Curcuma longa, also known as turmeric, has been documented since the seventh century AD in Chinese and Indian medicine for its healing properties. It has been used for a multitude of ailments that range from cancer, flatulence, jaundice, hematuria, inflammation, and bacterial infections. It is a member of the Zingiberaceae family and is grown extensively through Asia, India, China, and other tropical climates. The rhizome is the part that is medicinally used and is prepared using a process of boiling, cleaning, and drying. The active constituents of Curcuma are the flavonoids and volatile oils. The curcumin flavonoids, also known as curcumin, demethoxycurcumin, and bis-demethoxycurcumin give curcuma its bright yellow color and are becoming more extensively studied for their oncological effects.
What is the research showing about Turmeric?
Research is showing that Curcuma contains the properties of an antioxidant, prevent lipid (fat) oxidation in the arteries that causes plaquing, protective to the liver, anti-inflammatory, and anti-carcinogenic via inhibiting tumor growth, promotion, angiogenesis, and latering tumor gene expression. These multiple properties allow Curcuma to affect tumor cells via various pathways, an advantageous system as tumor cells are known to escape host defense mechanisms using multiple means.Curcuma has been shown to suppress proliferation of tumor cells within multiple lines of cancer. This list includes but is not limited to: breast carcinoma, colon carcinoma, renal cell carcinoma, hepatocellular carcinoma, T cell leukemia, B cell lymphoma, acute myelogenous leukemia, basal cell carcinoma, melanoma, and prostate carcinoma. It has been well documented that Curcuma inhibits tumor cell proliferation via inhibiting the transcription factor nuclear factor kappaB (NF-kappaB). NF-kappaB mediates cell survival and proliferation, allowing tumor cells to evade apoptosis (cell death) with activation. Because of Curcuma’s ability to inhibit the specific transcription factor (part of the genetic machinery that is important for cellular replication), it is being studied as a chemosensatizing agent. One study found that concomitant Curcuma use increased drug induced tumor cell death with the chemotherapy durgs 5-fluorouracil and cisplatin.
Can I take any Turmeric Supplement?
The quality, purity, and bioavailability of supplements in the nutraceutical market vary widely upon the manufacturers. For this reason, it is imperative that the nutraceutical companies have strict quality control. If you doubt what companies are good, give the office a call.
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