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Health Benefits of Turmeric, Uses And Its Side Effects

Last Updated: Sep 02, 2020

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Turmeric is not just a quintessential spice in curries, but it has a plethora of health benefits too. Turmeric can be used to treat everything from liver problems to digestive ailments to even ringworm and itching. Curcumin, the main compound present in turmeric has excellent anti-inflammatory, antiseptic and antioxidant properties.

Turmeric often rivals results produced by anti-inflammatory medicines, while its antiseptic properties make sure that it helps speed up wound and infection healing. The antioxidant properties of turmeric make it very useful for detoxifying the liver and for keeping bad cholesterol levels in check.


Turmeric is a rhizomatous herbaceous perennial plant. The turmeric spice comes from the turmeric plant. It is generally used in Asian cuisine to add flavor to dishes and curries, as well as in butters, mustard, and cheeses.

Turmeric has been used for thousands of years in Asia, and is a major part of Ayurveda, Siddha medicine, Unani, and traditional Chinese medicine. Although typically used in its powdered and dry form, it is also often used fresh, like ginger.

Nutritional Value of Turmeric

Turmeric is an excellent source of potassium, Vitamin B6, and fiber as well as substantial amounts of magnesium and Vitamin C. Curcumin, the major component of the spice turmeric, has several noted therapeutic effects.

Turmeric also contains health benefiting essential oils such as turmerone, zingiberene, cineole, and p-cymene. Turmeric does not contain any cholesterol, but it is rich in dietary fiber and antioxidants, which help control cholesterol levels.

Turmeric contains high amounts of minerals such as calcium, iron, potassium, manganese, copper, zinc, and magnesium.

Nutritional facts Per 100 Grams

10 g
Total Fat
38 mg
2,525 mg
65 g
Total Carbohydrate
8 g

Vitamins and Minerals

43 %
Vitamin C
230 %
90 %
Vitamin B-6
48 %

Health Benefits of Turmeric

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You can consume turmeric in a different way to get its nutritional benefits. Make turmeric tea or add some turmeric powder in milk for wound healing. Numerous health benefits of the single herb and used in cooking also all over the world. Turmeric herb plays important role in Ayurveda therapies and hold powerful medicinal properties. Mentioned below are the best health benefits of using Turmeric.

Anti-inflammatory properties of turmeric

Curcumin, the main component in turmeric, has excellent anti-inflammatory properties. In fact, studies have found that it is so powerful that it is capable of matching the effectiveness of anti-inflammatory drugs.

Curcumin targets multiple steps in the inflammatory pathway, at the molecular level. It blocks NF-kB, a molecule that travels into the nuclei of cells and turns on genes related to inflammation. Turmeric can thus help combat inflammation.

Turmeric helps in prevention of cancer

Curcumin present in turmeric has been found to be very effective in interfering with cancer development in the body. It can also help boost the effects of chemotherapy.

It has been noted that this cancer prevention ability of turmeric becomes even stronger when used in combination with freshly ground black pepper.

Turmeric for arthritis and joint pain relief

Turmeric's anti-inflammatory properties have been instrumental in treating osteoarthritis and rheumatoid arthritis.

Turmeric also contains anti-oxidants which destroy the free radicals in the body that damage the cells and lead to arthritis. People suffering from arthritis are advised to take turmeric on a daily basis.

Turmeric powder for digestion problems

Turmeric, if consumed raw when suffering from digestive problems, can be very effective in successfully treating them. The major components of the spice stimulate the gallbladder to produce bile, instantly making the digestive system more efficient. Turmeric powder has also been known to alleviate symptoms of gas and bloating.

Turmeric milk is good for diabetic patient

Turmeric is often used in the treatment of patients who have pre-diabetes to prevent or delay the onset of Type-2 diabetes. This is mainly due to the anti-inflammatory and antioxidant compounds present in curcumin. Turmeric milk helps keep insulin levels in check and also boosts the effects of the medications used for treating diabetes.

Turmeric boost your immune system

Lipopolysaccharide is a substance present in turmeric which has anti-bacterial, anti-fungal and anti-viral properties which help stimulate the human immune system. Not only does it improve the functioning of the immune system, but it is also very helpful in treating colds and coughs. Drink turmeric milk or tea to your boost immunity power.

Use turmeric for liver detoxification

Turmeric is capable of increasing the production of certain vital enzymes which detoxify the blood in the liver by breaking down and reducing the toxins. By improving blood circulation too, turmeric is instrumental in promoting good liver health.

Turmeric powder uses for weight loss

Turmeric helps accelerate the body’s metabolism rate, thus helping the body burn a greater amount if calories, leading to weight loss. Turmeric powder is also useful in reducing fat mass, which is important in diet-induced weight loss. Additionally, since the curcumin in turmeric lowers bad cholesterol levels, turmeric can act as the ideal weight-loss supplement.

Turmeric for skin whitening

Turmeric keeps skin healthy in more ways than one. It helps reduce oil secretion by the sebaceous glands, thus inhibiting the growth of pimple-causing bacteria. Long-term usage of turmeric on the skin can also clear scars caused by acne.

The antioxidants present in curcumin has been known to fight signs of aging such as wrinkles and pigmentation by curbing the growth of free radicals.

Benefits of turmeric in wound healing

Turmeric has excellent antibacterial and antiseptic properties. This makes it extremely useful when used for the purpose of quick and efficient wound healing. Studies have found that turmeric is capable of healing wounds completely within a very short period of time.

Uses of Turmeric

Turmeric is used not only as a spice, but it also widely used in the treatment of certain ailments such as arthritis, joint pain gallbladder diseases and other kidney problems.

Turmeric is often applied topically to the skin to treat pain, ringworm, bruising, infections and other inflammatory skin conditions. The essential oil present in turmeric is used in the cosmetic industry as an ingredient in scented soaps and perfumes. In food and manufacturing, the resin obtained from turmeric is used as a flavor and color component in foods.


Side-Effects & Allergies of Turmeric

Turmeric is generally very safe and has no side effects when used optimally. People with turmeric sensitivity can have mild stomach upset or diarrhea. Turmeric usually does not cause significant side effects; however, some people can experience stomach upset, nausea, dizziness, or diarrhea.

Cultivation of Turmeric

Turmeric has been used in Asia for thousands of years and is a major part of Ayurveda, Siddha medicine, Unani, and traditional Chinese medicine.

Turmeric has its origins in Southern India, and till date, this region continues as the world's largest producer of turmeric. India is the largest exporter of turmeric in the world, followed by Thailand, Latin America and Taiwan. Indian turmeric is considered the best in the world market because of its high curcumin content.

Turmeric is a perennial plant, which means that it can be cultivated throughout the year. It requires temperatures ranging from 20 to 30 °C and a considerable amount of annual rainfall to thrive. Though turmeric thrives in different types of soil ranging from light black loam, red soils to clayey loams, rich loamy soils having natural drainage and irrigation facilities are the best. Turmeric cannot stand water stagnation or alkalinity.


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    Written ByDrx Hina FirdousPhD (Pharmacology) Pursuing, M.Pharma (Pharmacology), B.Pharma - Certificate in Nutrition and Child CarePharmacology
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    Reviewed ByDt. Ms. Shilpa MarwahB.Sc (Home Science), Post Graduation Diploma in Dietetics and Public Health NutritionDietitian/Nutritionist

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