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Turmeric: Miracle Spice of the East

By Dr Pooja Maddela

Botanical Name: Curcuma longa
Other Common Names: Haridra, Indian Saffron
Part Used: Rhizome

 Explore the healing benefits of Turmeric

Explore the healing benefits of Turmeric

Turmeric is best known in the West as a common culinary spice native
to India which is now extensively used in cooking worldwide. Turmeric
is also used in both traditional and modern-day cultures for a variety of
purposes including ceremonies, dyes, food colouring, and cosmetics. It is
also highly valued by some indigenous cultures for its powerful medicinal
properties. Turmeric belongs to the Zingiberaceae family along with ginger
and cardamom, plants which also possess useful medicinal properties.

Our ancestors have passed on the art of using turmeric as an ingredient in
cooking which has proven to be a blessing for modern living. Turmeric has
also been used traditionally as a treatment both internally and topically for
a wide range of ailments.
Turmeric is an antiseptic, antibacterial and anti-inflammatory agent and
in Traditional Chinese Medicine it has been used as a treatment for depression.
Recent studies have identified anti-cancer properties. Laboratory and animal
studies have identified ‘curcumin’ (one of the main active constituents)
to have potent antioxidant properties – and the antioxidant properties of
curcumin have shown promise as a cancer preventative research into the
healing properties of Turmeric is ongoing.
Following are some traditional recipes from India using Turmeric to treat
common health problems.

Turmeric Herb for Common Ailments

Common Cold:
1. Add a teaspoon of turmeric powder and 1/2 teaspoon of
powdered black pepper to a glass of warm milk
2. Mix it well
3. Drink twice a day
Skin Pigmentation:
1. Add a teaspoon of turmeric powder to a tablespoon full of lemon
juice in a bowl
2. Mix well and apply it on affected area
3. After 10 to 15min wash it with cold water
4. It is most effective when applied before going to bed
Skin Abrasion:
1. In a bowl take a teaspoon of turmeric powder, add little water
2. Mix it well into a fine paste
3. Clean the abrasion and apply the turmeric paste
4. Allow it to dry and wash it off with cold water
1. Add 1/2 a teaspoon of turmeric powder to a glass of warm milk
2. Mix it well
3. Drink twice a day
4. Taken early morning on an empty stomach is more effective

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