Foods that have an incredible array of health benefits that go well beyond just their nutrient value are considered `super-foods.` Turmeric is an herb native to Southeast Asia that is a true super-food shown to have remarkable healing and anti-inflammatory properties that are just now being discovered.
Cellular inflammation is a common day epidemic that is it is the fundamental cause of degenerative disease in our society. Turmeric has been shown to reduce inflammation & oxidative stress as well as any herbal medicinal ever studied.
Turmeric root is extraordinarily rich in curcuminoid polyphenol anti-oxidants that give it a classic yellow-orange color. The principal crucuminoid is curcumin which is responsible for much of the health benefits attributed to turmeric. The other 2 curcuminoids are desmethoxycurcumin and bis-desmethoxycurcumin.
Blood sugar imbalances and insulin resistant cell membranes are critical factors that promote inflammatory conditions in the body. Curcumin has been shown to stabilize blood sugar and reverse cellular insulin resistance by increasing the number of insulin receptors and improving the receptor binding capacity to insulin.
Curcumin has been shown to activate PPAR (peroxisome proliferator-activator receptor), which is a group of nuclear receptor proteins that regulate gene expression and modulate sugar uptake and utilization from the blood. Curcumin also acts on the liver to decrease the activity of enzymes that release sugar into the blood while increasing activity of enzymes that store sugar. Through these mechanisms, curcumin has been shown to significantly reduce blood glucose and triglyceride levels in diabetic rats.
When blood sugar imbalances occur without sufficient regulation, glucose cross-links are formed with functional proteins. These new molecules are called Advanced Glycolytic Enzymes (AGE`S) that damage cell membranes, vital enzyme systems, and perpetuate inflammatory conditions in the body. Curcumin has been shown to inhibit the formation of these dangerous substances and turn off the inflammatory fires.
Turmeric is the 4th highest anti-oxidant rich herb with an extraordinarily impressive ORAC score of 159,277. These anti-oxidants such as curcumin are very powerful modulators of oxidative stress.
Turmeric also boosts levels of natural cellular anti-oxidants such as glutathione, superoxide dismutase, and catalase. These molecules are critical for the body to limit oxidative stress all day long. The greater the surplus of cellular anti-oxidants the less stress and damage occurs to vital organ systems.
Turmeric`s powerful curcuminoids have been shown to reduce the inflammatory mediating prostaglandins, cytokines and other molecules such as interleukin-6 & tumor necrosis factor-alpha (TNF-alpha). This tips the scales; it pulls the body out of an inflammatory cascade and promotes anti-inflammatory behavior at the cellular level.
Turmeric`s ability to inhibit oxidative stress, AGE formation, & inflammatory prostaglandins across multiple organ systems and multiple biochemical pathways makes it an incredibly powerful anti-aging and performance enhancing aid. Through the above mentioned mechanisms turmeric has been shown to reverse diabetes and improve blood vessel elasticity.
This stabilizes blood pressure and improves cardiovascular function. Additionally, by inhibiting pro-inflammatory prostaglandins it is a powerful pain inhibitor and cancer cell inhibitor. Turmeric improves blood flow and reduces brain inflammation, thus making you cognitively sharper while protecting against Dementia, Alzheimer`s, Parkinson`s and every other neurodegenerative disorder. It has been shown to speed up wound healing from cuts & burns while reducing inflammatory skin disorders such as psoriasis and eczema.
Here is one very tasty way of implementing more Turmeric into your lifestyle:
1 cup of fresh squeezed lemon juice:
(4 -6 lemons)
4-6 cups of clean water (to taste)
1 tsp of ground turmeric
1 tsp of cinnamon
Pinch of volcanic salt
1/2 tsp of liquid stevia (or to taste)
Optional: 1 tsp ground/fresh ginger
Dr. David Jockers