Turmeric is a plant with amazing health benefits.IT has lots of antioxidant properties.Mainly, Curcumin is the active compound responsible for this property.It has been used used for thousand years in South Asian countries for beauty, disinfection, as a spice , colorant and also as a herb.
Turmeric plant overview
The plant is scientifically named as Curcuma longa . This plant grows well in dry and intermediate zone in Sri Lanka and belongs to the family Zingiberaceae. The tuberous rhizomes are the plant part used for the consumption.
This plant can grow well as an inter-crop with coconut cultivation. The plant grows nearly 2.5 feet high. The leaves are broader and green through out the life time. A good harvest will come if the proper irrigation is set. These plants prefer the shade and do not require strong sunlight.
This is a bush type plant. It takes nearly a year to get the harvest. The cultivation season begins from March but varies from region to region. Villagers do not put chemical fertilizers instead they put organic fertilizers like cow dung. The farming technique is the distance between two consecutive plants are like two feet. The distance between the two plant lines is 2 feet.
The well divided rhizomes are used for the start of new cultivation. Mulching is essential to keep it moist. Villagers use coconut branches or the hay for mulching purposes.
Turmeric health benifits
Basically villagers use the turmeric powder as a spice to make foods tasty. It has a unique taste and can give the curries yellowish pleasant appearance. It is an unavoidable spice in Sri Lankan cuisine.
Applying turmeric is a practical way of killing germs. Villagers sprinkle turmeric dissolved water after the funerals and also in the religious places to keep them clean. It is a good disinfectant. When some one in the village suffered from chicken fox like infectious disease, they wash the whole home with turmeric water to disinfect the home.
Turmeric with a few of amazing health benefits are as below.
1. Turmeric is a good antioxidant
The presence of curcumin in turmeric is responsible for the antioxidant property.It has the ability to affect on free radicals to neutralize them.
Researchers have found that it has the ability to scavenge reactive oxygen and nitrogen species(free radicals).
It is noteworthy to mention this curcumin has the ability to prevent the reactive oxygen species generating enzymes like lipoxygenase.
In addition, curcumin is a lipophilic compound, which makes it an efficient scavenger of peroxyl radicals, therefore, like vitamin E, curcumin is also considered as a chain-breaking antioxidant
2. Turmeric has anti inflammatory effects
Oxidative stress has been implicated with various chronic diseases and with inflammation as well. At the site of inflammation, the inflammatory cells have been found to liberate number of reactive species leading to oxidative stress that shows the relationship between oxidative stress and the inflammation.
Further more, a number of reactive oxygen/nitrogen species can initiate an intracellular signaling cascade that enhances pro-inflammatory gene expression
The chronic diseases associated with inflammation include Alzheimer’s disease (AD), Parkinson’s disease, multiple sclerosis, epilepsy, cerebral injury, cardiovascular disease, metabolic syndrome, cancer, allergy, asthma, bronchitis, colitis, arthritis, renal ischemia, psoriasis, diabetes, obesity, depression, fatigue, and acquired immune deficiency syndromeAIDS like number of diseases.
Curcumin has shown to suppress inflammation through many different mechanisms beyond the scope of this review.
3. Effect of Turmeric against arthritis
One such disease associated with inflammation, both chronic and acute, is osteoarthritis (OA). It is a chronic joint condition. It affects over 250 million people worldwide, leading to increased healthcare costs.
Although Osteo arthritis was once considered primarily a degenerative and non-inflammatory condition, it is now recognized as having inflammatory aspects, including elevated cytokine levels, as well as potentially being connected with systemic inflammation
While there is no cure, there are several pharmaceutical options for treatment; however, many are costly and have undesirable side effects. Therefore, there is increased interest in alternative treatments including dietary supplements and herbal remedies. Several studies have shown the anti-arthritic effects of curcumin in humans with OA and rheumatoid arthritis (RA)
Turmeric has unrevealed , yet to discover amazing health benefits. Little by little i will write these to you and make you aware.
Villagers wait until the turmeric plants die(After one year, plants die completing their life span). The leaves get withered and start dying when completed their life time. Then people separate mother rhizomes and finger rhizomes and cut the mother rhizomes in to pieces.
Then boil the cut rhizomes. While boiling the rhizomes they insert the died leaves in the boiling bath. When it comes to the correct level of boiling, the boiled rhizomes are disseminate for drying.there, sun drying is the best way.