Originating in India, this yellow spice has been used to heal a ton of ailments for thousands of years. It has made its way around the world because more and more people in Western civilizations are learning of the amazing health advantages this spice has to offer.
Today we are going to discuss all the ways turmeric milk will enhance your overall health and well-being. It does this with the help of ingredients like ginger, cinnamon, honey, black pepper, and non-dairy milk. Each of them brings something to the table, which we explain below. After you read about the benefits below we will explain exactly how you can make it at home.
1 – Detoxes Your Body
We all have free radicals floating around our bodies, which can cause oxidative damage. If you have ever heard of someone doing a “detox”, what that means is they are limiting their diet and attempting to clean out the free radicals that have formed. As it turns out, even if you avoid fried foods, alcohol, tobacco smoke, and pesticides, the pollutants in the air can cause free radicals.
Believe it or not, the water you drink can cause them to form as well. If you don’t rid your body of free radicals you can experience all kinds of issues, like wrinkles, hair loss, diabetes, and even cataracts. Antioxidants fight free radicals and turmeric milk is a natural antioxidant.
As it turns out, curcumin is one of the core elements in this spice is an antioxidant that has been used in Ayurvedic medicine for centuries. Studies have shown that foods rich in antioxidants may help protect from diseases due to their ability to detoxify and rid our bodies of free radicals. Ginger and cinnamon are also strong detoxifiers.
2 – Eases Arthritis
There are different types of arthritis, which is an inflammation of the joints, or joint pain. Thousands of children and nearly a billion adults suffer from some type of arthritis and the obstacles that come along with this debilitating disease. Symptoms include the following.
- Decreased range of motion
Symptoms are constant for some and only show up on occasion for others. The symptoms can be mild, moderate, extreme, or anywhere in between. Any form of this disease makes functioning a challenge for some sufferers and finding a natural solution is a wonderful option. This is where we go back to curcumin.
A study published in 2012 was conducted at the Nirmala Medical Center in Kerala, India. Researchers took 45 patients suffering from rheumatoid arthritis and split them into three groups. They were given 500 mg of curcumin and 50 mg diclofenac sodium, a drug used to reduce arthritis.
The supplements were administered either alone or combined. Their progress was cited according to two scoring systems; the Disease Activity Score (DAS) and onset by The American College of Rheumatology (ACR). Every patient showed big improvements in their symptoms.
3 – Reduces Inflammation
We identify the term “inflammation” with a red mark or swelling, which is correct. But it’s much more than that. Inflammation occurs when the white blood cells in your body fight viruses and bacteria. Inflammation alerts us to an infection at times, but it can be painful and more serious like we’ve discussed above with arthritis.
There are several studies that show curcumin has relieved inflammations of all types. Chronic anterior uveitis is inflammation that destroys eye tissue. Curcumins effects showed to be just as powerful as the top therapy for this disease. Other studies show that curcumin can be used to treat inflammation resulting from pancreatitis and has been shown to relieve inflammation better than aspirin or ibuprofen.
We can’t count out the cinnamon and ginger, even if their names are not in the title. Ginger has shown to help patients with osteoarthritis of the knee while cinnamon has powerful anti-inflammatory compounds as well.
4 – Improves Cognition as We Age
Babies come into the world with developing brains, but what happens when we start to age, long after our bodies have stopped growing? Not all brains age the same but there are some symptoms typical to the aging brain. They include difficulty learning new things, problems multitasking, trouble remembering names, numbers, and appointments.
Deeper into your head, your brain could be experiencing shrinking of brain mass, thinning of the dense cortical where we are used to making simple synaptic connections, and shrinking of white matter, among other things. I am sure it comes as no surprise to you that our brains start to wear out, like the rest of your body.
One study showed that curcumin may help with the growth of new brain cells. It does this by increasing the levels of brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF), which aids your brain in making important neurological contacts. Cinnamon has been shown to be beneficial to patients suffering from Alzheimer’s disease and fights Parkinson’s in mice.
Ginger plays a part in this too and has been shown to improve the cognitive functioning of healthy middle-aged women. As a whole, you are doing your brain some serious good when drinking turmeric milk.
5 – Memory Booster
Fading memories isn’t only an issue for the old and aging. All of us can use a good boost in memory function once in a while. This is especially true for those who are still in school. While we all should continue to learn, there is no doubt that the youngest members of our culture are inundated with new information on a regular basis.
Between school, extracurricular activities, play dates, after-school clubs, sports, teams, you name it, today kids are involved. They have to be because it’s such a competitive world out there. Giving your children a leg up when it comes to school is in their best interest and you can boost their memory with a glass of turmeric milk.
Not only does turmeric help with the growth of new brain cells, but it has also been shown to have a reverse effect on those with memory problems. Cinnamon has been shown to also improve memory according to research conducted at Rush University Medical Center in Chicago. Ginger brings some power to the table by showing memory improvement in male rats.
6 – Lifts Your Spirits
Millions of people around the world suffer from depression, anxiety, and other mental disorders that affect their daily lives. While some of them are clinically depressed, you don’t need a chemical imbalance to feel sad. There are plenty of reasons in the world to make us feel melancholy once in a while.
The death of a loved one, losing a job, and the loss of a pet are just three of many major life occurrences that can leave us feeling down. While we aren’t claiming that this drink will wash all your woes away, there is no denying in the studies that have shown the ability of some ingredients in this elixir.
One study administered antidepressants to one group of patients while the others took curcumin and the results were similar for both. The interesting thing is, there was a third group who took both and they reported the best results. Essential oils extracted from cinnamon was successful in relieving depressive activities in mice.
7 – Might Battle Heart Disease
Inflammation and heart disease come hand in hand. While it is unsure if heart issues like stroke are caused by inflammation, it is quite frequent for heart disease and stroke patients to experience inflammation of the heart. Heart disease is a general term for a number of issues that can cause damage to your heart, one of our most important organs.
Symptoms that could indicate a person is suffering from heart disease include tightness, pain, pressure, or discomfort of the chest, shortness of breath, dizziness, coldness, and numbness in your extremities, swelling in the legs, or pale blue skin.
While there are no studies that connect turmeric directly to healing heart issues, it has been proven to fight inflammation, which is common for heart disease patients. Of course, turmeric isn’t the only ingredient with powers in this drink. Cinnamon has been proven to have strong anti-inflammatory properties, especially when mixed with ginger.
8 – Battles Diabetes
People who suffer from type 1 diabetes have trouble making insulin. Type 2 diabetes sufferers also have issues making insulin or the insulin they have doesn’t work effectively. Type 2 is the more common type of diabetes. Some people have prediabetes, which means you rise in your blood sugar but at the level of diabetes.
Turmeric has been shown to play a strong role in the prevention and the treatment of diabetes and issues related to the disease. When tested curcumin users show significant improvement over patients who took a placebo. Cinnamon is another strong advocate when it comes to fighting diabetes.
Adults with prediabetes who took 500 mg of cinnamon extract every day reduced their oxidative stress, which is a factor in diabetes, by fourteen percent. Cinnamon might also lower blood sugar by aiding the transportation of glucose into cells. It basically mimics insulin.
Ginger is also wonderful when fighting this disease. There are numerous studies, one in 2015 showed that supplements of ginger given to patients over a period of twelve weeks showed low levels of compounds associated with diabetes. In 2016, another study found ginger is aided rats with heart problems due to diabetes.
9 – Antibacterial Properties
Bacteria is everywhere. Outside of our bodies, on our exterior, and inside our organs. You may familiar with probiotics that offer to help you maintain healthy strains of bacteria in your gut, which has been said to cause digestive issues when imbalanced. This proves that some bacteria is good, but there are some that are not so great, like salmonella and E. coli.
We’ve heard enough about those in the news to know how harmful bacteria can be. Turmeric milk is not a cure for any of these harmful bacteria but there are properties in the ingredients that can help you keep the good bacteria in while battling the bad. Turmeric has shown compelling results when fighting bacteria.
Cinnamon extracts and essential oils have shown to work well fighting Gram-positive and Gram-negative bacteria that are connected to human infectious diseases. As it turns out, cinnamon has been used for centuries for these very purposes.
If you haven’t noticed a theme here, ginger is next on our list. It should come as no surprise to you that it too is a powerful agent against bacteria. Some elements in ginger rhizome have antibacterial properties as well.
We covered bacteria, now let’s move on to viruses. What’s the difference? There are quite a lot of issues they share, like coughing, sneezing, contamination of surfaces, and contagious through kissing and intimate exchanges. They both can cause an infection that is acute or chronic, and some that are hidden without symptoms.
They are both microbes, which are too small to see with the human eye. When magnified scientists and observers can tell they are quite different. Bacteria are complex, single-celled organisms.
Viruses are much smaller and wear a coat of protein and RNA or DNA in their core. The bottom line is, no matter what they look like under a microscope when they make us sick we want them gone.
Just as curcumin is a tough opponent for bacteria, viruses may be inhibited by it as well. Cinnamon is a powerful agent against viruses that might cause influenza. When it comes to ginger, the fresh version is quite powerful when it comes to antiviral activity. Our recipe doesn’t call for fresh ginger but that can easily replace the dried spice.
11 – Antifungal
We’ve covered two of the major pathogens that have the ability to wreak havoc on the human body. Some fungi are spectacular, and quite delicious when you consider mushroom varieties like crimini, shitake, and portabella. These tasty pickings are quite different from the fungi that cause internal infections like yeast infections and ringworm.
The curcumin found in turmeric also works as a powerful antiviral agent. Cinnamon was shown to have significant effects on healing when it came to intestinal Candida infections, which is a fungal infection. Keeping with the theme of this entire piece, ginger is also a fantastic remedy for Candida because it fights fungal infections so well.
12 – Promotes Healthy Gut – Aids Digestion
If you remember, I wrote earlier about the importance of healthy bacteria in your gut. When it comes to the bacteria in our bodies, they count well into the trillions, and most of them live in our digestive tract. Keeping the microbes in your gut happy is essential to healthy digestion.
Ginger is a dynamic ally when it comes to digestion. It has phenolic compounds that help with bile production and is able to relieve gastrointestinal irritation. It also stimulates saliva, which helps too. Cinnamon has been shown to improve colon health, which is one of the largest organs in our digestive tract.
Turmeric is right there with the other two and has been tested as a solution to irritable bowel syndrome, which is common. If you have issues with dairy be sure to use almond or cashew milk when mixing your first glass.
13 – Helps Strengthen Bones
Who hasn’t heard that milk is an amazing friend when it comes to healthy bones? We all have because our society has been raised on it, at least those of us in the United States. Still, there are quite a few people who don’t have an easy time with cow’s milk or any dairy substance. Many non-dairy kinds of milk like almonds and cashews come enriched with vitamin D and calcium.
Turmeric may protect bones. Researchers found that the curcuminoids in turmeric prevented 50 percent of bone loss in rats, but the key is to have those curcuminoids and plenty of them, so be sure to check the levels in the turmeric you purchase. Ginger has also been shown to possibly help with bone reduction.
14 – Reduction in Cell Damage
The more you learn how the body works the more fascinated you might become because everything inside of us is directly connected to everything else. Many of us are aware of this concept already. The oxygen that enters our lungs is picked up by blood that brings it to the cells in our body, which use it to break down glucose for energy in a process called respiration.
It doesn’t stop there but we will because cells are an essential portion of our body functioning properly. They are considered the “basic building blocks” of every living thing on Earth. All cells, including the ones that make up our organs, have parts as well. You probably recall words like mitochondria and nucleus from your early education science classes.
Like anything else in the world, cells experience wear and tear from usage. So repairing them, especially as we age, is a good way to keep your body working as well as it can. Cells that form DNA have been repaired due to activation by curcumin. This compound, found in turmeric, also has anti-tumor effects, when taken in a tolerable dose.
To be fair, there are studies that show curcumin can cause damage to HeLa cells in DNA, which confirms the adage, everything in small doses. But it is safe to take by mouth, as millions of Indian dishes have proven over centuries.
15 – Boosts Immunity
Our immune system is what keeps us going and able to fight off all the nasty pathogens exposed to us. As anyone who has had a compromised immune system will tell you, we need those white blood cells and everything else that protect us from small invaders. Without a healthy immunity, people are more susceptible to disease and can even die.
Curcumin has been shown to harmonize the activation of macrophages, B cells, T cells, neutrophils, and other cells that make up our immune system. Cinnamon has also been shown to be a powerful agent in strengthening immunity. Ginger is chock full of antioxidant compounds and has been shown to fight off a number of diseases.
One Word of Caution
While we suggest trying this mixture for some added health benefits, too much of anything isn’t a wonderful idea. That is the case for cinnamon and turmeric so be sure to not over do it with this blend.
How To Make Turmeric Milk
You won’t need much time or ingredients to enjoy this delightful drink.
- 1 cup of Milk, any will do although we prefer almond milk
- ¾ teaspoons turmeric powder, be sure there are no additives
- ¼ teaspoon ground ginger
- 1 teaspoon organic honey
- ¼ teaspoon black pepper, optional
Warm milk over a low flame and gradually add the spices. When it comes to a ball let it simmer for a couple of minutes and then turn off the heat. Pour in a mug and enjoy!
Healing our bodies and strengthening them via the natural resources available is attractive, yet there is no cure-all for any ailment and we don’t recommend relying on one thing to cure what ails you. Be sure to consult a professional healthcare provider before starting any type of dietary regimens, to be sure you are moving in the right direction.
If you enjoyed this piece please let us know in the comments section below and share it with friends or family that might be interested in turmeric milk and the benefits that come along with this tasty treat.