- Curcumin may be just as effective as moderate exercise in preventing aging and boosting heart health, according to three different studies carried out by researchers from the University of Tsukuba in Japan.
- Curcumin, when taken as a supplement or applied topically, may reduce the risk of developing skin cancer after exposure to UV rays, according to a new study by scientists at Louisiana State University.
- Curcumin may reduce pain related to diabetic neuropathy, which diabetics are at increasing risk of developing with age and disease duration, according to a new study published in the International Journal of Medical Sciences.
- Confirming the brain-enhancing benefits of curcumin, a new study conducted at Selçuk University in Turkey found that curcumin supplements may be able to prevent the oxidative stress that leads to mental decline in older adults. In addition, the substance was shown to enhance spatial memory.
- Curcumin supplementation reduces serum fetuin-A, which is involved in metabolic disorders like obesity, insulin resistance, diabetes, and fatty liver, according to a report published in the Journal of Physiology and Biochemistry.
- Curcumin may facilitate the healthy healing of bone sprains, according to the online medical reference guide published by the University of Maryland Medical Center.
- Dr. Saraswati Sukumar, a medical oncologist at Johns Hopkins, was quoted recently as saying: "The health benefits are many, many. For example, for those who suffer from rheumatoid arthritis, who have painful swelling in the knees, turmeric is a great way to suppress the inflammation. Beyond its anti-inflammatory powers, turmeric helps heal wounds, improve pancreatic functions and has offered significant hope to cancer researchers. We have close to 300 publications that cite turmeric for its anti-cancer effects. Many diseases, such as colon cancer and other types of cancer, are being traced to inflammation."
- Researchers at the MD Anderson Cancer Center published a ground-breaking review of their work with curcumin in which they said: "Extensive research over the past five decades has indicated that curcumin reduces blood cholesterol levels, prevents low-density lipoprotein oxidation, inhibits platelet aggregation, suppresses thrombosis and myocardial infraction, suppresses symptoms associated with type 2 diabetes, rheumatoid arthritis, multiple sclerosis, and Alzheimer's disease, inhibits HIV replication, suppresses tumor formation, enhances wound healing, protects against liver injury, increases bile secretion, protects against cataract formation, and protects against pulmonary toxicity and fibrosis."
So we have to leave this story where we have left so many before it. Turmeric and its flavonoid curcumin show massive therapeutic benefits for all sorts of diseases and maladies. Inflammatory pain from arthritis, elderly suffering from mental decline and women genetically predisposed to cancer would appear to benefit from this compound. But no doctor in his right mind would recommend such a protocol until it was rigorously studied against the barrage of unknown drug interactions, and, of course, amidst a minefield of malpractice litigation.
Here we wait, for additional study that will probably never come on the scale required to elevate curcumin to the echelon of a true pharmaceutical-type product. The advances are novel and interesting but remain in a medical gray area until the structure of the medical system is updated to take herbal medicine seriously. Let’s hope for a day when someone with a bit more training than the clerk at your local vitamin/herb store can legally guide you towards therapeutic herbal remedies. So there we are.
The federal government is equally to blame, having devised rules and standards for human trials (purportedly to protect the public) that essentially guarantee that no plant-based remedies will ever be approved for human use, & where only big Pharma with its seemingly-bottomless deep pockets (and exclusive interest in engineered materials that can be protected by patents) will ever be able to afford to conduct them. Insisting on high standards for science is of course admirable, but the underlying principle seems to be to set the bar at different levels depending on the needs of the industries represented by the lobbyists who keep our corrupt government's engine running. The emperor has no clothes, folks!!