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Anti-inflammatory properties of turmeric
Curcuma longa, commonly known as turmeric, possesses anti-inflammatory properties and is used in traditional Indian (Ayurvedic) and Chinese medical practices to treat painful inflammatory conditions such as arthritis, injury, and asthma.
While anti-inflammatory drugs, such as hydrocortisone, are used to reduce inflammation, they are often accompanied by adverse side effects such as increased appetite, indigestion, nervousness, and blurred vision.
Researchers assessed previous studies and discovered that “Two [compounds] showing statistically significant anti-inflammatory activity have been obtained from the rhizomes of [turmeric].”
In order to compare the anti-inflammatory properties of these compounds with other anti-inflammatory agents, researchers conducted several studies on arthritic laboratory rats. These rats were treated with either turmeric, hydrocortisone, or phenylbutazone (a non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drug).
According to R. Arora and colleagues in the Indian Journal of Medical Research, results of these studies showed that “[turmeric] possesses significant anti-inflammatory properties…” In addition, “The anti-inflammatory actions of [compounds found in turmeric] are comparable to that of hydrocortisone…”
Although many anti-inflammatory drugs are known to have adverse side effects, researchers claimed that, “[turmeric] extract did not show significant toxic effects”
Indian J Med Res 1971;59(8):1289-95.
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