Warming, peppery and slightly bitter, this rhizome has long been prized in eastern medicine. Modern science has since confirmed that it can help heal and prevent a laundry list of ailments.
•Turmeric has a high concentration of curcumin (the bright yellow pigment that gives curry powder its golden hue), an anti-inflammatory antioxidant.
According to Canadian expat Sarah Britton, a Copenhagen-based certified nutritional practitioner, holistic nutritionist and author of Naturally Nourished, it may lower cholesterol, reduce menstrual pain, protect the liver from toxins and soothe an upset stomach by aiding digestion and easing gas and bloating.
•Turmeric extracts have been shown to be as effective as ibuprofen for the treatment of osteoarthritis, and the rhizome has been recognized by Health Canada as a powerful anti-inflammatory and joint-pain reliever.
•Britton recommends using the spice as a remedy for minor cuts and skin irritations: Combine a teaspoon of ground turmeric and enough coconut oil to make a paste; apply to the infected area for up to an hour, then rinse.
Take advantage of turmeric's antioxidant and skin-healing benefits.
Kiehl's Turmeric & Cranberry Seed Energizing Radiance Masque, $50, kiehls.ca. Neal's Yard Remedies Deliciously Ella Rose, Lime & Cucumber Moisturiser, $51, nealsyardremedies.ca. Tata Harper Recovery Gel, $42, jacobandsebastian.com. Well Told Health Anti-Inflammatory Booster, $35, welltold.com.
GET THE RECIPE: TURMERIC CHICKEN SOUP