Turmeric is an amazing spice that has been used in medicine for centuries. It has become popular recently because of its use in curries and other spicy foods. Turmeric can be found in most grocery stores and is very inexpensive. Heart disease is the leading cause of death among both men and women in the United States. As with all diseases, there are risk factors that can be controlled to prevent heart disease, but there are others that cannot. Because of its antioxidant properties, turmeric may help to decrease risk factors related to heart disease. It also has anti-inflammatory effects on the body which have been shown to prevent certain conditions related to inflammation in the body. In order to be effective in preventing heart disease, turmeric must be taken in the form of a supplement.
We also made a video out of this blog in case you are more interested in watching than reading it.
This article will highlight some of the many different ways turmeric is helpful for heart health, including helping to control cholesterol and blood sugar levels and reducing inflammation throughout the body. The article will also cover how turmeric may provide relief from some symptoms associated with arthritis and Alzheimer’s disease.
1. Turmeric Lowers Cholesterol and Triglyceride Levels
Cholesterol and triglycerides are fats that get into the bloodstream and get stuck in the arteries. When this occurs, the body begins to form plaque because it is trying to protect itself from injury. The plaque builds up and causes damage to the arteries and can lead to a heart attack or stroke if there is a rupture.
Turmeric may be able to help lower cholesterol and triglyceride levels so that these fats cannot build up in the arteries. A study was conducted by Harvard Medical School, which found that patients who consumed turmeric together with black pepper had reduced cholesterol levels. The study also found that turmeric and pepper had virtually no effect on triglyceride levels.
2. Turmeric May Help Protect Against Cardiovascular Disease
A study was conducted by Dr. Madhusudhan Katti, who is a cardiologist at Boston Medical Center, which found that turmeric may be an effective way to reduce the risk of cardiovascular disease by lowering blood pressure and cholesterol levels. The study showed that this combination helped lower LDL (low-density lipoprotein) cholesterol significantly when compared to people who did not consume the spice.
Today, cardiovascular disease is a leading cause of death worldwide. If the results from the study are found to be true, then turmeric may have a significant impact on lowering mortality rates. Also, this could have a positive financial impact on the healthcare system because it could lower the number of people who need to see a cardiologist for heart disease.
3. Turmeric May Help Treat Heartburn and Acid Reflux
Heartburn and acid reflux are common ailments that can be painful for many people. They may include burning, fullness in the belly, and pain in the chest. The condition may be caused by stomach acid moving up into the esophagus and causing irritation and inflammation of the muscular layer of the stomach lining. Also, there is a buildup of stomach acids in the esophagus that can irritate this area as well.
Turmeric may be a good way to help reduce the symptoms of heartburn and acid reflux because it has been shown in a study to be effective in reducing the frequency of these symptoms when it is added to a person’s diet. It was also found that turmeric reduced the amount of stomach acid in the test subjects, which helped ease their pain.
WHAT KEEPS A HEART-HEALTHY AND WHAT LEADS TO HEART DISEASE?
The heart is the muscle responsible for pumping blood to all the cells and tissues within the body. It is continuously working every single second of our lives, and we can not live without it. Heart health should be focused on maintaining the strength of the heart muscle and also ensuring it can restore itself. One major cause of heart disease is high blood pressure. High blood pressure is one of the results of fat buildup in the blood vessels within the body, requiring the heart to use more energy to pump blood to the various parts of the body. High blood pressure increases the workload of the heart, tiring the muscles out much quicker and needing more cell regeneration and nutrients. The heart is also working hard daily to pump blood with many components so if the blood becomes thicker through fat and others, the more difficult it is to pump as well. Poor blood circulation can also create clots that can block blood flow and can lead to heart muscle death and stroke. Considering the important job of the heart and its constant work, reducing fat buildup in blood vessels and reducing blood clotting should be the two main focuses when it comes to heart health.
One way to maintain and protect the heart is through frequent exercising and maintaining a healthy diet. Regular cardiovascular exercises are also important for keeping your metabolism running smoothly and reducing your risk of other health problems like diabetes, high blood pressure, or high cholesterol. A curated diet that aims to supply the heart with good nutrients to maintain its health. Heart cells are continuously regenerated, providing the heart with targeted nutrients will increase its restorative strength and reduce any potential injuries. Over time, this can lessen the risk of heart disease. The cause of heart disease is constantly being researched to have a greater understanding of the matter, but the results are constantly evolving as more information becomes available. As more information is discovered it can be applied to new cases and improve future cases as well.
HOW CURCUMIN PROTECTS THE HEART FROM INJURIES AND PREVENTS HEART DISEASE
When there is an injury to the heart or other muscles, inflammation follows. Inflammation is an immune response within the body to increase blood flow to an area and bring healing components to the area. However, in cases of gradual injuries, such as sustained higher workload on the heart, the increased blood flow to the tissue can worsen the condition of the cells over time leading to heart muscle hypertrophy or muscle enlargement. Blood vessels can also suffer from inflammation-causing lesions and buildup. Both chips away at heart health and increase the chance of a heart attack.
Curcumin has been shown in both animal and human studies to reduce the rate of inflammation in the heart tissues in cases such as heart attacks. Also when curcumin is taken a couple of hours prior to heart surgery, it showed signs of improving post-surgery healing. It all connects together that curcumin can reduce excessive inflammation of the heart muscle cells and blood vessels that can help in preventing heart injuries such as heart attacks, but also protect and help heal the body when surgery is needed. The heart muscle needs to be protected at all times so when injury does occur, healing is quick and has minimal risk of complications.
CURCUMIN AND REDUCING BAD CHOLESTEROL
Another major contribution to heart disease is atherosclerosis, or cholesterol buildup on the blood vessels and within the blood flow. Both can slow down blood flow to the body’s cells and also increase the workload on the heart muscle requiring more nutrients. Studies saw a decrease in blood cholesterol levels within 7 days of taking curcumin orally. Even those already with high blood cholesterol or diagnosed with atherosclerosis, saw an improvement within 28 days when taking curcumin. These past studies show great promise for curcumin to be both preventative and protecting the heart when it comes to cholesterol within the body.
Curcumin has also been shown to be able to reduce the amount of fat linked to LDL cholesterol. Before curcumin, there were few ways of lowering cholesterol without surgery or medications. Curcumin is reported to block the production of apoB circulating lipoprotein particles, which are responsible for carrying fats around the body and into blood vessels. They are also responsible for increasing the risk of atherosclerosis, which can lead to heart disease.
HOW CURCUMIN HELPS REDUCE BLOOD PRESSURE AND PREVENT HEART DISEASE
High blood pressure is one of the major contributors to heart disease. It is believed that the elevated blood pressure is reported to be almost twice that of normal blood pressure within the United States, and similar to other countries. High blood pressure is a major issue for millions of people each year. Like curcumin, which has been shown to lower cholesterol levels and protect the heart muscle from injury and heart disease, so does curcumin reduce high blood pressure.
Higher blood pressure puts an added strain on the heart muscle which in turn can lead to a rise in cholesterol levels in the body, which is a major contributing factor in heart disease. When taking curcumin, not only did participants experience less high blood pressure but also saw a drastic decrease in LDL cholesterol levels within 2 weeks of taking it. The reduction in LDL cholesterol within the body caused by taking curcumin has been shown to reduce the risks of heart disease.
Curcumin also has shown to increase nitric oxide levels in the body which are known to play a significant role in blood pressure regulation. When you take curcumin, you are increasing the amount of nitric oxide released within the bloodstream that constricts blood vessels and helps lower blood pressure.
HOW CURCUMIN DEALS WITH DIABETES AND PREVENTS HEART DISEASE
Diabetes is another major issue when it comes to heart disease it affects millions of people worldwide. Diabetes is a disease that can cause damage to blood vessels and heart cells. When your own body does not produce enough of the insulin that is needed to regulate blood sugar, it results in diabetes. Diabetes affects the body by not only slowing down the process of metabolism of food for energy for the body but also by increasing heart disease risks, as well as having a greater risk of developing other serious health conditions such as high blood pressure and high cholesterol. Curcumin has been shown to decrease the symptoms of diabetes within days of taking it.
Curcumin also has been shown to lower triglyceride levels which are known to play a major role in heart disease, along with lowering the LDL cholesterol levels within the body. Lower triglyceride levels also decrease the risk of heart disease.
HEART DISEASE AND THE CALORIC INTAKE OF THE BODY
The heart is the muscle responsible for pumping blood to all the cells of our body. The calories that are consumed by the body are then transported through the blood to cells that need it. If there is more fat in the blood, then less can reach these cells which can lead to them starving. If there are not enough proteins, nutrients, and carbohydrates within the bloodstream, this increases the chance of heart attacks on a cellular level. Curcumin has been studied to see if it can increase glucose tolerance in the body by increasing the amount of blood glucose that reaches cells.
When curcumin is taken orally, it has been shown to increase blood glucose levels within hours of taking it. It also keeps up with high sugar levels even after eating. Curcumin has also been shown to reduce high triglyceride levels which are known to be a major risk factor for heart disease.
The major contributors to heart disease are mostly tied together through inflammation, cholesterol, blood pressure, and metabolic rates within the body. Curcumin has been researched and found to help with all four factors which can reduce or eliminate heart disease in people today.
PROTECTIVE ROLE OF CURCUMIN
Combining all of the potential benefits of curcumin, it is clear curcumin can have a protective role when it comes to heart health. Its antioxidant capabilities can help heart cell regeneration. Its anti-inflammatory characteristics can lower blood pressure and reduce healing time. It contributes to lowering blood cholesterol to reduce blood vessel buildup. Most important is its safety, it has reported low toxicity and wide availability, and high doses can be tolerated. As always, consult your doctor before starting any new medications or food additives intended for therapeutic effect.
Some other benefits include curcumin’s ability to prevent cancer, protect the brain, lower cholesterol, and increase immunity. Research has also shown that curcumin can help to protect the mind and body from aging. Curcumin helps to lower oxidative stress in the body which is believed to be one of the major factors that can lead to stress on nerve cells within the brain which could result in memory loss or even Alzheimer’s disease.
HOW TO TAKE TURMERIC
After seeing all the amazing potential effects of turmeric and curcumin, how can you safely add curcumin to your diet and how much should you add? Many of the studies cited above are using doses of 2 or more milligrams per day. However, the curcumin content of turmeric is not that high. It’s around 3%, by weight. It would be difficult to use enough turmeric spice in your food daily to receive its full effects. A supplement is your best choice to enjoy the full benefits of turmeric and curcumin, always check the label to make sure it has significant amounts of curcumin. A second consideration is the absorption of curcumin, which by itself is not easily absorbed by the bloodstream. Black pepper which contains piperine does increase curcumin absorption by 2000%, so choose a turmeric supplement that also has piperine. Lastly, curcumin is fat-soluble so you can further help absorption by having some fatty food or meal together with your supplements.
Turmeric Has Been Shown To Have Anti-Inflammatory Effects
Inflammation is a condition that occurs when the body reacts to irritants that have entered it or to an injury that has occurred. It is a normal response, but if it continues for a long time, it can cause damage to specific tissues in the body and lead to other conditions such as cancer and heart disease. People who have rheumatoid arthritis, inflammatory bowel disease, asthma, and pancreatitis are more likely to experience inflammation than people who do not have these health problems.
There are two main types of inflammation called acute and chronic. Acute inflammation is a response that occurs in a matter of minutes or hours. Chronic inflammation can last for a long time and worsen over time. Turmeric may be an effective treatment for chronic inflammation because it has been shown to have antioxidant effects on the body. It also helps to reduce pain associated with arthritis and reduce swelling that is caused by inflammation. Additionally, it has anti-inflammatory properties that will decrease swelling in the body by stopping certain chemicals called prostaglandins in their tracks.
THE SCIENCE BEHIND THE USE OF TURMERIC FOR HEALTH
Turmeric itself is not an anti-inflammatory, but it does contain curcumin, which is an anti-inflammatory agent. This is why some medicines that are used to treat inflammation contain turmeric in them. The inflammation of osteoarthritis is caused by the wear and tear of cartilage on bone leading to the loss of lubrication of the joints. Turmeric has been shown to decrease this process by reducing inflammatory molecules that can lead to more deterioration. Another important benefit of turmeric is its ability to decrease swelling within the body.
Gastroenteritis is an inflammation that occurs in the digestive system that can lead to nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, and abdominal pain. Turmeric can be an effective treatment for gastroenteritis because it has been shown to inhibit certain organisms that are present during the infection.
Another condition that turmeric can help with is asthma. People who have asthma are more prone to inflammation than those who do not suffer from this condition. Atopic dermatitis is caused by an allergic reaction and is characterized by redness, itching, and inflammation of the skin. When applied topically as a paste with some oil such as sesame oil mixed with turmeric extract can help to reduce symptoms of atopic dermatitis.
Turmeric has also been shown to reduce inflammation associated with atherosclerosis. At the same time, turmeric has been shown to protect the heart against some of its negative effects. Studies have found that regular use of turmeric reduces the amount of cholesterol in the bloodstream which can lead to heart disease by lowering blood cholesterol levels. This is why turmeric can be used by people who have high cholesterol levels.
THE EFFECT OF TURMERIC ON THE BODY
Turmeric is a nutraceutical spice that is used as a food additive that is often used for centuries for its health benefits. The most noteworthy benefit of turmeric is its ability to heal skin wounds by reducing inflammation and pain associated with them. Turmeric plays a vital role in reducing inflammation associated with osteoarthritis, chronic inflammatory bowel diseases, asthma, and atherosclerosis. Due to its anti-inflammatory properties, it has been shown to improve symptoms of rheumatoid arthritis.
Turmeric is also known for its protective effect on the cardiovascular system because it reduces the risk of heart disease by lowering cholesterol levels in the blood. It can stimulate bile flow which could be effective in reducing the risk of gallstones and decreasing bile acid levels could result in increased weight loss. Turmeric can also help to soften skin and could be applied topically as an anti-aging agent that also helps to reduce skin cancers.
ANTI-INFLAMMATORY DIY TURMERIC TEA RECIPE
This quick, easy-to-make anti-inflammatory turmeric tea recipe is the perfect drink to cozy up with a book. It only requires three simple ingredients for this healthy tea packed with anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties.
The main ingredient, turmeric contains curcumin which has been backed by science to have numerous benefits:
- Increase Heart Health: Reduces bad cholesterol
- Has Antibacterial and Antifungal properties
- Decrease Obesity: Regulates body fat by decrease inflammation
Reduce the risk of Diabetes: Regulates blood sugar levels
Reduce symptoms of osteoporosis: Reduces inflammation
Turmeric can be found in most grocery stores.
For this recipe you will need:
1 tablespoon of grated turmeric
Three tablespoons of lemon juice
One tablespoon of grated ginger
Three cups of water
1. Juice 3 Tbsp of lemon
2. Mix 1 Tbsp of grated ginger, 1 Tbsp of grated turmeric, and 3 Tbsp of lemon into a saucepan with 3 cups of water.
3. Simmer the mixture over medium heat for 3 to 5 minutes
4. Use a strainer as you pour the turmeric tea into your mug
If you prefer your teas on the sweeter side, add a dash of honey.
And for those of you who don't have the time to make this and want something to take on the go, our turmeric supplement can provide a daily dose of anti-inflammatory goodness!