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By JEROME MICHAEL EBRUPHIYO/Science and Nature/Friday, September 17, 2021

What Are The Health Benefits Of Turmeric (Curcuma longa)?

                              
                            
This post will provide information on "What are the health benefits of turmeric (Curcuma longa)?" as well as provide answers to questions like: What are the negative side effects of turmeric? Is it safe to take turmeric every day? Why you should not take turmeric? Is turmeric bad for your liver? How was turmeric discovered? What was turmeric traditionally used for? What is the truth about turmeric? Is turmeric a man made plant? What is the history and botanical name of turmeric?

History of Turmeric (Curcuma longa)

The use of turmeric dates back nearly 4000 years to the Vedic culture in India, where it was used as a culinary spice and had some religious significance. It probably reached China by 700 ad, East Africa by 800 ad, West Africa by 1200 ad, and Jamaica in the eighteenth century. In 1280, Marco Polo described this spice, marveling at a vegetable that exhibited qualities so similar to that of saffron. According to Sanskrit medical treatises and Ayurvedic and Unani systems, turmeric has a long history of medicinal use in South Asia. Susruta’s Ayurvedic Compendium, dating back to 250 bc, recommends an ointment containing turmeric to relieve the effects of poisoned food. Today, turmeric is widely cultivated in the tropics and goes by different names in different cultures and countries. In North India, turmeric is commonly called “haldi,” a word derived from the Sanskrit word haridra, and in the south it is called “manjal,” a word that is frequently used in ancient Tamil literature. The name turmeric derives from the Latin word terra merita (meritorious earth), referring to the color of ground turmeric, which resembles a mineral pigment. It is known as terre merite in French and simply as “yellow root” in many languages. In many cultures, its name is based on the Latin word curcuma. In Sanskrit, turmeric has at least 53 different names, including anestha (not offered for sacrifice or homa), bhadra (auspicious or lucky), bahula (plenty), dhirgharaja (long in appearance), gandhaplashika (which produces good smell), gauri (to make fair), gharshani (to rub), haldi (that draws attention to its bright color), haridra (dear to hari, Lord Krishna), harita (greenish), hemaragi (exhibits golden color), hemaragini (gives the golden color), hridayavilasini (gives delight to heart, charming), jayanti (one that wins over diseases), jawarantika (which cures fevers), kanchani (exhibits golden color), kaveri (harlot), krimighni or kashpa (killer of worms), kshamata (capability), laxmi (prosperity), mangalprada (who bestows auspiciousness), mangalya (auspicious), mehagni (killer of fat), nisha (night), nishakhya (known as night), nishawa (clears darkness and imparts color), patwaluka (perfumed powder), pavitra (holy), pinga (reddish-brown), pinja (yellow-red powder), pita (yellow), pitika (which gives yellow color), rabhangavasa (which dissolves fat), ranjani (which gives color), ratrimanika (as beautiful as moonlight), shifa (fibrous root), shobhna (brilliant color), shiva (gracious), shyama (dark colored), soubhagaya (lucky), survana (golden color), survanavara (which exhibits golden color), tamasini (beautiful as night), umavara (Parvati, wife of Lord Shiva), vairagi (who remains free from desires), varavarnini (which gives fair complexion), varna datri (enhancer of body complexion), varnini (which gives color), vishagni (killer of poison), yamini (night), yoshitapriya (beloved of wife), and yuvati (young girl)

Health Benefits of Turmeric (Curcuma longa)

  • Taking capsules of 400 to 600 milligrams (mg) of turmeric up to three times per day can help inflammation relief
  • It can relieve pain
  • The antioxidant effect of turmeric appears to be so powerful that it may stop your liver from being damaged by toxins
  • Turmeric has protective effects against pancreatic cancer, prostate cancer, and multiple myeloma
  • Turmeric can contribute to healthy digestion

Side Effects of Tumeric (Curcuma longa)

  • It may stimulate contractions and that is why pregnant women should avoid taking turmeric supplements
  • People who take blood-thinning drugs like warfarin (Coumadin) should avoid consuming large doses of turmeric
  • The same agents in turmeric that support digestive health can cause irritation when taken in large amounts
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