How Curcumin Works in the Body

How Curcumin Works in the Body

I believe a majority of people are not only familiar with turmeric, but use it in one way or another. Turmeric may just be the most versatile spice that ever was. Personally, I use it as a spice and as a facial mask. Studies have shown that turmeric has a wide range of benefits to the brain and to the body.

Curcumin is the main component in turmeric. It is a strong anti-oxidant, and it is also known for having anti-inflammatory properties. In this article, I am going to explain how curcumin works in the body. It just might give you a few more reasons to incorporate turmeric into your meals.

How Curcumin Works in the Body

Anti-inflammatory properties

Like I had mentioned earlier, curcumin is known for precisely this, and has been used for centuries too in Ayurvedic and traditional Chinese medicine. While short-term inflammation in the body is important in repairing damage and fighting foreign bodies, chronic inflammation is almost always a problem. Often reflective of serious diseases like Alzheimer’s, cancer and heart disease, just to name a few.

Curcumin in the body serves to fight inflammation at a molecular level, with the effectiveness of pharmaceutical drugs designed to fight inflammation. Curcumin the better choice really, as it has no side effects those pharmaceutical drugs might have.

Anti-oxidant

Oxidation is the process where cells use up the oxygen in the air we breathe and release free radicals. These free radicals are highly unstable due to unpaired electrons and will take the next electron to become stable. While oxidation is necessary, this is the degenerative side that may cause an undesirable domino effect.

Enter antioxidants like curcumin. Its chemical structure helps neutralize free radicals. And there is more. It also stimulates the body’s production of antioxidants.

Improves endothelial function

The endothelium is the lining of blood vessels. Dysfunction of the endothelium often leads to heart failure or heart disease due to factors like blood clots and an inability to regulate blood pressure.

Curcumin improves endothelial function, lowering your risk of heart disease and may even reverse would-be heart disease.

Good for the brain

There is a growth hormone functioning in the brain, known as BDNF – Brain-Derived Neurotrophic Factor. Common mental disorders like Alzheimer’s disease and depression are linked to the decrease of BDNF.

Curcumin increases levels of BDNF in the brain. This serves to delay and/or reverse cognitive decline usually brought about by age. It also promotes the growth of new cells in areas of the brain.

Anti-cancer effect

Cancer is a horrible disease. However, there are studies that show curcumin as an effective component in the treatment of cancer. That means it can be used in the prevention and possible treatment of cancer. It has been proven to reduce or inhibit the growth of malignant cells in different cancer forms.

Conclusion

From the above article, it is clear that curcumin is the gift that keeps on giving. It is important to note that absorption of curcumin into the bloodstream is poor, but piperine, a component found in black pepper, increases absorption significantly. It is also fat soluble, so I recommend that it is ingested with a fatty meal.

15 Comments

  1. I try to use Turmeric all the time not only is it a flavor enhancer but it’s super healthy for me. I’ve been very interested lately in anti inflammatory herbs and spices because my mom and my fiancé are dealing with pain related to inflammation so this is great to read, it’s full of so much good information. Thanks for sharing!

  2. I really like posts like this, where I learn something about our bodies. Reading about curcumin, I now want to make sure we’re getting more of it in our diet!

  3. I absolutely love curcumin in my food, now even more so with the knowledge that it has so many benefits! We will add some more to our diets at home. 😀

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