Curcuma longa

turmeric-info0
HowStuffWorks. (2014). Tumeric. Retrieved from: http://science.howstuffworks.com/life/botany/turmeric-info.htm

Turmeric-Root-and-Powder-1024x666
Christie, D. (2014). Top 5 Benefits of Tumeric. Retrieved from: http://www.harboursidefitness.com.au/blog-post/top-5-benefits-of-turmeric/

Botanical Name: Curcuma longa
Common name: Tumeric, Indian saffron, jianghuang (Chinese), shati (Sanskrit) (Bone & Mills, 2013, p. 900)
Family: Zingeberaceae (Bone & Mills, 2013, p. 901)
Parts used: root and rhizome Bone & Mills, 2013, p. 901)

Quality: Pungent, bitter, astringent, heating (Pole, 2006, p. 282). In Ayurvedic medicine the herb is used to dry damp and move stagnation in the blood (Pole, 2006, p. 282).

History/Folklore: Native to India and South-East Asia, Tumeric has been recorded in medical texts dating back to 600BC (Bone & Mills, 2013, p. 900).

Constituents: Essential oil (sesquiterpene ketones, zingiberene, phellandrene, sabinene, cineole and borneol); Yellow pigments “diarylheptanoids” or “curcuminoids” (incl. curcumin) (Bone & Mills, 2013, p. 901).

Yellow pigment curcumin has been shown to influence transcription factors, cytokines, growth factors, kinases and other enzymes (Bone & Mills, 2013, p. 900).

Actions

  • Anti-inflammatory (Bone & Mills, 2013, pp. 902-903; Pole, 2006, p. 282)
  • Anti-platelet (Bone & Mills, 2013, p. 903; Pole, 2006, p. 282)
  • Antioxidant (Bone & Mills, 2013, p. 904; Pole, 2006, p. 282)
  • Hepatoprotective (Bone & Mills, 2013, pp. 904-905)
  • Nephroprotective (Bone & Mills, 2013, pp. 904-905)
  • Neuroprotective (Bone & Mills, 2013, p. 905)
  • Cardioprotective and vasoprotective (Bone & Mills, 2013, p. 905)
  • Hypolipidaemia (Bone & Mills, 2013, pp. 905-906)
  • Antibacterial (Pole, 2006, p. 282; Zorotchian Moghadamtousi, Abdul Kadir, Hassandarvish, Tajik, Abubakar & Zandi, 2014, p. 2)
  • Antimicrobial (Bone & Mills, 2013, pp. 906-907)
  • Antiparasitic (Bone & Mills, 2013, pp. 907)
  • Antiviral (Zorotchian Moghadamtousi et al., 2014, pp. 2-3)
  • Antiparasitic (Zorotchian Moghadamtousi et al., 2014, p. 2)
  • Antitumor (Bone & Mills, 2013, p. 908)
  • Anti-depressant (Bone & Mills, 2013, p. 909)
  • Radioprotective (Bone & Mills, 2013, p. 910)
  • Antiallergic (Bone & Mills, 2013, p. 910)
  • Emmenagogue (Pole, 2006, p. 282)
  • Blood tonic (Pole, 2006, p. 282)
  • Carminative (Pole, 2006, p. 282)
  • Alterative (Pole, 2006, p. 282)
  • Vulunary (Pole, 2006, p. 282)
  • Anti-carcinogenic (Pole, 2006, p. 282)
  • TCM specific: blood and qi tonifier with analgesic properties (Bone & Mills, 2013, p. 900).

Indications

  • Cancer prevention (Bone & Mills, 2013, p. 907)
  • Cystic fibrosis (Bone & Mills, 2013, p. 909)
  • HIV/AIDS (Bone & Mills, 2013, p. 910)
    • One human trial exhibited an increase in CD4 and CD8 lymphocyte counts (Bone & Mills, 2013, p. 910)
    • Another human trial showed relief of HIV-associated chronic diarrhoea (Bone & Mills, 2013, p. 910)
  • Eye disorders (Bone & Mills, 2013, p. 911)
  • Genetic diseases (Bone & Mills, 2013, p. 911)
  • Alzehimer’s disease (Bone & Mills, 2013, p. 916)
  • Skin conditions (Bone & Mills, 2013, p. 916)
  • Candida (Zorotchian Moghadamtousi et al., 2014, p. 7)
  • Helicobacter pylori (Zorotchian Moghadamtousi et al., 2014, p. 8)

Dosage & Preparation:

  • Liquid extract (1:1): 5-14mL/day
  • 4g powdered tumeric mixed with water/1-2 day

(Bone & Mills, 2013, p. 901)

Cautions

  • Doses > 15g/day should not be administered long term or in conjunction with anti-platelet or anti-coagulant medication (Bone & Mills, 2013, p. 917)
  • Individuals complaining of hair loss (Bone & Mills, 2013, p. 917)
  • Women trying to conceive (Bone & Mills, 2013, p. 917)
  • Pregnancy (Bone & Mills, 2013, p. 918)

Contraindications

  • Biliary tract obstruction (Bone & Mills, 2013, p. 917)
  • In Ayurvedic medicine the herb is contraindicated in high vāta and pitta (Pole, 2006, p. 283).
  • Acute jaundice and hepatitis (Pole, 2006, p. 283).

Combinations

  • For liver congestion: combine with kutki, bhumiamalaki and pippali (Pole, 2006, p. 283)
  • Small amounts of long/black pepper enhances anti-inflammatory activity of turmeric (Pole, 2006, p. 283)
  • For congestion of the lower abdomen and menstrual imbalance: combine with guggulu, mustaka and purnarnava (Pole, 2006, p. 283)

Interactions: Turmeric may potentiate effects of anti-platelet or anticoagulant medications (Bone & Mills, 2013, p. 918).

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