How can turmeric cure / prevent arthritis?
It may be surprising to note that turmeric has been used traditionally by the Chinese and Indians to treat rheumatoid arthritis and osteoarthritis since time immemorial. Even today, turmeric is a vital constituent of Ayurveda, the ancient Indian branch of medicine. Known widely as a cleansing agent, it has multiple uses making this spice a natural panacea for many known diseases.
As per the data released by Arthritis Foundation, out of 7.2 billion human population worldwide, almost 700 million suffer from some form of arthritis. In the US, this number is almost one percent of its total population. Although there are no known remedies for arthritis due to its patient-centric behaviour as well as the numerous types of arthritis, drug companies keep coming up with new experiments every now and then. People who have grown tired of years of arthritis treatment are now slowly embracing the limitless potential of turmeric as a natural anti-inflammatory solution.
How does turmeric prevent arthritis?
There are various theories put forward by scientists in this regard. However, all of them seem to have a common thread, that is the presence of the key ingredient Curcumin, which is widely believed to have medicinal properties. It has been proved that curcumin can successfully prevent the onset of cytokines and other enzymes which are primarily responsible for inflammation of joints.
Another study funded by the Arthritis Foundation has proved that turmeric actually possess considerable anti-inflammatory properties that can change the way how your immune system reacts to inflammations. This study conducted in 2012 shows that a healthy intake of turmeric is actually more effective in preventing arthritis than curing it completely.
Scientists have been experimenting with various concentrations of turmeric for years. Such a study conducted in 2010, uncovered a unique composition involving 75% curcumin and phosphatidylcholine was successful in alleviating pain of patients with knee osteoarthritis. In continuation to this, various researchers have embarked on a mission to find a curcumin composition that will solve the riddle of Arthritis once and for all. They have come promisingly close to this mission in 2014 when they prepared a composition which offered better pain relief than the industry standard nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drug (NSAID) which has been certified by FDA as safe for administration.
Recommended curcumin dosage for Arthritis
- For Osteoarthritis: Capsule, typically 400mg to 600mg, three times per day or 0.5g to 1g of powdered root up to 3 g per day.
- For rheumatoid arthritis: 500mg twice daily
Arthritis onset is normally observed in people above 60 years of age, but it is known to affect people of all age groups. As the old adage goes, ‘prevention is better than cure’. Considering the fact that including turmeric regularly in your diet can yield long lasting positive results, it is highly recommended that you maintain a regular intake. This can be easily achieved by preparing your food with a pinch of turmeric. It has good flavour and colour as well.
– Written by Jaga Salai, a food technologist, working as Production Manager in Alobha Exim in India