Some things just complement each other – like chocolate chips and cookies. While not as heavenly, turmeric and black pepper is another combination that works like it was meant to be.
Cucurmin And Piperine Are The Magic Components
Turmeric, widely used in Asian and especially Indian cuisine, is known for its sundry health benefits. Curcumin, the compound imparting the vibrant orange-yellow color to turmeric, can take most credit for this. It offers antioxidant, anti-inflammatory, antiseptic, antifungal, and antibacterial effects.
But all these qualities are of no use to us if cucurmin cannot be used properly by our bodies. Unfortunately, that is the case with turmeric. Cucurmin has poor bioavailability. Why? Because it rapidly metabolizes in the liver and intestinal walls, and only a tiny portion of it enters the bloodstream. This is where black pepper comes in.1
Black pepper, derived from black peppercorns, has its own set of health benefits to offer. These include enhancing digestion, regulating nerve signals, fighting cancer, boosting metabolism, and controlling obesity. Studies also suggest that black pepper has antioxidant, anti-inflammatory, and antimicrobial properties just like turmeric. The chemical piperine is the major bioactive component present in black and white pepper and that is what makes it a super healthy spice.2
Black Pepper Allows Our Body To Use Turmeric
The effect of piperine from pepper was examined on the bioavailability of turmeric’s curcumin in rats and healthy human volunteers. The study concluded that piperine enhances the serum concentration, extent of absorption, and bioavailability of curcumin in both rats and humans. The best part? There were no side effects of consuming turmeric with black pepper.3
Flavoring Spices Are Usually Well Balanced
What Is An Effective Turmeric And Black Pepper Ratio? In a study, in humans after a dose of 2 gm curcumin with just 20 mg of piperine produced an astounding 2000 percent increase in bioavailability was observed.4 However, according to experts, the high amounts used in lab studies may not be needed when a variety of spices are being consumed by us as part of a healthful plant-based diet. Such diets are quite effective in reaping turmeric and black pepper health benefits by providing thousands of phytochemicals on a daily basis that prevent many diseases such as cancer.5
Explore Combinations With Other Natural Ingredients
The black pepper and turmeric combination is often blended with other ingredients, sometimes to make it more palatable and other times to make it more effective. Turmeric and black pepper are often combined with olive oil, coconut oil, honey, and ginger. You can also consume turmeric and black pepper tea or get creative and use it in your own way in some dishes.
Health Benefits Of The Turmeric-Black Pepper Combination
Add turmeric and black pepper to your regular meals to reap the following benefits:
1. Relieves Pain
Because of its anti-inflammatory properties, turmeric has long been used in India to heal the body, fight infections, and relieve pain.6 This makes it useful for painful conditions such as arthritis.
Add black pepper to the mix and you get an unbeatable combo for relief from chronic pain. Piperine in black pepper activates cellular receptors (TRPV1) that set off an anti-pain reaction in the body. This brings about significant relief – even from nerve-related pain, which is by and large chronic and untreatable.7
2. Tackles Obesity
Black pepper and turmeric can be your new weight loss ally. Many fitness enthusiasts swear by a combination of organic turmeric with black pepper and ginger in warm water in the morning to get rid of excess fat and activate their metabolism. If it doesn’t sound too appetizing, add a squeeze of lemon juice to it.
According to a study, curcumin directly interacts with fat cells, pancreatic cells, liver cells, immune system cells called macrophages, and muscle cells. It takes care of insulin resistance, hyperglycemia, inflammation, hyperlipidemia, and other symptoms linked to obesity. Black pepper and ginger also show similar effects against obesity and insulin resistance. Since turmeric needs black pepper to work, together these two form a potent combination to fight fat. 8
Tip: For best results, try to use fresh turmeric (that looks a lot like ginger) to meet your weight loss targets.
3. Helps Manage Diabetes
Diabetes can cause a host of other health problems. Blood vessel damage is one such common byproduct of diabetes. Researchers have found that compounds curcumin and piperine in turmeric and black pepper help reduce oxidative stress that causes blood vessel damage to begin with! So go ahead and take turmeric with black pepper to keep diabetic complications at bay.9
4. Battles Inflammation
Though there aren’t too many studies on the subject, turmeric and black pepper have been used for centuries in ayurveda as a treatment for inflammatory disorders such as arthritis. Both these ingredients have anti-inflammatory properties. On the basis of this traditional usage, supplements with turmeric rhizome and turmeric extracts are also being used in the West for treatment and prevention of arthritis. Studies reveal that turmeric may be more potent in preventing arthritis than treating it.10
Piperine in black pepper also lowers inflammation and the pain associated with it.11
5. Prevents Cancer
The turmeric-black pepper combo also works its magic to keep cancer at bay. The black pepper lets turmeric do its job to its full potential. Curcumin in turmeric helps kill cancerous cells.12 Human studies illustrating the anti-cancer effects of turmeric are promising, particularly on leukemia cells, gastric and colon cancer cells, and breast cancer cells. Studies also show that cancer incidence is recorded to be low in India as compared to Western countries, where turmeric is used on a regular basis.
With such a mixed bag of health benefits, turmeric in combination with black pepper is an everyday must-have.
|↑1||Shoba, Guido, David Joy, Thangam Joseph, M. Majeed, R_ Rajendran, and P. S. S. R. Srinivas. “Influence of piperine on the pharmacokinetics of curcumin in animals and human volunteers.” Planta medica 64, no. 04 (1998): 353-356.|
|↑2||Singletary, Keith. “Black Pepper.” Nutrition Today 45, no. 1 (2010): 43.|
|↑3||Shoba, Guido, David Joy, Thangam Joseph, M. Majeed, R_ Rajendran, and P. S. S. R. Srinivas. “Influence of piperine on the pharmacokinetics of curcumin in animals and human volunteers.” Planta medica 64, no. 04 (1998): 353-356.|
|↑4||Shoba, Guido, David Joy, Thangam Joseph, M. Majeed, R_ Rajendran, and P. S. S. R. Srinivas. “Influence of piperine on the pharmacokinetics of curcumin in animals and human volunteers.” Planta medica 64, no. 04 (1998): 353-356.|
|↑5||The Spices Of Cancer Prevention. AICR.|
|↑6||Singletary, Keith. “Turmeric: An overview of potential health benefits.” Nutrition Today 45, no. 5 (2010): 216-225.|
|↑7||Palazzo, Enza, Livio Luongo, Vito de Novellis, Liberato Berrino, Francesco Rossi, and Sabatino Maione. “Moving towards supraspinal TRPV1 receptors for chronic pain relief.” Molecular pain 6, no. 1 (2010): 66.|
|↑8||Aggarwal, Bharat B. “Targeting inflammation-induced obesity and metabolic diseases by curcumin and other nutraceuticals.” Annual review of nutrition 30 (2010): 173-199.|
|↑9||Naderi, G. H., Narges J. Dinani, S. Asgary, M. Taher, N. Nikkhoo, and M. Boshtam. “Effect of some high consumption spices on hemoglobin glycation.” Indian journal of pharmaceutical sciences 76, no. 6 (2014): 553.|
|↑10||Funk, Janet L., Janice N. Oyarzo, Jennifer B. Frye, Guanjie Chen, R. Clark Lantz, Shivanand D. Jolad, Aniko M. Sólyom, and Barbara N. Timmermann. “Turmeric Extracts Containing Curcuminoids Prevent Experimental Rheumatoid Arthritis#.” Journal of natural products 69, no. 3 (2006): 351-355.|
|↑11||Capasso, Raffaele, Angelo A. Izzo, Francesca Borrelli, Alessandra Russo, Lidia Sautebin, Aldo Pinto, Francesco Capasso, and Nicola Mascolo. “Effect of piperine, the active ingredient of black pepper, on intestinal secretion in mice.” Life sciences 71, no. 19 (2002): 2311-2317.|
|↑12||Hutchins-Wolfbrandt, Amanda, and Anahita M. Mistry. “Dietary turmeric potentially reduces the risk of cancer.” Asian Pac J Cancer Prev 12, no. 12 (2011): 3169-73.|