Commonly known for its ayurvedic health benefits, what is this spice called?
Turmeric is a perennial, rhizomatous, herbaceous plant native to the Indian subcontinent and Southeast Asia, that requires a considerable amount of annual rainfall to thrive.
Turmeric is the spice that gives curry its yellow color. It has been used in India for thousands of years as a spice and medicinal herb.
Recently, science has started to back up what Indians have known for a long time; it really does contain compounds with medicinal properties. These compounds are called curcuminoids, the most important of which is curcumin.
Unfortunately, curcumin is poorly absorbed into the bloodstream. It helps to consume black pepper with it, which contains piperine, a natural substance that enhances the absorption of curcumin by 2,000%. The best curcumin supplements contain piperine, substantially increasing their effectiveness.
Scientists now believe that chronic, low-level inflammation plays a major role in almost every chronic, Western disease. This includes heart disease, cancer, metabolic syndrome, Alzheimer's and various degenerative conditions
Turmeric is one of the key ingredients in many Asian dishes, imparting a mustard-like, earthy aroma and pungent, slightly bitter flavor to foods.
The stems and shoots are used fresh or boiled in water and dried, after which they are ground into a deep orange-yellow powder commonly used as a coloring and flavoring agent in many Asian cuisines, especially for curries, as well as for dyeing.