Does Turmeric Increase Stomach Acid?

NO, turmeric does not increase the production of stomach acids.

On the contrary, several studies have shown that curcumin, the active ingredient in turmeric lowers gastric acid secretion and the acidity levels in the stomach.

In this way, it protects the gastrointestinal lining from the adverse effects of acidity. This further helps in the prevention of gastric ulcers and stomach cancer.

Does Turmeric Increase Stomach Acid?

Let us study the scientific evidence behind these benefits.

1. Turmeric Reduces Stomach Acid Secretion

Research shows that curcumin present in turmeric decreases the secretion of acids in the stomach. [1] [2]

The H2 histamine receptors in the stomach stimulate the secretion of gastric acids. Curcumin acts as an H2 antagonist and blocks these receptors, thereby inhibiting gastric acid secretion. [3]

It also decreases the levels of gastrin, a hormone secreted by stomach cells, which stimulates acid (Hydrochloric acid- HCl) production.[4]

In this way, it reduces hyperacidity by increasing the gastric pH levels.[5]

Moreover, it attenuates ulcer formation which occurs as a result of increased secretion of stomach acids.[6]

However, some people may experience gastrointestinal problems while consuming turmeric for the first time, in high doses or for a long duration.

This is because different people have varying tolerability levels, as is the case with any other spice or food. In such individuals, the consumption of turmeric in considerable amounts may cause mild gastrointestinal irritation. [7] [8]

Nonetheless, dietary consumption of turmeric is considered safe and is unlikely to result in acidity or any other adverse effects.

Turmeric is taken with black pepper to improve its absorption by the body. Studies have shown that black pepper may increase stomach acid levels and act as stomach irritant.

However, this effect is dose-dependent and not applicable when black pepper is consumed in small amounts.[9]

Although turmeric reduces stomach acid, it is not suitable to consume it with other acid-reducing medicines.

The University of Maryland Medical Centre states that turmeric can interfere with the working mechanism of drugs used for reducing stomach acids and this may result in increased acid secretion.[10]

Thus, it is advised to maintain a gap of 3-4 hours while consuming turmeric and antacid medications.

2. Turmeric Alleviates the After Effects of Hyperacidity

Not only does turmeric inhibit the production of gastric acids, but it also protects the stomach lining from the ill effects of hyperacidity.

Studies have shown that curcumin has anti-inflammatory and gastroprotective effects. [11] [12] [13]

It can reduce the inflammation and mucosal injury caused by stomach acids and prevents the formation of gastric lesions and ulcers.

Due to its antioxidant properties, it reduces oxidative stress and assists in early healing and treatment of these ulcers. [14] [15]

Turmeric has many other significant benefits in acidity and acid reflux which can be studied in detail in the above article.

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About the Author

Fazila (B.Sc Biotech. & Bioinformatics)

Turmeric for Health's writer team consists of passionate writers from the fields of biotechnology, pharmacy, nutrition, Ayurveda & microbiology.Our writers are highly qualified with many having Ph.D., M.Tech & MSc degrees while others having B.Tech, BSc, B.Pharm. Our differentiation lies in researching and presenting ONLY FACTUAL SCIENTIFIC information. We spend 10s of hours to write a single article. Info of our articles is sourced from reliable scientific sources which are also provided as a link alongside for readers to refer if they want. You can read more about our team in the " About us" section.

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