Ordinary kitchen spice that indicated a surprising reduction in the levels of Alzheimer's-like plaque
Discovered: Indian spice reduces Alzheimer's symptoms by 30%
Despite millions spent on drug research and development, one of the more promising treatments for Alzheimer's disease (a progressive brain disorder thataffects more than 5 million Americans) is found in a substance widely known for its ability to spice (and color) food.
The compound curcumin, only found in turmeric, is a widely used spice found in Indian food, and is also popular in the cuisines of other South Asian countries like Nepal, Iran and Thailand. The bright yellow spice is familiar to fans of curry dishes, but it has been used in other preparations as well. For centuries, it has been used in Asian medicine.
Like other brightly colored foods (think blueberries, pomegranates and tomatoes), it is the compound that gives turmeric its color that makes it a powerful antioxidant — in this case, curcumin. And like the lycopene in tomatoes and the beta-carotene in carrots, bright orange-yellow curcumin has some seriously amazing health benefits.