By now, you’ve probably heard of the amazing health benefits of turmeric. From reducing inflammation in the body and preventing cancer to building new brain cells, turmeric has all your health needs covered. But what could be better than turmeric alone? Turmeric golden honey.
The great thing about turmeric is that it is easily available and affordable. In fact, you can order a pound of organic turmeric powder online for just $10 USD (and a little goes a long way – I’ve been working through my pound of turmeric powder for a good year now).
The Health Benefits of Turmeric
Turmeric is a powerful natural remedy for colds, respiratory issues, tummy troubles, cuts, wounds, skin problems, muscle sprains and other health issues. It is an ancient super spice that has been used in Ayurvedic, Indian and Chinese medicine for thousands of years.
What makes turmeric so special? The power lies in its active ingredient, curcumin, which provides anti-inflammatory, antioxidant and anti-bacterial benefits.
1. Powerful Natural Antibiotic
Thanks to its anti-inflammatory, antioxidant and anti-microbial properties, curcumin is an excellent way to boost the health of your immune system. A recent study found curcumin an effective remedy against the influenza virus. It inhibited production of local inflammatory cytokines, and also inhibited NF-kB signalling in macrophages (1). Other studies have also suggested that turmeric can help provide a boost to the white blood cells that help your immune system fight off bacteria, viruses and other ailments.
2. Cancer Prevention
Turmeric is so effective that it has even been studied for its ability to destroy cancer stem cells (arguably, the root of all cancer). Cancer stem cells are tumourigenic (tumour-forming), and are capable of both initiating and sustaining cancer. They’re becoming increasingly recognized as the main cause of relapse and metastasis following conventional treatment.
One study examined the effects of curcumin on the rat C6 glioma cell line. They found a decrease in the side population (SP) of C6 cells after daily curcumin treatment of the C6 cells. Since SP has been associated with stem cell populations, curcumin, the researchers postulate, could be a dietary phytochemical with the potential to target cancer stem cells (2).
3. Protects Against Heavy Metal Toxicity
Curcumin has proven chelating activities against various heavy metals like cadmium, lead, iron and copper (3). Chelation is a process whereby an agent (like curcumin) that has affinity towards a heavy metal is introduced in the body. The agent binds to the heavy metal and facilitates its excretion from the body. It has also been found to chelate mercury from body tissues (4).
4. Reduces Unhealthy Levels of Inflammation
While acute (short-term) inflammation is beneficial, it can become a major problem when it is chronic (long-term). When inflammation becomes chronic, it starts attacking the body’s own tissues, and can lead to a variety of different disease and illness. It turns out that curcumin is a strong anti-inflammatory, and is so powerful that it has even been studied to match the effectiveness of some anti-inflammatory drugs (5).
Curcumin targets multiple steps in the inflammatory pathway, at the molecular level. It blocks NF-kB, a molecule that normally turns on the genes related to inflammation. This molecule is also believed to play a role in many chronic diseases. By fighting inflammation at the molecular level (6), curcumin is a staple spice to always keep on hand.
5. Protects The Brain
Multiple studies have proven curcumins effectiveness on improving brain health. One study found that the extracts of turmeric contain a number of natural agents that block beta-amyloid formation (7). Beta-amyloid is a substance responsible for plaques that deteriorate cerebral function in Alzheimer’s disease.
Aromatic-turmerone, a fat-soluble component of turmeric, has also been studied on its ability to influence neural stem cells (NSC). NSC’s are self-renewing cells that generate neurons and glia of the nervous system of all animals during embryonic development. Some of these cells stick around into adulthood to help reproduce neurons throughout life.
One study found that when exposed to ar-turmerone, NSCs increased by as much as 80%. When supplemented in rats, they formed healthy new brain cells in the hippocampus and subventricular zone (8). This is promising for individuals suffering from neurodegenerative diseases like stroke or Alzheimer’s disease.
The Health Benefits of Raw Honey
Raw honey is one of nature’s most powerful antibiotics out there. Mixed with turmeric, these two create a potent combination capable of fighting nearly any virus or bacteria.
Raw, unpasteurized honey is full of antioxidants. It contains over 22 amino acids, 27 minerals (including zinc, iron, potassium, magnesium, calcium and selenium) and 5,000 enzymes. It is also rich in B-vitamins like B6, thiamin, riboflavin, pantothenic acid and niacin.
1. Wound Healing
Honey is an ancient remedy for the treatment of infected wounds. It has been used for healing ulcers, bed sores, and other skin infections resulting from burns and wounds (9). The antibacterial properties of honey have also been shown to speed up the growth of new tissue to help heal wounds (10).
2. Potent Anti-bacterial
Studies done on manuka honey have found it to be effective against several human pathogens, including Escherichia coli, Enterobacter aerogenes, Salmonella typhimurium, and S. aureus (11). Applied topically, it can kill a wide range of pathogens, including MRSA and flesh-eating bacteria. It was also found that the treated bacteria did not build up any resistance, which would render manuka honey ineffective (12).
The anti-microbial agents in honey are predominantly hydrogen peroxide, but several over non-peroxide factors have been found to be responsible for the unique anti-bacterial activity of honey (13).
Always make sure your honey is raw, unprocessed, and unpasteurized. You can be sure your honey is the real stuff by purchasing it as your local farmers’ market, organic co-ops, and health food stores.
Turmeric Golden Honey: The Most Potent Natural Antibiotic
If you feel a cold coming on, don’t reach for the pills. Instead, make this turmeric golden honey. It is deemed by Ayurveda as one of the strongest natural antibiotics out there.
– 1 tablespoon dried organic turmeric powder
– 1/2 cup raw, unpasteurized honey
– 1/2 tsp. freshly ground black pepper
– optional: 1 teaspoon dried organic ginger powder
Mix all of the above ingredients and store in a jar in the fridge.
How To Use:
Upon the first symptoms of a cold or flu:
– Day 1: take 1/2 tsp. every hour during the day.
– Day 2: take 1/2 tsp. every two hours during the day.
– Day 3: take 1/2 tsp. three times a day.
According to the Indo-Tibetan medicine, turmeric should be taken at different times, depending on your health complaint:
– Before eating: helps support the health of the throat and lungs.
– While eating: helps with digestion.
– After eating: provides support for the colon and kidneys.
Cautions: Turmeric should not be taken by those who suffer gallbladder problems. Turmeric causes contraction of the gallbladder muscles. Turmeric also lowers blood pressure and blood sugar levels. While these effects are generally positive for the average person, if you already have low blood pressure or issues with blood sugar levels, consult your doctor first.
Carly I have curcumin in my sspice cabinet, not tumeric. Curcumin we use for sauses and ragouts in indian dishes, can I substitute it for turmeric?
Carly Fraser says
Are you sure you're not confusing that with Cumin? Cumin is totally different from Turmeric. Turmeric spice is the one you want to use!
Barbara Tarkington says
I have had gallbladder removed. Can I use turmeric?
Carly Fraser says
Turmeric possesses antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties that protect the liver against damage from exposure to various toxins – which, when you don't have a gallbladder, the liver has to work a lot harder to process toxins. Because turmeric can thin the blood, if you take medicinal blood thinners, don't use unless discussing with your doctor first.
Is turmeric best used with black pepper if possible? Perperine helps the turmic for some reason?
Carly Fraser says
Yes! Black pepper helps turmeric absorb better!
Why store in a jar in the fridge? Wouldn’t it be shelf stable? What are your thoughts on garlic infused honey? I make the above recipe using garlic infused honey including the garlic cloves and leave it in kitchen cabinet. The garlic cloves become so mellow and delicious.
I’m battling Lyme disease and incorporate the above into my daily routine.
Carly Fraser says
Hey Suanne, honey is shelf-stable, and does in a sense preserve the garlic, so if you want to leave it on the counter top, you can do so. I just put it in the fridge as a just in case measure!