Turmeric has been used in India and other Asian countries as a spice, for medicinal purposes and as food. Turmeric root is taken and powdered before use. However, other forms are available like capsules, tincture, fluid extracts and tea. Turmeric tea offers various health benefits.
Turmeric Health Benefits
Turmeric has many anti-inflammatory properties that help in treating various health problems like osteoarthritis, rheumatoid arthritis and ulcerative colitis. It also helps people with cancer, multiple sclerosis, Alzheimer’s disease, high cholesterol etc. It can also provide health benefits for those with lichen planus (a chronic disease that affects the mucous membrane of the skin, mouth and tongue) and chronic anterior uveitis (inflammation of the middle eye). Its anti-oxidant properties can prevent cataracts and cancer. Turmeric can reduces risk of contracting atherosclerosis by preventing blood clots. Diabetic patients and those with viral infections can also benefit from turmeric.
People use anti-inflammatory drugs like ibuprofen or aspirin to cure inflammatory conditions. Why do you need to take these drugs when you can use turmeric in various forms without any potential side effects? Turmeric also helps to prevent blood from clotting. It reduces inflammation caused by wounds, acne and other skin conditions. Hence, a little bit of turmeric added to various foods can provide these benefits on a daily basis.
Since there are so many health benefits of curcumin, turmeric tea is one way of enjoying them.
Studies conducted at the University of California have found that curcumin that is the activeingredient in turmeric and therefore in turmeric tea can reduce the instances of Alzheimer’s disease. This is why a study of elderly people in Indian villages found that they had the lowest instances of Alzheimer’s in the world. When beta-amyloid plaque accumulates in the brain, this abnormality causes Alzheimer’s disease. Curcumin in turmeric tea can block this plaque accumulation and reduce inflammation of neural tissue that is another cause of Alzheimer’s disease. Freshly brewed turmeric tea provides all the great health benefits of curcumin.
Recipe for Turmeric Tea
Basic Recipe: Take four cups of water and bring it to the boil. Add 1 teaspoon turmeric. Reduce the heat and let it simmer for at least 10 minutes. Strain this using a fine sieve. Add lemon or honey to taste.
As a variation, a teaspoon of ginger can be added to the turmeric tea. Good quality turmeric powder must be used for this recipe. However, grating fresh turmeric root each time you brew your tea can provide a richer flavor.
Since the health benefits of turmeric are widely known, turmeric root is available in most grocery stores worldwide.
This is the basic recipe to prepare turmeric tea. You can use different ingredients depending on your specific preferences. There are turmeric tea bags available for those who do not have the time to brew a cup from scratch. However, the best flavor can be got from brewing a cup using fresh ingredients.
Creamy Turmeric Tea: This is a tasty variation to the basic turmeric tea recipe. Take a cup of coconut or almond milk and warm it gently. Mix turmeric (1/2 teaspoon), pinch of cayenne pepper, finely chopped ginger root (1/2 inch), 1-1/2 teaspoon of any sweetener or honey in a mug. Pour a little of the warmed milk onto the mixture and mix till all lumps are removed. Mix in the rest of the milk and strain before drinking. This recipe could be great to soothe a sore throat, runny nose or relieve stress after a hard day’s work.
A word of caution ..
Clinical studies have not been conducted on the health benefits of turmeric. Turmeric tea drunk in excess could cause liver damage in those who are already prone to liver disease. It could also affect those with gallbladder disease, those who take blood thinner medications, drugs for diabetes or stomach acid-reducers.
Drinking excessive turmeric tea can also cause circulatory problems. Pregnant women are advised to control consumption since it could stimulate the uterus.
My take on turmeric tea
I have taken turmeric tea a few times and found it effective in treating my cough and cold. I love my turmeric tea with some pure / organic honey – it provides me with benefits of honey too. While I do not use turmeric tea very regularly, but suggest to use it in case you want to get benefits of turmeic and you love tea!
If you have tried turmeric tea, do share your experience and recipe here for others to benefit!