Turmeric  a member of the ginger family – contains curcumin, a substance with powerful anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties. Curcumin is what gives this wonder spice its yellow pigment and has claimed some serious health benefits such as

  • anti cancer
  • prevention of heart disease
  • prevention of degenerative neurological diseases
  • brain boosting benefits related to cognitive function and mood (studies done on elderly adults¹)
  • lowers cholesterol
  • prevents oxidation of cholesterol
  • helps with treating inflammatory bowel issues such as IBD
  • relief for arthritis
    (just search PubMed http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/ for the many many published articles on this link)

Can you see all  the anti-inflammatory properties at work here..?

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Turmeric powder bought in Vietnam. Check out the packaging compared to anything similar in Ireland

I briefly mentioned turmeric in my other post on spices http://nutritionbyanna.com/2015/05/spice-up-your-life-i-mean-meals/#sthash.Me6iQkhw.dpbs

So … terrific turmeric can be incorporated into –

  • Smoothies
  • Stir-fries  (grate fresh turmeric into a stir-fry)
  • Curries (along with with other wonderful spices such as ground cardamom, cumin, coriander (the 3 c’s perhaps..), chilli, ginger
  • Salads
  • Desserts
  • Milk !  (See recipe for turmeric milk from Susan Jane White’s book ‘The Virtuous Tart’, a real taste-bud opener)

A half  to one teaspoon of ground turmeric is all  you need.  The turmeric root is an unusual looking spice and can be found in some farmers markets (such as in Midleton Farmers market in Cork every Saturday).  I always use the ground turmeric form.  I buy it from the spice stall at a Farmers market or a health store such as Here’s Health and store it in a glass jar to keep it at its best.

Turmeric root web

Turmeric root

 

 

 

 

 

 

¹ http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/25277322
http://www.greenmedinfo.com/blog/one-dose-kitchen-spice-improves-brain-function