Inflammation is something we all experience in our lifetime, as it’s the body’s response to things like pain, injury, or infection. That said, rather than turning to ibuprofen or Tylenol, there are natural ways to heal the body. The cure may already live in your kitchen cabinets in a spice bottle marked “turmeric.”
Used for centuries to heal, cure, and make delicious meals, turmeric is one superfood we could all use an extra dash of. Ahead, find out what causes inflammation and how the super spice can treat it.
But first, what is inflammation?
As we mentioned above, inflammation is a response the body has to pain, injury, or infection. Caused by a number of ailments — including: arthritis, stress, weight gain, and even food — if you’re not careful, it can wreak havoc on your body.
In addition to food, stress, and bad lifestyle habits, what you put inside your body can cause a significant boost in inflammation. And while drinking alcohol and eating sugary foods are common, some others may take you by surprise.
Here are the foods that could be making matters worse:
- Processed snacks
- White bread
- Asian food
What exactly is turmeric?
Derived from the root of the turmeric plant, the super spice has a yellowish-orange hue and is most commonly used in curry dishes. Related to the ginger family and native to India and Indonesia, the root’s powder has been used for centuries for medicinal healing and wedding ceremonies in South Asia.
Turmeric as an anti-inflammatory
Studies show that curcumin — a natural component of turmeric — has the power to fight inflammation by targeting the different molecules responsible. Because of this, turmeric houses the ability to protect the body from countless types of inflammation, including arthritis, inflammatory bowel disease, and more.
How to reap its benefits
While turmeric can aid in inflammation, there is more to it than adding a dash to your food or taking a daily supplement. The medicinal properties of curcumin can be ineffective due to how quickly it is metabolized. That said, there are ways to counter this and ensure maximum absorption.
One way to do so is by combining turmeric with pepper. According to research, pepper can help your body better absorb the super spice.
As an added bonus, add coconut oil — or, another healthy fat — to the mix. Curcumin is fat-soluble so coconut oil can help it make its way to the intestines and be absorbed into the body’s bloodstream.
Easy ways to add it to your diet
Turmeric is easy to add into your diet. Sprinkle it on top of your eggs, add it into a mac and cheese dish, or take a pepper and turmeric supplement. That said, one of our favorite ways to reap the benefits of this super spice is by making golden milk — aka, a turmeric latte.
Made from health-benefiting ingredients — think: turmeric, coconut oil, pepper, and cinnamon — the superfood-packed latte is as delicious as it is nourishing. Try this recipe from Domino.
Other health benefits of turmeric
From skin health to brain function to cancer prevention, turmeric can aid in a variety of ailments. Here are some of its most impressive benefits:
- Cancer prevention
- Heart disease
- Skin health
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