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Turmeric

Turmeric has been used as an anti-inflammatory in Indian traditional medicine(Ayurveda) system for thousands of years.

· Spice

Have you ever heard of Okinawa island and people on this island? Do you know the people of Okinawa are known for their longevity?

After studying their habits particularly of long-lived people, it is understood that they plant medical garden. Okinawan garden mainly contains mug-wort, ginger, and turmeric. It is believed that by consuming these medicinal plants every day, Okinawans may be protecting themselves against illness. Instead of using turmeric as one of the ingredients in recipe Okinawans decided to make a turmeric tea, as a way to drink daily thus benefitting from its incredible healing properties. Maybe this wonderful spiced tea might be one of the reasons of their long healthy life.

Turmeric tea
Ingredients:
1 tsp cinnamon,
1 pinch of clove powder,
1 pinch of nutmeg powder,
1 pinch fresh ground pepper

Directions:
1. Boil above spices in 2 cups of water
2. Sweeten with raw honey
3. Add milk or milk substitute of your choice (coconut milk, almond or hemp)

Let’s explore…
Turmeric is known as golden spice of India. It’s a tropical plant of ginger family (no wonder they look similar). It is rhizome or underground stem with rough, segmented skin. When added it turns things into a very pretty orange-yellow shade. India produces 90% of turmeric. Turmeric’s active ingredient is “Curcumin” with amazing medicinal properties. Turmeric has been used as an anti-inflammatory in Indian traditional medicine(Ayurveda) system for thousands of years. Curcumin is also an antioxidant that helps to stabilize membranes damaged by inflammation.

Do you know that black pepper aids in the absorption of curcumin, the active ingredient in turmeric? Basically, black pepper helps your body to absorb curcumin easily.

Another way to boost the absorption of curcumin is to consume it in the whole food form like turmeric root (fresh or dried as a powder) because natural oils found in turmeric root and turmeric powder can enhance the bioavailability of curcumin more easily.

When eaten with fat, curcumin can be directly absorbed into the bloodstream through the lymphatic system by this it bypasses the liver.

To maximize the effectiveness of the turmeric, make sure to follow 3 things:
1. Activate turmeric by heating it up.
2. Boost turmeric’s absorption by combining it with some freshly ground black pepper.
3. Mix turmeric with a healthy fat to bypass the liver.

Health Benefits:

1. Turmeric is excellent for skin.
The anti-inflammatory qualities of turmeric can target your pores and calm the skin. Turmeric is also known to reduce scarring. It is very common practice in India to bathe babies with Chickpea flour and turmeric to protect and maintain their skin health. In India, a day before marriage there is a special bride-groom “Haldi Ceremony (turmeric ceremony)” …. The turmeric paste is made from turmeric, rose water (or water), and sandalwood powder. It is gooey and cold but smells strong and pungent yet refreshing. It is than applied to the bride and groom on five places: the feet, knees, arms, hands, face, by close relatives. The paste serves as a cleanser for the body and soul and signifies the bride and groom’s preparation and welcoming into adult married life. The turmeric in some Indian communities also signifies protection, hence why the couple cannot leave the house after the ceremony.

2. Turmeric reduces pain, inflammation and stiffness related to rheumatoid arthritis (RA) and osteoarthritis since it has anti-inflammatory properties. It is antiseptic and antibacterial. It is very commonly used on cuts and bruises.

3. Turmeic helps to detoxify the liver, it helps fight allergies, it helps digestion, boosts immunity and also balances cholesterol levels.

Home Remedies:

1. Mix turmeric, ginger, and fenugreek powder in similar quantity and consume it with warm water twice a day
2. Make a paste with turmeric, salt and water. Warm it and apply around the wound to reduce swelling and for quick healing.
3. Make turmeric face masks with 1 tsp turmeric and 2 tbsp of lemon juice or 1 tsp turmeric, ½ tsp honey and 2 tbsp of Greek yogurt. This face mask will help you reduce acne and resulting scars. These combinations will also help your face clear up from acne breakouts.
4. Add ½ tsp turmeric and sugar to 1 c of warm milk. Drink this milk to fight common cold and its symptoms.

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