Say hello to turmeric, the ultimate superfood spice for gorgeous skin
What you eat can play a vital role in helping you achieve clear, hydrated and gorgeous skin that glows with good health. As well as simple changes such as increasing your vegetable intake and cutting back on coffee, sugar and processed foods (see more advice on this below), adding some skin-protective foods – such as the super-spice turmeric – to your daily regime can reap huge beauty-boosting rewards.
How to get the golden glow?
You probably know turmeric as being one of the spices used in Indian and Asian cooking. It adds depth of flavour and a vibrant yellow-orange colour to dishes such as curries. But research shows that it does much more than just making our food taste amazing. In India, turmeric is also known as ‘the Golden Goddess’ and has been used for over 4,000 years as a medicinal herb to protect the body and increase vitality. When it comes to turmeric’s beauty benefits, modern studies have shown that this remarkable spice contains a unique range of beneficial compounds that can enhance our skin: from protecting us against premature ageing, to clearing skin, to supporting skin healing and cell renewal. It’s a true natural beauty all-rounder!
How can turmeric protect and enhance the appearance of skin?
Antioxidant – anti-ageing
One of the primary reasons for skin ageing – including wrinkles – is free radical damage. This can come from processes inside the body (our cells make free radicals just from producing energy!) and from outside the body, such as from UV damage. As well as protecting our skin from the outside, we can take steps that will help reduce this damage by consuming plenty of antioxidants in our food. Studies suggest that natural constituents of turmeric – especially curcumin – may possess particularly strong antioxidant activity and may directly reduce skin ageing – including preventing moisture loss and protecting against wrinkles. But it’s not only ageing skin that could benefit from this superfood. The antioxidant activity of turmeric may also help those with skin diseases such psoriasis and vitiligo, which can involve free radical damage.
In addition to free radical damage, inflammation is also a big factor in many skin problems, from acne to psoriasis, eczema and other skin rashes. It’s what causes the unwanted redness and swelling, as well as the soreness and heat. So calming down the inflammation is vital to help soothe and restore the skin. Again, it’s turmeric to the rescue! One of this superfood’s best-known properties is its anti-inflammatory activity, as shown in numerous research studies.
Liver-supporting and blood-cleansing
One of the traditional uses of turmeric in herbal medicine is as a ‘blood purifier’. Modern research suggests that turmeric could actually help to clear toxins from the blood, in at least two different ways. Firstly, it’s thought that turmeric can increase the activity of certain enzymes responsible for removing toxins from the blood (known as phase II detoxification enzymes). Secondly, this wonder spice is thought to stimulate bile flow from the gallbladder into the digestive tract. As well as helping to digest our food, bile is the primary way in which our liver gets rid of fat-soluble toxins and wastes from our blood; it’s made in the liver and stored in the gallbladder, ready to be excreted. Turmeric seems to help with this process! So how does this apply to maintaining healthy, glowing skin? A build-up of toxins in the body is one of the potential reasons for problematic skin, including dull-looking or sallow skin, skin reactions such as rashes, and even increased skin aging. In our modern environment we’re exposed to many more chemicals and toxins than our bodies were designed to deal with – in the air, in our food and water, on our furniture and in the products we use on our skin and in our homes. We need to give our body’s detoxification processes all the help it can get – to support general health and vitality, as well as great skin.
Good circulation to the skin allows nutrients to be delivered to our skin cells, and waste products to be flushed away. With optimal circulation, our skin has all it needs to be healthy, and can more efficiently get rid of clogging, dullness-producing toxins. You guessed it, Turmeric may support healthy blood flow and circulation to the skin. Curcuminoids in turmeric have been shown to have ‘anti-platelet’ activity – which basically means they can help to keep our blood flowing more easily. In a clinical trial, giving a curcumin supplement to patients was found to increase their micro-circulation – the circulation to the smallest blood vessels such as those in the skin! A true definition of superfood!
To help your skin benefit from the many wonders of turmeric, you can now enjoy a cup of Pukka Herbs organic Turmeric Gold tea (£2.39 for 20 sachets) and a daily capsule of Pukka Herbs organic Wholistic Turmeric (£15.95 for 30 days supply). When combined together, these high-potency organic herbal formulations offer many health and beauty benefits.
Pukka Turmeric Gold tea and Pukka Wholistic Turmeric capsules are available from selected health food stores across the UK and to purchase online from www.pukkaherbs.com.