How to get more turmeric in your diet through food, beverages and supplements.
Isn’t it fascinating that a spice that has been revered in Asia for thousands of years for cooking, dyeing and medicinal properties is now a darling of the health food industry here in the United States? We’ve had turmeric in our spice cabinets for ages because it makes a great tasting curry but suddenly the health benefits of turmeric are all the rage.
Health Benefits of Turmeric
Turmeric, and its active compound curcumin is known to:
- Reduce inflammation – making it good for joint pain, nerve pain and even arthritis.
- Boost brain function – helping with memory and even Alzheimers disease.
- Lower risk of heart disease – by improving function of the endothelium, regulating blood pressure and clotting.
- Fight heartburn – by suppression of stomach acid and anti-inflammatory properties.
- Increase antioxidants – by neutralizing free radicals.
- Treat or prevent cancer – by slowing down growth of cancerous cells.
How to Get More Turmeric in Your Diet
With all those benefits, it seems like getting more turmeric in your diet is a good idea! Here are 3 ways to do that:
Cook with Turmeric
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Turmeric is a popular kitchen spice, especially in curry dishes. It has a slightly bitter flavor that mixes well with other spices. In fact, if you have a jar of curry powder in your kitchen, it most likely contains turmeric. Here are a few ways to to add turmeric to the foods you eat regularly at home:
- Mix a couple teaspoons into soups, stews and stir fries
- Add to a smoothie
- Sprinkle a bit on your popcorn
- Made a homemade curried nut mix
You can find turmeric in the spice section of most grocery stores and often in bulk at the co-op. My favorite source for turmeric: Simply Organic Turmeric Powder
If you don’t already have a favorite recipe using turmeric, here’s a little inspiration for you:
Cauliflower Steaks with Ginger, Turmeric & Cumin
Chicken Curry with Apples (great “starter curry” for kids)
Orange Turmeric Cake
Turmeric Golden Milk Ice Cream
Beverages made with turmeric have been super trendy. Temple Turmeric makes an excellent turmeric elixer in many flavors – I tried a couple at the Natural Products Expo and they were delicious! You can also make your own turmeric drinks:
- Golden Milk – a blend of turmeric and other spices and mixed with coconut milk or ghee. Make it from scratch or buy a Golden Milk powder like this one from Gaia Herbs or the Tur Latte from Raw & Root.
- A refreshing turmeric smoothie
- Anti-inflammatory turmeric tea
- Vanilla turmeric latte
Take a Turmeric Supplement
All this talk of health benefits has me wanting to get a dose of turmeric every day. But because I don’t cook curry or drink turmeric beverages every day, I sometimes take a supplement. Here are a couple I’ve tried and recommend:
And if you’re more of a DIY’er, here’s an intriguing recipe for homemade turmeric supplements made with honey.
Do you get enough turmeric in your diet?
Sources: Organic Authority, Care2, Huffington Post
Note: Please consult your doctor for all medical advice.
(Photo credits: Steven Jackson, Rachel Hathaway and Melanie Cook all via flicker cc as well as Temple Turmeric for product shot.)
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