By now, we're all familiar with turmeric, aka the golden child of herbal wellness. Literally: In India, the herb is known as the "Golden Goddess," and it's been used for centuries in ayurvedic medicine.
Fast-forward to today, and thousands of published peer-reviewed studies have backed up turmeric and its myriad benefits for health. It's not just a spice in Indian and Asian dishes; it's now a mainstream dietary supplement for things like inflammation, arthritis, and more. We'll even go ahead and guess that your local coffee shop has a golden latte on the menu.
And while it's true that much of turmeric's praise is attributed to its potent anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties—which is good news for everyone—the herb has also been shown to be beneficial for anyone with an active lifestyle, according to some of the latest research on the herb. Read on to see how:
1. Turmeric may lessen muscle and joint soreness.
Whether you're a competitive athlete, you're training for your first 5k, or you're new to the yoga studio, you know the feeling: sore, achy muscles and joints with a stiffness that lasts for days. That's a natural and totally normal form of inflammation, your body's response to stress, and its job is to help heal the "damaged" tissues you just worked. But in the meantime—ouch.
The short story? The anti-inflammatory benefits of turmeric and its compounds called curcuminoids (specifically curcumin) make the herb work similarly to the anti-inflammatory painkillers in our medicine cabinets. Studies have shown promising results in turmeric's ability to help manage muscular and joint pain after strenuous exercise.
To help soothe soreness, try a turmeric massage oil, make an organic turmeric herbal tea, or consider adding a turmeric supplement as part of your routine on days you're getting in a tough workout. Pukka Herbs' Turmeric Active capsules are a broad-spectrum formula (aka it uses many of the plant's components to deliver its benefits) derived from sustainably cultivated herbs. It's part of Pukka's Turmeric Family range of organic turmeric products. What's cool is that the brand uses a unique Wholistic™ extraction process to harness the full synergistic effects of more than 200 bioactive compounds found within the herb, making the whole greater than the sum of its parts.
2. Turmeric may help speed up muscle recovery post-workout
Remember how the inflammation after a tough workout can last for days? Well, curcumin has also been found to help athletes perform their best in another way: The results of one recent study demonstrate that curcuminoids may not only reduce muscle soreness but may also even reduce muscle damage for faster recovery.
3. Turmeric might be your new favorite herbal detox.
Every now and then, even the most well-intentioned among us indulges in the kind of meal or shared bottle of wine that we MIGHT regret the next day. (No judgment here, we all do it!) While more research still needs to be done in this area, a review of studies found that curcumin, thanks to its antioxidant properties, may play a role in supporting the digestive enzymes responsible for flushing out known dietary toxins, resulting in some extra protection against liver damage.
4. Turmeric might give your mental health a boost.
Lastly, turmeric has been studied for its potential to boost levels of mood-regulating neurotransmitters like serotonin and dopamine, all of which play a role in our mood and even our mental health. Get a taste for these feel-good vibes with Pukka's Turmeric Active tea—a spicy, invigorating blend of organically grown turmeric, galangal, ginger, licorice, nettle, and triphala—and if you're looking for an everyday turmeric tea, try Pukka's Turmeric Glow. You'll be supporting your every move, mentally and physically.
5. Turmeric might help you maintain your happy weight.
A number of studies have found a link between turmeric and two things in particular that can add up to healthy weight maintenance. First, curcumin has been shown to help slow down the division of fat cells, which in theory, suppresses the growth of fat tissues and makes putting on extra unwanted pounds a bit harder.
And secondly, research on the relationship between turmeric and diabetes is in a good place: Scientists have found that including the spice in your diet may be helpful in decreasing blood sugar.
We're not about calorie counting or dieting in the traditional sense, but we do recognize that sometimes the journey to our healthiest lives involves weight loss. So this potential benefit of turmeric is just another reason this herb can help support an active lifestyle now and for years to come.