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A New Study Has Shown That Eating Turmeric May Provide Health Benefits That Taking A Supplement Do Not

Real food is the cornerstone of a healthy lifestyle. Supplements exist to fill gaps in the diet and in an ideal world would not be necessary. When weighing the comparative merits of diet and supplements, turmeric provides an interesting case study. Recent research has revealed that it possesses extraordinary curative properties plus it is widely available in the spice aisle and sold in supplement form.

The BBC study compared the efficacy of store bought turmeric used as a spice against turmeric in a supplement capsule. To add a veneer of scientific legitimacy they included a control group that took a placebo pill. Their initial findings were that turmeric used as a spice in food was more effective than when it was encapsulated and swallowed in pill form. They were only able to surmise why the results were so strikingly different. One possibility was "that adding fat or heating it up makes the active ingredients more soluble, which would make it easier for us to absorb the turmeric."

That turmeric can be challenging for your body to absorb is actually quite well-documented. Black pepper is often added to turmeric supplements to aid absorption, although ginger may be able to achieve the same end without the potential for digestive discomfort. Turmeric consumed without a catalyst is not particularly effective and the BBC study did not clarify if this was taken into account with the supplement group.

It is also important to note that the study did not verify the source of the turmeric. With minimal research it is easy to find a high quality turmeric supplement that includes a catalyst and is verified to be fully potent. Conversely, spice rack turmeric is very rarely labeled as such and can vary wildly in quality.
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