’t you give it a try?