But modern, Western cultures are only just now beginning to learn of the incredible healing powers of turmeric, which in more recent days have earned it the appropriate title of "king of all spices." And as more scientific evidence continues to emerge, turmeric is quickly becoming recognized as a fountain of youth "superspice" with near-miraculous potential in modern medicine.
A cohort of scientific studies published in recent years have shown that taking turmeric on a regular basis can actually lengthen lifespan and improve overall quality of life. A study conducted on roundworms, for instance, found that small amounts of curcumin, the primary active ingredient in turmeric, increased average lifespan by about 39 percent. A similar study involving fruit flies revealed a 25 percent lifespan increase as a result of curcumin intake.
In the first study, researchers found that turmeric helped reduce the number of reactive oxygen species in roundworms, as well as reduce the amount of cellular damage that normally occurs during aging. Curcumin was also observed to improve roundworms' resistance to heat stress compared to those not taking the spice. And in fruit flies, curcumin appeared to trigger increased levels of superoxide dismutase (SOD), an antioxidant compound that protects cells against oxidative damage. (http://www.lef.org)
"Given the long and established history of turmeric as a spice and herbal medicine, its demonstrated chemopreventive and therapeutic potential, and its pharmacological safety in model system, curcumin, the bioactive extract of turmeric, promises a great future in human clinical studies designed to prevent and/or delay age-related diseases," explained the authors of a review on these and other animal studies involving turmeric.
Improve the quality of your life with therapeutic doses of curcuminEven with all the data showing that it can help boost energy levels, cleanse the blood, heal digestive disorders, dissolve gallstones, treat infections, and prevent cancer, some health experts have been reluctant to recommend taking turmeric in medicinal doses until human clinical trials have been conducted. But unlike pharmaceutical drugs, taking turmeric is not dangerous, and civilizations have been consuming large amounts of it for centuries as part of their normal diets.
According to consumption data collected back in the 1980s and 1990s, the average Asian person consumes up to 1,000 milligrams of turmeric a day, or as much as 440 grams per year, which equates to roughly 90 milligrams of active curcuminoids per day at higher end of the concentration spectrum. And these figures, of course, primarily cover just the amount of turmeric consumed as food in curries and other traditional dishes, which means supplements with similar concentrations are perfectly safe and effective.
But the truth of the matter is that you can safely take much higher doses of both turmeric and curcumin, and doing so will provide even more benefits. The Linus Pauling Institute at Oregon State University (OSU) has compiled a thorough list of turmeric's benefits with detailed information about the doses used to achieve such benefits. You can access this list here: