Mary Poppins famously sang that a “spoonful of sugar helps the medicine go down”. What if a spoonful of something from your kitchen’s spice rack was an effective treatment for your rheumatoid arthritis?
Researches have devoted their resources in recent years to studying the potential benefits of using turmeric to relieve rheumatoid arthritis symptoms.
What is turmeric?
Turmeric has long been an ingredient in dishes such as curries. What isn’t as well known is the fact that turmeric has long been used in some medical circles to treat conditions such as stomach problems, skin conditions, blood diseases, mild infections, coughs, and liver disorders.
A Look at the Science
A 2015 review article outlined findings that suggest curcumin – one of the primary compounds in turmeric – has anti-inflammatory properties that could be useful in treating inflammatory conditions such as rheumatoid arthritis. Having a potential treatment or supplement to treatment in our very own kitchens would be a welcome development, but what does the science really say about turmeric as a rheumatoid arthritis treatment?
A more recent study from 2018 took a closer look at curcumin with the help of some lab rats. It appeared that curcumin was successful in reducing joint inflammation and redness. The results are promising, but further research will need to be conducted using humans in order to determine if turmeric has real value as a rheumatoid arthritis treatment.
In the meantime, feel free to make yourself a delicious curry with your turmeric. You can rest assured that your treatment team at Saint Paul Rheumatology will be keeping abreast of all the latest developments in potential treatments, turmeric included.