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Monday, November 14, 2016

Functional Food Series, Part 1: Tumeric, the Orange Dye that Fights Cancer

Its not enough for food to taste good and fill you up. If it's not increasing your health or protecting you from illness, you're doing it wrong. The functional food trend has been on the rise for a few years now. The ingredients change, but the ideals remain the same.

One of the hottest functioning food ingredients, (for the moment), is Tumeric. There was a time that this mildly aromatic spice was primarily associated with curries and it wasn't a common kitchen staple. But, oh how times have changed!

The earliest known use of Tumeric is thought to be around 2500 BC. Pots uncovered near New Delhi were analyzed and showed tumeric residue. Before it's medicinal properties were discovered, it was originally used as an orange dye. A fact that a few of my dish towels can attest to, I'm afraid.

Health benefits boasted by Tumeric include reducing inflammation, dramatically increasing antioxidant levels, improving brain function, lowering risk of heart disease, fighting depression, alleviating arthritis, delaying aging, and treating certain cancers and Alzheimer's.

With so many beneficial qualities associated with it, tumeric is being added to everything. From smoothies and teas to casseroles and egg scrambles, it has found its way into the hearts and stomachs of America.

To take advantage of all that tumeric has to offer, try adding some to rice for a healthier yellow rice, or sprinkle a little on your scrambled eggs. For a delicious health concoction, make some tumeric tea. Here's a recipe:

Tumeric Tea

1 tsp Ground Tumeric (add more as desired)
1 tsp Cinnamon
1 pinch Clove
1 pinch Black Pepper
2 cups Water


1. Simmer herbs and water for 10 min. Strain.

2. Serve with honey and milk of your choice.

Do you use Tumeric? Have you noticed any health benefits?

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