Turmeric, also called curcuma, is a precious Indian spice that is obtained from plant rhizomes and has distinguishing orange-yellow color. It looks similar to saffron, although not as expensive, so it is sometimes called Indian saffron. Due to curcumin and essential oils content it has a characteristic, mustard-like smell. Its taste is quite hot and peppery. It is added to many traditional Indian meals, making them taste spicy. It is also an ingredient of a traditional spice mix: curry.
Apart from adding it to your dishes, you can also make some meals look more attractive on a plate by adding turmeric while boiling. Some rice boiled with turmeric gains a beautiful yellow color.
But the culinary use and making meals taste better is not the only way of using turmeric. You can also recognize its strong points by getting to know something about turmeric health benefits. This spice has been widely known to Asian traditional medicine (which has thousands of years!). Its medicinal value is universal. The most important property of curcumin is preventing infections in cuts or burns. It acts like antiseptic agent. Therefore it has been used for dressing injuries for thousands of years. It can also be helpful for our modern civilization illnesses, such as cancer, depression, rheumatoid arthritis or even Alzheimer’s disease, as well as other types of dementia. All in all, it is always good to have turmeric in your kitchen.
Probably we still don’t know about all turmeric health benefits. Some interesting studies are ongoing, investigating whether this rhizome affects such diseases as liver damage, myeloma, pancreatic cancer and other types of tumors. Summing up, spicy food can be not only really delicious, but also beneficial for your health. You can also add warm water to this spice and drink it as a tea or take dietary supplements with curcumin.