A discussion on the use of turmeric as a natural anti-inflammatory. Uses and benefits, as well as a delicious tropical smoothie recipe that uses turmeric.
Golden milk lattes and turmeric juice shots have become all the rage nowadays in most boujee coffee shops and juice bars you go into.
The most popular ingredient? Turmeric.
And in the case of this food trend…rightfully so.
Turmeric is one of the most powerful natural anti-inflammatory foods on the planet. However, you have to ingest it properly and in the right amounts to reap the benefits.
Today we’re diving into everything you need to know about turmeric to incorporate it into your daily life and experience it’s myriad benefits.
The main compound in turmeric is curcumin.
Curcumin is a powerful anti-inflammatory compound as well as a very strong antioxidant.
Think of inflammation in the body, no matter what it’s caused by (stress, exercise, diet, etc), as poison.
Too much inflammation and EVERY part of your body is negatively effected (I have personal experience with that!).
Even low level CHRONIC inflammation has been connected to almost every chronic western disease in existence today.
Curcumin (in the right doses) has been proven to be so powerful that it matches the effectiveness of some man made anti-inflammatory drugs.
The problem is getting enough of it to have the intended effects…
How Much Turmeric Do You Really Need?
You need 500-1000 milligrams of curcumin at a time to reap the benefits. In 1 tsp of fresh ground turmeric, there is about 200 milligrams.
So taking a turmeric/curcumin supplement like I do is definitely the easiest way to get the proper amount. But it’s not the only way. Just don’t fall for gimmicks on the market like a turmeric infused granola bar that has nothing more than a sprinkle of what you need.
The reason I personally take turmeric in supplement form and recommend it to others is because of all the scientific literature and data backing its health benefits. LOTS of supplements on the market make claims, but have no research to back them up.
Turmeric is a natural, whole food AND has been scientifically proven to benefit our bodies in myriad ways.
This is the supplement I take.
Benefits of Curcumin on the Body
Other studies have shown multiple positive effects of curcumin on the body, including:
- improved brain function
- neutralization of free radicals in the body
- may be anti-cancer
- may reduce depressive symptoms
- may help prevent/treat Alzheimer’s
- reduces joint inflammation (on the of the main reasons I take a turmeric/curcumin supplement)
One thing to note:
A lot of its benefits come in conjunction with an overall healthy, balanced lifestyle. Turmeric (just like any food or supplement) is NOT a cureall.
It is still being widely studied so of course don’t take any of the info I am sharing here in place of your own medical doctor’s advice.
Ways to Use Turmeric
And finally…here are some ways to incorporate turmeric in your diet.
Despite being such a vibrant color and being so nutrient rich, I’m not going to lie and say it tastes good.
But there are some ways to use it that mask the flavor a bit…
- Bake with it (these donuts are awesome!)
- Stir it into oatmeal (love these overnight oats)
- Make a golden milk latte from scratch (the store bought mixes have very little turmeric per serving)
- Make Indian food or other ethnic food that calls for turmeric
- Blend it into a smoothie…like this one below!
Tropical Turmeric Smoothie
Here is one of my FAVORITE ways to use turmeric. A Tropical Turmeric Smoothie!
Tropical Turmeric Smoothie
- Prep Time: 5 minutes
- Total Time: 5 minutes
- Yield: 1 serving 1x
1/2 of a frozen banana
1 cup frozen mango
1 orange, peeled
1 1/2 cups unsweetened cashew milk (or another kind of plant milk)
1–2 tsp ground turmeric
1/2 tsp ground ginger
Optional: 2 tbsp unsweetened shredded coconut or 2 tsp coconut oil
Place all ingredients into a high powered blender. Blend on high until creamy and smooth.
Looking for more info on natural anti-inflammatory foods? Check out these posts:
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Disclosure: While I do hold 2 certifications in nutrition, I am not a medical professional. Please consult with your own doctors before making any changes to your diet or supplement regimen.