I was listening to an interview this past weekend about inflammation and all the issues that inflammation causes in the body (including cancer, neurological issues, and degenerative diseases) and what we can do about it. Curcumin (the plant that turmeric comes from) was mentioned as one of the supplements that can naturally help reduce the inflammation in our bodies and help alleviate the symptoms or even treat some of these conditions.
I have written about Turmeric in the past when talking about the supplements I take, how I trained for 7 marathons in 7 days, and in my juicing recipes, but merely mentioned it, never actually written about it.
Over the past week I have had 2 people ask me about this “miracle spice” so I thought I would tell you all why I love it and why I eat it every single day!
Turmeric is a powerful medicine that has been used in the Chinese and Indian systems of medicine for over 5,000 years as an anti-inflammatory agent to treat a wide variety of medical conditions, including general inflammation in the body.
The most effective part of the spice is found in the pigment and is called curcumin. Curcumin is thought to be the primary pharmacological agent in turmeric. In numerous studies, curcumin’s anti-inflammatory effects have been shown to be comparable to drugs like hydrocortisone and phenylbutazone as well as over-the-counter anti-inflammatory agents such as ibuprofen. Unlike the drugs, which have significant toxic effects, curcumin produces no toxicity.
Some of the conditions curcumin has been known to help are inflammatory bowel disease, arthritis, cystic fibrosis, cancer cell growth, colon cancer, poor liver function, high cholesterol, alzheimer’s, and most illnesses and diseases which worsen with inflammation in the body.
Before I knew all this about Turmeric, I actually just took it for inflammation in my joints caused from running. About 10 years ago, I couldn’t run more than 6-8 miles without my joints starting to ache. I never ran 2 days in a row because I wanted to give my body time to heal from the joint pain. My mom has arthritis so I just figured that’s what I would eventually have and it was coming on faster since I put so much impact on my body and my joints.
And racing a half marathon or a marathon? I was sore for weeks! I could barely walk after the race, let alone the next day.
So I went into Whole Foods to get some sort of glucosamine because that was the “in” thing that everyone took for their joints. I asked the guy in the supplement section where to find stuff for joint health and he asked “Do you want eastern or western?” I have always leaned toward more “eastern” ways of thinking, but I didn’t know anything about eastern medicine. I replied without hesitation “Eastern”.
He told me about Wobenzyme (which I also talk about in my supplements article) and Turmeric. I bought both that day and have been taking them ever since. When I learned about curcumin, I just made sure my supplement was high in curcumin, which is why I take the one I currently take (http://amzn.to/20oKcoO).
In addition to taking a daily supplement, here are 3 other ways I incorporate turmeric into my day…
- I add it to my smoothies. Ideally I add actual turmeric root, but the small town I live in doesn’t carry it so when I haven’t been to a big store in a while and I am out, I use the powder.
- I add it to my soups, sauces, coleslaw, salads, veggies, and anything else where I think it would taste good.
- I add it to my juices when I am juicing. I just toss the entire root into the juicer and VOILA! It’s juice!
I originally started taking turmeric for one specific purpose, but as more info has come out about the spice, I have added overall health and well-being AND quicker recovery from training to my list of why I continue to eat turmeric on a daily basis.
So here I am, 10 years after starting to incorporate turmeric into my life. I can run back to back days easily and I have run over 60 marathons and even more half marathons with no join pain and very little soreness afterward. My recovery for all workouts is quicker, and I rarely get sick, even with how hard I push my stress level on a daily basis.
I am sold! Turmeric is my friend and will be a part of my life for as long as I live!
Here is the supplement I use…
I would to hear about the supplements you love! Comment here or in our community at…
See you SOON!!