Turmeric is another of those ‘sarvaroganivarinis’ or ‘remedy for all maladies’, that has been the go to medicine for any ailment affecting adults or kids. Turmeric benefits are too numerous to list and few herbs have such a wide spectrum of uses. No wonder it has been a staple in Ayurvedic medicine ever since the system came into being.
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Turmeric/Manjal/Haldi/Haridra (Curcuma longa) belongs to the Ginger family and is a perennial native to Southeast Asia and is widely cultivated in India, China, Indonesia and other tropical zones. The golden yellow rhizome of this versatile plant is used as a dye, medicine and in cooking. In fact, there is barely any Indian dish that is cooked without this potent spice that flavors, colors, heals, and protects.
Medicinal Uses of Turmeric:
Turmeric balances the three doshas, Vata, Pitta and Kapha and is taken internally or applied topically. It is antiviral, anti fungal, anti bacterial, anthelmintic and an analgesic.
Turmeric as an Anti-inflammatory:
It’s most common use is as an anti-inflammatory against treat asthma, bronchitis and cough and cold associated with the common cold. A pinch of turmeric boiled in milk with honey serves as an effective remedy for all the above.
Turmeric against Cuts, Wounds and Bites:
The antiseptic properties of turmeric are an effective shield for any kind of cuts, scrapes, bruises and wounds. It is also the first aid for scorpion and other poisonous insect bites. It is applied topically to treat eczema, fungal infections and athlete’s foot.
Turmeric for Blood:
Besides purifying the blood and treating anemia, its anti-coagulant property makes turmeric effective for prevention of atheroscheloris. It prevents blood platelets from clumping. Turmeric also detoxifies the liver and improves flow of bile.
Anti-cancer properties of Turmeric:
inclusion of turmeric in daily diet can go a long way in prevention of almost every type of cancer because it has proven to have anti cancer properties. It’s effect is trifold: it neutralizes carcinogenic conditions and agents, helps healthy cells maintain their properties if threatened by carcinogens and also destroys cancer cells if they are formed.
Turmeric fo Gastrointestinal Health:
Turmeric improves digestion, prevents bloating, especially when used in dishes with high protein content, prevents formation of gall-stones and fights food poisoning.
Turmeric for Skin:
Turmeric paste is applied to prevent the formation of scars from chicken pox, shingles, eczema and other skin wounds and bruises. Regular use of turmeric paste of the face is an effective treatment for acne.
Besides these listed, turmeric is also used in various treatments for the eye, teeth, reproductive disorders, Alzheimer’s Disease, hemorrhoids, arthritis etc.
It almost appears that there is nothing that turmeric cannot treat and so rightfully earns the name of ‘sarvaroganivarini’. To maintain a healthy lifestyle, all you need to do is make the consumption of turmeric a daily habit. And with all the benefits it offers, this is one unavoidable plant that needs to be growing in your Ayurvedic herbs garden. Looking for a plant? Here’s where you will find one.
Coming up next: Karinochi.