How do I chose a turmeric supplement?

I’ve been recently searching for a turmeric supplement to help with my chronic inflammation. I got a bit overwhelmed with all the different strengths and brands so I did some research.  And to save you from having to do all the work I’ve compiled my research in this tidy blog post for you.

The active ingredient in turmeric is curcumin. What you’re looking for in a proper turmeric supplement is one that has at least 95% curcumanoids. Curcuminoids are actually responsible for turmerics distinctive yellow color.  This isn’t something that you would think is common practice in the supplement either.  For example a search on Amazon for some turmeric supplements yields some super cheap and super expensive options.  And though, yes, you get what you pay for.  You also pay for a name and sometimes can be over charged simply to buy a brand name.  Or by a supplement that has added unnecessary ingredients.

Swansons may have a supplement that has 720mg in each serving, which is a lot more than say some of the others with only 450mg.  But upon closer inspection you see it has only “3% to 6% Curcuminoids”.  Don’t be fooled! Turmeric is about 2-3% curcumin by weight. That means that in order to consume 1,000mg of curcumin, you would have to take in 33-50 grams of turmeric! This is the reason that it’s better to buy a concentrated curcumin supplement rather than a turmeric supplement.

Curcumin is a very strong supplement with beneficial effects, but it is also very hard for your body to digest all of it as it works it’s way through your system. Curcumin is fat soluble not water soluble  which means if you take that turmeric supplement on an empty stomach or with that glass of low fat milk it will be rendered useless.  Scientist and supplement companies are spending loads and loads of money trying to figure out a way to make curcumin more bioavailable (a measure of how much of the curcumin you ingest is circulated through your body) and more stable so that it will last long enough to get past your gut.

There are already some supplements out there that are trying to reproduce this in your body.  You may see some tumeric supplements that read “More bioavailable” But then they’re about $10 more expensive.  You could take your turmeric this way, OR you could just be sure to take your turmeric with your meal and make sure that meal has plenty of fat.

But crap! It’s bed time and I forgot to take my pills.  Will taking my turmeric now being useful since it’s not with a meal?  Well no it won’t.  But just scoop out a tablespoon of coconut oil, and swallow it down with your pill.  Voila!

What is Tumeric good for?

I’m glad you asked! Let’s take a look at the numerous benefits this amazing spice has.

  • It is a natural antiseptic and antibacterial agent, useful in disinfecting cuts and burns.
  • Prevented breast cancer from spreading to the lungs in mice.
  • Is a natural liver detoxifier.
  • May prevent and slow the progression of Alzheimer’s disease by removing amyloyd plaque buildup in the brain.
  • May prevent metastases from occurring in many different forms of cancer.
  •  It is a potent natural anti-inflammatory that works as well as many anti-inflammatory drugs but without the side effects. (DO NOT TAKE NSAIDS!!!!!!!!!!!  TRY TAKING THIS INSTEAD)
  • I have just recently made a paste out of some turmeric and oil of oregano for my husbands wisdom tooth that is coming through and really hurting him.  The turmeric keeps inflammation down, and the oil of oregano is anti bacterial.
  • Has shown promise in slowing the progression of multiple sclerosis in mice.
  • Is a natural painkiller and cox-2 inhibitor.
  •  May aid in fat metabolism and help in weight management.
  • Has long been used in Chinese medicine as a treatment for depression.
  • Because of its anti-inflammatory properties, it is a natural treatment for arthritis and rheumatoid arthritis.
  • Boosts the effects of chemo drug paclitaxel and reduces its side effects.
  • Has been shown to stop the growth of new blood vessels in tumors.
  • Speeds up wound healing and assists in remodeling of damaged skin.
  • May help in the treatment of psoriasis and other inflammatory skin conditions.

So there you have it!  Are you using or thinking about use turmeric?  Do you have anymore questions that I haven’t covered in this post?  Feel free to ask!


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