thoughts from a future registered dietitian

Turmeric

Turmeric

When I think of anti-inflammatory spices, Turmeric is the first that comes to mind. This vivid orange spice is derived from the root of the Turmeric plant. Fun fact: it’s technically a member of the ginger family or Zingiberaceae (say that twice! πŸ˜› ). Used in many Asian and Indian dishes, it adds flavor, color and has a multitude of health benefits!

Health Benefits

β€’ Anti-inflammatory – The most powerful aspect of turmeric is its anti-inflammatory properties. The anti-inflammatory properties come from a compound called curcumin. Clinical research shows curcumin improves symptoms of arthritis and reduces joint pain. It’s particularly beneficial for those with the most common types of arthritis, osteoarthritis and rheumatoid arthritis. Some individuals also use turmeric topically for inflammation on the skin, or acne.
β€’ Cognitive Function – Curcumin neutralizes free radicals and stimulates antioxidant enzymes. Taking curcumin daily along with an antidepressant can moderately lessen depression symptoms while protecting healthy cells. Some research also shows that curcumin can improve long-term memory and attention, and possibly prevent Alzheimer’s Disease.
β€’ Cardiovascular Health – Turmeric is believed to enhance circulation, decrease hyperlipidemia and improve cardiovascular health. Studies have shown that turmeric supplements reduce triglycerides, LDL, and VLDL levels (which directly impact total cholesterol).

The benefits of turmeric are complex and multifaceted! Either way, it’s worth adding to your diet!

Recipe

I made this curry in attempt to clean out my refrigerator. All over the globe there are various versions of curries. By definition, curry is a ‘dish with meat or vegetables in a spicy sauce’, and can essentially be made with any combination of vegetables. Thus, allowing you to be creative with the texture and flavors!

‘Clean Out the Fridge’ Instant Pot Curry
1-2 T. EVOO
3 Cloves of Garlic (minced)
1 T. Ginger (minced)
1/2 C. Yellow Onion (chopped)
1 Medium Sweet Potato (diced)
1 Green Pepper (chopped)
2 T. Curry Powder
1 t. Turmeric
1/2 t. Cumin
1/4 t. Cayenne
Salt to taste
1 C. Dry Lentils
1 Can Coconut Milk
1 C. Vegetable Broth
3 C. Spinach, fresh

Directions:
1. Use ‘saute’ function on Instant pot and heat EVOO over medium-heat. Saute onion, garlic, and ginger. Add sweet potatoes and cook for 3-4 minutes.
2. Mix in the pepper and spices. Salt to taste.
3. Add coconut milk, veggie broth and the dry lentils.
4. Cook for 7 minutes in Instant Pot (on high)
5. Release steam and stir in the spinach.
6. Add more spices, salt or herbs for an extra kick πŸ™‚