What is turmeric and what are the health benefits?

 
 

THE TURBOCHARGED AND HEALTHY ANCIENT HERB

Don't let its death wasp appearance fool you. Turmeric is shaman-in-chief of the root kingdom, with curative powers a supernatural faith healer could only dream of. This ancient spice, celebrated as a culinary spice as well as medicine dating back nearly 4000 years to the Vedic culture in India, has resurfaced within the health and nutrition communities thanks to curcumin, the healing substance that gives curry its vibrant yellow colour. In Ayurvedic practices, turmeric is thought to have many medicinal properties including strengthening the overall energy of the body, relieving gas and improving digestion.
 

 You probably have a jar of it in your kitchen cupboard, but did you know it contains some of the most powerful anti-oxidant properties on the herb and spice spectrum? Following a significant number of positive scientific discoveries, this once shy, retiring spice is stepping into the spotlight. This is thanks in no small part to its primary active ingredient, curcumin, which has powerful anti-oxidant and anti-inflammatory effects. 

Anti-oxidants help neutralise free radicals - the molecules that cause oxidative damage (one of the reasons we age, develop diseases or get hangovers). Turmeric also contains a host of other beneficial nutrients in its small but mighty form. At MOJU, we include turmeric in our daily diet whenever we can, even popping a spoon or two of powder into our porridge in the morning. Where possible, it's well worth using the fresh root, but this can be tricky to find (we've found the most reliable source to be at a local Chinese or Thai supermarket). 

The flavour of turmeric can be pretty overpowering, so remember to use it sparingly to avoid two hours of scratchy pepper throat. Luckily, you only need a small amount to extract the nutritional benefits, which is why we use it in our Orange Edition Juice (which ironically doesn’t contain any oranges). Then you have our turmeric shots which contain 20g of raw turmeric root in every bottle - these pack a punch.

CURCUMIN JUST GOT AMPED

The most beguiling part of the turmeric story is that you can make it even more powerful with a sprinkling of black pepper. Piperine, the compound in black pepper, increases your body's ability to absorb the curcumin by up to 2000%. It turns out piperine is very effective in improving the absorption of lots of nutritional compounds. So get grinding, people! 

 

At MOJU HQ when we need an afternoon pick-me-up, a turmeric root tonic is the one!

Ingredients

  • 2 cups of water
  • 1 inch of fresh ginger root
  • 1 inch of turmeric root
  • a pinch of ground black pepper
  • slice of orange

Method

In a small saucepan, bring water to the boil, add peeled and minced ginger root, turmeric root, sliced orange and a pinch of black pepper. Simmer for 10 minutes on a low heat. Strain and pour into a tea mug. Add honey and/or lemon juice to taste.

In the wild

Ceremonial Matcha Tea Powder

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WORD TO YOUR MUTHA

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