Turmeric and Its Role in Arthritis and Inflammation
Turmeric, which is in the ginger family, is easily recognizable for its yellow-orange color. Curcumin is the bioactive ingredient that gives turmeric this iconic color. Turmeric, like ginger, has an abundance of healing benefits.
Arthritis Pain and Inflammation
Osteoarthritis is a degenerative joint disease. Osteoarthritis in the knees is prevalent and affects women more than men over 60. Rheumatoid arthritis is disease-causing inflammation and pain in the joints and affects 1-2% of the population.
Treatment for both types of arthritis is similar and usually includes NSAIDs, which cannot be taken long term due to their side effects. Both patients and the medical community are now looking at natural remedies to manage arthritis inflammation and pain.
In a study review that examined eight random clinical trials on humans, researchers analyzed the experiments' results that used curcumin to manage arthritis. All participants were middle-aged and elderly adults of both genders.
The trials varied. The studies included comparisons with either turmeric and a prescription anti-inflammatory, curcumin and glucosamine or curcumin, and a placebo. The dosages between the tests also varied.
The results varied slightly, but overall it was discovered that turmeric might be as useful as an analgesic in controlling pain and inflammation due to arthritis.
Due to its anti-inflammatory properties, turmeric may also help relieve muscle pain. In a study involving 17 men, researchers put the men through several strenuous leg exercises. They found overall that curcumin helped reduce the pain of Delay Onset of Muscle Strain (DOMS).
In a recent review published in 2020, researchers examined several studies on curcumin and muscle pain due to exercising. The studies revealed that curcumin did reduce the subjective perception of the intensity of muscle pain due to excessive exercising.
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