Fuel Buzz: Turmeric as a Recovery Supplement

A spice commonly used in Indian curries, turmeric’s restorative properties may prove especially beneficial for runners. 

Along with kale, beets, chia seeds and, more recently, bone broth, turmeric is another superfood with long-term restorative powers worth considering.

Relative to the ginger root family, turmeric is made up of curcumin compounds which have a powerful anti-inflammatory effect on the body. An overview of the compound published in the “Advanced Experimental Medical Biology,” states that not only has curcumin exhibited anti-inflammatory abilities, but its strong antioxidant properties has also been proven to help prevent diabetes, arthritis, Alzheimer’s disease and cancer.

MORE FUEL BUZZ: Bone Broth, the Next Superfood?

For runners specifically, inflamed joints and muscles are a frequent result of pounding pavement for miles on end, in which consuming turmeric post-run can either curb or alleviate the pain as effectively as some anti-inflammatory drugs, according to Authoritynutrition.com.

However, the curcumin content in turmeric spices is only about 3 percent by weight. Hence, supplement products such as Gaia Herbs’ Turmeric Boost Restore powder use turmeric extract instead, which contains a much higher concentration of curcumin, in this case 42 milligrams per serving. Gaia’s turmeric supplement also incorporates a vanilla chai prebiotic blend including black pepper extract, cardamom, cinnamon, ginger, holy basil and star anise. By combining black pepper with curcumin, it significantly increases the absorption of curcumin into the bloodstream, thereby delivering a more pronounced effect.

Gaia Herbs recommends adding 1.5 teaspoons of the Turmeric Boost Restore daily in milk or your favorite smoothie. Our editors gave it a go and found that the vanilla chai probiotic blend not only softened the turmeric’s strong kick, but also tasted exactly like a spiced chai latte, only better for you with no added sugars or flavorings.

The latest addition to Gaia Herbs’ product line, a 5.29-ounce canister or single serve packet of Turmeric Boost Restore will be available for purchase on April 15 through their website for $30 and $2 respectively.

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