advertisement



Q & A Library


Print this page | Sign up for free e-bulletins
 | Bookmark This Page

Q
Turmeric for Arthritis?

I know that turmeric has anti-inflammatory action. Do you recommend it for treatment of osteoarthritis? Are there good studies showing that it helps?

A
Answer (Published 12/3/2010)

Turmeric (Curcuma longa) is a culinary spice that is a major ingredient in Indian curries and is the component that makes American mustard yellow. Accumulating evidence suggests that this brightly colored relative of ginger is a promising disease-preventive agent as well, probably due largely to its anti-inflammatory properties. And at least one new study suggests that it can be used effectively for arthritis treatment.

Related Weil Products
Dr. Weil's Vitamin Advisor for Joint Health - Bone and joint issues a concern? Dr. Weil's Vitamin Advisor has herbs, vitamins and supplements that address bone and joint conditions, as well as others health problems. Learn more, and get your free, personalized Dr. Weil's Vitamin Advisor Recommendation today.

This research, from Italy, was a three-month trial involving 50 patients diagnosed by x-ray with osteoarthritis of the knee. The Italian team was investigating the effect on arthritis symptoms of a special formulation of turmeric designed to improve its absorption by the body. Half the participating patients took the turmeric formulation in addition to standard medical treatment; those in the second group continued following their physicians' recommendations.

After 90 days, the researchers found a 58 percent decrease in overall reported pain and stiffness as well as an improvement in physical functioning among the turmeric group compared to the controls. These changes were documented with a standard medical scoring method used to assess symptoms of knee and hip osteoarthritis. In addition, another scoring method showed a 300 percent improvement in the emotional well being of the turmeric patients compared with the others. And blood tests showed a 16-fold decline in C-reactive protein, a marker for inflammation. Patients in the turmeric group were able to reduce their use of non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs by 63 percent, compared to the other group.

Results of this study are very good news for the millions of people worldwide who suffer from osteoarthritis and haven't been adequately helped by available treatments. The dose of the turmeric formulation used in the study was one gram per day. It is now commercially available in the United States and Europe.

Turmeric may also be useful for prevention of symptoms of rheumatoid arthritis, but this evidence comes from animal studies, not human trials.

Research also suggests that turmeric may prevent changes that lead to Alzheimer's disease, and animal studies have shown that turmeric may be effective in the prevention or treatment of colon, breast and prostate cancers.

Andrew Weil, M.D.

Creative Commons License Some Rights Reserved Creative Commons Copyright Notice
A portion of the original material created by Weil Lifestyle, LLC on DrWeil.com (specifically, all question and answer-type articles in the Dr. Weil Q&A Library) is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 3.0 United States License.

The Weil Vitamin Advisor
Get your FREE personalized vitamin recommendation & supplement plan today!

Dr. Weil on Healthy Aging
Your Online Guide to the Anti-Inflammatory Diet. Start eating for your health - begin your free trial now.

Dr. Weil's Spontaneous Happiness
Achieve emotional well-being
in just eight weeks!
Start your 10-day free trial now!

Vitamin Library
Supplement your knowledge with Dr. Weil's essential vitamin facts. Learn why they are necessary and more.

Dr. Weil's Optimum Health Plan
Your 8-week plan to wellness.
Begin your journey today!
 

Dr. Weil's Head-to-Toe
Wellness Guide

Your guide to natural health.
Use the Wellness Guide today!

Dr. Weil's Anti-Inflammatory Diet Food Pyramid
Our interactive tool can help improve overall health through diet.

Condition Care Guide
Learn about health conditions from acne to vertigo, and Dr. Weil's view of the best treatment options for each.

Healthy Recipes
Discover a treasure trove of healthy, healing foods and creative, delicious ways to prepare them.

Q&A Library
Over 2,000 questions from you
and their corresponding answers
from Dr. Weil.

 
Copyright © 2014 Weil Lifestyle, LLC
Information on this web site is provided for informational purposes only and is not intended as a substitute for the advice provided by your physician or other healthcare professional. You should not use the information on this web site for diagnosing or treating a health problem or disease, or prescribing any medication or other treatment.

Ad Choice
Advertising Notice

This Site and third parties who place advertisements on this Site may collect and use information about your visits to this Site and other websites in order to provide advertisements about goods and services of interest to you. If you would like to obtain more information about these advertising practices and to make choices about online behavioral advertising, please click here