YORUBA-ATALE PUPA, IGBO-NWANDUMO, HAUSA-GANGAMAU.
SPECIES CURCUMA LONGA
Turmeric is a rhizomatous herbaceous perennial plant of the ginger family, zingiberaceae. It has been used for over 2500years in India. The health benefits of turmeric has been slowly revealing themselves over the centuries.
Turmeric , also known as curcuma longa, is a very common herb. It is often referred as queen of spices, “its main characteristics are a pepper-like aroma, sharp taste and golden colour.
Apart from its anti-inflammatory properties, recent research has revealed that it can be helpful in the treatment of many different health conditions from cancers to alzheimers’s disease.
Its bioavailability increases when it is consumed with black pepper.
one of the biggest health benefits of turmeric is in the prevention and treatment of cancer. Research has found that curcumin induces cell death in medulla blastoma, a pediatric brain tumor. Other studies have found that it may induce cell death in glioblastomas an aggressive type of brain tumor that is resistant to chemo and radiation.
One study found that turmeric, when combined with cruciferous vegetables e.g. Cabbages, broccoli, cauliflower etc. may prevent prostate cancer and stop or slow the growth of existing prostate cancer.
A study found that Curcumin caused melanoma cells to commit suicide. Topical application of Curcumin has shown promise in fighting squamous cell carcinoma.
Multiple studies have found that one of the most exciting health benefits of turmeric is the prevention of metastasis, the spread of cancer from primary site to other areas of the body.
Cachexia is one the biggest hurdles for many cancer patients with solid tumors. It causes weight loss and muscle wasting even when large amounts of food are ingested. A Chinese study found that patients with colorectal cancer who were given oral curcumin while waiting to undergo surgery experienced weight gain. The same study also found that curcumin induced cancer cells death in patient with colorectal cancer.
Researchers at UCLA found that turmeric enhances the effects of cisplatin, a chemotherapy used in the treatment of many different cancers. Cisplatin and Turmeric together worked better at suppressing tumors than cisplatin alone. In addition, a study published in the nutrition and cancer journal found that turmeric not only makes cancer cells more susceptible to chemo but it also protect healthy cells from toxic effects of chemo.
One of the most exciting turmeric benefits is in the realm of brain health. It has long been noted that elderly people in India have low rates of Alzheimer’s disease. One reason may be that they consume a lot of turmeric in their diets. A study found that curcumin may prevent or slow the progression of Alzheimer’s disease by removing amyloyd plaque buildup in the brain.
Turmeric helps to moderate insulin levels. It also improves glucose control. Another significant benefit is Turmeric’s effectiveness in helping reduce insulin resistance, which may prevent the onset of type2 diabetes.
Research has proven that simply using turmeric as a food seasoning can reduce serum cholesterol levels. It is a known fact from my previous health tips that high bad cholesterol level can lead to other serious health problems. Maintaining a proper cholesterol level can prevent many cardiovascular diseases.
Turmeric contains a substance known as lipopolysaccharide which stimulates the body immune system. Its antibacterial, antiviral and antifungal agents also help strengthen the immune system. If you do get a cough, cold or flu, you can feel better sooner by mixing one teaspoon of turmeric powder in a glass of warm milk and drinking it once daily for three days and if symptoms persist see your doctor.
A study at UC San Diego found that turmeric may be able to treat some type of retinitis pigmentosa, a degenerative group of eye diseases that can lead to blindness. Another study found that it may be helpful in the treatment of macular degeneration.
Research has found that turmeric may be a powerful tool in the fight against obesity and its related symptoms. Turmeric reduces leptin resistance, reverses hyperglycemia, reduces inflammation and activates fat burning gene signals.
NATURAL PAIN KILLER AND ANTI-INFLAMMATORY:
Turmeric is a natural pain killer and cox-2 inhibitor. One study compared turmeric to ibuprofen for pain relief in knee osteoarthritis patients and found that turmeric worked just as well as ibuprofen.
Turmeric is a natural liver detoxifier. Research has found out that it protects against alcohol induced liver damage as well as damage caused by a high fat diet.
Turmeric crosses the blood brain barrier and is known neuroprotective agent. According to some researchers turmeric can prevent clumping of protein that leads to Parkinson’s disease.
Turmeric has shown promise in slowing the progression of multiple sclerosis. A study has shown that turmeric prevented the onset of an autoimmune disease in mice that is similar to multiple sclerosis in human. It is also said that multiple sclerosis is a rare disease in India and China where turmeric is consumed on daily basis.
Oral turmeric has been shown to be effective against psoriasis.
Turmeric is effective in the treatment for people with major depression.
Turmeric has been found to stop the growth of Helicobacter pylori bacteria that is found in the stomach and other part of the body. If left untreated can lead to stomach ulcer and stomach cancer.
Turmeric may protect against the effect of sleep deprivation and helps one to sleep better.
TREATMENT FOR WOUNDS:
Several studies have found that turmeric has antibacterial properties and is useful in disinfecting cuts and burns.
Turmeric should not be used by people with gallstones and bile obstruction in order not to worsen their situation.