Adaptogens are one of the most popular health trends right now. Even though their properties have been known for millennia, it wasn’t until fairly recently that more extensive research has been done on them. Today, more and more people are starting to recognize these herbs for their numerous health benefits.
A very popular herb that is used as a spice, a food colorant, and a medicine is turmeric. However, it’s still unclear whether turmeric has all the properties to fall under the category of adaptogens.
In order to reveal an answer, we must first discuss everything that an herb needs to have in order to be considered an adaptogen. After we do that, we’ll go over everything that turmeric has to offer, and see if it qualifies as an adaptogenic herb. In the end there’ll be no need to wonder is turmeric an adaptogen.
What are Adaptogens?
Even though this term applies to a wide variety of plants with all kinds of properties, there are some things that all herbs need to have in order to be considered adaptogens.
First of all, they need to be completely non-toxic. They need to ensure that your body’s physiological functions remain normal. Aside from this, they need to improve the functions that they target.
Of course, this doesn’t mean that you won’t notice any changes when you first start using them. Your body will need to adapt to a slew of newly introduced compounds, which might cause some minor changes. The important thing is that these changes are mild and short term.
Also, adaptogens need to ensure homeostasis, which is an optimal level of all bodily functions. Adaptogens need to make sure to correct different disturbance, and provide your body with the state of equilibrium.
Another thing that all adaptogens have in common is that there’s no specific benefit to them. Instead, they need to ensure a mix of positive effects, which will improve your overall well-being. They need to target different aspects of your health at the same time to arrive at noticeable benefits.
These are the main aspects that adaptogens need to cover. Of course, each one of them offers a different set of effects and benefits, but the convention is that they need to have the properties mentioned above to qualify as adaptogens. Now let’s take a look at turmeric to see whether it can be called an adaptogen.
Turmeric as an Adaptogen
There’s a high chance that you’ve already encountered turmeric in your life. It’s a pretty common additive to many popular foods, such as mustard, cheeses, and curry.
However, what you might not know is that turmeric has a wide application as a natural medicine. The chemical called curcumin is the main reason for this. For a long time, turmeric has been used to treat all kinds of medical conditions and to improve overall health.
It is for this reason that Western Bioscience recognized turmeric for its adaptogen properties. A study revealed that it is a potent herb that can help fight chronic stress and return the body to homeostasis.
Aside from this, there are many health benefits of turmeric. Here are some of them.
One of the best-known and proven benefits is its ability to reduce the symptoms of depression. A major study was conducted to determine whether turmeric was as effective as fluoxetine, an antidepressant marketed as Prozac.
The results showed that turmeric was equally effective as fluoxetine and that the combination of the two could yield even better results in some cases.
The thing that turmeric is best known for within the alternative medicine community is its anti-inflammatory properties.
One study even found that turmeric is far more effective in reducing inflammation than some of the most widely used anti-inflammatory medication, such as ibuprofen and aspirin. This alone brings a variety of health benefits and disease prevention.
A very important function that turmeric may serve is killing cancer cells and preventing the tumor from spreading. Studies done by Cancer Research UK showed that curcumin was effective in fighting cancer cells and could be an important part in recovery from cancer.
The same research showed that it’s most effective against skin, breast, stomach, and bowel cancers. Aside from fighting off cancer, it can prevent it from forming, thanks to it being a powerful antioxidant.
From everything you can see here, it’s safe to say that turmeric falls under the category of adaptogens. Its many proven effects can be very beneficial to treating various health conditions and making sure your body stays healthy.
The benefits of turmeric extend beyond just what you see here. It’s a very versatile herb, which is why it may be beneficial to virtually anyone.