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Today, we are talking about Turmeric. Turmeric is a popular spice used in traditional Indian dishes, and is what gives curry that warm orange color. Along with having a very distinctive taste, it has some amazing health benefits to go along with it as well. Turmeric has long been a staple of Ayurvedic medicine, being used for thousands of years for a myriad of ailments.
Turmeric is a part of the ginger family, and contains a variety of compounds called curcuminoids. The major health benefits come from one curcuminoid in particular, curcumin. In particular, this amazing compound has major anti-inflammatory benefits. It is great to take if you suffer from arthritis, and also provides natural pain relief, providing greater pain reduction when compared to high doses of Tylenol in various studies.
If you do any type of strength training or weightlifting, I recommend not taking it in the few hours before or after your workout. As it is an anti-inflammatory, it may interfere with the positive inflammation that occurs around your workout window.
While you will get some of the effects from whole turmeric, the most effective way to get the full benefits is from taking it in supplement form. Look for one that is standardized to 95% curcumin. Along with finding a high potency, ensure it is enhanced with piperine(a black pepper extract that enhances nutrient absorption) or some other kind of black pepper.
Doses between 500-2000 milligrams per day appear to be safe to take long term.