Turmeric improves cholesterol balance and fights against Cardio Vascular Disease
In looking into his the question of whether Turmeric helps improve matters for those with ‘High Cholesterol’, we searched for studies in the medical literature that were based on human subjects (not mice) and what we found was very interesting;
- Turmeric has been shown to lower LDL levels, more specifically the sub group of LDL’s called lipoprotein(a), or Lp(a). (decrease of LDL ’a.k.a. the bad cholesterol’ is thought to be a good thing).
- A 2012 study of 30 obese people found that use of Turmeric over a 30 day period lowered Triglyceride levels significantly.
- An early study from 1992 noted 29% increase in HDL (increasing HDL ‘a.k.a. the good cholesterol’ is thought to be a good thing).
- A 2017 study focused on subjects with Type 2 diabetes had findings consistent with the above three bullets and recommended that curcuminoids (Curcumin is a Turmeric extract) supplementation could contribute to a reduced risk of cardiovascular events in dyslipidemic patients with Type 2 Diabetes.
One of our customers recently passed along the results of a recent physical where, for the first time in 5 years, their cholesterol numbers noticeably improved. He asked if the Chocolate Tumeries he’s been taking for the last year could be a reason, or at least a contributor to the good news. Every other variable for him has been essentially constant but the last year taking Chocolate Tumeries had him wondering if this could be having a positive affect so he reached out.
Why is this important?
Simply put, Cardio Vascular Disease is the leading cause of death in industrialized societies. Low Density Lipids have been found to be the main driver of Atherosclerosis, a condition that develops when plaque builds up in the walls of the arteries. This buildup narrows the arteries, making it harder for blood to flow through. If a blood clot forms, it can block the blood flow. Cardio Vascular Disease can cause a heart attack or stroke.
Several factors have been shown to improve the symptoms of high cholesterol including exercise, eating less fatty foods, increasing consumption of fruits and vegetables. Often it is suggested that this regimen be supplemented with medications such as statins but while statins are highly effective, they have been linked to muscle pain, digestive problems and mental fuzziness in some people and may rarely cause liver damage. What the findings above suggest is that incorporating Turmeric into your daily diet can have a positive impact on the lowering of your LDL levels, specifically Lp(a), lower triglyerides and may even help raise HDL levels without risking the potential side effects of taking Statins.
For reference; here are a few of the more significant research sources we came across;
Soni KB, Kuttan R. Effect of oral curcumin administration on serum peroxides and cholesterol levels in human volunteers. Indian J Physiol Pharmacol. 1992 Oct; 36(4):273-5. 1992.
Mohammadi A, Sahebkar A, et al. Effects of Supplementation with Curcuminoids on Dyslipidemia in Obese Patients: A Randomized Crossover Trial. Phytother Res. 2012 May 21. doi: 10.1002/ptr.4715.
Pungcharoenkul K, Thongnopnua P. Effect of different curcuminoid supplement dosages on total in vivo antioxidant capacity and cholesterol levels of healthy human subjects. Phytother Res. 2011 Nov; 25 (11):1721-6.
Baum L, Cheung SK, et al. Curcumin effects on blood lipid profile in a 6-month human study. Pharmacol Res. 2007 Dec; 56 (6):509-14.
Shin SK, Ha TY, McGregor RA, Choi MS. Long-term curcumin administration protects against atherosclerosis via hepatic regulation of lipoprotein cholesterol metabolism. Mol Nutr Food Res. 2011 Dec; 55 (12):1829-40.