Keep Your Fire Burning Bright

Turmeric and Gut Health

’70% of your serotonin is made in your gut. What’s going on in your gut is going to effect your mood - anxiety, depression and focus.’ Dr. Frank Lipman

Something I’ve loved seeing recently is the latest trend in gut health. One of the reasons for this, is that it supports what I’ve always believed and something integral to Ayurveda (Indian traditional medicine) which is that a healthy gut is key to having a healthy body and mind.

Gut health is something that was preached to us from birth! The concoctions we were given were impressively vile, it almost became a game for me to see if I could tolerate the latest sludge - brown powders mixed with water that tasted like bitter mud. All in the name of cleaning your gut. 

While my sister would run for the hills to escape, I secretly liked it, it tastiest nasty but I knew even as a young kid that it was good for me. Why on earth would my mum give it to us otherwise! (just as an aside all these powders are now available in tablet form). 

Ayurveda believes the key to health is keeping your Agni (your internal fire) burning bright. Agni is the ‘entity that is responsible for all digestive and metabolic processes in the human beings’. It is complex, but put simply if you have a healthy metabolic fire you’ll have good health. 

So where does Turmeric fit in with gut health?

We all eat, drink and do things that aren’t good for us, even the most over zealous healthy peeps I know indulge in their guilty pleasures. Whether it’s a few glasses of wine, chocolate when your sweet tooth strikes, not getting enough sleep, being overstressed at work or some other more hardcore vice they all end up causing inflammation and ultimately reducing your Agni.

Turmeric’s key healing compound curcumin is one of natures most powerful anti-inflammatories  

In one study, researchers gave 117 people diagnosed with metabolic syndrome either one gram of curcumin powder or a placebo pill daily for eight weeks. At the end of the study, the curcumin group had lower levels of inflammation. This is just one of many studies that reached these findings. For this reason, research suggests that turmeric may be helpful in treating inflammatory bowel diseases (IBD). The two main types of IBD are Crohn’s disease and ulcerative colitis.

So regular Turmeric intake assists your body in reducing inflammation, thus balancing your Agni and allowing your body to function at peak performance.

What if you're just feeling a little off in the tummy, will turmeric still help? The answer is yes.

Turmeric can help the body break down and digest food. It also plays an important role in absorbing fats and certain nutrients. 

Even if you want to prep your body for a particularly stressful or busy time socially, you can start drinking turmeric drinks or using it in your food to combat any potential harm in the future. 

Turmeric is an incredibly versatile spice. If you want to add this super spice to your diet, but don’t know how to enjoy it, then check out these ideas: 

 

Golden latte

Turmeric latte or Golden Latte
 

HOW TO MAKE A GOLDEN LATTE

add 1/2 - 1 teaspoon Turmeric & Co golden latte mix to cup

add 1/3 cup boiling water 

add 1 teaspoon honey and stir 

top with warmed milk 

sip, breath and relax

 

Turmeric Roasted Cauliflower

 

INGREDIENTS:

    •    6 heaping cups cauliflower florets cut into 1-inch florets

    •    3 garlic cloves, smashed

    •    1/4 cup olive oil

    •    1 tsp turmeric exiler or activated turmeric 

    •    1 tsp ground cumin

    •    Salt, to taste

    •    1/4 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes

    •    2 tbsp chopped coriander 

 

DIRECTIONS:

    1    Preheat the oven to 180°c Cut the cauliflower florets into 1-inch pieces and combine with the garlic in a large bowl. Drizzle with the olive oil and toss to coat.

    2    In a small bowl, combine the turmeric, cumin, pepper flakes, and salt. Sprinkle over the cauliflower and toss to coat. Spread the cauliflower out on a large rimmed baking sheet.

    3    Bake, stirring occasionally, until browned on the edges and tender, 23-27 minutes. Remove the from oven, sprinkle with coriander and serve hot!

 

Turmeric Quinoa

turmeric-quinoa-4.jpg
 

INGREDIENTS:

    •    1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil

    •    1 onion, diced

    •    1 teaspoon minced garlic

    •    2 cups quinoa, rinsed

    •    2 teaspoons turmeric

    •    2 1/2 cups vegetable broth or water 

    •    3/4 cup pomegranate seeds

    •    1/3 cup walnuts, toasted and chopped

    •    4 spring onions, sliced

 

DIRECTIONS:

    1    Add olive oil, onion, garlic and quinoa. Toast, in a little olive oil stiring often, for 2-3mins. Add turmeric and vegetable broth or water. Cook until done.

    2    Toss with pomegranate seeds (optional). Top with walnuts and spring onions and serve warm or at room temperature.