Turmeric has been used as a medicinal cure for various health conditions for centuries. Only relatively recently, however, have these uses gained a more scientific consensus. Today, many medical professionals and prestigious health organizations attest to the medicinal potency of turmeric and curcumin for the body, brain, and beyond.
(Side-note: since the words curcumin and turmeric are often used both in conjunction and interchangeably, it is important to describe what exactly comprises them. Turmeric is the spice as a whole, while curcumin is an element of turmeric – this is the only difference. Turmeric consists of a number of active elements, with curcumin among the most notable ingredients in terms of effect.)
Research Reveals How This Simple Spice Can Heal A Brain Damage
Curcumin as an antioxidant, anti-inflammatory, and lipophilic action improves the cognitive functions in patients with Alzheimer’s Disease (AD). – The Effect of curcumin (turmeric) on Alzheimer’s disease: An overview, Annals of Indian Academy of Neurology
As with many spices and herbs that have proven to be medically helpful, turmeric has been around for a long time. It is quite extraordinary that so many countless natural remedies are just now beginning to gain proper (and overdue) recognition.
It is estimated that turmeric has over 600 known medical uses, and possibly many more. Keep in mind that these medical uses are not purely anecdotal – they are scientifically valid (as seen in the excerpt above, confirming turmeric’s AD benefits.)
This leads us to perhaps the most recent – and maybe the most important – turmeric discovery: the ability to potentially heal brain damage. Many scientists attest to turmeric’s cognitive benefits, including its ability to counteract neurodegenerative disorders, making this uncovering all the more sensible.
In an article published in the journal Stem Cell Research & Therapy, researchers exposed fetal rats to varying amounts of Aromatic (ar-) turmerone – a biologically-active element of turmeric (Curcuma longa). The study was conducted in order to test the hypothesis that ar-turmerone inhibits a response that could prove beneficial to counteracting, and potentially treating, neurodegenerative disease.
After exposing the fetal rates to ar-turmerone, researchers measured and compared the levels of neural stem cells (NSC’s) to pre-exposure levels. It was determined that certain doses of ar-turmerone stimulated the growth of NSCs, both in vitro (in a controlled setting) and in vivo (within the living animal). Thus, researchers concluded that ar-turmerone aids in the proliferation of NSCs, which may help support brain cell regeneration.
The research findings were published in both mainstream and medical news outlets, and with good reason. Degenerative brain diseases are among the most devastating and physically imposing conditions that someone can acquire. Conditions such as Alzheimer’s, Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis (ALS, or Lou Gehrig’s Disease), and others render millions of people to a life of limited mobility and outright dependency.
This and other research discoveries provide a ray of hope to not only patients, but to their families and loved ones. Moreover, society has been desperately seeking a way to prevent such debilitating illnesses from occurring. As it may turn out, a trip to the local grocer, or a health and nutrition store may just be in the answer.
Of course, as with any medical research, more rigorous testing and overall consensus from medical professionals and scientists is going to be required. While it is clear that turmeric possesses a multitude of health benefits, cognitive and otherwise, medical treatment of any form must pass rigorous litmus tests in order to be widely recommended.
What is clear, however, is that turmeric should be considered as a necessary component of one’s nutritional regimen. There is simply far too much research proving the myriad of benefits from turmeric not to utilize its powerful, and potentially life-saving, medical properties.
So, this naturally leads to the question: what is the best kind of turmeric to use? The most successful brain research has been conducted with holistic turmeric ingredients. In other words, consuming curcumin alone – while it does contain powerful properties – is not the apparent solution, at least in terms of neurodegenerative prevention.
On the other hand, for certain medical conditions (e.g. chronic inflammation or precancerous growths) ingesting a concentrated dose of curcumin is preferential, as this directly acts on the physiological mechanisms that induce the condition.