Turmeric and Depression
One of the most well-backed areas of research for turmerics role in health is its use in major depressive disorder. Analysis of data from six clinical studies showed that taking curcumin, the active component in turmeric, along with antidepressant medication moderately improves depression symptoms in those with major depressive disorder (1).
Turmeric and Cholesterol
Results on trials done on high cholesterol and turmeric are inconsistent. The conflicting results could be due to differences in turmeric formulations, duration of treatment, or cholesterol status of the patients at baseline. One factor that is relatively consistent across trials is that turmeric, or curcuminoids, can reduce triglyceride levels (2,3,4) which is a type of blood fat that is used to give energy to your body.
Turmeric and Osteoarthritis
Turmeric has been widely used for the treatment of disorders associated with inflammation. Specific turmeric extracts have been shown to be beneficial for those that suffer from pain and impacted functionality related to osteoarthritis, and two studies showed a lesser dependence on medication (5,6). Preliminary clinical research also shows that taking a specific turmeric extract 500 mg twice daily for 6 weeks reduces pain and improves function and other symptoms compared to placebo in patients with knee osteoarthritis (7), results have been similar for non-commercial turmeric dosed at 500mg two to three times per day (8,9).
Using Fresh Turmeric
Using the whole turmeric root provides us with a different set of benefits compared to the isolated curcumin found in turmeric supplements. This is because turmeric root includes three different curcuminoids including curcumin, bisdemethozycurcumin and demethozycurcumin, as well as volatile oils. All these different substances are associated with their own unique health benefits.
Using Fresh vs Powdered Turmeric
Fresh turmeric can be found in some health food stores but is not always available. Option to use 1 teaspoon of ground turmeric in place of fresh turmeric. Note that turmeric will lose some of its essential oils in the drying process.
Preparing Fresh Turmeric
Fresh turmeric root can stain hands and cutting boards. I have found that washing my kitchen utensils and equipment, as well as my hands immediately afterwards cuts down on the severity of the stains.
Making A Golden Milk Paste
If you enjoy this latte on a regular basis, prepare the minced turmeric and ginger in larger batches to use for a few days in a row. Option to mix the coconut oil with the minced ginger and turmeric to create a simple golden-milk paste.
Creating a Frothy Latte
Use a high-speed blender to get the nice frothy topping that is typical of a traditional latte. I use my Nutra Bullet which makes the frothiest lattes in my experience due to the lack of steam vents (because of this it is important to only blitz for a few seconds).
Using Coconut Oil
The bright yellow-orange colour of turmeric comes mainly from fat-soluble, polyphenolic pigments known as curcuminoids. To increase the bioavailability of these compounds it is beneficial to consume turmeric with a fat source. Try adding coconut oil, not only for the flavour but also for the creamy mouthfeel.
To further enhance the availability and absorption of the curcuminoids in the turmeric, add a small pinch of black pepper. Research supports that when the component piperine in black pepper is added at a ratio of 1:100 piperine to curcumin, the absorption of curcumin is increased by 154% (10).
Making it Vegan
This recipe can be made vegan by using a milk alternative in place of milk. Even better if you can make your own! Try this simple Hemp Milk Recipe.
To make a caffeinated Turmeric Latte, steep 1 black tea bag in the warm milk for 3 minutes. Remove before adding the warmed milk to the blender with the remaining ingredients.
Making an Iced Latte
To make an iced turmeric latte recipe, reduce the amount of milk alternative by 1/2 (warm only 1/2 cup of milk alternative). When you have added the warmed milk alternative to the blender with the remaining ingredients, add 1/2 cup of ice cubes. Blend until well combined and frothy. Option to serve over an additional 3 ice cubes.
Making A Turmeric Chia Recipe
More Turmeric Recipes
Try these favourite recipes featuring turmeric:
Or these recipes where turmeric plays a supporting role:
- Hemp and Sunflower Seed Vegan Pate
- Raw Almond Paleo Hummus Recipe
- Curried Butternut Squash Lentil Soup
More Nourishing Drink Recipes
Here are some of my other favourite warm drinks:
- So Simple Pumpkin Spiced Latte
- Chaga Turmeric Golden Milk Latte
- Homemade Hemp Milk Recipe
- Masala Chai Recipe – Dairy Free
- Dandelion Root Latte
Simple Turmeric Latte Recipe with Ginger [Vegan]
- 1 cup (+2 tbsp) milk or milk alternative (milk with a fat content works best*)
- 1 tbsp fresh ginger root peeled and minced
- 1 tbsp fresh turmeric root peeled and minced
- 1 tsp coconut oil extra virgin
- 1 tsp maple syrup (or honey)
- dash sea salt
- pinch black pepper
- Heat the milk or milk alternative in a small saucepan over medium heat and bring it just before the boiling point. You should not see bubbles forming, but instead some small movement in the liquid. Remove from heat.
- Add the minced ginger, turmeric, as well as coconut oil and maple syrup (if using) into a small blender (I use a Nutri Bullet but a Magic Bullet would work just fine). Add 2 tablespoons of milk or milk alternative to help the mixture blend better. Blend the mixture until the ginger and turmeric make a nice liquid puree.
- Next, add the warmed milk to the blender, along with the salt and pepper. Blend for 5 seconds or less to create a frothy milk latte. Do not blend for longer as the warmed liquid will create a negative pressure and the lid of the blender will be difficult to remove.
- Option to strain the latte, but I prefer not to. When you pour the drink, a nice foam should form on the top layer. Taste and adjust for sweetness.
1) Al-Karawi D, Al Mamoori DA, Tayyar Y. The role of curcumin administration in patients with major depressive disorder: Mini meta-analysis of clinical trials. Phytotherapy Research. 2016;30(2):175-83.
2) Pashine L, Singh JV, Vaish AK, Ojha SK, Mahdi AA. Effect of turmeric (Curcuma longa) on overweight hyperlipidemic subjects: Double blind study. Indian J Comm Health 2012;24(2):113-117.
3) Qin S, Huang L, Gong J, et al. Efficacy and safety of turmeric and curcumin in lowering blood lipid levels in patients with cardiovascular risk factors: a meta-analysis of randomized controlled trials. Nutr J. 2017;16(1):68.
4) Sanmukhani J, Satodia V, Trivedi J, Patel T, Tiwari D, Panchal B, Goel A, Tripathi CB. Efficacy and safety of curcumin in major depressive disorder: a randomized controlled trial. Phytother Res 2014;28(4):579-85.
5) Belcaro G, Cesarone MR, Dugall M, et al. Efficacy and safety of Meriva, a curcumin-phosphatidylcholine complex, during extended administration in osteoarthritis patients. Alt Med Rev 2010:15:337-4.
6) Belcaro, G., Cesarone, M. R., Dugall, M., Pellegrini, L., Ledda, A., Grossi, M. G., Togni, S., and Appendino, G. Product-evaluation registry of Meriva(R), a curcumin-phosphatidylcholine complex, for the complementary management of osteoarthritis. Panminerva Med 2010;52(2 Suppl 1):55-62.
7) Madhu K, Chanda K, Saji MJ. Safety and efficacy of Curcuma longa extract in the treatment of painful knee osteoarthritis: a randomized placebo-controlled trial. Inflammopharmacology 2013;21(2):129-36.
9) Kuptniratsaikul V, Dajpratham P, Taechaarpornkul W, Buntragulpoontawee M, Lukkanapichonchut P, Chootip C, Saengsuwan J, Tantayakom K, Laongpech S. Efficacy and safety of Curcuma domestica extracts compared with ibuprofen in patients with knee osteoarthritis: a multicenter study. Clin Interv Aging 2014;9:451-8.