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Senior Wellness: Benefits of Turmeric for Cognitive Decline

What are your thoughts on natural solutions for health issues?

We all see stories in the news media, blogs and health publications about the benefits of natural remedies, but one that is extremely interesting to me is turmeric and its impact on cognitive decline. The benefits of turmeric are worth investigating.

Turmeric is an herb, also known as Curcuma longa, which is a member of the ginger family. It has been used throughout India and the Orient for thousands of years. In fact, according to the October 22, 2014, article in The Alternative Daily, “In India this golden spice has long been called ‘holy powder’ and is used extensively to treat infections, wounds and a myriad of other health problems. Once thought of as only a folktale, modern research is now confirming what the people of India and many parts of Asia have known for thousands of years, turmeric is a spice you don’t want to pass up.”

Similarly, curcumin, which is a compound found in the root of the turmeric plant, “is one of the most powerful natural brain protecting substances on the planet,” according to the Alternative Daily article. The article states that scientists are finding an astonishing amount of antioxidant, anticancer, antiviral and antibiotic properties. Also, as an immune system booster, turmeric is 5 to 8 times stronger than vitamin C and E.

So is this something you can’t pass up? What are the benefits of turmeric and curcumin related to cognitive ability?

The Let’s Talk Health Blog reported on a clinical trial conducted that measured the effects of curcumin in people with severe cognitive decline. And to clarify, “cognitive decline” is defined by the researchers as the effect of abnormal protein structures called beta-amyloid plaques forming in the brain.

The blog reported that “Amazingly, the participants taking curcumin had significantly higher levels of dissolved plaque in their blood compared to those in the placebo group. This study showed that curcumin has the ability to effectively pass into the brain, bind to beta-amyloid plaques and assist the body in their breakdown. Curcumin is one of the only substances known to have such a profound protective effect on the brain.”

Many articles and research that I have read supports the benefits of turmeric and curcumin in protecting your brain against the ill-effects of aging. Some more bluntly than others. The Power of Turmeric website states: “studies found that elderly people who consume turmeric retain sharper mental agility and experience reduced cognitive decline compared to those who seldom or never eat it.”

As with any health remedy, knowing the facts is critical.

This blog has just skimmed the surface of the story so I encourage you to read further about the benefits of turmeric/curcumin. And of course, please reach out to our team at Assisted Living Services for any home care concerns.

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