As more people begin to understand the benefits of turmeric, we are beginning to see a growing trend in using turmeric in culinary recipes, face masks, natural toothpaste, etc.
We want the benefits anyway we can get them!
However, what many may not realize is our bodies do not retain some of the most important benefits without a little extra help.
In fact, turmeric has a very low bioavailability which means it does not get absorbed efficiently in the body. This is due to the rapid metabolism of the turmeric in the liver and the intestinal walls.
As a result of this quick metabolism, a special key ingredient found in turmeric, called curcumin, also does not get absorbed into our body.
No curcumin, no benefits.
So How Do We Get the Great Benefits Found in Turmeric?
Turmeric has a counterpart - Black pepper.
When these two power spices are used together beautiful things begin to happen!
A natural ingredient found in black pepper called piperine, greatly increases the absorption of curcumin within the body.
What does this mean for you? It means your body now gets all of the benefits found within the turmeric.
Curcumin + Piperine = Benefits!
To increase your body’s ability to reap the benefits found in turmeric, you should also consider using turmeric extract or raw turmeric versus the loose turmeric spice you find in the typical grocery store.
Try This Simple Mixture
If using raw turmeric powder, just add 1/2 teaspoon of black pepper powder to 1/4 cup of turmeric powder.
10 Amazing Health Benefits of Turmeric and Black Pepper
Citizens and scientists alike are becoming more aware of the benefits of taking turmeric with black pepper.
1. Cancer Treatment
One of the most intriguing benefits currently being researched is the use of turmeric and black pepper for cancer treatment.
A few studies have documented that when curcumin and piperine are combined, they are able to target breast cancer stem cells, thus reducing and possibly even eliminating the cells.
In the future, this may provide women with a natural alternative to the toxic medication currently available for cancer treatments.
It is important to note, many of the studies done so far have been completed in vitro (in a test tube) and not in vivo (in a living organism).
More studies will need to take place before experts can determine the use of the curcumin and piperine combination in vivo before offering it to the public as a cancer treatment.
2. Reduce Inflammation
A second benefit of turmeric and black pepper is the combination’s ability to reduce inflammation and decrease pain.
The dynamic pair has shown to inhibit the activity of certain enzymes which often lead to inflammation.
Typically, it is recommended that the supplement be taken before the onset of inflammation; however, turmeric and black pepper are also used following the onset of inflammation to help reduce the symptoms.
3. Weight Loss
Individuals who are looking for an extra tool for weight loss may also find benefits from consuming turmeric and black pepper.
Black pepper in particular is thermogenic. This means that it increases the body’s metabolism and increases the number of calories burned.
When this is combined with turmeric’s ability to lower bad cholesterol, it becomes a win-win situation!
4. Diabetes Control
Diabetes is one of the most common medical conditions throughout the world and almost all patients require medication to keep their blood sugar levels under control.
Insulin is necessary for blood sugar regulation and turmeric may help to improve glucose control and moderate insulin levels.
Those with insulin resistance, such as women with polycystic ovarian syndrome, can also benefit from this herb because it may reduce insulin resistance.
5. Prevent Liver Disease
Turmeric is a potent liver detoxifier.
Since the liver is responsible for filtering the blood and flushing out toxins and waste, you need it to function at 100 percent all the time.
Turmeric ensures this, so that you never have to worry about toxins and waste accumulating in your body.
Turmeric may also be beneficial in improving blood circulation and invigorating the blood, both of which are important for a healthy liver.
6. Improve Digestion
There are several components in turmeric that promote healthy digestion by stimulating the production of bile.
This helps to ensure optimal digestion and prevents things like gas and bloating.
Its anti-inflammatory effects also make it effective in reducing the symptoms that are associated with inflammatory bowel disease.
7. Alzheimer's Disease Prevention
Alzheimer's disease is devastating and keeping your brain healthy is a critical part of prevention.
It is believed that one of the major causes of this disease is inflammation. Since turmeric has anti-inflammatory properties, it may help to prevent the inflammation that may lead to this disease.
Turmeric is good for the brain overall because it removes plaque buildup and improves oxygen flow in the brain.
8. Wound Healing
Turmeric has natural antibacterial and antiseptic properties making it ideal for promoting wound healing and keeping wounds clean.
This is not ideal for major wounds and those should be assessed and treated by a doctor.
However, minor wounds, such as superficial cuts and scrapes, can benefit from the healing power of turmeric because it shortens healing time and helps to prevent infection.
It has the ability to repair skin that is damaged and may also be beneficial for inflammatory skin conditions like psoriasis.
9. Stronger Immune System
Turmeric contains lipopolysaccharide, a substance that works to stimulate your immune system.
This substance further improves the immune system because it has antibacterial, antifungal and antiviral effects.
When you have a strong immune system, your risk of illness is much lower.
If you do end up getting sick, you will notice that your symptoms are not as severe and that your illness lasts for a shorter period of time.
10. Cholesterol Reduction
Research proves that turmeric is effective in lowering bad cholesterol levels.
This is achieved by simply adding some turmeric to your meals each day, so this is a very easy way to keep your cholesterol in check.
When you keep your bad cholesterol levels low, you are also working to prevent cardiovascular disease, so the overall benefits of turmeric are for the whole cardiovascular system.
The Perfect Pair
There you have it!
When paired with the piperine found in black pepper, the curcumin in turmeric has countless benefits for you!
It is no wonder the Indian culture has been using this combination for years in their delicious spice recipes such as the traditional curry powder, masala, etc.
Deliciously spiced food and reaping health benefits in the process?
If you use turmeric in your daily diet, let us know how you incorporate it in the comments below!
A Word of Caution
Although the benefits of taking turmeric with black pepper are becoming more clear, it is important to consult your doctor if you have any medical conditions or allergies.
It is also important to schedule an appointment with your doctor before eliminating any medication they may have prescribed for your conditions.
The information above is to not replace any medical advice or professional treatment.
Editor's Note: This post was originally published in January 2017 and has been completely revamped and updated.