Used for thousands of years in Ayurvedic medicine, curcuma is a spice abundant in properties that are beneficial to our health.
Turmeric, part of the Zingiberaceae family (the same as that of ginger and cardamom), also known as kurkum, “Indian saffron” or “poor man’s saffron”, is a spontaneous perennial that grows to a height of one metre. It is easily recognisable from its large leaves, large yellow flowers and of course its cylindrical, branching and orange-coloured rhizomes.
The root of the plant is the part that contains the beneficial properties, and is harvested in the autumn. It can be purchased fresh or dried and ground. Its main health benefits are as follows:
Anti-inflammatory, depurative (helping the body to discharge toxins), choleretic (stimulatingbile secretion) antioxidant, anticancer (blocking the progression of tumour cells and preventing tumours of the colon, mouth, lungs, liver, skin, kidneys, breasts and leukaemia), remedial, digestive, neuroprotective (blocking neurodegenerative pathologies such as Alzheimer’s disease), immunostimulant, sebum-regulating and palliative (ideal for treating a number of dermatological complaints), antibacterial, antihistamine, cardiovascular protector (improves circulation, helps to regulate cholesterol and protects against heart attacks), carminative and anti-spasmatic (very useful
in countering abdominal bloating and regularising intestinal functions).