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Turmeric (Haldi) - How To Identify If It Is Pure Or Not?

Dr. Kanwar Samrat Singh 88% (899 ratings)
MD-Ayurveda
Ayurveda, Patiala  •  6 years experience
Turmeric (Haldi) - How To Identify If It Is Pure Or Not?

When it comes to Indian cuisine, it is all about a mélange of flavors and aroma that can entirely transform the face of any dish. One such important spice is turmeric which is not just revered for the amazing color and texture it adds to any food but for its medicinal value as well.

Turmeric or haldi is used for thousands of years in Ayurvedic treatments, and its values are now researched and approved by scientists and researchers all across the globe. But if you have decided to add turmeric in your daily edibles then you should be aware of the tips and tricks that would enable you to choose the pure form of turmeric over the unwanted filtered and chemically dyed ones.

Turmeric often tends to have unwanted additives such as chalk powder or starch or sawdust and sometimes, it is made to look appealing with the help of synthetic colors. Adulteration in spices is a common situation in India and therefore, it pays to ensure that the turmeric you buy and eat is free from Metanil yellow or lead chromate which is some of the toxic chemicals.

Quick tricks that can help you check

  1. Checking for chalk powder: You can take a pinch of turmeric powder in a glass flask and add a few drops of water to it. Now add a few drops of hydrochloric acid, and if you see it to give off bubbles, it is indicative of the presence of yellow soap powder or chalk powder or both.
  2. Presence of Metanil yellow: A few drops of hydrochloric acid in a pinch of turmeric will also help you understand whether it has Metanil yellow. Add some water and shake the mixture as vigorously as you can. If you see the mixture to turn pink, then rest assured that it contains this unwanted additive.
  3. Spotting adulterated turmeric root: Sometimes, we need turmeric root instead of the powder, and you will be surprised to know that it may also be coated with some unwanted substance. To test for it, you will have to place turmeric root on a piece of paper and pour some water on it. If you see it leaving color, it can be impure and polished to give the desired look.
  4. Go for the water test: This is one of the easiest ways to find out if there is any adulteration. You will have to take some warm water in a glass and pour in little quantity of turmeric on the surface. You need not stir or mix it and leave it for around 20 to 30 minutes. If all the turmeric powder settles at the bottom of the glass and the water is crystal clear, then the turmeric is pure. If you find the water to turn cloudy, then you need to look for some other vendor for the Haldi supply.

Such simple measures can go a long way in maintaining the good health of your family. Hence care must be taken in this regard.

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