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What Is the Difference Between Turmeric and Curcumin?

Turmeric is widely used as both a spice and a supplement. Curcumin is the powerful bioactive agent found in turmeric and is a nutritional juggernaut. It is important to understand this distinction because these terms are often used interchangeably. A recent report by NDTV made sure to clarify this distinction while extolling the curative powers of this natural compound. 

Even without its potent healing powers, turmeric would be wildly popular. Its complex and challenging flavor can stand alone on its own merits. As a supplement, curcumin also has much to recommend and even if it were not a compound in turmeric, it would be widely used. 

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. It is a supplement with extraordinary properties; plus, it is widely available in the spice aisle and sold in supplement form. 

That turmeric can be challenging for your body to absorb is 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. 

With minimal research it is easy to find high-quality turmeric that includes a catalyst and is verified to be fully potent. One important consideration is that spice rack turmeric is very rarely labeled as such and can vary wildly in quality. Curcumin is the active ingredient and you do not want to miss out on the benefits it can provide.