As we plunge headfirst into these last stubborn weeks of winter, it’s important to keep your body strong, healthy and resistant to the many strains of illness that have already reared their ugly heads this season. Of course, you may be tempted to just shut yourself up in your home, bundled up cozily beneath blankets and completely safe from all human contact. Alas, we know this isn’t possible, so I’m here to tell you about an amazing sickness-fighting weapon that’s not only been used for centuries, but has the science to back it up. I’m talking about that gorgeous, mustard-colored wonder-spice turmeric.
I can’t tell you how much I love turmeric. From food to beauty to medicine, turmeric has an impressively wide variety of uses, which is something the inhabitants of its native India and other tropical Asian countries have known for over 5,000 years now. The Western world is finally catching on to this super-spice, and I can’t encourage you enough to incorporate it into your everyday life so you, too, can fight sickness and overall benefit from the almost magical properties of this beautiful golden spice.
Benefits of Turmeric
Turmeric (which is a member of the ginger family) contains a powerful antioxidant called curcumin. Curcumin gives turmeric that lovely golden hue and is a potent anti-inflammatory agent on par with drugs like hydrocortisone and phenylbutazone. Besides being an anti-inflammatory, curcumin produces no toxicity, is a known immune system booster and a wonderful agent for making skin beautiful. Did I mention that it tastes delicious, too? Peppery, earthy…it’s the main ingredient in a lot of curries and other flavorful dishes for a reason. Yum!
What Should I Look For When Buying It?
This may seem obvious, but you can’t go wrong with fresh turmeric root or certified organic turmeric. With fresh turmeric root, treat it much like you would ginger: peel it, grate it and voilá–fresh turmeric ready for your recipe of choice. If fresh turmeric root is hard to come by, choose brands that don’t add preservatives, fillers or other additives. In other words, 100% pure turmeric only!
Recipes & Other Uses
Here are some of my favorite ways to use turmeric. Try them for yourself and let me know in the comments below what you think!
This fragrant tea combines the refreshing and immune system-boosting loveliness of ginger and citrus.
Golden milk is a soothing, delicious way to incorporate turmeric into your daily routine and boost immunity. Combined with your preferred milk, turmeric boosts your calcium intake, while the added fat from the coconut oil aids in your body’s ability to absorb and reap the rewards of turmeric.
As I mentioned above, turmeric works wonders on your skin, too! As a proven anti-inflammatory, anti-bacterial and antioxidant, turmeric can help with acne and rosacea flareups and give you a head-to-toe glow. You’ve got nothing to lose by trying this!
Here’s to staying healthy this winter!