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Curcuma longa

Curcumin is the active compound in turmeric and is a close relative of another common anti-inflammatory rhizome, ginger.

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Used for:

Arthritis, tendinitis, bursitis; it acts as an antioxidant and anti-inflammatory agent

Available in:

As a culinary spice, in powdered form; as medicinal extract, in tablets or capsules. Labeled as standardized turmeric extract or curcumin.

Herb / drug interactions:

None known

Other safety concerns:

In rare instances, daily use over an extended period of time can cause stomach upset and/or heartburn. If pregnant, do not use without your doctor’s approval. Do not use if you have gallstones or a bile duct dysfunction; however, curcumin, an active component of turmeric, can increase bile solubility and is recommended for the condition.

When buying:

Look for products standardized for 95% curcuminoids. For cooking, brightly colored and aromatic powder is best.


400 to 600 mg of extracts (tablets or capsules) three times per day or as directed on the product. Dried spice is not effective for treating conditions.

Child dosage:

Do not give to young children.