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Nutritional Benefits of Turmeric Powder


Turmeric powder also known as “Haldi” in India has been used for centuries in India as a spice in cooking and also for medicinal purposes. I remember when I was younger and even now, every time I catch a cold or cough, my mum will say, “Drink this turmeric milk (hardar wadu dudh in my language i.e. hardar meaning turmeric, wadu meaning of, dudh meaning milk).

When I was younger, I used to think that was bonkers. Can’t I just have cough syrup? But after several years of studies, scientists are now realising the benefits of turmeric powder.

Scientists have found evidence to show that turmeric has an ingredient called curcumin which is a strong antioxidant and is anti-inflammatory as well.


What nutrients does 1tbsp of Turmeric powder have?


According to the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) National Nutrient Database, one tablespoon (tbsp) of turmeric powder contains:

  • 29 calories
  • 0.91 grams (g) of protein
  • 0.31 g of fat
  • 6.31 g of carbohydrates
  • 2.1 g of fiber
  • 0.3 g of sugar

That same 1-tbsp serving provides:

  • 26 percent of daily manganese needs
  • 16 percent of daily iron
  • 5 percent of daily potassium
  • 3 percent of daily vitamin C


What are the nutritional benefits of Turmeric powder?


Research on the benefits of turmeric powder is still on-going and nothing is set in stone. Scientists have discovered potential benefits such as:


Turmeric powder may help delay aging and fight disease as we get older


Turmeric powder contains curcumin which is a strong antioxidant and may protect the body from free radicals.

Free radicals cause oxidative stress in the body and are responsible for aging and disease as we get older.

Antioxidants such as curcumin in turmeric powder may protect the body from the damaging effects of free radicals.


Turmeric powder may boost brain health


Some animal studies have found that curcumin found in turmeric powder may increase the levels of a gene, brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF), that promotes the life of neurons.

This may delay or even reverse brain diseases such as Alzheimer’s and could be beneficial for depression as well.

BDNF also plays a part in memory and learning so turmeric powder may improve our learning capacity.

These studies are yet to be performed on humans so the evidence is not conclusive.


Turmeric powder may be beneficial for arthritis


Curcumin found in turmeric powder has shown to be anti-inflammatory which may be beneficial for arthritis.

Studies show that the anti-inflammatory effect of curcumin may help treat the symptoms of arthritis.


Turmeric powder may be beneficial for heart disease


As turmeric powder contains curcumin which is anti-inflammatory, this may be beneficial for lowering the risk of heart disease.

The anti-inflammatory and anti-oxidative effects of curcumin could improve heart health and may even reverse some of the steps in the heart disease process.

One study found that curcumin could help ward off heart attacks in people who have had bypass surgery.


Turmeric powder may help prevent cancer


Animal studies have found that curcumin found in turmeric powder can contribute to the death of cancer cells and stop them from spreading.

There is also evidence that curcumin may prevent the occurrence of cancer in the first place.

However, these studies have been mainly performed on animals so the evidence is inconclusive.


Turmeric powder may help with depression


Studies on humans have shown that curcumin found in turmeric powder may be beneficial for those suffering from depression.

As curcumin found in turmeric powder can increase the levels of the gene, BDNF, which is helpful for learning and memory, this may reduce depression. There’s some evidence that curcumin may also boost serotonin and dopamine.


Turmeric powder may help with the flu


Studies done in the lab show that curcumin found in turmeric powder may help fight viruses such as the flu.

Studies haven’t been done on humans yet, but the study that has been done on me by my mum since birth, (turmeric milk), may prove that it does help ward off colds – and not just colds – cough as well. Simply add ginger to your turmeric milk concoction for better results.


Turmeric powder may help with digestion


In Ayurveda, an traditional Indian approach to medicine, turmeric powder has been thought to be beneficial for digestion.

Studies are now underway to check if turmeric powder may help with gut health.

Human studies have shown that turmeric powder may be beneficial for treating irritable bowel syndrome symptoms such as abdominal pain.


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How to eat turmeric powder?


Turmeric powder can be added to your food as below:


  • Turmeric Milk
  • Turmeric Tea
  • Curries
  • Lentil Dhals
  • Rice
  • Other Indian Savoury Recipes


It is thought that adding black pepper to turmeric can increase curcumin absorption by about 2000%, so it is worth adding black pepper to some of your recipes too such as the curries and dhals.

I will be adding several recipes on my blog that showcase how you could use turmeric powder so do keep checking back 🙂


Are there are side effects of turmeric powder? Is it safe to eat for everyone? Am I allergic to turmeric powder?


As with all foods, it’s always best to eat a little bit to start out with (if you’ve never eaten it before) to check if you have any side effects.


There are a few instances when you need to be careful when consuming turmeric powder:

  • If you have iron deficiency anaemia, avoid consuming turmeric in high quantities as it may prevent the absorption of iron
  • Turmeric may increase bile production which may be problematic if you have gallstones or liver disease
  • Turmeric has blood thinning properties, so check with your GP if you take blood thinning drugs


To be on the safe side, you should consume small quantities of turmeric powder daily.

I consume about 1/4 tspn – 1/2 tspn daily and I have no problems. Everyone is different though, so always check with a small quantity first.


How to store turmeric powder?


Turmeric powder can be stored in a cool, dry and dark place and it can last for several years. I have stored turmeric powder for anywhere between 2-5 years and I do not remember it tasting off ever.

There is a possibility that turmeric powder may lose its potency after a few months if not stored well but it rarely “goes off” in my experience.

Store turmeric powder in a cool, dark cupboard away from direct sunlight or heat (such as your stove).


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Nutritional benefits of turmeric powder


I hope you enjoyed reading my blog post on turmeric powder as much as I enjoyed writing it.

I found most of these benefits of turmeric powder whilst reading online blogs, articles, newspapers and through people.

It is worth noting that consuming turmeric powder will not provide these benefits immediately. You would probably need to consume a curcumin pill for instant benefits. Consuming turmeric powder on a daily basis as I do (1/4 – 1/2 tsp) can only provide a very small amount of curcumin in your diet. It is a superfood and will provide beneficial effects over the long run. It is better to have it in your diet than to not have it, but it is not a miracle cure.

Please feel free to comment, share, add or subtract anything from this article 🙂

Have a lovely day!


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