Can this Spice Improve Your Health?
According to the American Cancer Society, one out of every three women in the United States risks developing some form of cancer over the course of their lives. For men, that number rises to one in two.
And most doctors would have you believe that it’s all a matter of genetics or bad luck.
But what if it wasn’t? What if there were lifestyle or dietary changes that can help prevent cancer?
Curcumin is the pigment extracted from the spice, turmeric. It’s known to have anti-inflammatory and anti-oxidant properties and its use dates back to 3,000 B.C.
There have been over 2,000 published studies on the effects of curcumin and cancer. These studies have found that curcumin kills cancer cells, while leaving normal cells alone. Studies also show that curcumin prevents cancer cells from dividing, as well as developing a resistance.
And these aren’t just studies by holistic doctors, Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center, states that turmeric has anti-cancer effects. They found that when administered orally for colorectal and prostate cancer, the health of the patients improved.
How Does Curcumin Affect Cancer?
In cancer patients, curcumin doses as high as 3,600 mg a day have been shown to induce the following favorable anti-cancer effects:
- Paraptosis – only in breast cancer cells, resulting in cancer cell’s rapid destruction.
- Apoptosis – the death of cancer cells, especially in hematological cancers, leukemia, Hodgkin’s lymphoma, non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma, gastrointestinal cancers, as well as intestinal, liver, pancreatic and colon cancers (source).
- Destruction of cancer cell mitochondria – but it leaves mitochondria in healthy cells unaffected.
- Disrupts cancer cell cycle – stops cancer cells from dividing.
- Cancer cell downregulation – Curcumin blocks a group of molecules vital to the process of metastasis.
- Arrested stem cell development – inhibits growth and renewal of cancer stem cells believed to be at the root of many cancers, including breast cancer.
Several studies have also shown that curcumin helps ease symptoms of osteoarthritis and rheumatoid arthritis.
My advice: make sure the curcumin you are taking is pure with 95% cucuminoids. Why? This allows for better absorption and means that a lower dosage is required to achieve beneficial effects. Also check that the ingredients contain bioprene because this will also help with absorption (up to 2000%!). Without bioprene, most of the curcumin just passes through your digestive tract.
I like to get extra turmeric in my diet by adding it to my cancer fighting smoothie.
And if you’re curious about other spices and their affect on cancer, check out my post here.
Disclosure: this post contains affiliate links.