Turmeric Plus is a proprietary blend of whole turmeric root and black pepper for enhanced bioavailability and absorption. Turmeric (Curcuma longa) has become popular as a supplement, both as a whole herb and in its extracted form, as curcumin. It is perhaps best known for supporting healthy liver function and for managing inflammation due to changes in diet and exercise appropriately. It also supports balanced mood, optimal cognitive function, healthy lymphatic drainage, normal gallbladder function and respiratory health, as well as overall vitality and well-being.*
Suggested Use: Take 1 capsule 2 times per day after meals or as directed by your health care professional.
Bottle Contains: 90 vegetarian capsules, 500 mg each
Ingredients: Organic Curcuma longa (Turmeric Root), Organic Piper nigrum (Black Pepper Fruit)
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Does not contain: Yeast, gluten, corn, soy, milk, fish, animal products, binders, fillers, preservatives or artificial coloring.
Kosher Certified: No animal derivatives
It is safe to say that most health-conscious people know about the benefits of turmeric, and that most are probably taking an extract of turmeric, called curcumin, rather than the raw turmeric – as the extract is thought to be a more potent form.
While curcumin is the constituent of turmeric that gives it its yellow color, it only makes up about 5% of the turmeric root. The other 95% is made up of more than 300 other constituents that are rarely talked about. New science is suggesting that they are possibly even more potent than the curcumin on its own.
To study this, researchers took the curcumin out of the turmeric root and studied the effects of curcumin-free turmeric, and the results were surprising. The turmeric without the curcumin significantly outperformed the curcumin extract. The other constituents were shown to provide more potent support for healthy blood sugar, a normal inflammation response to changes in diet and exercise, and healthy lymphatic function. (1)
In another study, a whole plant turmeric extract was shown to have twice the amount of antioxidant activity compared to isolated curcumin. (2) Another study showed that low doses of curcuminoids from whole plant extracts administered over a longer period of time were more effective at supporting the natural drainage of protein aggregates from the brain than high doses of isolated curcuminoids administered rapidly. (3)
One of the problems with turmeric is that it is fat soluble, which makes it more difficult to absorb. That is why many of the studies have been done on curcumin, which is the extract of turmeric, and easier to absorb. Much research has gone into finding ways to boost the absorption of turmeric, with some good success.
While modern herbal extracts have potent therapeutic value, it is difficult to match the blueprint of the original plant. Sadly, extracts kill the beneficial microbes that actually live on whole plants. Whole herbs carry specific microbes that support the actions of that plant, making their ingestion along with the whole plant supportive in receiving that plants’ benefits.
Regulatory standards for the manufacture of dietary supplements in the United States allow 1000 times more potentially beneficial microbes attached to them compared to herbal extracts of the same plant. (4) The microbes in the soils change from season to season, and do so in perfect synchrony with the kind of plant being harvested in that season. Disturbing this in any way may be one reason why whole herbs regularly outperform herbal extracts or isolated constituents.
Whole Turmeric & Black Pepper
Raw turmeric root is rich in natural fatty acids that help boost increase its bio-availability by 7-8%. (5) The natural-occurring fats help slow down the liver from processing and converting the numerous turmeric constituents into water-soluble metabolites that are too easily flushed out of the body. The extract of turmeric, curcumin, is basically devoid of such fats, and much of the natural bio-availability boost of turmeric is lost in the extraction process.
Ayurvedic practitioners have much understanding around these fatty bio-available benefits, as they would commonly deliver it in a paste with ghee, which also slows down the liver’s processing time of turmeric, allowing the turmeric constituents to linger in the bloodstream much longer.
Black pepper was also used in curry powder to boost the bio-availability of turmeric. As it turns out, the piperine in black pepper is a potent inhibitor to the liver’s ability to metabolize turmeric. In one study, mixing 1 part of black pepper to 16 parts of a turmeric extract boosted bio-availability by a whopping 2000%. (6, 7) Numerous other studies suggest the effects of raw turmeric are just as potent, if not more potent than curcumin extracts. (1)
Newer studies on turmeric are suggesting that this age-old spice has powerful mood-regulating and brain-stimulating effects. In one study, the extract of turmeric was shown to boost the brain chemical norepinephrine, which supports healthy mood, attentiveness, sleep, dreaming and higher learning. It also boosted levels of dopamine, which supports pleasure, emotion, satisfaction and locomotion.
On top of this, it boosted levels of serotonin, which plays a key role in mood, memory, learning, appetite, sexual behavior, sleep, and many other functions. (8)
Perhaps one of our biggest concerns as we age is to somehow protect ourselves from the ravages of cognitive decline. Turmeric has at least 10 neuroprotective actions that support healthy cognitive function. (9)
Because the brain is predominately fatty tissue, fat-soluble toxins may accumulate in the brain and cause damage. As a fat-soluble substance, turmeric may have an affinity for chelating (removing) fat-soluble toxins out of the deep tissues. In addition, turmeric crosses the blood-brain barrier, where it may attach to neurotoxins and support healthy antioxidant activity. (10)
With over 300 active constituents, turmeric has been found to support the production of new brain cells during stress, naturally lower cortisol levels, increase antioxidant stress-fighting activity and boost lymphatic circulation. (11, 12, 14, 15) Turmeric is also emerging as an adaptogenic herb for stress-related mood concerns. (13)
Turmeric has also been found to boost BDNF levels in the blood while supporting healthy brain cell rejuvenation, cognitive function and mental and emotional health. (9, 16, 17)
A Healthy Lymphatic System
The extract of turmeric has been found to reduce the spread of toxins through lymphatic channels in stressful situations. Turmeric seems to help the body fight the toxin build-up locally, while decreasing the likelihood that toxins will be circulated through the lymphatics and carried to other areas of the body. (18) Turmeric has also been shown to support a healthy lymphatic response to stress. (12)
Studies have shown that turmeric provides excellent support for the liver and bile production. (14) In one study, 40mg of the extract of turmeric, curcumin, increased the contractions of the gallbladder by 50%. (19)
Turmeric is well-documented to support a healthy immune system, the external and internal skin that lines the intestinal and respiratory tracts, healthy clear respiration and the natural expectoration of healthy lungs. It also supports a healthy environment of mucous membranes that support the proliferation of beneficial bacteria, which compete with undesirable bacteria for growing space in both the respiratory and intestinal tracts. (14)
Important Note: Caution is recommended with turmeric if one is taking anti-platelet or anti-coagulant medication, as turmeric can thin the blood and enhance blood flow.
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