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Turmeric: The Golden Spice

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Turmeric: The Golden Spice

It is among earth’s first-known spices, also one of its most beneficial. Turmeric, a relative of ginger, boasts a staggering range of qualities that make it a must-have in your spice box. Besides, this beautiful yellow spice gives a rich colour to gravies, stir-fries and lentils, and it is known to bring a radiant glow to skin.

According to Ayurveda, turmeric imparts three of the 6 essential tastes to food: bitter, astringent and pungent (the other three being salty, sour and sweet).

It balances all the doshas—Vata, Pitta and Kapha.

India has one of the lowest rates of Alzheimers in the world, and research studies give part of the credit to the nation’s high usage of turmeric.

The magic ingredient in turmeric is curcumin, time-tested for its anti-inflammatory, anti-bacterial and antispetic properties. That is why my grandmother used to comfort burns and wounds with a warm poultice of ghee and turmeric—both highly prized by Ayurveda for their role in healing.

Although Ayurvedic healers have known of turmeric’s wondrous qualities for many centuries, modern research has not lab-tested it to prove its role in healing tumours, curing coughs, lowering bad cholesterol, easing arthritis and pampering skin. Every now and then, a new study announces yet another good thing that turmeric can do, and high time, too! This humble relative of ginger deserves all the glory.

It is so easy to introduce a touch of turmeric into your life!

Next: 3 Great ways to use turmeric!

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Shubhra Krishan

Writer, editor and journalist Shubhra Krishan is the author of Essential Ayurveda: What it is and what it can do for you (New World Library, 2003), Radiant Body, Restful Mind: A Woman's book of comfort (New World Library, 2004), and The 9 to 5 Yogi: How to feel like a sage while working like a dog (Hay House India, 2011).

92 comments

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5:18PM PST on Mar 3, 2014

Turmeric is colourful and I have used it for years. There are numerous recipes that it can be used in.

6:00PM PST on Mar 2, 2014

*Turmeric

5:59PM PST on Mar 2, 2014

Bought tumeric for the vegan mac and cheese recipe from Care2. My daughter has made it twice and loves it : )

6:35AM PST on Jan 12, 2013

Thank you Shubhra, for Sharing this!

10:37AM PDT on Jun 4, 2012

I am embarrassed to say, that I have never cooked with turmeric; now it's time to change my eating habits.

4:06AM PDT on Jun 3, 2012

Thanks for the info. Indian food makes heavy use of turmeric!

12:43PM PDT on May 27, 2012

thanks

3:33AM PDT on May 26, 2012

It's incredible how good turmeric is for us and it tastes fantastic, I don't really see the point of buying saffron any longer (my budget certainly doesn't)

3:50PM PDT on May 25, 2012

good to know

12:52PM PDT on May 25, 2012

wow i think i'll start using turmeric now!!!

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