Turmeric may smell bitter, but the yellowish powder can turn any drink into a super drink because of its many properties. This is why your grandmother always asked you to drink turmeric milk or golden milk before hitting the sack. From healing wounds to curing colds, turmeric milk has always been on the top list of home remedies in every household. If you’re wondering what makes it so healthy, you should know that turmeric milk has several benefits.
Health Shots asked Bhakti Samant, Head Dietitian at Kokilaben Dhirubhai Ambani Hospital, Mumbai to share insights on the benefits of turmeric milk and what it does for your health.
Health benefits of turmeric milk
Sourced from the roots of the Curcuma longa plant, turmeric is a yellow spice that offers health-promoting properties attributed to an active ingredient found in it called curcumin. When combined with milk, the benefits of both turmeric and milk are enhanced, says the expert. Here are some nutritional benefits of turmeric milk:
1. Contains anti-inflammatory properties
Drinking turmeric milk can help keep problems like arthritis and inflammatory bowel disease at bay. It contains anti-inflammatory properties that help reduce inflammation in the body and reduce the risk of such problems. A study published in the Alternative Medicine Review found that the active ingredient curcumin in turmeric contains anti-inflammatory properties that help reduce the risk of joint pain and inflammation in the body.
2. Rich in antioxidants
Antioxidants are molecules that help fight free radicals in the body, which can damage cells and contribute to several chronic diseases. Curcumin in turmeric is a powerful antioxidant that helps maintain overall health and slow the aging process. It also reduces the risk of cancer, heart disease and more such diseases.
3. Boosts immunity
If you are someone who gets sick often, try including turmeric milk in your diet. It has immunomodulatory properties that help support the immune system and improve the body’s ability to defend itself against infections and diseases, Samant explains.
Also read: 9 superfoods to keep your immunity in check during the changing season
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4. Improves digestion
Do you have digestive problems, such as bloating and bloating? Drinking turmeric milk can help relieve symptoms. The expert says that turmeric milk contains properties that stimulate the production of bile in the liver, which helps in the proper digestion of fats.
5. Good for your brain
Drinking turmeric milk may even promote brain health. Samant says that regular consumption can help slow down or even reverse brain diseases and age-related diseases in brain function. A study published in the journal Neuropeptides found that curcumin can increase levels of brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF), a substance that helps increase brain cell growth.
6. Helps with wound healing
Studies have shown that turmeric contains antiseptic, anti-inflammatory, antimicrobial and antiallergic properties that aid in wound healing. It accelerates the healing process and supports wound healing. It also helps fight various infections including bacterial and viral infections.
7. Improves heart health
Did you know that heart disease is one of the leading causes of death in the world? The Key Ingredient: Turmeric in this drink may also help lower the risk of heart disease. A review of basic research in cardiology found that curcumin improves the function of blood vessels, known as endothelial function, which is crucial for maintaining a healthy heart. Drinking turmeric milk can also help reduce the risk factors such as cholesterol and blood pressure that lead to heart disease.
Also read: 5 foods that can prevent the risk of heart attacks
8. Reduces the risk of anxiety and depression
Since drinking turmeric milk promotes brain health, it can also help boost your mental health. The expert says curcumin has antidepressant effects and can help reduce symptoms of depression and anxiety.
How to make turmeric milk?
The dietitian shares a simple recipe to prepare turmeric milk easily:
- Heat a cup of dairy or non-dairy milk in a saucepan.
- Add half or a teaspoon of turmeric powder or a small piece of fresh turmeric root to the milk.
- Add a pinch of black pepper. It contains a compound called piperine that can improve the absorption of curcumin, she explains.
- Let the mixture simmer for a few minutes and stir well.
- Strain the milk to remove any remaining turmeric particles.
Note: The curcumin content in turmeric can vary widely depending on factors such as the source of the turmeric and its processing. On average, turmeric contains approximately 2-5% curcumin by weight. To get about 100 mg of curcumin from turmeric into the body, you would need to consume about 2,000 to 5,000 milligrams (2 to 5 grams) of turmeric.
While you can enjoy this soothing and nutritious drink as part of your daily routine, the expert says it is not a substitute for medical treatment when needed. You should consult your doctor before including it in your diet or if you have any specific health concerns.