Tuesday, 1 November 2011

Turmeric: 5,000 Year Old Herb Now Considered a Health Breakthrough:

Know Turmeric

Scientists discovered an amazing herb that seems to have 'cracked the code' to making your cells behave the way Nature truly intended. Ironically, it's been around for thousands of years. You may already know I place a strong emphasis on eating as much unprocessed, organically grown food as possible for optimal health.

Termeric Plant

One frequently overlooked way to enhance and optimize health with organically grown food is the use of herbs and spices, unprocessed and organic, of course. One amazing benefit of these herbs is that they are very low in calories, while being dense in vitamins and minerals. In the same vein, they are thermogenic, meaning they naturally boost your metabolism to help you burn calories.
You feel satisfied more easily, so you eat less. Studies show that consuming certain herbs and spices before each meal can potentially reduce your caloric intake. Due to their nutrient-dense status, they promote your overall wellbeing with antioxidants more potent than many fruits and veggitables. Herbs and spices promote health and wellbeing in your entire body, not just in a particular area. This "whole person" approach is why I believe these spices and herbs can benefit you so greatly. But I consider one particular spice the “granddaddy” of them all, because its benefits are so amazing and far-reaching. Don't Waste Your Time and Health with Synthetically Processed Herbs and Spices. Just as it's important to select and consume wholesome, unprocessed organic foods, you should do the same with herbs and spices. Avoid breezing down the spice aisle of your local grocery store to pick up any old herb or spice. If the herb or spice you're looking for is processed or not organically grown, you risk missing out on their most potent active ingredients, which provide you with optimal benefits. If the herb or spice isn't cultivated, harvested, produced, and packaged using certified organic processes, you could be robbed of its healthful active ingredients.
India is the home of Ayurveda, recognized as an authoritative source of knowledge and truth in natural health promotion -- with herbs and spices lying at the very heart of Ayurvedic practice. So it would make perfect sense to consider using herbs that were grown in India if you are considering Ayurvedic herbs.
How this Ancient Spice Originated Thousands of Years Ago. That's one of the reasons I traveled over 15,000 miles to India last year, to find a high quality source of these herbs. During my trip to India, I witnessed firsthand how the Ayurvedic holistic approach and organic processes work in unison. And of the many herbs and spices I studied, the one in particular that caught my immediate attention was turmeric. It provides you with these whole-person benefits:

a.       Supports your healthy joint function
b.      Promotes your radiant skin
c.       Helps improve your digestion
And so much more.

There's some debate about the timing of turmeric's first use as a healthy spice. But one thing is certain. Thousands of years ago, people in India and China used the spice. In fact, some stories suggest usage dates back 10,000 years in India when they say Lord Rama walked the earth. And the ancient Polynesians carried turmeric with them on their incredible voyage across the Pacific Ocean to Hawaii. Today, Hawaiians still use this spice known to them as Olena. While in China, Marco Polo in 1280 AD recorded information on turmeric in his diary:  "There is also a vegetable which has all the properties of true saffron, as well the smell and the color, and yet it is not really saffron."  So, turmeric has been used as a substitute for saffron (an old world spice) in Europe for over 700 years. One of the main healthful ingredients in turmeric is cur cumin (a curcuminoid), which as I said, gives turmeric its yellow color. Western scientists first isolated the cur cumin molecule in 1815, obtained its crystalline form in 1870, and determined its overall structure in 1910.

Cur cumin can potentially benefit you by: Promoting your immune system against stress

     Promoting your immune system
     Helping you maintain your healthy digestive system
     Supporting your healthy bones, joints, and overall skeletal system
     Helping you maintain cholesterol levels that are already within the normal range
     Promoting your healthy blood and liver functions

How Turmeric and Cur cumin Provide Antioxidant Nutrients. You probably know that antioxidants are important for your health. I believe antioxidants are your body's #1 way to neutralize free radicals and help you potentially slow down the signs of normal aging. Oxidation by free radicals can damage cells and organs -- and thus impact your aging process -- something I’m sure you’d rather put the brakes on.

Antioxidants are also key nutrients in:

TermericRoot with Tea
  1. Supporting your memory function
  2. Promoting your heart health
  3. Boosting your immune system

Turmeric's antioxidants help protect your cells from free radical damage.
The antioxidant content within turmeric comes from active compounds called curcuminoids.
These curcuminoids deliver antioxidants that may be:

  • 5 to 8 times stronger than vitamin E and also stronger than vitamin C
  • 3 times more powerful than grape seed or pine bark extract
  • Strong enough to scavenge the hydroxyl radical considered by many to be the most reactive of all oxidants

How Turmeric Enhances Your Outer Beauty
Speaking of antioxidant nutrients and their potential to impact the aging process, some of the first aging signs you may see as you get older are changes to your skin. Believe it or not, the organic ingredients found in turmeric can help promote your healthy skin. Curcuminoids support important blood and liver functions, healthy joints, and your overall well-being, which in turn helps promote radiant, supple skin. Turmeric has been considered to be ‘skin food' for thousands of years in India and other cultures.

Turmeric helps:

  • Cleanse your skin and maintain its elasticity
  • Provide nourishment to your skin
  • Balance the effects of skin flora

So, turmeric can act as your one-two punch against normal aging with its skin promotion and antioxidant capabilities outer beauty plus inner purity. Your Triple-Action Cellular Booster and Adaptogen Another potential advantage from turmeric usage involves the smallest living things within you i.e. your cells.
Turmeric can assist your cells in three ways, by:
  • Helping neutralize substances that can cause cellular stress
  • Maintaining your cells' integrity when threatened by occasional environmental stressors
  • Providing the antioxidants you need to help support your cells against excessive oxidation and free radicals

Turmeric is also recognized as an adaptogen, helping to support your body against stress and providing immune system support. How this Ancient Spice has Become Embedded in India's Ayurvedic Practice
Turmeric, like other herbs and spices, is a principle herb in Ayurveda -- India's ancient holistic health system.  Ayurveda means "knowledge of life" -- with herbs lying at the very heart of Ayurvedic practice.

Turmeric Ayurveda Practice Turmeric has multiple uses within Ayurveda, including blood cleansing and maintaining healthy skin.

In Ayurvedic terminology, turmeric includes the following:
  • Verdana sthapana promotes your healthy nervous system and helps you with occasional discomfort
  • Sangrahani supports your absorption of vitamins and minerals
  • Anulomana helps you in purging out wastes and building healthy blood
  • Rakta stambhaka promotes the wellness of your circulatory system

And this is just the tip of the iceberg when it comes to Ayurvedic turmeric uses.

What does this mean to you?

Simply, turmeric has been used in Indian culture for thousands of years for a multitude of health-promoting reasons. An estimated 500 million Indians still use the spice today. With store-bought turmeric powder, you'll probably just use it once in awhile to cook with -- not on a daily basis to consistently take advantage of the benefits it offers. I recommend searching for a high-quality, 100% organic-based turmeric supplement. But there are some things you should watch for when choosing a turmeric supplement. Avoid Unnecessary Fillers, Additives, and Recipients

When I (the person who put this on web) did my own research on available turmeric supplements, I found a surprising array of choices.

Besides, cur cumin and curcuminoid ingredients, I found products with questionable ingredients like fillers, additives, and recipients. An excipient is a substance added to the supplement as a processing or stability aid.
One ingredient, magnesium steerages (also know as stearic acid), is a potentially toxic metal additive from pill production.
Another ingredient I found in many turmeric supplements, Dibasic Calcium Phosphate (DCP), may even inhibit the absorption of essential minerals within your system.
There are others you may find as well, but the bottom line is... you don't want or need these ingredients in your turmeric supplement. Some pose potential health risks -- and all are unnecessary.

Turmeric Powder
Termeric Powder

Here's the type of certifications I recommend you look for (The original writer is American so this is basically applicable to America): 

  • Hazards and Critical Control Points (HACCP) -- International food safety certification that World Health Organization (WHO) standards are met
  • Safe Quality Food (SQF), HACCP-based food safety and risk management system covering the identification of food safety, quality risks, and the validation and monitoring of control measures
  • Good Manufacturing Practices (GMP). International certification verifies all required practices necessary for an effective food safety program are followed.
  • International Organization for Standardization (ISO) 9001:2000. International standard for quality, safety, ecology, economy, reliability, compatibility, inter-operability, efficiency, and effectiveness.
  • Orthodox Union (OU) Kosher. Certifies compliance for Kosher observers and followers.
  • International organic certifications such as: USDA, EU, and NSOP (India).

Use This Checklist to Find Your Highest Quality Turmeric.

To take advantage of all the great benefits turmeric has to offer you, I created a checklist on what you should look for in a turmeric supplement. Whatever you do, don't settle for second best.

Here's my checklist to help you find the best turmeric source:

  • Contains only 100% certified organic ingredients. Turmeric extract with at least 95% curcuminoids.
  • Comes in supplement form. Don't rely on your typically low quality and unpredictable local grocery store spice. Additionally when you heat the spice during cooking many of the beneficial properties are lost.
  • Avoids fillers, additives, and recipients. No need for questionable "other ingredients" in the formula.
  • Provides a vegetable capsule. Avoid gelatin based capsules whenever possible.
Is produced by a certified organic manufacturer with high-quality organic and safe production practices. Don't settle for second best here.

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