The 411 On Turmeric, An Essential Spice & Super Supplement!
Posted by Abigail Schmidt on July 08, 2014 (0 Comments)
If it's not in your cupboard, it should be. Here’s why:
Turmeric, as I’m sure you know, is a spice generally found in the form of a fine ground golden powder. A close cousin to ginger root, the harvested portion of the turmeric plant is also a root, or a “rhizome”, that really looks remarkably more like ginger’s flamboyant fraternal twin. Though it does grow in China and Africa, it is native to and mostly cultivated in India. This is undoubtedly why it is a long standing essential ingredient in traditional Indian cuisine. Turmeric has garnered most of its fame for the brilliant golden color it brings to Indian curry, vegetable and rice dishes. It asserts a mild harmonizing flavor to a recipe that is best described as earthy and peppery.
Here is the part about turmeric you may not know so much about:
The turmeric root has a very unique dichotomy in that it has an extraordinarily long history for two reasons; it has served not only as a culinary spice in ancient India, Africa and Asia, but also as an ancient medical cure-all for both the immune and digestive systems. For centuries it has been used for its potent medicinal properties in both the ancient Indian system of medicine known as ‘Ayurveda’ as well as traditional Chinese medicine.
Modern science has found that the active healing ingredient in turmeric is a compound called curcumin. Curcumin is not only a powerful antioxidant that protects the body from harmful free-radicals but it is also a scientifically proven anti-inflammatory. The Yogis used turmeric to aid digestion, heal the stomach and liver, and even reduce the pain from arthritis.
Studies have shown that it even has the power to help fight heart disease, diabetes, Alzheimer's disease, and the spreading of cancer.
With all that in mind, here's how to make turmeric a part of your life in both the kitchen cupboard and vitamin/supplement cabinet.
In the kitchen:
- Dinesh’s own BBQ marinade recipe with turmeric is a simple, delicious, and fun summer dish.
- A sumptuous traditional recipe for Authentic Tikka Masala, it is a must for one’s culinary ‘bucket list’.
- A divine and vegetarian Indian-style cauliflower dish that is easy to make, which calls for both tumeric and cumin seeds.
In the vitamin cabinet:
To really capitalize on turmeric’s beneficial health properties, a higher dosage of curcumin is needed that any recipe would likely be able to provide. To get turmeric working as an antioxidant and anti-inflammatory, the body needs over an ounce of turmeric extract along with black pepper or piperine to make the medicinal properties bioavailable. A dosage of 400-600 milligrams (with pepper or piperine) a day is recommended by Dr. Andrew Weil to reap full rewards.
With so many benefits and such a long history, it's no wonder that turmeric has endured as such a culinary and medicinal staple!