Turmeric (Curcuma longa) has been used for over 4,000 years to treat a variety of ailments. It is widely used as a food coloring and gives Indian curry its distinctive flavor and yellow color. It is also used in mustard and to color butter and cheese. Turmeric has been used in both Ayurvedic and Chinese medicine as an anti-inflammatory, to treat digestive and liver problems, skin diseases, and wounds. Curcumin, its active ingredient, is also a powerful antioxidant
In addition, curcumin reduces inflammation by lowering levels of two inflammatory enzymes (called COX-2 and LOX) in the body and stops platelets from clumping together to form blood clots. . Turmeric is considered to have promising results for fighting infections and some cancers, reducing inflammation, and treating digestive problems.
In Ayurvedic practices, turmeric has many medicinal properties and many in South Asia use it as a readily available antiseptic for cuts, burns and bruises. It is also used as an antibacterial agent. It is taken in some Asian countries as a dietary supplement, which allegedly helps with stomach problems and other ailments. It is popularly taken as a tea in Okinawa, Japan. Pakistanis also use it as an anti-inflammatory agent, and remedy for gastrointestinal discomfort associated with irritable bowel syndrome. In Afghanistan and northwest Pakistan, turmeric is applied to a piece of burnt cloth, and placed over a wound to cleanse and stimulate recovery. Indians, in addition to its Ayurvedic properties, use turmeric in a wide variety of creams for all sorts of skin diseases.
I discovered Turmeric as a guinea pig of sorts. My mother was developing a whole line of organic herbal supplement products and I was asked to try this as a cure for gout which had already plagued me for a number of years. Gout, in itself, is hardly curable. It is caused by high uric acid levels in the body which form crystals in your system and these press against your nerves, causing an intense pain that is beyond imagination. Having taken maintenance medicine for this ailment for over 10 years, I had little to lose in trying this medicinal plant and everything to gain. I took Ashitaba and Turmeric capsules daily and was quite surprised at how my body reacted. There is no known cure for gout, only medicine to prevent it or to control its effects. It seems like a miracle, but I have had no gout attacks for almost 2 years now. Life is back to normal for me as well, I am now able to eat what previously were considered as “dangerous” food. Turmeric works effectively with Ashitaba as a colon and liver flush. It excretes any excess uric acid the body cannot process, thus controlling gout by keeping these values at a reasonable level within the body.
I still take Turmeric daily and my blood tests show a normal cholesterol level, and just a slightly elevated uric acid level. But I am free from gout today and what was previously thought as an incurable ailment is now a controlled condition, allowing me to live a normal lifestyle and eat what I wish. Truly a miracle for me, and all borrowed from folkloric traditions in Asia – specifically Ayurveda, an Indian tradition of traditional and alternative medicine. In Sanskrit, Ayurveda means “the complete knowledge for long life.” In western medicine, ayurvedic practices are considered as Complimentary Alternative Medicine (CAM) which is meant for use as a complement rather than a replacement to traditional western medicinal methods.
It is more than that for me and for those who suffer from gout. It is a miracle that enables us to live normally, thanks to Indian tradition and ayurvedic practices. After all, 800 years of civilization can’t possibly be all wrong.