What Is Turmeric Powder?

by Justine Depalma

Turmeric powder is a spice made from drying the rhizomes of the Curcuma Longa plant, which is in the ginger family. It is a staple of Indian cooking. Turmeric powder gives the yellow color to curry dishes; it is also known for its healthy properties.

Antibacterial

In India, turmeric powder is added to bandages or applied as paste to wounds to prevent infection.

Alzheimer's

UCLA researchers looked at the low rate of Alzheimer’s in the Indian population and determined that turmeric may be the reason. Indians eat turmeric powder daily. An ingredient, curcumin, shows promise of reducing the amount of plaque that causes Alzheimer’s.

Food Coloring

Foods ranging from cheese to cereal contain turmeric powder as a natural food coloring.

Bathing

Indian women sometimes bathe in turmeric. They believe that turmeric’s antibacterial properties will prevent infections. In addition, turmeric is believed to give the skin a healthy glow.

Potential

Turmeric powder is at the center of a number of clinical studies. Turmeric’s anti-oxidant and anti-tumor properties are being tested as a treatment for pancreatic cancer and liver disease.

About the Author

Justine DePalma is a freelance writer who lives in rural Michigan. She is the editor of michanimalnews.com, a website dedicated to providing information about Michigan animals.