7 reasons that haldi (Turmeric) is good for you

Ritu Puri

January 17, 2020

The world may be going gaga over turmeric latte now but we in India have been sipping on haldi doodh for years! Turmeric, which comes from the root of the Curcuma longa plant, has been used as a powerful anti-inflammatory in Chinese and Indian systems of medicine. The deep yellow-orange colour led it to be called “Indian saffron” and it has been used for centuries as a condiment and healing remedy. In fact, no Indian meal is complete without haldi!haldi

Ground turmeric has a mild fragrance, a strong colour, and a peppery and bitter flavour. We give you 7 reasons to consume turmeric every day:

1. It offers significant anti-inflammatory benefits

Curcumin, the primary pharmacological agent in turmeric, has been revealed to have anti-inflammatory effects comparable to hydrocortisone and phenylbutazone and certain over-the-counter anti-inflammatory agents. The best part is that curcumin leads to no toxic effects. No wonder it helps you get rid of that hacking cough!

2. It can help prevent cancer

The antioxidant actions also enable protection of the colon cells from free radicals that can damage cellular DNA. It also helps destroy mutated cancer cells, ensuring that they don’t spread through the body and cause more harm. Apart from inhibiting colon cancer, studies have linked turmeric to lower rates of breast, prostate and lung cancer.turmeric prevents from cancer

3. It helps detox and enhances liver function

Consumed regularly, turmeric can up levels of liver detoxification enzymes in the body. Recent research suggests that turmeric may help you detox and if “used widely as a spice would probably mitigate the effects of several dietary carcinogens”.

4. It can help in cases of rheumatoid arthritis

Many clinical studies have shown that curcumin has powerful antioxidant effects and can neutralise free radicals. The potent combination of antioxidants and anti-inflammatory agents can help people with the joint disease such as arthritis.turmeric prevents from arthritis

5. It improves cardiovascular health

Curcumin seems to be responsible for all the good that turmeric does. It may also be able to prevent the oxidation of cholesterol in the body, which can help reduce progression of atherosclerosis and diabetic heart disease. Turmeric is also a good source of vitamin B6, which is essential to keep homocysteine levels from getting too high and creating a risk factor for blood vessel damage.

6. It helps treat inflammatory bowel disease

Curcumin’s antioxidant activity and inhibition of a major cellular inflammatory agent known as NF-kappa-B is an easy and inexpensive way to treat inflammatory bowel diseases such as Crohn’s and ulcerative colitis. Just adding a pinch of turmeric to your curry or moong dal is enough!Turmeric prevents inflammatory bowel disease

7. It can protect against Alzheimer’s Disease

Cases of neurodegenerative diseases are low in India, where turmeric is a part and parcel of the daily diet. Research suggests that turmeric may help protect against neurological diseases such as Alzheimer’s and multiple sclerosis.

Apart from these health benefits, turmeric offers umpteen others, including help for those suffering from cystic fibrosis and reduction in the risk of childhood leukaemia.

So go ahead, add turmeric to your food in all the ways you can: to curries, to honey & milk or as a beverage to teatox. Ignite your imagination and reap the benefits!

About the Author

Ritu, who battled weight issues, acne and other health issues as an adolescent, managed to overcome these problems through changes in diet and lifestyle. Her success prompted her to pursue the subject professionally, leading her to a BSc in Home Science followed by an MSc in Food and Nutrition from Lady Irwin College, Delhi University. Ritu completed a training programme with All India Institute of Medical Science (AIIMS) before working with Fortis Hospital, and the Nutrition Foundation of India. Serving as a Sr. Nutritionist at HealthifyMe, she aims to help her clients to make small changes in their lifestyle that will positively impact their health.

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