10 Ways Turmeric Might Be Superior To Modern Medicine
By Hilary Lebow
The use of turmeric dates back to nearly 4,000 years ago to the Vedic culture in India. Back then it was used primarily as a cooking spice, with some religious significance. Today, it has migrated across the globe for a range of applications, both culinary and medicinal. While there are some skeptics about its medicinal efficacy, there are thousands of peer-reviewed studies to date highlighting turmeric’s versatility in whole-body healing.
Turmeric can improve digestion, control unwanted facial hair, remove dandruff, enhance memory, fade stretch marks and much, much more. Is there anything it can’t do? Maybe, but this beloved Indian spice continues to surge in popularity year after year as the world discovers its numerous health benefits. Google searches for turmeric have increased 300 percent in the last five years, along with other superfoods like coconut oil and apple cider vinegar. So go ahead — jump on the bandwagon.
Turmeric’s role in modern medicine
A healthy lifestyle with turmeric may help prevent disease and overmedication.
Let’s think about the modern medical system for a moment, and how it differs from alternative health. Consider this scenario: you’re tired, stressed and you’re eating out all the time. You come down with a nasty infection and head straight to the doctor. They prescribe you antibiotics. Over the course of a week, your meds wipe out the bacteria in your gut, both good and bad. You’re cured of the first infection, but get walloped with a second infection while you’re immune system is down, paving the way for more medications with more side effects. On and on until you’re 100 percent better… a month later.
That’s our modern medical system — a reactionary approach.
Now, consider this: All year round you eat organic, whole foods and stay away from junk food. You meditate, you hydrate, you exercise, you get eight hours of sleep a night. You lead a low-stress lifestyle, you supplement your diet with plenty of probiotics and you sprinkle turmeric on many of your recipes. When everyone around you gets an infection, you might get sick. However, because you’ve strengthened your immune system through the seasons, chances are your body will be able to fight off the infection on its own.
That’s alternative health — a proactive approach.
In the first scenario, you’ve caused your body unnecessary damage, which takes time and resources to fix. In the second case, you’ve relied on your body’s own faculties to take care of the problem before it strikes. That’s where turmeric fits in. It can be used as part of an overall healthy lifestyle to give your body the support it deserves. Here are ten ways that turmeric can improve your health:
1. Turmeric has anti-inflammatory properties
This sunny spice belongs at the top of our list for its inflammation-fighting powers. Chronic inflammation caused by a poor diet and unhealthy lifestyle causes dangerous diseases over the long haul, including cancer, heart disease, type 2 diabetes, arthritis and more. Adding turmeric to your diet is a simple way to add a kick of flavor to your dishes while allowing your body to do what it does best: keep you healthy. Turns out, the active compound in turmeric — curcumin — is on par with over-the-counter anti-inflammatories, without all the harmful side effects.
2. It’s an antidepressant
Yes, a simple spice may really be able to improve your mood. In one study, researchers tested stressed-out lab rats displaying depression-like symptoms along with adrenal issues, caused by a prolonged elevation in stress hormones. Surprisingly, they found that curcumin helped to alleviate negative physiological effects. “These results provide compelling evidence that the behavioral effects of curcumin in chronically stressed animals, and by extension humans, may be related to their modulating effects on the HPA axis and neurotrophin factor expressions,” wrote the authors. That’s fancy talk for curcumin’s powerful impact on the brain.
3. It kills cancer cells
Over the years, researchers have examined curcumin’s role in treating various forms of cancer. Several studies have found that curcumin can significantly inhibit the development and movement of cancer cells through the body. It does this by reducing the growth of new blood vessels in tumors, called angiogenesis. Curcumin may also contribute to the cancer cell death directly, though more research is needed in this area.
4. It reduces pain
The curcumin in turmeric can help to relieve pain.
Chronic pain is one of the biggest problems in our country, sending many towards over-the-counter or prescription pain medications. The problem is, they are more dangerous than you might think. For example, acetaminophen, sold under the name Tylenol, is associated with 50 percent of acute liver failure in the states. “Tylenol is responsible for more than 56,000 emergency room visits, 2,600 hospitalizations and an estimated 458 deaths due to acute liver failure each year,” says a study published in Hepatology. Curcumin, on the other hand, may alleviate pain naturally, according to researchers.
5. It increases cognitive capacity
Alzheimer’s disease has been linked to low levels of brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF), an important neurologic growth hormone. Several studies have shown that curcumin in turmeric can increase levels of BDNF in the human brain, perhaps causing neurological disorders to delay or even reverse. Additionally, scientists now suspect that curcumin may improve memory and increase cognitive capacity, something we could all use a little more of.
6. It fights heart disease
Endothelial dysfunction is a common cause of heart disease. It occurs when the endothelium (the lining on your blood vessels) can no longer regulate blood pressure and clotting. Fortunately, researchers have found that curcumin can help your endothelium by raising nitric oxide availability and reducing oxidative stress, similar to exercise. Improved endothelial function means you have a lower risk of heart disease. Thanks, turmeric!
7. It reduces symptoms of arthritis
In one study, researchers evaluated three groups of rheumatoid arthritis sufferers. They gave one group 500 milligrams of curcumin, another group diclofenac sodium (50 milligrams), and a third group with the combination of the two. They found that the curcumin group had the highest reduction in tenderness and swelling of the joints. “These scores were significantly better than the patients in the diclofenac sodium group. More importantly, curcumin treatment was found to be safe and did not relate with any adverse events,” wrote the study authors.
8. It can alleviate PMS symptoms
Turmeric may be able to alleviate PMS symptoms.
A study published in Neuropeptides found that curcumin contains properties that can alleviate PMS symptoms. The researchers conducted a trial on 70 young women. Half of the participants took curcumin for three menstrual cycles, while the other half took a placebo. At the end of the study, researchers discovered that PMS symptoms were “significantly reduced” for the curcumin group.
9. It can help irritable bowel disease (IBD)
Researchers have found that curcumin’s anti-inflammatory properties may prove beneficial for the GI tract, perhaps by blocking inflammatory cytokines. In one study, researchers gave patients 360 milligrams of curcumin three or four times a day over the course of three months. At the end of the study, they found that curcumin significantly reduced clinical relapse in patients with IBD. Though the research so far looks promising, more studies are needed to confirm the link.
10. It can treat skin issues
Turmeric may be able to provide therapeutic benefits for your skin health. In one meta-analysis, researchers reviewed eight studies on the topical application of turmeric and its effects on the skin. The skin conditions included acne, alopecia, atopic dermatitis, facial photoaging, oral lichen planus, pruritus, psoriasis, radiodermatitis and vitiligo. Researchers noted “statistically significant improvement” in dermatological issues for the curcumin treatment group in comparison to the control group.
We received this note from one of our dedicated customer's, Shayne. Shayne is an international dressage competitor and wanted to share her Copper Cup story.
"As a young professional with big dreams, my day is always organized chaos. I ride anywhere from 10-15 horses a day. On top of that, I coach my clients, I travel to teach clinics, I travel for competitions, and I spend long nights chipping away at my business, Ride To The Max. My life is so busy!
Unfortunately, as much as I love what I do, I have been fighting chronic kidney stones for about 10 years. Coffee (caffeine) is a big trigger for me.... but it's so hard to not use it as a go to boost throughout my day!
A friend of mine introduced me to Copper Cup as a healthy, yummy alternative to my much needed coffee in between rides. I fell in love... even my horses try to snag a sip! It's caffeine free, it comes in easy to use pouches, and the flavor is addicting.
Thank you Copper Cup for making my day easier and keeping my health on track!
Thank you, Shayne for taking the time to tell us how Copper Cup has benefited your life.
If you have a story on how Copper Cup has helped you, please share your story with us here.
Okay so this recipe seems like a bit of a word salad, but I promise the results will be worth it! Let’s dissect each word, starting with ‘Lassi’. A lassi is a traditional Indian yogurt-based beverage that is typically a creamy, smooth, mango flavor. Think of it like a mango milkshake. Lassi drinks are served cold as a refreshing beverage on a hot day or while eating spicy Indian cuisine. Most lassi’s have savory spices like cardamom or ginger to balance the sweet fruit flavor, so we thought it would be only fitting to add our Copper Cup turmeric latte mix!
We put a vegan spin on this recipe by substituting the traditional dairy yogurt base with organic coconut milk & almond milk. We then threw the blended beverage into a bowl and added texture with some nutrient dense toppers. This recipe tastes how I imagine liquid gold would taste. It tastes incredible. My favorite part is the unsweetened coconut flakes that freeze in the smoothie bowl to add the perfect crunch factor.
Yield: 1-2 servings
Prep time: 10 minutes
Ingredients for Smoothie:
1 cup frozen mango
1/2 cup ice
Juice of 1/2 lime
1 piece raw ginger
1 piece raw turmeric
1 tablespoon hemp seeds
1/4 cup almond milk
1/2 cup full fat coconut milk
1 tablespoon Nutiva coconut oil
1 sachet or 1 Tbsp of Copper Cup turmeric latte mix
Unsweetened coconut flakes
Love Grown Raisin Almond Crunch granola
Put all ingredients for the smoothie into a blender and blend until smooth. Add more almond milk to adjust consistency. Pour contents into 1-2 bowls and add arrange desired toppings.