Curcumin (turmeric) reduces blood fats and blood pressure, and supports liver and brain health

Curcumin is the yellow-orange antioxidant in the Indian spice turmeric. Earlier lab studies have found many health benefits, but because curcumin is hard to absorb, doctors have questioned its usefulness in humans. In this study, researchers used a curcumin-lipid mixture that would improve absorption, even at a relatively low dose.

In the study, 38 healthy men and women, aged 40 to 60, took 80 mg of curcumin per day, or a placebo. After four weeks, while there were no changes for placebo, compared to the start of the study, those who took curcumin had an average decline in triglycerides of 15 mg per deciliter of blood and significantly higher blood levels of nitric oxide, which helps lower blood pressure. Doctors also found lower levels of a molecule linked to artery clogging, higher levels of an antioxidant enzyme, lower levels of an enzyme linked to liver disease, and a small drop in beta amyloid protein, which is linked to brain aging and Alzheimer’s disease.

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