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Nature’s Pharmacy
Turmeric Sooths Aching Joints and Boosts the Immune System

By Simeon Darwick
Nutritional Health Coach

Turmeric (curcuma longa) is a member of the ginger family. This herb’s flavor is pungent and bitter and has a warming effect. It contains the antioxidant curcumin, known for anticancer and anti-inflammatory properties, as well as lowering cholesterol. 

The National Health Institute has found that turmeric is very likely beneficial for upset stomachs and osteoarthritis (pain in the joints). Because of this, many athletes use turmeric to recover from intensive athletic performances and training. Here in Nosara, yogis use this herb to recover from long practice sessions of yoga postures and sitting cross legged during meditation. In addition, adding it to rice and beans enhances flavor, digestibility, and vibrant orange color appeal.   

Turmeric also gives a super boost to the immune system, which helps our bodies to stay healthy and effectively fight against common illness such as colds. Because of this, it is being tested as a supplement to chemotherapy. 

In “Ayurveda,” the Indian medicine system, turmeric is known as one of the royal herbs due to its longevity-promoting properties. Its daily consumption may help the Nicoya peninsula to maintain its reputation as a longevity hot spot. 

Turmeric can also help cope with all the dust during summer months due to the unpaved roads. In fact, the herb has been shown to reduce asthma due to its ability to reduce inflammation, irritation and even infection in the lungs. 

Needless to say, turmeric is a powerful medicine, but few know its beauty benefits. It has been shown to treat eczema, a skin condition typically associated with chronic rashes, itchiness and blotchy skin. It helps to beautify the skin through the elimination of acne, boils, and other impurities by purifying the blood. Turmeric works to not only treat this skin condition, but also to give beautiful color and texture to the skin and promote vibrant, healthy looking hair. 

The only contraindications are not consuming turmeric in extremely high doses, and if one is pregnant it might promote a menstrual period or stimulate the uterus, putting the pregnancy at risk.

Turmeric Recipes
You can purchase turmeric in powder form or fresh and use with rice, beans, stews, salad dressings, milk, or combine with smoothies. Start with using an 1/8 teaspoon and increase as desired. 

Golden Milk: joint remedy
Add ¼ teaspoon of turmeric to 1 quart of cow, goat, soy, almond, or coconut milk. Heat the milk if desired.  Drink as so or you can add a banana and ice and blend as a smoothie.


More Health News

How to Pamper Yourself

Christmas! Hanukkah! New Year! A time to party, shop for gifts and "love your neighbors as you love yourself." Did you ever wonder, like me, how on earth you were supposed to love yourself?

Natural Glam in the Jungle

Life in the jungle along the Guanacaste coast is filled with natural resources to keep our skin and hair healthy and youthful. Here are some tried and true recipes you can make at home with easy-to-find food-based products that are completely chemical free.

Massage & Day Spas Help You De-Stress

Studies have shown that massage releases in the bloodstream serotonin that makes you feel very relaxed and endorphins that makes you feel quite happy, and the jungle is teeming with options for quality massages these days, as well as options for learning how to massage.

Health and Art Had Their Weekend in Samara

The second health fair held in Samara was bigger and better this year, taking place over two days instead of one, December 7-8, with more participants and volunteering than last year.

Be Healthy and Happy during Samara’s Health Fair

“Health and cheerfulness naturally beget each other,” said English writer Joseph Addison. You will likely concur with that statement if you spend an afternoon in Samara at this year’s health fair at the Natural Center Gym and Spa, located next to Samara school.


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