Turmeric & Black Pepper: Health Benefits
Turmeric does more than just make your curry yellow. For thousands of years, it has been revered as a magical ingredient steeped in ancient Middle Eastern and Southeast Asian food, society and medicinal history.
Black Pepper is the non-replaceable staple spice in every cuisines in the world. The two when consumed together offer medicinal effects so potent that the Ayurvedic medicine have been using them for thousands of years.
Let's take a look at the health benefits of each of the spices:
Turmeric is revered as ancestral healer’s spice in South Asian and Middle Eastern. Contemporary science found that the main compound responsible for its praised medicinal properties is curcumin. Curcumin’s anti-inflammatory effect matches synthetic drugs without the side effects1. Curcumin slows aging and prevents cancer by hindering oxidative damage: it neutralizes free radicals2 while stimulating your bodies own antioxidant enzymes3. Curcumin improves brain function by boosting the growth of new neurons4. Studies show that Curcumin is effective as exercise in improving the function of the lining of your blood vessels5.
Although potent, curcumin content is only around 3% by weight in fresh turmeric6. Folona SuperGreen capsules contain the concentrated curcumin extract (min. 95%) to optimize nutrient density.
Black Pepper: Deemed as “king of spices” in ancient Ayurvedic medicine for thousands of years due to its high concentration of piperine, black pepper prevents free radical damage to your cells7, suppressed inflammation, reverses degenerative brain damage8, lowers cholesterol levels9, and possesses cancer-fighting properties10. Most notably, black pepper boosts absorption of nutrients like calcium, selenium, as well as beneficial compounds found in plants, such as turmeric11. Black pepper promotes growth of good bacteria in your gut12. It is a natural pain reliever13. Studies also show that it supports weight loss by reducing appetite14.
1. Jurenka JS, 2009. “Anti-inflammatory properties of curcumin, a major constituent of Curcuma longa: a review of preclinical and clinical research”, Altern Med Rev, 14(2):141-53.
2. Menon VP, et al. 2007. “Antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties of curcumin” Adv Exp Med Biol, 595:105-25.
3. Biswas SK et al., 2005. “Curcumin induces glutathione biosynthesis and inhibits NF-kappaB activation and interleukin-8 release in alveolar epithelial cells: mechanism of free radical scavenging activity” Antioxid Redox Signal. 7(1-2):32-41.
4. Dong, S et al. 2012. “Curcumin Enhances Neurogenesis and Cognition in Aged Rats: Implications for Transcriptional Interactions Related to Growth and Synaptic Plasticity” PloS One. 7(2): e3121.
5. Akazawa N. et al. 2012. “Curcumin ingestion and exercise training improve vascular endothelial function in postmenopausal women”. Nutr Res 32(10):795-9.
6. Tayyem, RF et al., 2006. “Curcumin content of turmeric and curry powders”, Nutr Cancer 55(2):126-31.
7. Vijayakumar RS et al. 2004, “Antioxidant efficacy of black pepper (Piper nigrum L.) and piperine in rats with high fat diet induced oxidative stress”, Redox Rep, 9(2):105-10.
8. Hritcu L. et al 2014, “Methanolic extract of Piper nigrum fruits improves memory impairment by decreasing brain oxidative stress in amyloid beta(1-42) rat model of Alzheimer's disease“, Cell Mol Neurobiol, 34(3):437-49.
9. Duangjai A et al. 2013, “Black pepper and piperine reduce cholesterol uptake and enhance translocation of cholesterol transporter proteins”, J Nat Med, 67(2):303-10.
10. Rather RA et al. 2018, “Cancer Chemoprevention and Piperine: Molecular Mechanisms and Therapeutic Opportunities”, Front Cell Dev Biol, 15;6:10.
11. Patil VM et al. 2016, “Quantum Chemical and Docking Insights into Bioavailability Enhancement of Curcumin by Piperine in Pepper”, J Phys Chem, 120(20):3643-53.
12. Lu QY et al. 2017, “Prebiotic Potential and Chemical Composition of Seven Culinary Spice Extracts”, J Food Sci, 82(8):1807-1813.
13. Tasleem F et al. 2014, “Analgesic and anti-inflammatory activities of Piper nigrum L”, Asian Pac J Trop Med, 7S1:S461-8.
14. Zanzer YC 2018, “Black pepper-based beverage induced appetite-suppressing effects without altering postprandial glycaemia, gut and thyroid hormones or gastrointestinal well-being: a randomized crossover study in healthy subjects”, Food Funct., 9(5):2774-2786.