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10 Proven Health Benefits of Turmeric Powder

Turmeric powder has a strong anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties, which are believed to treat pain and inflammation in the body. It’s also used to treat hay fever, depression, excessive cholesterol, liver disease, and itching, but there’s no concrete evidence to back this up. However, the plant-based spice is used in Asian cuisines most frequently.

health benefits of turmeric powder
The main bioactive compound in turmeric is cucumin.

How Does It Work?

Turmeric contains a yellow-colored substance called curcumin, often used for the coloration of foods. Many studies claim that it is as strong as medicine, with a wide range of health benefits. As a result, turmeric may be useful in the treatment of inflammatory disorders. Here are 10 health benefits of turmeric powder.

1. Curcumin is an anti-inflammatory

The active ingredient in turmeric powder is curcumin. One of turmeric’s most famous claim is that it is effective against inflammation and it fights against invaders, which may cure damage inside your body. According to a previous study, curcumin may be a more effective anti-inflammatory treatment than standard inflammation-fighting drugs such as Advil (ibuprofen) and aspirin. This involves inflammatory bowel disease, pancreatitis, arthritis, heart disease, cancer, metabolic syndrome, and many other diseases. (1)

Curcumin is highly anti-inflammatory substance. It is effective, like any other anti-inflammatory drug, without side effects.

2. May prevent cancer

Cancer is an uncontrolled, terrible disease. There are many cancers that still have many things in common. Some of them seem to suffer from turmeric supplements. However, the active substance in turmeric powder is curcumin, which is a beneficial herb in the prevention of cancer. Study shows it may reduce the growth of abnormal cells. Curcumin may perform this through a variety of mechanisms, including blocking the production of abnormal cells at various stages of the cell cycle, interfering with cell signalling pathways, and even causing cancerous cells to die. (2)

Curcumin is a medicinal substance, and it is the active ingredient in turmeric powder. According to research, it may help slow the growth of abnormal cells.

3. Contains bioactive compounds

According to the Evidence, dry turmeric contains 69.43% carbohydrates, 6.3% proteins, 5.1% oils, 3.5% minerals, and other elements. Research has extensively investigated the bioactive chemicals in turmeric. Approximately 235 compounds, mostly phenolics and terpenoids, have been identified from various species of turmeric, including twenty-two diarylheptanoids and diarylpentanoids, eight phenylpropenes and other phenolics, sixty-eight monoterpenes, 109 sesquiterpenes, five diterpenes, three triterpenoids, four sterols, two alkaloids, and fourteen other compounds. Curcuminoids (mainly curcumin) and essential oils (mainly monoterpenes) are the main bioactive compounds with varying bioactivities. Turmeric has been linked to calebin-A, vanillic acid, vanillin, quercetin, and other phenolic compounds. However, the most important of these compounds are curcuminoids (curcumin). Most studies conducted on the effects of turmeric have used curcumin.

Dry turmeric contains 69.43% carbs, 6.33% proteins, 5.13% oils, 3.53% minerals, and other substances. Approximately 235 chemicals, including phenolics and terpenoids, have been discovered in turmeric from various species. The main bioactive compounds with varying bioactivities are curcuminoids (curcumin).

4. Increases antioxidant capacity

One mechanism behind aging and many diseases is oxidative stress. Free radicals usually react to important organic materials, such as fatty acids, proteins, or DNA. Therefore, antioxidants are very beneficial in protecting your body against free radicals. Curcumin is a powerful antioxidant that can neutralize free radicals by its chemical structure. In addition, curcumin can boost the capacity of antioxidant enzymes. It directly blocks free radicals and then promotes antioxidant defenses in your body. (3)

Curcumin is a potent antioxidant with the ability to destroy free radicals because of its chemical structure. Curcumin can also increase the capability of antioxidant enzymes.

5. Lowers risk of heart disease

Heart disease is one of the leading causes of death in the world. However, heart disease is very complicated, and uncommon things make a vast difference. Endothelial dysfunction is well known to be a major cause of heart disease. Curcumin has been shown in previous studies to improve endothelial function, or the health of the thin membrane that covers the inside of the heart and blood vessels. This membrane is crucial in regulating blood pressure. In one study, it is as effective as exercise, whereas, in another study, it works as well as the Atorvastatin medicine. These studies look promising, but we need further studies to draw a concrete evidence that curcumin supplement is effective in the treatment of coronary heart disease. (4, 5, 6)

Curcumin has been proven to help the thin membrane that protects the inside of the heart and blood vessels. This membrane is fundamental for blood pressure control.

6. Prevents Alzheimer’s disease

Alzheimer’s disease is a major cause of dementia and the most common neurodegenerative disease in the world. The excellent news is that the antioxidant compounds in curcumin can cross the brain-blood barrier by boosting levels of brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF), a protein present in the brain and spinal cord that plays an important role in maintaining the health of nerve cells (neurons) as well as regulating communication between nerve cells, which is essential for learning and memory. Inflammation and oxidative stress play the primary role in developing Alzheimer’s disease. (7, 8)

Curcumin’s antioxidant properties can pass the blood-brain barrier via increasing levels of brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF). Alzheimer’s disease is caused by inflammation and oxidative damage. Curcumin prevents both from happening in the human body.

Oxidation and inflammation play a major role in aging and the effects of curcumin can go much further than just disease prevention. Although there is no evidence that turmeric or curcumin directly influence lifespan. Previous research suggests that turmeric and curcumin may be effective anti-aging supplements because of their powerful antioxidant and anti-inflammatory agent, which could be able to improve the health of the elderly. To draw conclusion, we need concrete evidence that curcumin is effective in age-related diseases.

According to previous study, turmeric and curcumin may be beneficial anti-aging supplements. This might be because of the antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties.

8. Curcumin can boost BDNF

Neurons can build new links, but they can also multiply and grow in numbers in certain areas of the brain. However, the BDNF (brain-derived neurotrophic factor) is a kind of growth hormone functioning in your brain. Many common brain disorders, including depression and Alzheimer’s disease, have been associated with a decrease in the BDNF hormone. Curcumin can increase in brain BDNF levels and delay or even reverse several brain diseases and also reduces in old age-related brain problems. It can improve memory and make you more intelligent, which looks logical because of its BDNF effects. (9, 10)

BDNF (brain-derived neurotrophic factor) is a type of growth hormone that is produced in the brain. A reduction in the hormone has been linked to a variety of common brain illnesses, including depression and Alzheimer’s disease.

9. Can Help Arthritis Patients

As curcumin is a powerful anti-inflammatory compound, it may help people with arthritis. According to the study, curcumin is more effective than an anti-inflammatory drug in people with rheumatoid arthritis. Many studies have found curcumin positive effects on different symptoms of arthritis. (11, 12, 13)

Curcumin is a potent anti-inflammatory agent. It has the potential to reduce a variety of arthritis symptoms.

10. Has anti-depressant effects

In the treatment of depression, curcumin results are promising. A study shows that 60 people with depression in three groups. One group took Prozac, another group took 1 gram curcumin, and the third took both Prozac and curcumin. The group took Curcumin showed similar results as the group took Prozac after 6 weeks. The group took both curcumin and Prozac had better results. According to this small study, curcumin can boost BDNF levels and may reverse certain modifications that lead to depression. In addition, curcumin can also boost serotonin and dopamine neurotransmitters in the brain. (14, 15)

Curcumin’s outcomes in the treatment of depression are promising. A small study found that curcumin increases BDNF levels and may reverse the changes that lead to depression.

Dosage and Side Effects

You should take either 3 grams of turmeric powder or 1 gram of curcumin. 3 grams of pure turmeric contain 1 gram of curcumin. Studies have shown that curcumin is safe even at higher doses of 12 grams a day. However, most studies have used 1 gram of curcumin a day, or you can split it in 2 doses of 500 mg. Turmeric never causes side effects. Mild side effects such as stomach discomfort, nausea, dizziness, or diarrhoea may occur in some users. People who take blood thinners or other medications should see their doctor before using turmeric or curcumin supplements. People with allergies should also speak to their doctor before using turmeric. (16)

How To Make Turmeric Tea?

  • Boil 3 cups of water.
  • Add and stir 2 teaspoons of turmeric.
  • Add a pinch of black pepper.
  • Simmer for 5 to 10 minutes.
  • Strain the tea into a different container.
  • Add honey or lemon juice to taste

Curcumin is not properly absorbed in the bloodstream. Therefore, piperine in black pepper can boost its absorption by 2,000%. It is important to add a pinch of black pepper to your turmeric tea to increase absorption. If you are using curcumin or turmeric supplements in a capsule form, always buy supplements that include piperine, which significantly increases its efficiency. You can also make golden milk by combining turmeric powder and other spices such as cinnamon and ginger with cow or plant milk. For more information, read about 10 health benefits of turmeric tea.


  1. Nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory agents differ in their ability to suppress NF-kappaB activation, inhibition of expression of cyclooxygenase-2 and cyclin D1, and abrogation of tumor cell proliferation. Oncogene. 2004.
  2. Curcumin as an anti-cancer agent: review of the gap between basic and clinical applications. Curr Med Chem. 2010.
  3. Influence of piperine on the pharmacokinetics of curcumin in animals and human volunteers. Planta Med. 1998.
  4. Curcumin induces glutathione biosynthesis and inhibits NF-kappaB activation and interleukin-8 release in alveolar epithelial cells: mechanism of free radical scavenging activity. Antioxid Redox Signal. 2005.
  5. Effects of curcuminoids on frequency of acute myocardial infarction after coronary artery bypass grafting. Am J Cardiol. 2012.
  6. The effect of curcumin (turmeric) on Alzheimer’s disease: An overview. Ann Indian Acad Neurol. 2008.
  7. Curcumin, inflammation, ageing and age-related diseases. Immun Ageing. 2010.
  8. A randomized, pilot study to assess the efficacy and safety of curcumin in patients with active rheumatoid arthritis. Phytother Res. 2012.
  9. Efficacy and safety of curcumin in major depressive disorder: a randomized controlled trial. Phytother Res. 2014.
  10. Potentials of Curcumin as an Antidepressant. The Scientific World JOURNAL, 2009.

Naeem Durrani BSc
I am a retired pharmacist, nutrition expert, journalist, and more. My interests include medical research, and the scientific evidence around effective wellness practices, which empower people to transform their lives.

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