Curcumin has a long history of use in Ayruvedic medicine for maintaining a healthy inflammatory response via its effects on cytokine metabolism, such as the cyclooxygenases, prostaglandins and leukotrienes. It also appears to provide important antioxidant defenses. Finally, it has influence over the protein complex nuclear factor-kappa beta (NF-kB), an important factor in cell survival. Curcumin is the primarily component of the bright yellow, culinary spice turmeric.
Several clinical trials have been conducted on various uses of supplemental curcumin. These include studies on rheumatoid arthritis, cancer, Alzheimer’s disease, post-operative recovery, and gastrointestinal illnesses. In one eight-week pilot study of patients with irritable bowel (IBS), either 72 mg or 144 mg of a standardized curcumin was administered to a group of 105 subjects. After one month, those in the lower dose group experienced a 53% reduction in IBS prevalence, while the higher dose group experienced a 60% decrease (1).
Pharmokinetic research has indicated that curcumin is poorly absorbed and its actions short-lived (1). To improve bioavailablity and usefulness of this potent spice, curcumin supplements are complexed with other ingredients that promote absorption. Commonly added is Bioperine, a black pepper extract that contains the alkaloid piperine. Research shows that it can enhance the bioavailability of curcumin, promoting absorption by as much as 20-fold (1).
Curcumin 500 with Bioperine provides powerful support for maintaining a healthy inflammatory response, promoting cellular health, and supporting healthy liver, colon, and musculoskeletal function.
Clinical trials have established that curcumin is extremely safe even at doses up to 8 g per day. Curcumin supplementation plays a crucial role in chronic fatigue syndrome and fibromyalgia through these anti-inflammatory properties. Both conditions are marked by increased oxidative stress, inflammatory cytokines, and poor regulation of NF-kB. Regular curcumin supplementation may relieve many of the inflammatory symptoms of these conditions such as brain fog, pain, allodynia, and fatigue.
* Did you know Dr. Craig donates a portion of all supplement sales to CFS & Fibromyalgia research & advocacy groups?
1 Jurenka, JS (2009) Anti-inflammatory Properties of Curcumin, a Major Constituent of Curcuma longa: A Review of Preclinical and Clinical Research. Alternative Medicine Review. 14(2).