The “Spice of Life?”
If you grew up in a house like mine, mealtime was fairly routine.
When it came to spices, there was salt & pepper of course.
Occasionally some garlic, oregano or onion powder. But rarely anything exotic.
Pretty middle-American fare.
But since then, my tastes, my knowledge and my sense of adventure have all grown.
And one spice that sees a lot of use these days in my house – both as a tasty addition to dishes and as a boost for smoothies and more – is turmeric.
Because few spices pack the kind of health punch turmeric, and its main component, curcumin, can deliver.
If you’re at all concerned about your brain as you age (and who among us isn’t?) then listen up. Because curcumin, an antioxidant found in turmeric, is one of the most powerful natural brain-protecting substances I’ve ever seen.
You may be familiar with the golden color of turmeric, often found in curry dishes. It has a long history of use in Indian food – and people who use it have some of the best brain health in the world.
Curcumin can pass through the “blood-brain” barrier, delivering protection straight to your brain. Not a lot of simple roots or spices can say this.
And if it stopped there, it would be worth adding to your diet. But it doesn’t.
Because turmeric can help support healthy, limber and ache-free joints.
Ease digestion, especially the digestion of fats, by spurring bile production.
Support heart health and healthy cholesterol.
Help protect your arteries. And mitigate a lot of the symptoms of aging.
But getting back to the brain – because this is impressive – studies have shown that those who consume curry made with turmeric had better cognitive scores than those who don’t.
And they had an average mental performance equal to a rollback in brain age of 10 years!
One of the things people will tell you about turmeric is you need high doses for it to work. But the latest research says that’s not true, especially when combined with black pepper, which aids absorption.
So, my folks had the pepper part right at least.
If you’re looking for a way to spark overall health benefits and add a splash of “gold” to your life, finding ways to incorporate turmeric is a great start.
Add it to your food, drink it like a tea, or add it to your favorite smoothie.
Your reward is a stronger brain, healthier and more comfortable joints, a boost to your liver, and even a brighter mood.
And it goes without saying, we could all use a dose of that these days.