The $1.99 Health Breakthrough
There’s a nasty bacteria that’s had doctors worried lately. It’s called Clostridium difficile – or C. diff. – and it causes intestinal problems. For most people, that means a bad case of diarrhea. But C. diff. can also cause life-threatening problems in your colon.
In the last few years, cases of C. diff. have been on the rise. It’s especially common in mature adults… and often strikes when they’re in the hospital. Even worse, these cases are getting more severe and tougher to beat.
There’s one more alarming fact about C. diff. It usually strikes when you’re taking antibiotics. So some of the tools we use to kill bacteria are this bug’s best friends.
Strong antibiotics will kill C. diff., but they come with their own set of problems. For one thing, the antibiotics themselves can cause diarrhea. So relief can be a long time in coming.
But a team from Cedars Sinai Medical Center may have discovered C. diff.’s “Achilles heel.” And it costs all of $1.99 at your local grocery store.
Curries are probably the best-known foods from India. And the signature spice in any curry is turmeric. It’s been used for thousands of years. And it’s cheap. Just a couple of dollars a bottle at your supermarket.
But inside that bottle is something very powerful. It’s called curcumin, and it’s been linked to many health benefits. For example, research shows curcumin…
- Is a powerful antioxidant. Studies show it may also support increased production of your body’s own antioxidant molecules.
- Has a “blocking effect” on several inflammatory triggers.
- May support the cell-death process that clears abnormal cells out of your body.
- Shows promise against some forms of joint pain and mental decline.1
But this new research shows that curcumin may also play a role in beating bacteria – especially C. diff. In fact, the Cedars Sinai team found that curcumin was effective against all 13 strains of C. diff. they tested.2
And here’s what makes this such great news… The team says the answer may be as simple as adding curry dishes to the hospital menu.
You see, curcumin appears to be particularly effective in your digestive system – exactly where C. diff. attacks. So eating curry dishes when you’re in the hospital – or when you’re taking antibiotics – may mean C. diff. won’t ever get a foothold.
The team still has to perform human studies, but the results are promising. And with all the potential benefits, it can’t hurt to add curry dishes to your diet – even if you’re healthy.
As you probably know, I’m a big fan of natural health solutions. But I find this one particularly appealing. Imagine going to see your doctor and coming away with a prescription for a delicious chicken curry!
Dr Kenneth Woliner, M.D.
1 See http://lpi.oregonstate.edu/infocenter/phytochemicals/curcumin/.
2 See http://www.medpagetoday.com/MeetingCoverage/ACG/22832?utm_content=GroupCL&utm_medium=email&impressionId=1287560371596&utm_campaign=DailyHeadlines&utm_source=mSpoke&userid=248861.
1 From http://lpi.oregonstate.edu/infocenter/phytochemicals/curcumin/. See accompanying document, Curcumin LPI.pdf.