Turmeric, also known as “Indian Saffron,” is a powerful herb with many health benefits. It is an effective natural remedy for overall wellness thanks to its content of antioxidants and anti-inflammatory compounds, known as curcuminoids. While curcumin is responsible for anti-inflammatory benefits to help with pain, the turmeric root itself carries the antioxidants. However, both curcumin and antioxidants in turmeric can be beneficial to our immune health.
The Benefits of Antioxidants
Antioxidants are compounds that help fight free radicals in your body that causes oxidative stress. Vitamin C is a well-known antioxidant that has been studied to have a positive effect on our immune system. Oxidative stress causes damage in the body, with long-term oxidative stress leading to damage to your body’s cells, proteins, and even DNA. Along with that, oxidative stress can cause inflammation as well. It is important for us to include antioxidant-rich foods in our diet in order to slow oxidative stress.
How Curcumin Impacts Your Health
According to the article from The Indian Express, some inflammation is necessary for our immune system to fight infections and illness. However, chronic or long-term inflammation can wreak havoc on your health, causing damage to healthy cells in your body. Inflammation caused by chronic stress can impair our immune system, so it is important that we manage our stress. Otherwise, we may find that our cortisol levels are too high, leading to other illnesses that can negatively impact your life and livelihood. Cortisol is a stress hormone, also known as your “flight or fight” hormone. Too much cortisol can keep your body at a regular state of stress. Some good ways that you can do to help manage your stress levels is addressing external factors causing the stress, practicing mindful meditation or breathing techniques, and calming internal inflammation with turmeric.
Author Adin Smith suggests that curcumin can improve our immune strength through its ability to support the “gut-immune connection” with its prebiotic-like properties. When considering that around 70% of our immune cells can be located in our gut, promoting a healthy gut, in turn, can improve your body’s defenses against foreign invaders.