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The Queen of All Herbs: Turmeric

Posted Sep 23 2010 12:05pm

Turmeric has been used for medicinal purposes for many years. A member of the same plant family as ginger, Turmeric is one of the most popular spices in South Asian and Middle Eastern cooking and is widely used in Ayurvedic system of traditional medicine in India.

Turmeric use has been recognized and proved by several generations and is considered the “Queen of all herbs” because of its success on treating health issues. This rhizomatous perennial plant is used to produce supplements to support and treat conditions such as indigestion, rheumatoid arthritis, and ulcerative colitis. Additionally, turmeric extract may help improving poor vision, coughs and increasing milk production for women.

Turmeric rhizome, which is the underground stem, looks very much like ginger. The characteristic yellow color of turmeric, which is found in many yellow mustards and yellow curry preparations, derives from compounds known collectively as curcuminoids, whose most abundant member is curcumin. Turmeric’s popularity has risen tremendously in the past few years as consumers learn more about its safety and wide spectrum of health benefits.

Turmeric dietary supplements were ranked 5th in sales in natural food stores in 2009, up about 23 percent from the previous year according to a report in the American Botanical Council’s journal HerbalGram.

Moreover, it looks like the list of Turmeric’s benefits never ends . A new clinical trial supports the benefits to people with osteoarthritis who used a unique extract of turmeric (Curcuma longa). Scientists in Italy have studied the pain-relief, increased flexibility, and other effects of a special, patented extract of the roots of turmeric, the flavorful spice that has been used for centuries as a traditional remedy.

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