Back in 1280, during his legendary voyages to India via the Silk Route, Marco Polo came across one very remarkable herb, Turmeric. Humbly used in traditional Indian cooking create vibrant dishes for over 4,000 years, this wonderous herb has more recently attracted a lot more attention outside of the kitchen.
Turmeric, a root spice belonging to the ginger family (Zingiberaceae), also has a ‘deep-rooted’ history of use in traditional medicine, particularly in Ayurvedic and Unani systems. Medicinal use dates back close to 4,000 years ago and people of the time believed turmeric to help:
- Boost energy
- Remove parasites
- Improve digestion
- Relieve gas
- Improve respiratory conditions
- Reduce inflammation.
According to USA’s ‘National Center for Biotechnology Information’ in vitro studies reveal that turmeric is a potent antioxidant, anti-inflammatory, antimutagenic and antimicrobial agent at proper concentrations.
But what’s responsible for these properties is turmeric’s key active compound, curcuminoids. However, these phenolic compounds need to be partnered with piperine, an alkaloid found in black pepper, in order to be absorbed properly by the human body.