What is turmeric, and why do so many people love it?
Well, aside from the recent fad of adding turmeric to your smoothies or the now-placement of turmeric capsules sitting front-and-center at your local pharmacy, let's talk about what it is before we push it to the side and see what comes next.
I am a fan. I love the bright color, the unique smell and of course, the medicinal qualities that come with it.
The root of a perennial related to ginger, Turmeric has been used for thousands of years.
Native to south-east Asia, it is widely respected as both a food and medicine.
(pictured above freshly ground Indian turmeric root)
The main chemical compound in turmeric is curcumin.
This is where the anti-inflammatory properties come into play, as well as being a super anti-oxidant.
The downfall? **Lets get real** there is always some sort of catch...
Curcumin is poorly absorbed by the blood stream, and still only makes up maybeee 3% of turmeric itself. You would have to consume a hefty amount for it to be beneficial on a daily dose.
Life is really fun so, of course we can make a puzzle out of it.
The matching piece in this game happens to be piperine.
We find piperine in black peppercorn!
Yum, the flavors mend so well together, too.
Piperine allows curcumin to be absorbed by an additional %2,000. Yup
(pictured above: freshly ground dried Indian turmeric root
and cracked black African peppercorn)
Our guts love Turmeric.
Well, if you're not allergic to it, and if that is the case, I am so sorry. (though rare).
So does our skin, our brains, make-up manufacturers, and MOSTLY DIY'ers.
Combined with baking soda, lime juice, and coconut oil, it becomes a super-mega natural whitener.
You can make tooth pastes (but um...be careful not to brush to hard and exfoliate your soft gums) **I learned the hard way** and exfoliating your skin from scars.
IT CAN DO ALMOST EVERYTHING.
(pictured above: I know I posted this on a past post, but I just love this short video, and hey its black peppercorns and turmeric mixing together with fresh orange juice, so why not)
From heart disease, to Alzheimer's, better skin, and delicious recipes-
(The Home Pantry's Black Pepper Turmeric Jelly is awesome for marinades and sandwiches).
Turmeric is a great addition to many.
Did I mention the use for color dyes?!
Sometimes fad-foods can really bring some enlightenment to this part of the world (the US) when it comes to the use of spices and herbs for our medicines, and some imported flavors in our restaurants! Getting back to our roots as human beings and getting to know the helpful and benefical, earth-grown resources (but lets not get greedy) that are at our finger tips.
Listed below are a few recipes.
Food, natural DIY toothpaste, and a great exfoliant
--TURMERIC ORANGE MARINADE--
6 tbsp. oil (extra virgin, avocado, coconut)
1/4 cup orange juice (4oz, about half an orange)
2 tbsp. dark vinegar (balsamic, red wine, etc.)
3 garlic segments (more or less, to taste)
1 tsp honey -or brown sugar- (optional)
1 tsp turmeric powder
1 tsp. stone ground mustard (optional)
salt and pepper to taste
Mix all ingredients into a bowl and mix with a fork steadily to emulsify ingredients before pouring for marinade or top as a dressing. Pairs well with proteins and dark leafy greens. Also add with rice before steaming for flavorful side dishes.
1 tsp. turmeric powder (must be fine ground)
1/2 tsp. coconut oil (optional)
1/4 tsp. baking soda (optional)
This will stain your toothbrush. I just mix together in a little bowl and rub with my fingers.
I promise this is not a joke! A colorant used for stains, really does whiten your teeth.
Its anti-inflammatory properties also help with swollen sensitive gums, and gingivitis.
Simply mix together, or use JUST turmeric and apply to your teeth.
Gently, rinse and repeat to your liking, and even let sit for a few minutes.
For this recipe, you can use either sugar or ground oats.
1/4 cup sugar or dry ground oats
2 tbsp turmeric powder
2 tsp coconut oil OR rose water
1 tsp honey
Mix dry ingredients together well in a bowl, and incorporate wet ingredients. Apply and scrub to wet skin. Turmeric will not stain your skin, but may stain your fingernails or collar if touched.
I use in the shower!!