Turmeric is a medical spice that is being widely used in kitchens across the world. Research shows that curcumin ( compound found in turmeric) has numerous medical benefits.
So will curcumin bring some migraine relief? We will have a close look at some benefits and disadvantages of turmeric for migraine relief.
Reasons why you should take turmeric for migraine relief:
Curcumin has been reported to reduce inflammation in many studies in the past. One study found that it has stronger anti-inflammatory response than ibuprofen and aspirin. You already know that in some cases, inflammation is the biggest migraine trigger.
Being a powerful antioxidant, turmeric reduces oxidative stress. Oxidative stress is one of the reasons for some migraines.
In a study carried out I 2014, it was found that curcumin possesses good anti-depressant properties that had the same efficacy as Prozac. Depression is so common among migraine sufferers and suicides are about 3 times higher in migraineurs.
Curcumin protects you from many cardiovascular diseases. In a 2011 study, it was found that curcumin reduced the risk of heart attack by 69 percent in patients that opted for coronary bypass surgery. The risk of cardiovascular disease is 50 percent higher in women with migraines.
Migraines also double the risk of stroke.
Chronic Fatigue Syndrome
Curcumin also reduces chronic fatigue and even postoperative fatigue in rodents. Around 86 percent of those with chronic fatigue symptoms have migraines.
There’s a strong evidence that curcumin can boost serotonin. Lower serotonin levels are directly associated with migraines and drugs that boost serotonin can successfully treat migraines.
Curcumin also improves irritable bowel disease symptoms and can benefit its patients. Gut issue are synonymous with migraines.
Some studies show turmeric significantly reduces acne. Kids with migraines have eight times he odds of having acne.
Curcumin also protects against glutamate exitotoxicity. Exitotoxicity and glutamate are closely associated with triggering migraines.
Curcumin protects astrocyles and also reverses mitochondrial damage.
Some migraines are associated with mitochondrial dysfunction.
Astrocyltes helps in the removal of glutamate, which prevents it from building up in the brain and triggering migraine attacks.
Curcumin also improves lupus symptoms. It’s a condition where immune systems start attacking its own cells.
In a 2004 Harvard Medical School Study, 69 percent of patients with lupus reported severe headaches, and 37 percent met the criteria for migraines.
Curcumin also helps in treating Alzheimer’s disease by reducing amyloid plaque.
The white-matter brain lesions so common in Alzheimer’s patients are also found in many migraine patients.
In fact, migraines also triple the risk of Alzheimer’s disease.
Many attribute turmeric as the sole reason why Alzheimer’s disease account for just one percent deaths in India (United States 11.7 percent).
Curcumin successfully reduces carpal tunnel pain by more than 64 percent. This was proved in a 2014 study in Texas. According to a 2001 study, migraineurs are nearly four times more likely to have carpal tunnel syndrome.
Should I take turmeric?
Yes, definitely it’s best bet if you want to limit your migraine attacks in the long-run.
Curcumin is just 4.2 percent of turmeric and is poorly absorbed by the body. However, consumption of pepperine (black pepper) can boost its absorption by about 1900 percent.
So include some pepper on meals with some turmeric. For supplements, it’s best to choose one with black pepper extract.
How much do I take?
You can safely take up to 500-600 mg three times a day.
Most of the turmeric supplements are enriched with curcumin because it represents just a small portion of turmeric.
A mixture of curcumin and turmeric is ideal because turmeric contains two other compounds (bisdemethoxycurcumin and demethoxycurcumin) that have many medicinal benefits.
Choose supplements with curcumin, turmeric, black pepper extract (bioperine or piperine). Always buy your supplement from a reputable company as supplements in the US are currently not FDA regulated.