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GIFT: Turmeric Tea For Health-Conscious Friends

A tea-of-the-moment, which happens to be thousands of years old, is turmeric tea, a highly antioxidant, anti-inflammatory herbal tea.

Revered as a ‘golden spice’ in Ayurvedic medicine for more than 5000 years, it has long been drunk as a tea.

When brewing black tea, you can add ¼ teaspoon ground turmeric to the cup before pouring in the hot water. For a simple tisane, ground turmeric or fresh root slices with hot water is popular.

But for a most impressive healthful gift, Vahdam’s Turmeric Tea Tales (photos #1 and #2) is the way to gift it in style.

An elegant golden gift box contains vials of six turmeric teas that, the company notes, are not only healthful year-round, but are ideal to combat holiday stress and travel.

And, we say, a fine way to usher in all those “healthier lifestyle” resolutions for the new year.

Vahdam’s turmeric teas are flavored to add variety:

  • Turmeric Ashwagandha Tea
  • Turmeric Fennel Tea
  • Turmeric Ginger Tea
  • Turmeric Moringa Tea
  • Turmeric Saffron Tea
  • Turmeric Spiced Tea
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    There are also individual tins of Turmeric Lattes (photo #3). Just add hot water or milk.

    Varieties include:
    li>Turmeric Ashwagandha Tea

  • Turmeric Classic Tea
  • Turmeric Ginger Tea
  • Turmeric Moringa Tea
  • Turmeric Mushroom Latte
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    And there are even more options for everyday: tea bags and pouches of loose tea.

    Head To VahdamTeas.com to see all the options.
     
     
    WHAT IS TURMERIC

    Turmeric (TER-muh-ric) is a rhizome, an edible root of a flowering plant.

    A relative of ginger, turmeric may look like ginger root from the outside (photo #4). But inside is a vivid yellow-orange flesh, that is dried and ground into a spice (you can find it in just about any grocery store).

    Common in Indian, Southeast Asian, and Middle Eastern cuisines, turmeric has a sharp, slightly bitter flavor that adds interest to foods.

    Because of recent focus of turmeric as a superfood, fresh turmeric root is now available in health food and other food stores in the U.S. We have friends who brew tea from the fresh root daily.

    There’s more about the potential health benefits of turmeric below.
     
     
    TURMERIC IN THE KITCHEN

    In addition to brewed tea, turmeric is an ingredient in curry powder and garam masala spice mixes. It also has a place in American cuisine:

  • In scrambled eggs, frittatas, quiche, even deviled eggs.
  • To season greens, roasted vegetables, sautéed onions, beans and lentils.
  • Added to soups and smoothies.
  • Added to rice, yogurt and other pale foods (even pancakes!) for great color.
  • Blended into hummus and yogurt, marinades and salad dressings.
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    Use the freshly-grated root in:

  • Marinades
  • Pumpkin: pies, muffins, cookies
  • Smoothies and fresh-pressed juices
  • Stir-frys
  • Vinaigrettes and other salad dressings
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    Here’s more on how to cook with turmeric.

     
    TURMERIC & HEALTH

    Turmeric has been touted as a superfood that can fight cancer and diabetes, ease depression, and more.

    Several compounds in turmeric may contribute to better health. The most well-known of these is curcumin.

    We turned to Web MD for advice on what turmeric can, and can’t do.

    While there has been much lab testing, the Web MD notes that scientific testing on humans is limited, and more is needed.

    Research is ongoing.

     


    [1] Deck the halls with this healthful gift: Turmeric Tea Tales (photos #1, #2 and #3 © Vahdam Teas).

    [2] The inside of the gift box. And surprise: It’s one of Oprah’s favorite things!


    [3] Turmeric latte.


    [4] Turmeric root (photo © Malaysian Kitchen).


    [5] Turmeric root and ground spice (photo © Silk Road Spices).

     
    We’ve abridged their information here. Check out the entire article and discuss options with your healthcare provider.

  • Alzheimer’s. People with Alzheimer’s have chronic inflammation, and turmeric seems to have natural anti-inflammatory effects. But so far, there’s no strong scientific evidence of turmeric’s efficacy.
  • Arthritis. For its anti-inflammatory properties, there is hope that turmeric may help with joint pain, stiffness and other inflammation. If you decide to try it,note that black pepper is needed to help your body absorb the natural curcumin.
  • Cancer. In lab and animal studies, turmeric has stopped the growth of tumor cells and helped detoxifying enzymes work better.
  • Depression. Scientists are excited about curcumin’s potential to ease depression and help antidepressants work better. But so far, research results have been mixed.
  • Diabetes: Because curcumin can keep blood sugar levels steady, it could be a useful tool to prevent or treat type 2 diabetes.
  • Flu. If you sip turmeric tea, the curcumin might help you to fight off a variety of viruses, including herpes and the flu. But since turmeric is only about 3% curcumin, the occasional cup of tea isn’t be a cure-all.
  • Headache. Since ginger is a well-known natural headache remedy, turmeric has also been embraced anecdotally, especially for migraines. More research is needed.
  • Heart Health. Some studies have found that turmeric can lower LDL “bad” cholesterol, while others concluded that the spice has no effect. Scientists continue to look into the heart-protective possibilities of turmeric.
  • IBS. Early research indicates that turmeric could help improve IBS symptoms such as abdominal pain.Turmeric is also being studied as a treatment for diseases like Crohn’s and ulcerative colitis.
  • PMS. Curcumin supplements have been found helped ease PMS symptoms.
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