Turmeric is a perennial flowering plant that belongs to the ginger family. It is native to the Indian subcontinent and heat and rain are the conditions that allow the plant to thrive. Turmeric has certainly become an integral part of our kitchen and an ally in our search of natural healing remedies.
In Asian cuisines, turmeric has been used for centuries as a coloring agent, especially in curries, as well as for dyeing fabrics. Its warm, slightly bitter taste that resembles something of black pepper and its earthy, mustard-like aroma constitute turmeric’s flavor profile.
It is mostly used in savory dishes, but not exempt from some traditional Indian sweets. It is also used in many products like canned beverages, baked products, ice cream, biscuits, etc. It is also an especially important ingredient of curry powders and the Moroccan ras el hanout. Turmeric is used in a plethora of recipes, like in rice and meat dishes, offering its bright color and strong pharmaceutical properties.
Medicinally, in the traditional practices of classical Indian medicine, turmeric has been extensively used to heal various internal conditions, such as dyspepsia, throat infections, the common cold, and even many hepatic conditions. Research conducted lately has proven that turmeric can be used to block some types of cancer, especially in the throat and brain. Additionally, turmeric is a strong antioxidant and can help against free radicals. Also, it has great anti-inflammatory properties and various studies have shown that turmeric can have the same effect on the body as cortisone, so it can be administrated to relieve from rheumatoid arthritis pain. Turmeric can also promote digestion, stimulating the production of bile and can help prevent the accumulation of arterial plaque.