In India, turmeric is a popular home remedy for cough, congestion, colds and skin problems.
Turmeric—that potent, mustard-colored spice we know most often as an ingredient in curries—has health benefits more far-reaching than originally believed.
Recent scientific research is proving what mothers have known all along!
According to a recent report by CNN, turmeric possesses a wide variety of antibacterial, anti-inflammatory, antiviral and anti-carcinogenic properties, as well as vitamins and minerals.
~ Prevent cancer cells from forming
~ Remove plaque from the brain and improve oxygen flow, acting as a preventive for Alzheimer’s
~ Detoxify the liver
~ Reduce cholesterol
~ Stimulate the immune system
How to add this miracle spice to a health and wellness regimen?
Turmeric is available in supplement form in many health food stores, but why not try to spice things up this cold and flu season?
Replace your usual hot cocoa (or hot toddy) with an invigorating cup of hot turmeric milk. Hot turmeric milk, known as haldi ka doodh, can be easily prepared at home. Bonus points for jammies and slippers!
It took some research, several rounds at the stove, and the assistance of a few devoted tasters to come upon this combination of ingredients—rich, creamy and satisfying! Adding black pepper to the mixture will greatly increase the absorption of turmeric into the body. It also gives the drink a spicy kick.
(Warning: Turmeric can stain clothing and countertops, so wear an apron and proceed with caution!)
For one serving you will need:
one cup milk (whole or 2% milk, almond milk or coconut milk beverage)
1/4-1/2 teaspoon turmeric
3/4- 1 teaspoon honey or agave nectar (depending on desired sweetness)
1/4 teaspoon ground cardamom (or a few cardamom pods)
pinch of powdered ginger or small piece of peeled ginger root
dash of vanilla extract
dash of black pepper or black peppercorns
pinch of cloves (if desired)
pinch of allspice (if desired)
strainer or sieve
1) Heat the milk on the stove. When milk becomes warm, add turmeric powder. Stir slowly to dissolve any lumps. The liquid will take on a rich, mustard color.
2) Add the honey, ginger root, vanilla and spices.
3) Keep the pot on gentle heat for a few minutes.
4) Pour the milk through a fine sieve to remove the ginger root, cardamom and pepper. (The turmeric can be a bit grainy, too.)
5) Enjoy! All ingredients can be adjusted for individual tastes!
Note: Turmeric is generally considered to be safe.
According to WebMD, “it has been known to cause nausea and stomach upset in some individuals, especially in high doses. Pregnant women should not use turmeric supplements. Talk to a doctor before using turmeric supplements regularly if you have any medical conditions, like gallbladder or kidney disease, bleeding disorders, diabetes, or immunity problems. Since turmeric can potentially increase bleeding, stop taking it at least two weeks before any surgery.
If you take any medicines regularly, talk to your doctor before you start using turmeric supplements. They could interact with medicines like aspirin, NSAID painkillers, statins, diabetes drugs, blood pressure medicines, and blood thinners. They might also interact with supplements that decrease clotting, like ginkgo, ginseng, and garlic.”
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Ed: Bryonie Wise