It Really Is All About Inflammation!
Turmerics’ (main active ingredient Curcumin) physiological effects and actions are well known in the scientific community, and its mechanism of action is well understood on a microscopic level. It interacts with the human body in a myriad of ways, via many enzymes, proteins and genes. I will not try to “re invent the wheel” here and leave these basic facts up to your own research.
Here is an article indicating the many ways Turmeric, and its main active ingredient CURCUMIN interacts with your bodies physiology https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3025067/
Studies indicate that addition of black pepper (piper nigrum) increases bioavailabilty (absorption) of turmeric from 95% to 2000%
Here is the study indicating 2000%
DOSE AND SAFETY
There are no recorded toxicities from turmeric ingestion.
Up to 12000mg of curcumin (approximately 600grams of raw turmeric) is safe for human consumption. http://www.greenmedinfo.com/article/safety-dosage-review-curcumin
TURMERIC RESTRUCTURES YOUR CELL MEMBRANES
Many of the actions of turmeric listed are the result of Turmeric literally restructuring the cell walls of millions of cells in your body, especially the arteries and veins of your heart and cardiovascular system.
This article explaining how turmeric physically remodels your cell membranes. This results in decreased inflammation. Inflammation is disruption/ erosion of cell membranes in the cells lining and making up your cardiovascular system. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2748423/
ANTI INFLAMMATORY ACTION
Modulation of inflammatory response is among the biological effects of curcumin. It is well documented that Turmeric is anti inflammatory.
Here is a review of such studies:
Curcumin’s anti-inflammatory potential is one of its most commonly researched aspects. It helps reduce inflammation by regulating inflammatory enzymes and proteins, specifically the cyclooxygenase (COX2) enzymes and cytokines. COX-2 enzyme inhibitors are the most frequently prescribed non-steroidal antiinflammatory drugs (NSAIDs/ ASPIRIN) for symptomatic relief of arthritic pain.
References Study showing decreased inflammatory mediators (TNF tumour necrosis factor)
Post operative administration as anti inflammatory
Post exercise muscle anti inflammatory effects
Due to its unique ability to cross the blood-brain barrier (BBB) (a protective mechanism that maintains a constant environment around the brain), curcumin is being studied extensively in many types of dementia including Alzheimer’s disease. It has been shown that in synergy with vitamin D it can reduce the amyloid plaques that are characteristic of Alzheimer’s disease.
Alzheimers and Dementia
Turmeric is beneficial for alzheimers and Dementia, due to its ability to pass the BBB, its anti inflammatory, and anti oxidant effects, and subsequent increased blood flow.
Alzheimers treatment with churchmen shows decrease amyloid (neural) plaques: http://www.greenmedinfo.com/article/curcumin-appears-enhance-clearance-amyloid-beta-alzheimers-disease-patients
Stem Cell Repair
A less known active component of turmeric is tumerone has been seen to promote activation of the natural stem cells in our bodies. Also called endogenous neutral stem cells , they are critical in how the brain repairs itself and recovers function in neurodegenerative diseases. Though this is an animal study, it is included for relevance and possible areas of further research.
Neural Repair after Brain Trauma
Decreases inflammation after brain trauma
Brain Cancer (GBM- Glioblastoma multiforme)
Associated with this unique ability to cross the blood brain barrier and enter our brain, Turmeric has been shown to be effective in the treatment of GBM.
Induces apoptosis (programmed cell death) in GBM
Positive effect of Turmeric on depression and mental health.
Long term supplementation with turmeric aids antidepressant medication https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/26066335
positive effect in major depressive disorder
Indicates modes of action of antidepressant effect
Improved mood in depression
Curcumin and pepper effective in depressive disorders
Turmeric has general anti cancer properties. The anti-cancer properties of curcumin include various cellular mechanisms such as reduction in cancer cell growth, initiation of apoptosis (cancer cell death), inhibition of collagen digesting matrix metalloproteinase (MMP) enzymes and prevention of angiogenesis. By inducing the enzymes involved in cell death (apoptosis), curcumin can selectively eliminate cancer cells formed in the organ systems. Basically Turmeric can be seen as a “Cancer Chemopreventive” substance.
Turmeric is a FREE RADICAL SCAVENGER (ANTI OXIDANT) and PREVENTS CANCER
By acting as a free radical scavenger curcumin can prevent oxidative DNA damage. This damage to cellular DNA is known to initiate cancer by converting/ mutating a normal cell into a cancer cell.
Regulation of Angiogenisis (Blood Vessel Growth)
One part of the causation of cancer is unregulated vessel growth, resulting in too much blood supply to the cancer and thus unregulated cell growth. This allows it to grow unnaturally large and fast resulting in a tumour.
By measuring various blood enzymes associated with unregulated blood vessel growth (notably VEGF and related compounds) with the addition of curcumin it is indicated that turmeric actually plays a role in tumour growth inhibition (stop cancer growth) via anti-angiogenisis (prevention of blood vessel growth)
COLORECTAL/ BOWEL CANCER
A study indicating potential of Turmeric as an anti cancer agent in colorectal cancer http://clincancerres.aacrjournals.org/content/7/7/1894.long
colorectal liver metastasis treatment (ie bowel cancer spread to liver) https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4510144/
Turmeric and green tea effective against bowel cancer
Positive indications for use in pancreatic cancer
Potential for treatment
Prevention of oral cancer
Promotes dental/ oral health by decreasing oral plaque formation
T CELL LYMPHOMA
Induces apoptosis (programmed cell death) in T Cell Lymphoma
While CHEMOTHERAPEUTIC DRUGS are immune suppressors, CURCUMIN has potent immune modulator properties as it can activate the white blood cells (WBCs, or “police cells”) and natural killer cells that help in fighting cancer and infections.
As antioxidants, curcuminoid compounds help maintain a healthy cardiovascular system by improving the viscosity of blood and reducing plaque formation in the arteries, both of which obstruct proper blood circulation. Recent studies show that curcumin helps maintain cholesterol levels by reducing low-density cholesterol (LDL) and triglyceride levels1.
DIABETES AND OBESITY AND HYPERTENSION (high blood pressure) AND CARDIOVASCULAR DISEASE
These diseases all “go together” are related due to their physiological causes.
And the cause is inflammation.
Study showing weightloss in obese people
Study indicating the connection between obesity and systemic inflammation and immunoactivation, and reporting positive effects of curcumin. This is achieved by measuring blood levels of common inflammatory mediator molecules https://www.hindawi.com/journals/tswj/2014/898361/
Turmeric is beneficial in the cardiovascular health of Diabetes patients
This study indicates this by measuring endothelial cell (blood vessels cells) dysfunction and inflammatory mediators (the proteins in blood that signal inflammation)
Increase in insulin secretion
Decreased atherogenic risk in type 2 diabetes
Prevention of type 2 diabetes
General improvement of CVS health is noted due to anti oxidant, anti inflammatory and anti coagulant effects of Curcumin
Decrease rate of acute myocardial infarct (heart attack) after coronary artery bypass grafting CABG http://www.greenmedinfo.com/article/curcuminoids-reduce-frequency-acute-myocardial-infarction-after-coronary
Turmeric has been shown to decrease pain of osteoarthritis. This is due to its anti inflammatory effects, and also halted acute progession of disease as shown by decreased inflammatory mediators and genes associated with the inflammatory response
“(turmeric) inhibited joint inflammation and periarticular joint destruction in a dose-dependent manner. In vivo treatment prevented local activation of NF-κB and the subsequent expression of NF-κB–regulated genes mediating joint inflammation and destruction, including chemokines, cyclooxygenase 2, and RANKL. Consistent with these findings, inflammatory cell influx, joint levels of prostaglandin E2, and periarticular osteoclast formation were inhibited by turmeric extract treatment”
Potential for cartilage regeneration
Potential in Rheumatoid Arthritis:
Safe and effective in treatment of Rheumatoid Arthritis
INFLAMMATORY BOWEL DISEASE (Chrons and Ulcerative colitis)
Turmeric is beneficial in treatment of inflammatory bowel disease.
Helps maintain remission in ulcerative colitis
Chrons, ulcerative proctitis beneficial effect
In conjunction with Salazine treatment
Effective decreased inflammation of children with IBD
GASTRITIS AND STOMACH CANCER:
Curcumin exhibits antimicrobial activity on the bacteria helicobacter pylori. This bacteria is seen by modern medicine as the cause of gastritis and stomach ulcers and cancer
“curcumin targets the shikimate pathway and indicate that polymorphism in aroE may lead to differential inhibition of H. pylori growth.”
Here is the mentioned article:
Decreases symptoms of gastritis and peptic ulcer, ie indigestion and pain https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/27351245
Oxidative stress plays a causative role in most liver disorders and models of hepatic injury, thus one of the mechanisms of action of turmeric on liver disease and damage. This study shows positive correlation with turmeric and repair of liver damage and disease http://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1111/j.1478-3231.2009.02086.x/full
Alcohol Induced Liver Disease https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/20080166
Bilary Pain (gall Bladder pain) Gall bladder pain is often caused by dyskinesia (lack of contraction) Turmeric is effective in treatment of biliary pain https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/10495621
Contractive effect on gall bladder
Dose rates for gall bladder emptying rates
Potential in treatment of multiple myeloma
another study indicating slowed disease progression
Asthma is a chronic inflammatory disease of the airways. Regular turmeric may assist in treatment of asthma, in conjuction with regular treatment
Turmeric assists reduction of psoriasis taken orally
Potential in MS treatment
Potential benefit in treatment prostate cancer
GOOD SCIENTIFIC GENERAL TURMERIC INFORMATION: http://articles.mercola.com/sites/articles/archive/2015/05/04/curcumin-turmeric-benefits.aspx
VERY BASIC ARTICLE OVERVIEW OF TURMERIC
WHY FRESH COLD PRESSED TURMERIC IS BEST
A meta analysis of studies indicating why fresh is best from the point of view of immune modulation and gene expression associated turmeric supplementation.
GOOD GENERAL INFORMATION AND INFOGRAPHICS ON THE PROVEN BENEFITS AND EFFECTS OF TURMERIC/ CURCUMIN
This is an information page that aims to sell you a particular brand of curcumin supplement, but the information is good:
PMS POTENTIAL DECREASE IN SYMPTOMS
PROTECTS AGAINST OXIDATIVE DAMAGE OF PESTICIDE EXPOSURE http://www.greenmedinfo.com/article/curcumin-protects-against-oxidative-damage-induced-pesticide-parathion