Turmeric is a wide known spice, commonly used in Asian foods. Also, scientific evidence shows that it has beneficial effects on the brain and heart. Namely, recent studies show that it can help in the treatment of many different chronic inflammatory diseases, like asthma, inflammatory bowel diseases, arthritis, chronic obstructive airways diseases, and so on.
What Is Turmeric?
This is a root plant, which has been used as a culinary spice and natural remedy for thousands of years on the Asian continent. The main ingredient of turmeric is curcumin, a bioactive ingredient which is considered a natural antioxidant with antimicrobial, anti-inflammatory, and carminative properties.
In addition, recent research has found that this spice has a beneficial effect on the brain, helping in the treatment stress and depression.
All in all, turmeric has many healing effects. It can help with the following:
- Improve digestion
- Help with intestinal diseases, such as peptic ulcers and inflammatory bowel disease
- Help with colon cancer
- Reduce gas and bloating
- Treat liver disorders
- Normalize menstrual difficulties
- Reduce rheumatoid arthritis
- Purify blood and improve blood circulation
- Enhance the work of the metabolizing enzymes
- Remedy skin conditions
- Cleanse wounds and accelerate healing
- Treat respiratory disorders
- Has an antifungal and antibacterial effect
- Help with depression and stress
You can use turmeric in many ways in your diet. For example, you can add it to risotto, salads, salad dressings, vegetable soups, roasted potatoes, as well as cakes.
If you do not like its taste, you can also take it in the form of capsules.
Turmeric Drug Interactions And Possible Side Effects
Because of the aforementioned beneficial effects, turmeric is often used as a natural remedy in today’s modern society. People usually use it to avoid the negative side effects and complications of pharmaceutical drugs. However, turmeric can also be dangerous when taken in combination with certain medications.
If you have problems with thrombosis, you need to know that turmeric reduces blood clots. But, it’s dangerous if taken together with blood thinners. In combination with this type of drug, it can boost their effects and increase the risk of bleeding. Common blood-thinning drugs are aspirin, clopidogrel (Plavix) and warfarin (Coumadin).
Turmeric inhibits the effects of drugs used for reduction of stomach acid. When consumed together, they will actually increase the production of stomach acid and make things worse. Eventually, you may end up with a damaged esophagus, which causes abdominal pain, inflammation, and nausea. Some of the drugs belonging to this group are omeprazole, ranitidine (Zantac), famotidine (Pepcid), esomeprazole (Nexium), lansoprazole (Prevacid), and cimetidine (Tagamet).
This spice presents a potential risk if consumed with medications for diabetes, which reduce the blood sugar levels. Namely, turmeric enhances the effects of the drugs, and consequently, increases the risk of lowering the blood sugar levels too much. This can further cause numerous side effects, such as reduced cognitive function, delirium, blurred vision, anxiety, and tremor. Some of the medications belonging to this group are insulin therapy, metformin, meglitinides, sulfonylureas, thiazolidinediones, SGLT2 inhibitors, and the like.