Turmeric, the ancient golden spice with healing properties

February 18, 2021 Providence Nutrition Team

Key takeaways: 

  • Turmeric is a plant that grows horizontally underground and can be used fresh or dried and ground. 

  • People have been using turmeric to spice up their favorite recipes for thousands of years. 

  • Turmeric contains powerful antioxidants, which protect your cells from damage and reduce inflammation. 

[2 MIN READ]  

Turmeric has a truly international history. Consumption of turmeric dates back nearly 4,000 years to India where it had both religious significance and a regular place on the menu. It reached China around 700 AD and moved on to East Africa, West Africa and Jamaica in the centuries that followed. Marco Polo sang its praises and Ayurvedic healers have long recognized its use. 

Turmeric is a plant that’s part of the ginger family. It’s a rhizome, which means it grows horizontally underground just below the surface. It can be used in its natural form or dried and ground into powder for multiple applications, including: 

  • Cooking spice and spice blends like curry 

Whether you’re brewing up a simple cup of turmeric tea or making one of the many turmeric-based recipes found online, the bright yellow spice may give your health a boost—and it will taste great doing it. 

Here’s a look at turmeric and the health benefits it brings. 

*Source: National Center for Biotechnology Information 

Turmeric has not met the rigor of an FDA approval and the quality of manufacturing can vary widely. Although it may give your health a boost, using the spice is not a 'magic bullet' to cure an ailment. Always consult your doctor regarding your health conditions and shifts to your diet, including adding herbs and spices.


Is #turmeric making a regular appearance on your dinner table? Share your favorite tips and tricks to improve your health with readers @providence. 

Find a doctor 

The registered dietitians at Providence can help you develop an eating plan that spices up your diet with healthy alternatives and additions. Through Providence Express Care Virtual, you can access a full range of healthcare services. If you need to find a doctor, you can use our provider directory or search for one in your area. 



Related resources 

This information is not intended as a substitute for professional medical care. Always follow your healthcare professional's instructions. 

About the Author

We are all about food! The Providence Nutrition Team loves to talk about and share our expertise on how to help you find the right diet, food types and maintenance tactics to help you live life to the fullest...while also enjoying the best foods that mother nature has to offer.

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