Hi everyone. Unless you've been living under a rock you've heard a lot about curcumin or turmeric lately. It's apparently good for everything. I'm going to talk about it today.
Interesting article here. This one is from a journal called Complimentary Therapies in Medicine in August of 2017 and this is about curcumin's effect on basically parts of the cholesterol panel in type two diabetics. Now, type two diabetics are notorious for having high triglycerides and high markers that would indicate their risk for heart disease. Heart attack, stroke, those kinds of things.
So being able to make a difference in that is substantial. I've done a few blog posts in the past few weeks about how to change type two diabetes. That's probably the bigger problem and one of the approaches that needs to be instituted in people like this. However, in the meantime, or in patients who refuse or their doctor tells them they can't fast or whatever, this is an option.
So in this study, they were looking at HDL which is considered the protective cholesterol and they were looking at something called Lipoprotein(a) and it's kind of abbreviated, you know loosely, lp (a) is what it's called more often than not but on the lab report it'll actually say Lipoprotein (a). So having a low HDL and having a high Lipoprotein (a) or Lp (a) are both risk factors for heart disease. And so getting those under control is important. Again, I'm going to say that I think the better way to get them under control is to get rid of the type two Diabetes. Type two diabetes I don't consider a disease. I consider it a compensatory mechanism. I've talked about that. Go back and watch the old blog posts and you'll see all that.
Now, what they did in this study is they used 1,000 milligrams of standardized curcumin a day or they used a placebo and they did this for 12 weeks. They did testing before and after and essentially what they found was HDL went up considerably which was considered to be protective and Lp (a) reduced considerably.
Now, what's important about this, HDL can be raised multiple ways. You can do exercise, you can take fish oil, we know now you can use curcumin which is an active extract of turmeric. Most turmeric, I think, is only like two or three percent curcumin. So if you're taking whole turmeric powder there are benefits to that. I'm a whole food kind of guy. But if you're trying to have an effect like this using curcumin rather than whole turmeric or mixing the two, right? Whole turmeric with added curcumin to it might give you a much better result simply because curcumin's the more active component. Not always easy to absorb. Taking it with some black pepper helps or doing it in a form that's called a liposomal form meaning it's basically put in a blender with certain fats so that it's much more easily absorbed and much more easily transported into the cell membranes. Liposomal's a great way to do this. You can find liposomal in capsules, you can find it as liquids, and you can get absorbable turmeric if they mix it with, like I said, black pepper, celery, things like that. Those help the absorption of it. Fennel, I think, also makes a difference.
Anyway. So your options for reducing lp(a) are pretty limited. We don't have great options. Even pharmaceutically there aren't great options for limiting that. Sometimes berberine can help. Curcumin, obviously, can help but you don't have a ton of options. Niacin is one of them. Sometimes it works, sometimes it doesn't. A lot of people don't tolerate niacin very well. That's about all you've got.
So the ability to use turmeric to lower Lp (a) and if it works in diabetics it will likely work in anybody that has an elevated lipoprotein(a). So being able to do that with curcumin helps. You can find curcumin all over the place now. People take it for lots of other reasons, this is just yet another benefit of it. When you look at its anti-cancer properties, its anti-inflammatory properties, now you've got its lipid normalizing properties, blood sugar related issues, I mean the list just goes on and on. So making curcumin part of your daily intake seems to make a lot of these sense and 1,000 milligrams a day is not a crazy massive dose. They do point out in this particular article which is from Michael Jurgelewicz, he writes on behalf of Designs for Health and Functional Medicine University, I believe.
So anyway, in this article he also mentions that you should also control for other inflammatory related markers. Ferritin, high sensitivity CRP, fibrinogen, fat soluble vitamins A, D, E, and K, [inaudible 00:05:19], and then some oxidative stress factors like homocysteine, insulin levels, heavy metals, fatty acid profiles like omega three versus omega six. Those all need to be taken into consideration. Simply taking curcumin is not the only thing you need to do to modify your risk of heart disease but it plays an important role and it fills a void to some degree in the arsenal of natural practitioners because that Lp (a) has been difficult to really manage over time. You can do things to get rid of inflammation, a lot of the other nutritional stuff we talked about and a lot of times it will come down but if someone wanted to go after it directly or if it didn't respond to other treatment, curcumin's a great option for that.
In our office we have curcumin avail Curcum-Evail which is from Designs for Health. It's a liposomal curcumin and we have Turmeric Forte from Mediherb which is part of standard process. Both of them are made in a way that they are easily available. Curcum-Evail is kind of a large capsule. It's a soft gel but it's long and narrow. Some patients don't like to swallow that. Turmeric Forte is a smaller tablet, very easy to take.
So either way, we've got some options and honestly if you go to the health food store you're gonna fine curcumin, I mean they probably have an entire shelf full of different forms of curcumin at this point. Just be aware if you're taking whole turmeric, it's going to be difficult to get the 1,000 milligrams. But if you're watching your blood results, if what you're taking is having the effect you want then who cares if it's 1,000 milligrams. Right?
So clean up your diet, get the blood sugar under control, go back and watch two or three blog posts that I've done over the past month or so because they talk about type two diabetes and blood sugar and lifestyle changes, they get that under control. And in the meantime, take your turmeric or your curcumin and get these factors related to cardiovascular events under control and slow down, drop your risk of developing heart disease.
So that was it today. Short one but I wanted to bring that to you. Again, another reason to consume curcumin.
So until next time, eat for your health, train for performance, and live the life you love today. Pass it around, share this with other people, all right? See you next time.