Curcumin has been touted as a powerful anti-inflammatory and antioxidant for centuries. In the past 25 years alone there have been over 3,000 medical studies(1) conducted on the efficacy of curcumin in the treatment of a vast array of diseases and illnesses.
Not only is curcumin anti-inflammatory and antioxidant, but it is also being investigated as a potential anti-cancer, antibacterial, and anti-viral compound.* (1)
This spicy yellow nutrient that is found in turmeric has been used as a dietary supplement for inflammation, joint discomfort, stomach issues, skin problems, and many other health challenges.
Other Uses For Curcumin
Not many other superfoods have such near-universal praise from researchers as curcumin. Touted as “the golden spice,” for its ability to act as a panacea for a host of ailments, this superfood is a beneficial addition to any vitamin or supplement regime.
Of the many medicinal uses for curcumin, its role for those with lung conditions has piqued the interest of researchers recently. Given today's health climate, improving the outcome for patients who suffer from these conditions is more vital than ever. (2)
The lung-related illnesses that curcumin has been found to be part of an effective treatment plan for include chronic obstructive pulmonary disorder (COPD), allergic asthma, and acute lung injury.* (2)
In clinical studies, curcumin has shown promise in reducing airway inflammation for sufferers of COPD. By minimizing obstructions to airflow in the lungs through the suppression of inflammatory pathways, COPD patients saw reductions in some symptoms.* (2)
History of Curcumin Use In Medicine
For over 4,000 years this bright yellow plant has been used by many cultures to treat everything from a sprained ankle to cancer. It is sometimes called “Indian saffron” because of its used in India in traditional Ayurvedic medicine. The Ayurvedic form of medicine originated 3,000 years ago and focuses on the interconnectedness of plants, the environment, and our health.
Curcumin is a member of the ginger family and is mostly grown and consumed in India. Being consumed in cooking and medicine for thousands of years in India has led to over half of the world’s supply of curcumin being produced in India and nearly 80 percent of all curcumin being consumed by the South Asian country.
By reducing inflammation in the body, curcumin is considered to be useful for many health challenges. From minor aches and pains to supporting a healthy heart, these broad applications have made this powerful antioxidant a staple in folk medicine, traditional Chinese medicine, Ayurvedic medicine, and many other traditional practices for centuries.
In traditional medicine, the more common uses for curcumin are:
- Antiseptic and antibacterial (2)
- Anti-inflammatory (2)
- Healthy blood circulation (2)
- Strengthening the overall energy of the body (2)
The deep yellow color of the spice also lends itself to uses in food coloring, sunscreens, makeup, and dyes.
How To Take Curcumin
There are a variety of ways to take curcumin but because the supplement has poor solubility, it is not easily absorbed in the gut and is quickly metabolized. It is beneficial to optimize the method of delivery that is used when taking curcumin supplements to negate these factors.
Liposomal encapsulation has proven to be an effective method of delivery for drugs and has shown in studies to increase the absorption levels and rates for a variety of supplements.
Liposomes are being utilized in treatment plans for minor ailments to major illnesses, and are readily absorbed into the bloodstream at a higher rate than many other drug delivery methods can provide for most supplements. Through what is essentially a mimicking of the body’s own cells, liposomes aren’t recognized as a foreign substance in the body. This equates to a larger quantity of the drug or supplement being absorbed into the bloodstream. *
Liposomes also increase the biocompatibility of the medicines that they are carrying, making them more readily available for absorption. There is also evidence that liposomes can help with the timed-release of some drugs. Promoting the controlled and sustained release of the drugs into the body has been shown to lower systemic toxicity when compared to other methods. *
The same properties that make liposomes a favorable delivery method for pharmaceuticals are beneficial for the delivery of supplements and nutrients like curcumin too. For more information on how liposomal curcumin can support immune function, click here.