Historically, spices are treasured for the unique flavors they bring to food and for their healing properties.
Most spices provide some health benefits. But one spice that shines for its medicinal benefits is turmeric. You may have seen turmeric in the news as a potential treatment for diseases as diverse as arthritis, cancer, diabetes, heart disease, psoriasis, and Alzheimer’s.
But does this spice live up to its press? And can you get the benefits of turmeric from food alone or should you take a turmeric supplement? Turmeric and curcumin are often used interchangeably. What’s the difference between them? Here’s everything you need to know about the health benefits of turmeric.
Traditional Health Benefits of Turmeric
Turmeric is a spice that comes from the root of Curcuma longa, a beautiful flowering tropical plant native to India. Turmeric has been used for healing for thousands of years going back to Ayurveda, India’s 5,000-year-old natural healing system. Cooking residue found on pottery shards shows that people in parts of Asia cooked with turmeric 4,500 years ago.