How Long Does it Take for Turmeric to Really Work 2022
So, how long does it take turmeric to work? Depending on your body mass and condition, it will usually take around 4-8 weeks for you to start noticing improvements to your body and mind. The latest on what researchers say this spice can and can’t do
Turmeric, which is sold as a spice and in supplement form, has become a highly touted super ingredient. But despite promises that it can do everything from eliminating chronic pain to curing various diseases, a new study, focusing on post-surgical inflammation, suggests that marketing has gotten a little ahead of the science.
Dozens of animal studies and small human trials have indicated that curcumin (the medically active compound in turmeric) has some anti-inflammatory properties. That is why it has become a popular remedy for conditions such as arthritis, colitis, and irritable bowel syndrome (IBS).
But the first large-scale human trial, published in the Canadian Medical Association Journal (CMAJ), has found no evidence that curcumin, taken in this study as supplement capsules, reduces inflammation in humans.
“It’s disappointing when a large, rigorous study doesn’t align with the findings of earlier smaller studies, but it happens every day,” says Kristen Patrick, CMAJ deputy editor, who wrote an editorial accompanying the new study.
While the researchers tested how turmeric affects only one type of inflammation in a specific population, the findings could still “help dampen the buzz around curcumin,” Patrick says.
Here’s what you need to know about the study findings, the promise of turmeric, and whether you should consider using it.
What the study found
This new study examined the effects of curcumin supplements on postsurgical inflammation.
“We were open-minded to the potential benefits of curcumin based on the positive results of many previous studies,” says lead author Amit Garg, MD, professor in the department of medicine at Western University and Lawson Health Research Institute in London, Ontario. . “It has been used traditionally for thousands of years in Indian and Chinese medicine, but it is irresponsible to defend its health benefits without evidence to show it.”
This randomized clinical trial included more than 600 patients from 10 hospitals in Canada who underwent elective surgery to repair an unruptured abdominal aortic aneurysm. One group took 4,000 mg of curcumin for the two days prior to surgery, 6,000 mg on the day of surgery, and a 2,000 mg dose the morning after surgery. The other group took a placebo.
For several days after surgery, the researchers measured 4 biomarkers, in the patients’ blood and urine, which are signs that indicate tissue inflammation. “We didn’t see any difference in biomarkers between those who took curcumin and those who took a placebo,” says Garg.
The researchers also looked at the clinical outcomes after surgery for both groups: reported events such as acute kidney injury, heart attack, stroke, and a long hospital stay.
They found that the group that took curcumin actually had a slightly higher risk of acute kidney injury (17% risk for that group vs 10% risk for those in the placebo group), although the authors note that this should be further investigated in future studies; it may have been a statistical anomaly.
Turmeric still has potential
While this is a large and well-designed trial, it focuses on a very specific population and situation. The average age of the subjects was 76, and most had one or more medical complications, such as diabetes, heart disease, or high blood pressure.
“The results should be viewed in that context,” says Chris D’Adamo, Ph.D., director of research and education at the Center for Integrative Medicine at Maryland University School of Medicine in Baltimore. “This study shows that curcumin did not reduce postoperative inflammation in older adults with serious medical conditions, but those findings may not apply to younger, healthier populations.”
D’Adamo notes that surgery is a single source of inflammation and that this study does not necessarily mean that curcumin cannot help alleviate some of the inflammation involved in arthritis, colitis, or IBS.
For example, A 2015 study of 50 ulcerative colitis patients found that those who took 3,000 mg of curcumin capsules in addition to their regular treatment were more likely to be in remission a month later than those who took a placebo. Other research is underway investigating how curcumin could be used in conjunction with conventional cancer treatment.
The authors of the new study acknowledge that this study is not the last word on curcumin’s potential. “We are advocating for additional evidence of it,” says Garg. “I wouldn’t say it couldn’t be effective in other settings or formulations.”
Should you try turmeric?
Turmeric has been a staple spice in Indian and other Asian cuisines for centuries. However, adding it to your dishes or to your tea will provide you with only a small fraction of the amount of curcumin that is generally administered in animal or human studies. (Only 1 to 6% of turmeric is curcumin.)
“For someone not trying to use curcumin to manage chronic disease, adding turmeric to food, in combination with fat and black pepper, both of which help absorption, can still provide benefits,” says D’Adamo.
In general, however, curcumin taken by mouth, either as a spice or as a supplement, is not well absorbed and is rapidly eliminated from the body, one of the reasons some experts have been skeptical about the claims. of its effects on humans. A 2017 study compared curcumin to “a missile that continually explodes on the launch pad, never reaching … its intended target.”
Turmeric isn’t without its risks, either.
“Several studies and periodic national recalls by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) have shown that turmeric powder may be contaminated with heavy metals such as lead,” says Tunde Akinleye, a chemist in the Food Safety Division. from Consumer Reports.
And curcumin supplements, like all supplements, are not regulated in the same way as drugs. That means they may not contain what the label advertises and the advertising claims may not have been vetted. “Just because they’re ‘natural’ doesn’t mean it’s necessarily helpful or even benign,” says Garg.
Finally, be sure to check with your doctor if you are considering taking curcumin supplements. They can interact dangerously with certain medications, such as blood thinners.
Positive side effects of turmeric
It is anti-inflammatory
Arthritis Foundation cites several studies in which turmeric has reduced inflammation.
This anti-inflammatory ability could reduce the aggravation that people with arthritis feel in their joints.
The foundation suggests taking 400 to 600 milligram (mg) turmeric capsules up to three times a day to relieve inflammation.
Can relieve pain
Many people, including doctors, cite their own anecdotal experience with turmeric as a pain reliever. The spice is also reputed to relieve arthritis pain.
Studies seem to support turmeric’s ability to relieve pain, with one finding that it seemed to work as well as ibuprofen (Advil) in people with arthritis in the knees. While dosage recommendations appear to vary, those who participated in the study took 800 mg of turmeric in capsule form each day.
Improves liver function
Turmeric has also gained attention recently due to its antioxidant capabilities. The antioxidant effect of turmeric appears to be so powerful that it can prevent toxins from damaging your liver. This could be good news for people taking strong medications for diabetes or other health conditions that could damage their liver from long-term use.
May help reduce the risk of developing cancer
Curcumin shows promise as a cancer treatment. Studies suggest that it has protective effects against pancreatic cancer, prostate cancer, and multiple myeloma.
It can help your digestion
One of the reasons turmeric is in curries is because it adds an element of flavor to food. But turmeric can also play an important role in the digestion of that food. The antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties of turmeric aid in healthy digestion.
It is used in Ayurvedic medicine as a digestive healing agent. Current Western medicine has begun to study how turmeric can help reduce intestinal inflammation and improve intestinal permeability, two measures of digestive efficiency. Even turmeric is currently being studied as a treatment for irritable bowel syndrome.
Including turmeric in your diet could be beneficial for your health. Golden spice supports the immune system, helps relieve pain, and can aid digestion, among other things. However, due to some of its side effects, some people may not want to use turmeric.
It is important to be careful when deciding whether turmeric is something you should try. As with any alternative therapy, talk to your doctor before using turmeric to treat any health problems you have.
If you want to buy a turmeric or curcumin supplement, there is an excellent selection online with thousands of favorable customer reviews.
How often should you take turmeric for inflammation?
The Arthritis Foundation recommends 400 to 600 milligrams (mg) of turmeric capsules, three times per day, or half to three grams of root powder per day for inflammation relief. Other studies on arthritis patients show benefits from one gram of curcumin per day.
Does turmeric really reduce inflammation?
Recent studies show turmeric helps prevent and reduce joint inflammation. This reduces pain, stiffness, and inflammation related to arthritis. For digestive relief, pay close attention to the amount of turmeric in a supplement. High dosages can cause an upset stomach
How long should I take turmeric?
When taken by mouth: Turmeric is likely safe when used short-term. Turmeric products that provide up to 8 grams of curcumin daily seem to be safe when used for up to 2 months, Also, taking up to 3 grams of turmeric daily seems to be safe when used for up to 3 months. Turmeric usually doesn’t cause serious side effects.
How much weight can u lose taking turmeric?
In another 2015 study published in the European Review for Medical and Pharmacological Sciences, researchers found curcumin to increase weight loss from 1.88 to 4.91 percent, enhance reduction of body fat from 0.70 to 8.43 percent and that of BMI from 2.10 to 6.43 percent, in a group of overweight people
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