What is Curcumin?
Most commonly found in your pantry or spice rack, turmeric comes from the root of the Curcuma longa plant, a member of the ginger family. The root is known to have many beneficial properties thanks to its numerous phytochemicals, especially the curcuminoid compounds.
The three most prominent curcuminoids present in turmeric are curcumin, demethoxycurcumin, and bisdemothoxycurcumin. The principal active component of these is curcumin, which is also said to have the most beneficial properties.
You might be wondering, then, how to get curcumin in your diet. Although adding turmeric to your meals will undoubtedly add flavour and a beautiful golden hue, curcumin only accounts for 3% of pure turmeric powder by weight, which is why many people turn to turmeric tablets, turmeric capsules, or curcumin supplements.
Are Turmeric and Curcumin the Same Thing?
Turmeric is a plant, and it is the roots of this plant that are used to make the spice that is used in cooking and herbal drinks. Curcumin, meanwhile, is the naturally occurring carotenoid compound within the plant’s roots that give it its bright yellow colour. In short, then, curcumin is a compound found in turmeric.
Both turmeric and curcumin are beneficial to our health, but the difference between turmeric and curcumin supplements is the amount of curcumin. While turmeric supplements consist of that, the most effective curcumin supplement will contain liquid curcumin, as it provides a higher concentration of the active ingredient than turmeric extract. While curcumin itself is a powder, some supplements combine it with oil to increase the bioavailability.
So, with all this in mind, what are the health benefits of curcumin and turmeric?
Acute inflammation is essential for the body’s healing processes; however, in the long term, chronic low-grade inflammation can lead to various health conditions and poor quality of life. Thus, various research indicates that treating and preventing chronic inflammation may help to reduce the risk of heart disease, Alzheimer’s disease, cancer, and many other degenerative conditions.
Could curcumin help reduce inflammation? The short answer seems to be “yes”, with curcumin having been observed as possessing anti-inflammatory properties.
In addition to having powerful anti-inflammatory properties, curcumin and turmeric seem to have the potential to ease pain levels for aching bones and joints. Research suggests that curcumin may be able to inhibit cyclooxygenase (COX), an enzyme involved in inflammation, with the potential to provide modest pain relief.
Relief from arthritis
If over-the-counter medications, prescriptions, or arthritis relief supplements are not working for you, it is only natural that you will be left wondering what natural ingredient(s) may help with arthritis.
One study indicated that curcumin may reduce the symptoms of rheumatoid arthritis more than an anti-inflammatory drug, evidencing it to be an effective compound for arthritis pain, natural or otherwise. Curcumin supplements for arthritis, such as a turmeric arthritis drink, may help to reduce swelling around the joints, and lessen the pain this can cause.
With osteoarthritis also being associated with inflammation, and curcumin known for its generally anti-inflammatory and pain-relieving properties, it may be an ingredient that interests you if you are seeking an effective way of beating arthritis naturally, including natural pain relief. Sure enough, a study published in BMC in 2019 indicated a link between curcumin and reduced osteoarthritis pain.
Improve antioxidant capacity
Free radicals can react with organic substances in the body, such as DNA, fatty acids, and proteins. In doing so, it is widely recognised that free radicals age the body and promote diseases. However, antioxidants have the opportunity to trap these free radicals, and it is thought that curcumin can neutralise free radicals before they do any damage.
Boost brain health
Curcumin is associated with improved overall cognitive function, as it is thought that it can help to promote the growth and plasticity of the brain. More technically, curcumin has been found to potentially increase the levels of brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) – a protein involved in memory, learning, attention span, weight gain and weight loss.
BDNF plays an important role in cognitive and emotional disorders such as depression, anxiety, dementia, Huntington’s disease, Parkinson’s disease, and multiple sclerosis. Thus, it is thought that curcumin may help prevent or reduce the symptoms of a wide range of mental health and neurodegenerative issues.
What are Nutraceuticals?
Firstly, what does nutraceutical mean? Nutraceutical is an amalgamation of “nutrition” and “pharmaceuticals”. In other words, nutraceuticals include ingredients that may have health benefits, but originated from a natural food source.
So, if you are wondering how to benefit from curcumin, look no further than a nutraceutical drink, which may enhance the health benefits of the natural ingredients. Coupled with our unique and innovative SoluSmart® technology, this is truly the best natural curcumin supplement.
Whether you just need a one-off boost, or a monthly supplement subscription, iüLabs is committed to helping to improve the quality of life for people with debilitating diseases, combining science, technology, and nutraceuticals for an innovative and effective solution.