A Cancer-Killing Kitchen Spice?

A Cancer-Killing Kitchen Spice?

Imagine being able to take an over-the-counter supplement that attacks and kills cancer cells while leaving normal cells alone? Dream on, right?

Well, not only does such a miraculous substance exist, but, you might just have some in your kitchen spice cabinet. It’s Turmeric.

(And by the way, it’s pronounced “TER-muh-rihk, not “TOO-mer-ic”)

Turmeric contains curcumin, which has powerful anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties. Curcumin is the polyphenol that gives the yellow color to the spice turmeric and has been most recognized for its ability to suppress inflammation. 

In a 2011 study conducted by the University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center, researchers found that the curcumin extract effectively differentiates between cancer cells and normal cells while activating cancer cell death (apoptosis). 

This promising discovery—that curcumin selectively starves tumor cells to death—spawned over 12,500 peered reviewed articles describing the health benefits of curcumin. 

The fact that curcumin selectively kills tumor cells with no impact on healthy tissues makes it especially appealing for cancer prevention: It targets the great majority of cancers, confirming previous studies showing that curcumin has specific effects against colorectal, breast, prostate, lung and liver cancers. 

That key effect? It starves malignant cells of their energy supply.

Now, before you start sprinkling turmeric on everything you eat, understand that curcumin (the active component in turmeric) is poorly absorbed in the body. However, there are ways to enhance its absorption.

  • Take with black pepper: Piperine, a compound found in black pepper, can greatly improve absorption of turmeric in the body. The liver makes certain substances water soluble so they can more easily pass through our systems. But adding black pepper slows down the absorption of curcumin. And that’s a plus, since, say, in the case of colorectal cancers, the curcumin stays in the colon longer, doing good work.

So, when shopping for turmeric supplements, be sure to get one with black pepper added. Or, purchase piperine (a.k.a. bioperine) separately and take with the turmeric.

  • Add fat: Turmeric is fat-soluble and thus much better absorbed when taken with fat, such as coconut/almond milk, nut butters or even cottage cheese. If you’re on the Budwig diet, make sure to add turmeric with black pepper!
  • Heat it up: Heat is said to increase the solubility of curcumin 12-fold, which may also increase its bioavailability in the body.

For more information about Turmeric and its benefits in Attacking Cancer, here’s a great article by Dr. Mercola: https://www.google.com/amp/s/articles.mercola.com/sites/articles/archive/2018/09/17/amp/curcumin-health-benefits.aspx

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