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Turmeric vs Curcumin: Which is Better to Take?

Turmeric is a well-known name in most of the Asian countries. It is used as a spice in curries plus it has a medicinal value attached to it. Turmeric is used as a major component in various medicinal fields like Ayurveda, Unani medicines, Chinese traditional medicines and, Siddha medicines. With the increase in awareness about the advantages of using natural treatments, more and more people have come to know about this highly beneficial herb.

Another natural component which shares almost the same benefits as turmeric is ‘curcumin.’ Turmeric and curcumin are very much related to each other as curcumin is derived from turmeric. As a result, sometimes people do get confused about which one is better among them.

Introduction

The scientific name of the turmeric plant is Curcuma longa. The well-known turmeric spice is derived from the roots of the plant. It is also used in making herbal tonics. Turmeric powder is also known as yellow saffron. The spice is known for its anti-inflammatory and anti-oxidant properties. The yellow color of the turmeric is because of the presence of a natural pigment in it which is known as curcumin.  Various researches have proved that curcumin is highly beneficial for the human body. Some studies also claim that the anti-oxidant and anti-inflammatory properties of turmeric are because of the curcumin present in it.

How is curcumin different from turmeric?

Both curcumin and turmeric have similar benefits. They both help in preventing diseases like Alzheimer’s, cancer as well as heart diseases. They also help in curing arthritis and depression. Both of them also help in delaying aging as well are known for treating age-related diseases. As a result, these two words; turmeric and curcumin are used as synonyms. But the truth is they are different from each other. Curcumin is only a component of curcuminoids which are present in turmeric.

Extraction process

The process of making turmeric spice is quite simple. The root of the plant is dried and then grinded into fine powder. Whereas, the extraction of curcumin, is done by a complicated process called Chromatography. Researchers have found that the antioxidant property of curcumin is more as compared to turmeric. However, the other two components of curcuminoids do have antioxidant properties, but it is quite less as compared to curcumin.

Absorption

Another thing that differentiates between curcumin and turmeric is their absorption. Absorption of curcumin and turmeric is possible only in the presence of fats or oils. Though turmeric does contain natural oils in it, they are absorbed well with the help of additional fats. Turmeric when used as a spice in curries, it gets combined with oils, that might help in its absorption by the body. Similarly, most of the supplements also use essential fatty acids with the curcumin.

There are several types of research which prove that curcumin is the most active component of turmeric.

Curcumin benefits:

  • Curcumin helps in preventing cancer
  • It also helps in treating various kinds of cancer like skin cancer, breast cancer and, prostate cancer
  • Regular intake of curcumin also helps in reducing the chances of relapse of ulcerative colitis.
  • Theracurmin has been found beneficial in improving memory and attention.

Which supplement to select?

Another question that pops up in the mind of many people is regarding which is the best form of turmeric and curcumin in the market.

The first thing that should be kept in mind while selecting the turmeric or curcumin supplement is its constituents. It is always recommended to go for products which are pure and do not contain any hidden ingredient. Turmeric can be taken either in its natural form, powder, as a spice or as a supplement. However, it better to add black pepper in case of using a turmeric supplement.

The best curcumin supplement Canada is the one which is made keeping in mind their absorption factor. The curcumin supplements generally come in combination with oils to make them easily absorbed by the body.

Turmeric or curcumin

Which is better- turmeric or curcumin? It is a highly debatable question. Various arguments are given in favor of both. Some studies recommend the use of natural products rather than extractions which are done using artificial methods. Such people recommend the use of turmeric over curcumin extract. As per them, turmeric retails all its natural elements.

Whereas, another group believes that a curcumin supplement is the concentrated form of the most active antioxidant component of the turmeric. As a result, a curcumin supplement will be far more beneficial than the turmeric.

An important thing about using either of the two is that it should suit the body. For example, turmeric is not recommended for people having bile or gastric issues. Similarly, pregnant women are recommended to use these supplements under the guidance of their doctor.

Conclusion

Turmeric and curcumin both are natural products with highly beneficial properties. This golden yellow herb has been proving its role in medical field for thousands of years. They treat various ailments that too without any side effects.