How Much Turmeric Is Enough to Improve Digestion and Blood Sugar Levels

By KrisTina | Articles

Sep 21

Did you know that diabetes affects as much as 13% of those aged 20 and older? It’s not surprising why so many experts and researchers out there are working around the clock to find better ways to prevent, manage, and hopefully, one day, even cure this dreadful disease.

And while the natural ingredient we are about to discuss in this article may not be a proven cure, it can most certainly aid in the prevention of diabetes. And, as we like to say, prevention is the best cure of them all.

After all, you won’t need to cure anything if you prevent it from occurring in the first place. Which natural ingredient are we referring to? Why, turmeric, of course! Are you even surprised?

Turmeric and Type 2 Diabetes: Benefits?

As you may have already been informed, turmeric is a super-healthy spice found in Asian culture and cuisine, especially curry! In fact, the food gets its yellowish color from this spice. Our ancestors have used it for centuries in Eastern medicine.

It’s great for a large number of health-related matters, such as improving digestion and liver functions, as well as easing any pain caused by arthritis and any similar conditions.

And even today it has been gaining more and more popularity, not just in alternative medical practices, but in mainstream medicine as well! It even possesses powerful antioxidant properties which are believed to fight infection and inflammation.

And yes, certain research has reported that consuming turmeric can prevent and treat diabetes.

What Research Has to Say About It

Curcumin, which is the active component in turmeric is the one which holds the credit for many of the supposed benefits of this spice.

A review of studies back in 2013 suggested that this component has the ability to decrease glucose levels in one’s blood, among other complications related to diabetes. According to some researchers, curcumin may have a vital role to play when it comes to preventing diabetes altogether.

Another research reports that turmeric extract could aid in stabilizing blood sugar levels and making one’s diabetes more easily manageable. But even those who are not diabetic can benefit from this extract, as it could provide overall health benefits, such as improving digestion.

Curcumin and Type I Diabetes

The Clinical and Experimental Immunology posted an article in which they explained that turmeric’s active component, curcumin, might adjust the way one’s over-active immune system works in those with type I diabetes.

It appears that curcumin can lower the T cell response of one’s body. This is the very same immune response which destroys the insulin-producing beta cells of the pancreas. Which means this spice might aid in empowering the immune system.

It might even boost the immunomodulatory medicines which are prescribed for managing one’s type I diabetes.

Curcumin, when it comes to easing diabetes, can also aid in:

  • Prevent diabetic cataracts
  • Reduce important markers, thus fighting kidney disease
  • Thanks to its anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties, it can fight cognitive problems
  • Prevent diabetes-caused nerve damage

Of course, many more clinical trials (which would involve human participants) are needed so one can truly grasp the potential benefits of turmeric and its most important ingredient –  curcumin.

Warnings and Risks

Another great thing about turmeric is that it is considered safe for consumption. However, when curcumin is consumed in overly large doses, it may have some unpleasant consequences. What is a high dosage? Over 4 grams a day, to be more precise.

What kinds of consequences? Well, they may differ for each individual, but some of the most common are:

  • Indigestion
  • Nausea
  • Diarrhea

Additionally, consuming large quantities of turmeric over and over again may lead to issues related to the liver. And if you happen to have gallbladder disease, you should avoid this spice completely, as it very well may end up worsening your condition.

It’s always the best idea to consult with your physician before taking turmeric. After all, they know your health history and can help you better assess the benefits and risks.

How Much Is Enough?

We’ve already established that 4 grams is the very border of how much turmeric is healthy for you. But as for how much is ‘just right’…that’s a bit more complicated. Some experts claim as little as 200 mg a day is more than sufficient to reap all the benefits we’ve mentioned.

Others claim it needs to be 300 mg for one to witness any real results. Some studies claim as much as 1000 mg are the ideal amount for this specific spice. You can choose which advice to listen to, or you can go your own way and see how much exactly works best for you personally.

Our recommendation? Start small and build up from there.

Some Other Ways to Manage Diabetes

Basically, managing one’s diabetes largely revolves around regular exercise, healthy life choices, managing one’s stress levels, and a balanced, nutritious diet. One usually works closely with their doctors for developing the best management plan for them personally.

Most healthy diet plans (and not just those for diabetics) include eating more raw foods, such as vegetables, grains, and fruits. The most important thing you can do if you’ve been diagnosed with diabetes is to choose foods which are low in sugar, but high in fiber.

Such choices are beneficial for helping you maintain your blood glucose levels. Any doctor or diabetes expert will suggest regular physical activity and exercising in order to further obtain control over your glucose levels.

If you have been diagnosed with type II diabetes, you should be able to control this condition through exercise and diet alone. As for those of you who have been diagnosed with type I diabetes (as well as certain cases of type II), also need to take insulin medication.

There are also a few other spices, similar to turmeric, which can help one in their management of diabetes, such as:

  • Ginger
  • Cumin
  • Cinnamon

To Sum It All Up

You can take turmeric as a supplement to go with your regular healthcare regime. But it should by no means try to replace that regime. Always consult with your doctor to determine what to do next. Here are some things worth considering:

  • Carefully read the labels on the packaging and follow the instructions. If you are uncertain of the dosage, consult with your doctor first.
  • Just like with other supplement dosages, it’s always a good idea to start with a low one, and see how you’re doing. If all’s well, you can go up from there.
  • Turmeric, in some cases, may worsen anemia or increase the urinary oxalate levels. If you happen to have a history of anemia or kidney stones, you might want to ease up on the turmeric.
  • While we’re on caution, you need to realize that not everyone’s stomach may agree with this spice. And although most can tolerate it, it’s always better to start small. For the sake of any possible allergies to it, as well.
  • Avoid buying turmeric in bulk. As most other spices, it holds the most benefits when it’s fresh. It doesn’t matter whether you choose to add it to your meals or take it in supplement form. Either way, it’s best to buy only the amounts you need for your immediate future.
  • If you decide to cook with turmeric, rather than take it as a supplement, you should know that it doesn’t possess the same benefits. This is because the heat takes away some of its medicinal value.
  • If you pair turmeric with oil or fat, it may improve its absorption into your system. Which, of course, results in even more benefits.

Source: Medical News Today | Turmeric for HealthHealth Line