6 Beauty Products You Should Replace with Healthier Alternatives

Personal Care Healthier Alternatives Products

If you like making healthier choices about what food you eat but haven’t yet replaced your chemical-laden personal care and beauty products, it’s time to find healthier alternatives.

Your skin is your body’s largest organ and absorbs the creams, powders, sprays and lotions we put on it. Around 10,500 industrial chemicals are used as cosmetic ingredients, many of which are carcinogens, pesticides, reproductive toxins, endocrine disruptors, plasticisers (chemicals that keep concrete soft), degreasers (used to get grime off auto parts) and surfactants (they reduce surface tension in water, like in paint and inks). These chemicals are absorbed into your bloodstream through your skin.

“We really need to start questioning the products we are putting on our skin and not just assume that the chemicals in them are safe,” warns Biochemist Richard Bence. “We have no idea what these chemicals do when they are mixed together. The effect could be much greater than the sum of the individual parts.”

With research showing that the average woman absorbs over 500 different synthetic chemicals into her body every day due to personal care and cosmetic products, and over 2kg of chemicals through her skin every year, we can see why it’s so important to be informed of the dangers of these chemicals.

Let’s take a closer look at some common everyday products along with some healthier alternatives.

SHAMPOO

Many shampoos contain parabens, DEA, Cocamide DEA or Lauramide DEA, sodium lauryl sulfate or sodium laureth sulphate, synthetic fragrances and parfum. These chemicals have been shown to interfere with hormone function (endocrine disruption), cause certain cancers, lead to liver damage, cause allergies and migraines, among a few other side effects.

The alternative: TMP Organics offers a great range of hair care products that don’t include the worst chemical offenders. We stock Giovanni, Biologika, Miessence, Sukin, Dr Organics, Australian Native Botanicals Hair Care, and Acure Hair Care.

MOISTURISER

A lot of moisturisers use similar ingredients to shampoo including parabens, synthetic fragrances and DEA, but they can also include BHA and BHT, PEGS, Petrolatum, Mineral Oil and Siloxanes. These additional ingredients are used as preservatives, thickeners, moisture-carriers, moisture barriers and softeners, but they can also have harmful effects. BHA/BHT can cause cancer and interfere with hormone function. Mineral Oil slows down cell development. Siloxanes can damage the liver and may impair fertility and cause uterine tumours.

The alternative: Many companies are creating effective and affordable moisturisers and TMP Organics stock a fantastic range. Our brands include Biologika, Miessence, Sukin, LaMav, Gaia, Dr Organics, The Jojoba Company, Mountain Lotus, Eco Care Body, Uni Organics, Lavern, Ausganica and Dr Bronner’s.

DEODORANT

The worst offender in deodorant is aluminium which is usually found in antiperspirant deodorants. Aluminium-based compounds form a temporary plug within the sweat duct that stops the flow of sweat to the skin’s surface. It is often linked to Alzheimer’s and brain disorders and is a possible risk factor in breast cancer. It is a neurotoxin that also binds and sticks to our red and white blood cells and hormones that can lead to microvascular strokes which cause many other serious issues.

The alternative: There are several excellent natural deodorants available that are both safe and effective. TMP Organics stock DeoNat Natural Mineral Deodorant, Lafe’s Crystal Deodorant and MooGoo Fresh Cream Deodorant.

COSMETICS, HAIR DYES AND NAIL POLISH

Cosmetics are often harmful chemical cocktails, whether they be powders, liquids, creams, sprays, pencils, gels, dyes, glosses, lacquers or polishes. Some ingredients to look out for are Parabens, Dibutyl Phthalate (DBP), Butylated Hydroxyanisole or Butylated Hydroytoluene, Coal Tar Dyes, PEGS, Petrolatum, Mineral Oil, Siloxanes, Heavy Metals and Talc. Talc is a carcinogen known to cause ovarian cancer, and can be extremely harmful if inhaled. Heavy metals build up in the body over time and are known to cause varied health problems, which can include: cancer, reproductive and developmental disorders, neurological problems; memory loss; mood swings; nerve, joint and muscle disorders; cardiovascular, skeletal, blood, immune system, kidney and renal problems; headaches; vomiting, nausea, and diarrhoea; lung damage; contact dermatitis; and brittle hair and hair loss. Many are suspected hormone disruptors and respiratory toxins, and for some like lead, there is no known safe blood level.

The alternative: There are now plenty of better options available to those who love cosmetics but don’t want to harm their body. TMP Organics offers these brands: Eco Tan, Zuii Makeup, Ere Perez Makeup, Aromaganic Permanent Hair Colour, Hemp Organics and Nancy Evans.

SUNSCREEN (WITH RETINYL PALMITATE, OXYBENZONE AND OCTYL METHOXYCINNAMATE)

When many of the chemicals used in popular sunscreens are exposed to sunlight, reactions occur between the sunscreen’s active and inactive ingredients and the epidermis. Toxic reactions include inflammation, dermalogical effects, allergic reactions and photogenotoxic (DNA altering) effects. Chemical sunscreens have ingredients that actually promote cancer.

The alternative: Try one of our natural sunscreens without the nasties. We currently stock Wotnot, Soleo and UV Natural Sun Products.

BODY WASH

Some beautifully coloured, delicious-smelling body washes seem tempting until you look at the ingredients list. Parabens, DEA, Coat Tar Dyes, PEGS, Mineral Oils, SLS… there’s not a lot in them that you’d want being absorbed into your bloodstream.

The alternative: TMP Organics stocks some beautiful natural body washes from brands like Biologika, Miessence, Sukin, MooGoo, Dr Organics, Melrose Liquid Castile Soaps, Ausganica and Dr Bronners’.

There’s a common adage that says, “the dose makes the poison”. If you do a mental stocktake of the products you use in the morning, throughout the day and in the evening, how often these products are applied and how long they stay on your skin, it’s not hard to see how we end up absorbing hundreds of chemicals a day. Some of these chemicals have no known safe limits. Why gamble with your health?

Come into TMP Organics this week and take a look at our wide range of personal care and beauty products. You’ll be amazed by the quality and you’ll be eager to ditch the chemical cocktails you currently have on your shelves. We can’t wait to see you and help you make the switch to healthier alternatives.

TMP Organics Butcher and Supermarket
North West Plaza
97 Flockton Street
McDowall, Brisbane, QLD.

View the original article HERE.

 

 

 

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Soak It In: How to Prepare Grains, Beans, Legumes, Nuts and Seeds

soaking-chickpeas

Our modern culture is fixated on speed and convenience: fast-food, microwave meals, quick oats, 2 minute noodles, instant coffee and powdered soup in a box. In our desperate search for more time in the day, we’ve lost touch with traditional food preparation methods that can dramatically improve our health.

Traditional societies around the world knew that certain foods required preparation before consumption. These include grains, beans, legumes, nuts and seeds- foods that contain anti-nutrients and are difficult to digest unless properly prepared.

Grains can be stored for long periods of time without rotting and breaking down, unlike many fruits and vegetables. They have a special protection on them called phytic acid and this prevents them from being digested properly. The phytic acid needs to be broken down before our bodies can access and absorb the wonderful nutrients inside the grain.

When grains are prepared properly – soaked or sprouted- they release phytase which is an enzyme that breaks down the phytic acid, increasing the nutritional quality of the grain and allowing your body to absorb the good stuff! Some people will find that they experience stomach issues if they eat grains that aren’t properly prepared.

Soaking beans helps to remove indigestible sugars and anti-nutrients that cause the, ahem, tooting side effects of the magical fruit. Soaked beans also require less cooking time.

bean-dish

Nuts and seeds contain phytic acid and enzyme inhibitors as well. Enzyme inhibitors prevent seeds from sprouting prematurely, but they can also cause problems in humans by binding to nutrients in the body and contributing to nutrient deficiencies and digestive system irritation. Just because nuts and seeds are considered good sources of protein and nutrients doesn’t mean your body can easily absorb these, and the same goes for grains and legumes. Preparation is needed.

Benefits of Soaking Grains, Legumes, Nuts, Beans and Seeds:

– It’s easy.

– It breaks down the phytic acid and anti-nutrients into a more digestible form.

– It creates the enzymes needed to digest some of these foods properly so your body can absorb a higher amount of the nutrients, vitamins and minerals available.

Challenges

One of the only down-sides to preparing your food properly is that soaking takes time. You’ll need to think ahead when meal planning and make sure you’ve left enough time for the grains, beans, legumes, nuts or seeds to soak.

How to Soak

Soaking is a simple process, but there are a few things to keep in mind:

– Soaking times vary depending on the grain, bean, legume, nut or seed. We’ve included a handy chart below to help you get started.

– Sift through beans or legumes and remove any shrivelled, broken or discoloured ones before soaking. Also give them a good rinse in cold running water.

– Soak your food in water in a bowl or a jar on your countertop at room temperature, making sure the water is double the amount of the food as some of the water will be absorbed.

– If the soaking time is fairly long, you may need to change the water once or twice.

– Drain the liquid. If cooking grains, legumes or beans, cook normally but bear in mind that the cooking time will be reduced. Nuts and seeds can be eaten plain or roasted.

Optional but highly recommended:

– Add 1-2 tablespoons of apple cider vinegar to your water during the soaking time to help develop phytase, the enzyme needed to break down the phytic acid.

Ready to get started?

Come into TMP Organics this week for your grains, beans, legumes, nuts, seeds and apple cider vinegar! Some of our grains, nuts and lentils can also be bought in bulk. Want to enjoy properly prepared grains without having to soak or sprout them yourself? Try our delicious range of sprouted breads.

We look forward to seeing you soon!

  

Why You Should Start Preserving Food

Food preservation banner

Food preservation may seem like a thing of the past, a method used ‘back in the day’ when fresh produce was scarce in the cooler months, but it certainly has its place in the modern world and we use several methods every day without even thinking about it.

While our ancestors dried food for long journeys or fermented food for better nutritional value, food preservation can be used today to not only keep food for longer but also to reduce waste, save money, and enjoy local and seasonal produce year round.

Common food products such as yogurt, cheese, salami, dried fruits, pickled vegetables, canned beans, frozen peas and even beer use various methods of preservation, however many of these store-bought products have been imported and add up on the shopping bill. You can start using local produce and learn to ferment at home to save money and use fruit and vegetables you may have otherwise thrown away.

The best part about using local seasonal produce is that it’s nutritious and flavoursome, it’s cheaper, it supports our local farmers, and it hasn’t traveled half way around the world to get to you so it’s better for the environment.

Preservation Methods

Humans have been preserving food for thousands of years. Some anthropologists even believe that mankind settled down from nomadic wanderers into farmers to grow barley to make beer in roughly 10,000 BC. Food preservation can be found in every culture on the planet. Our long history of preserving food means that we now have a wide variety of time-tested ways to keep food around longer, many of them very basic.

Maturity vs Ripeness

It’s good to understand the difference between maturity and ripeness when preserving fruits and vegetables. Maturity means the produce will ripen and become ready to eat after you pick it. Ripeness occurs when the colour, flavour, and texture is fully developed.

Here’s a guideline to the best preservation methods based on maturity or ripeness of your produce:

Mature, slightly underripe produce is optimal for canning, pickling, and jamming.
Ripe produce is best for fresh eating, drying, cellaring, and freezing.
Overripe produce (but not decaying or mouldy) is suitable for fermenting.

The most common methods of preserving food at home today are canning, freezing and drying, however there are other ways to preserve food.

Here are some popular methods along with some old-fashioned or ancient techniques:

CANNING
The food is heated at a specified temperate for a certain length of time (pasteurising) and then vacuum sealed in special glass jars. Canning will work for most foods including fruits, vegetables, meats and seafood.

Special Equipment
You must use special glass jars with two-piece canning lids designed for this purpose.

FREEZING
Fruits, vegetables, meats, seafood, nuts, grains, dairy and eggs can be frozen, however foods must be chilled to at least -18 celsius.

Foods that love to be frozen:
– Bread. Just slice it first!
– Soups, stews and stocks.
– Cooked rice. Great to have on hand for egg fried rice.
– Meat & fish – although they will lose some moisture upon thawing.
– Bacon. Great to keep on hand for when there’s an emergency call for pork products.
– Bananas. Great for making banana bread or if you remember to peel them first almost instant ‘ice cream’.
– Berries. If you ever find yourself with a berry glut, freeze them in a single layer on a tray. Then pop them in a freezer bag or container.
– Pastry. I always make more than I need then freeze the rest for later.
– Fresh chilli, horseradish, turmeric & ginger. Great to have on hand.
– Herbs. While they will lose their fresh appearance, the flavour will still be great. Especially good for the woody herbs like rosemary & thyme.

Foods that don’t freeze so well:
– Dairy products – except for butter.
– Whole eggs – because they crack on expanding.
– High moisture fruit & vegetables – like celery or lettuce. When the water expands it damages the vegetable cell walls which turns them to mush when they thaw out.
– Garlic.
– Jam. The pectin which causes the jam to gel breaks down at freezing temperatures.
– Mayonnaise.

DRYING
Drying is the process of dehydrating foods until there is not enough moisture to support microbial activity. Fruits, vegetables, meats, seafood, grains, legumes and nuts can be dried.

Special Equipment
– Oven, or
– Electric dehydrator

Common dried foods:
– Instant coffee
– Evaporated and powdered milk
– Instant noodles
– Oatmeal
– Instant soup
– Sugar
– Dried apricots, banana and apple
– Desiccated coconut
– Dates
– Dried figs, goji berries and raisins
– Nuts
– Sun-dried tomatoes
– Rice
– Jerky
– Pancetta, Salami, Pastrami and Prosciutto

FERMENTING
Many foods can be fermented, which means that good bacteria is encouraged to grow to counteract bad bacteria in order to preserve the food. Examples of fermented products are wine (from grapes), sauerkraut (from cabbage), cured sausage, and yogurt (from milk).

PICKLING
Pickled foods can be unsafe if prepared incorrectly, so another method of preservation is often used in conjunction with pickling such as fermenting or canning. Pickling requires the food to be soaked in a solution containing salt (brine), acid (vinegar or lemon juice), or alcohol and can be done with a wide variety of foods.

DRY SALTING
This old-fashioned method was used in the early twentieth century as an alternative to canning. Dry salting is either a fermenting or pickling technique used for meat, fish, and vegetables, and can produce a favourable taste to canned or frozen food.

CURING
This can be a complex method of preservation requiring special technique and know-how. Curing is similar to pickling in that it uses salt, acid, and/or nitrates. It is used specifically for meat and fish.

SMOKING
Smoking can act as a drying agent while also improving flavour and appearance. Smoked meats are less likely to turn rancid or grow mould than unsmoked meats.

SEALING
Sealing keeps air out which delays spoilage, but does not stop it. It is often used in conjunction with drying or freezing. Vacuum sealing is a relatively inexpensive and simple method of food preservation.

CELLARING
Cellaring can be used for many foods such as vegetables, grains, nuts, fermented foods and dry-cured meats. It is the process of storing foods in a temperature-, humidity-, and light-controlled environment.

Ready to get started?

The start of winter is the perfect time to make large batches of soup and freeze, create ferments like sauerkraut and kimchi, dry or can tomatoes, or dry fruits now going out of season.

Come into TMP Organics for your fresh produce and try your hand at one of the methods of food preservation mentioned in this article. We’d love to see how you go!

Original article: http://www.tmporganicsbutcherandsupermarket.com.au/why-you-should-start-preserving-food.html

 

 

Diatomaceous Earth – The next big thing in health and well being?

diatomaceous-earth

You may have never heard of Diatomaceous Earth before, even though it’s been a part of the earth’s ecology for millions of years, but based on its remarkable health benefits we think it’s time the word got out. Like kale and goji berries before it, Diatomaceous Earth, or DE, may very well be the next big thing in the wellness industry.

Diatomaceous earth is an all-natural product made from tiny fossilised water plants or algae called diatoms. You’ve probably used DE before and not even realised it. It’s commonly found in pet nutrition products, sprays and products used to kill bugs, water filters, skin care products, toothpastes, foods and beverages such as beer and wine, and even in supplements and medicines.

Wait, I know what you’re thinking- did they just say it’s used to kill bugs and it’s used in food and beverages? Yep!

DE is available in two different grades: food grade (meant to be taken internally by humans) and non-food grade (used in industrial practices). The FDA in the US lists food grade diatomaceous earth as “Generally Recognised as Safe” and it has been used in household, beauty, food and pesticide products since the 1960s.

So how does it work and what is it exactly?

DE usually comes in the form of a white powder comprised of ground up diatoms (fossilised remains of tiny aquatic organisms) and is used to naturally eliminate free radicals, viruses, insects, parasites and other harmful organisms by binding to them and drying them out. It also has the ability to improve bone mineralisation, protect joints and fight the effects of ageing.

diatoms

Health Benefits

Sure, we’ve all heard about juice cleanses for detoxification, but DE takes detoxing to a whole new level.

Diatomaceous earth helps to eliminate unhealthy bacteria, parasites, fungi, protozoa, endotoxins, pesticides and drug residues, e-coli, heavy metals (including methyl mercury), and protein toxins produced by some intestinal infections from the body. It does this by becoming negatively charged and attracting harmful microbes, free radicals and positively charged waste and helping the body to excrete them safely.

Parasites in the stomach or digestive tract are killed by the sharp edges of the DE. These edges also help to clean the walls of the intestines to remove mucus and mould, allowing the body to absorb more of the nutrients in the foods we eat.

A small amount of DE is absorbed into the blood stream as silica. Silica works similarly to antioxidants found in high-antioxidant foods, fighting free radical damage and detoxifying the blood.

A study published in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition found that silica helps eliminate heavy metals such as aluminium from the body. It can also be beneficial to bone and connective tissue and can help prevent osteoporosis.

DE health benefits include:

– Improved digestion and more regular bowel movements

– Better liver and colon functioning

– Improved detoxification and removal of heavy metals

– Stronger immune function and protection from illnesses

– Healthier looking skin, hair and nails

– Stronger bones and protection from fractures or osteoporosis

– Improved joint and ligament health

– Improved energy

Ready to try Diatomaceous Earth for yourself?

Come into TMP Organics and pick up your pack of Fossil Power Diatomaceous Earth or Supercharged Food Heal Your Gut Powder and experience the benefits for yourself.

We’d love to hear your feedback and thoughts.

Heal Your Gut DE

Fossil Power DE

Health Benefits of Manuka Honey

manuka-honey

Not all honeys are created equal, and telling the difference can sometimes be tricky. The standard honeys available at conventional supermarkets aren’t always as beneficial for our health as we’d like them to be. They are often highly processed and lacking in important nutrients.

Manuka honey, however, has been shown to have up to 4 times the nutritional content of normal flower honeys, and it is also highly antibacterial.

Honey has been used for thousands of years for medicinal purposes including topical treatment for wounds and other skin infections, but recent studies have exposed many more amazing health benefits of this unique honey.

Manuka Honey is so effective because of its considerably higher level of enzymes than regular honey. These enzymes create a natural hydrogen peroxide that works as an antibacterial. Hydrogen peroxide and methylglyoxal (MG), a powerful antibiotic compound, found in Manuka honey create what is referred to as the Unique Manuka Factor (UMF).

The UMF is a global standard in identifying and measuring the antibacterial strength of Manuka. This is necessary as UMF is not found in the nectar of all Manuka flowers, the flower native to New Zealand which is pollinated to create the Manuka honey. Two laboratories in New Zealand carry out independent tests in order to establish the UMF of certain Manuka honeys, that is, to identify the percentage of MG and therefore its concentration of healing properties.

Some honey is sold as Manuka honey but only contains a small amount of MG. It is recommended that you purchase honey that has the UMF trademark on it and the UMF factor. The minimum recognised UMF rating is UMF5, but it’s not considered beneficial unless it carries a UMF10+. You should aim for a UMF rating of at least 10+, however 16+ is ideal for the best medicinal benefits. To be considered Manuka honey, it also has to come from New Zealand.

Here is an explanation of what Manuka honey UMF you should use:
0-4 Non-therapeutic
4-9 Maintenance level with general honey health benefits
10-14 Supports natural healing and bacterial balance
15+ Superior levels of phenols that are highly therapeutic

Top Manuka Honey Benefits

Gastritis

Gastritis is the inflammation of the stomach lining and can be caused by bacterial infections. Manuka honey has been shown to be effective against Helicobacter pylori, the bacteria most commonly seen in the highly acidic environment of the stomach. This bacterium is implicated in most cases of stomach ulcers that develop into cancer.

SIBO, Low Stomach Acid, Acid Reflux

Manuka honey is very beneficial in reducing reflux and balancing your digestive system to heal stomach and intestinal imbalances.

Inflammatory Bowel Disease

Manuka honey has been found to be effective in preventing colonic inflammation. It also helps with the repair of the colon lining damaged due to chronic Inflammatory Bowel Disease (IBD).

Acne and Eczema

While there are no clinical trials to support claims that Manuka honey helps treat acne and eczema, there is plenty of anecdotal evidence from people applying honey on affected areas and seeing results. This makes sense due to Manuka’s proven antimicrobial and healing properties.

Staph Infections (MRSA)

UK researchers from Cardiff Metropolitan University have recently discovered that Manuka honey down-regulates the most potent genes of the MRSA bacteria. Some scientists have suggested that regular topical use on cuts and infections (especially in hospitals and nursing homes) may keep MRSA at bay naturally.

Burns and Wounds

Manuka honey is excellent at treating cuts and burns due to its rich antioxidant, antibacterial and anti-inflammatory properties. It disinfects the wound, draws out fluid and accelerates the body’s own defence mechanisms. Manuka also acts as pain relief for burn patients.

Dental Health

Inflammation of the gum (gingivitis) and the periodontal disease called pyorrhoea can be prevented or controlled by Manuka honey. Manuka has a high mineral content including calcium, zinc and phosphorous, and several studies have shown that chewing or sucking on a Manuka honey product caused a 35% decrease in plaque and led to a 35% reduction in bleeding sites in people suffering from gingivitis.

Immunity

Manuka honey can stimulate the body’s cytokine production and kickstart our defence mechanisms to better fight off pathogens and diseases.

Cough Remedy

Honey has traditionally been taken to soothe sore throats and stop coughs because it soothes the lining of the throat and decreases discomfort and irritation. Due to its high antimicrobial actions, Manuka honey is even more effective than regular honey, and it has recently been approved by the National Cancer Institute to be used to heal inflammation in the throat from chemotherapy.

Tonsillitis

Tonsillitis is a painful inflammation of the tonsils and Manuka honey has been shown to be an effective remedy. It’s recommended that a teaspoon of honey be taken 3-4 times a day to combat the infection and inflammation. It acts by destroying the pathogens and stimulating the body’s own defence system.

Allergies and Sinusitis

Taking Manuka honey on a regular basis can dramatically improve symptoms of allergy sufferers. It also helps those suffering from chronic sinusitis. Some people use Manuka honey in a neti pot to irrigate the sinuses, but intake of high grade (UMF 15+) could be just as effective.

Athlete’s Foot and Ringworm

Two of the most common fungal infections of the skin are athlete’s foot and ringworm. Applying honey to the affected area will relieve the itch and help clear the infection, making Manuka honey an effective treatment.

How to Use Manuka Honey

Cup of tea with lemon and honey

You can add Manuka honey to your favourite herbal tea or to meals, or you can just take it straight. It’s recommended that you take a dose of about 1-2 tablespoons per day for the most benefit.

Precautions

Some sources claim that people allergic to bees, pollen or other bee-related allergies should use Manuka honey with caution due to possible allergic side effects.

Any kind of honey isn’t suitable for babies under 12 months of age.

TMP Organics has a range of Manuka Honeys in store. Come on in this weekend!

Health Benefits of Turmeric

curmin-image

Turmeric is the spice that gives curry its yellow colour, and it has been used in India and the Middle East for thousands of years. Turmeric was traditionally used in Siddha and Ayurvedic medicine to treat inflammatory conditions, skin diseases, wounds, digestive ailments and liver conditions.

It’s only recently, however, that science has started to shed more light on turmeric’s true medicinal potential.

The focus of many studies has been on curcumin, which is the main active compound in turmeric. Turmeric has so many healing properties that there have been over 6000 peer-reviewed articles published proving the benefits of turmeric, and in particular curcumin.

One of the most comprehensive summaries of turmeric studies to date was published by James A. Duke, PhD. Reviewing around 700 studies looking at turmeric benefits, Duke concluded that turmeric appears to outperform many pharmaceuticals in its effects against several chronic debilitating diseases, and does so with virtually no adverse side effects.

Turmeric is arguably the most powerful herb on the planet at fighting and potentially reversing disease.

Health Benefits of Turmeric

Research suggests that turmeric may be helpful in treating chronic inflammation, inflammatory bowel diseases, rheumatoid arthritis, lowering cholesterol counts, protecting the heart, relieving indigestion, improving liver function, preventing Alzheimer’s disease, and even preventing and treating cancer.

Curcumin is a Natural Anti-Inflammatory Compound

The most powerful use for curcumin is in reducing inflammation. One study evaluated several anti-inflammatory compounds and found that aspirin and ibuprofen are the least effective in controlling inflammation while curcumin is among the most effective in the world.

This finding is important because chronic, low-level inflammation plays a major role in almost every chronic Western disease including heart disease, cancer, metabolic syndrome, ulcerative colitis, arthritis, Alzheimer’s, and various degenerative conditions. Curcumin has the potential to prevent, and even treat, these diseases by keeping inflammation at bay.

Gastrointestinal Treatment

For many people with inflammatory bowel disease (IBS, Crohn’s disease, and Ulcerative Colitis), corticosteroids reduce their pain symptoms but damage the intestinal lining over time, actually making the condition worse. An in-depth analysis on all the studies evaluating curcumin’s ability to mange IBD found that many patients were able to stop taking their prescribed corticosteroids because their condition improved so dramatically by taking curcumin.

Arthritis Management

Most types of arthritis involve inflammation in the joints, and several studies show that curcumin can help reduce this inflammation. A study was conducted on 45 rheumatoid arthritis patients to compare the benefits of curcumin in turmeric to arthritis drugs (diclofenac sodium), that put people at risk of developing leaky gut and heart disease.

Patients treated with curcumin alone showed the highest percentage of improvement in overall scores. Curcumin treatment was found to be safe and did not relate with any adverse events.

Turmeric Increases the Antioxidant Capacity of the Body

Oxidative damage is believed to be one of the mechanisms behind ageing and many diseases. Curcumin is a potent antioxidant that can neutralise free radicals and boost the activity of the body’s own antioxidant enzymes.

Curcumin and Heart Disease

Heart disease is the world’s leading cause of death, and while there are many contributing factors to heart disease, curcumin may help reverse many of them.

Curcumin can help improve the function of the endothelium, which is the lining of the blood vessels. Endothelial dysfunction is a major driver of heart disease and involves the inability of the endothelium to regulate blood pressure, blood clotting and various other factors.

Curcumin reduces inflammation and oxidation (as discussed above) which are also linked with heart disease.

One of the reasons heart disease is such a problem in the western world is because people are developing pre-diabetes (excessive blood sugar) at an alarming rate. Also, diabetics and non-diabetics are suffering from oxidative stress which damages the inside of blood vessels. Because of this damage to the arteries, cholesterol begins to build up to patch up the damaged areas which leads to high levels of LDL cholesterol.

One study has found that curcumin is equal or more effective than diabetes medications at reducing oxidative stress and inflammation in the treatment of high cholesterol. This is good news as statin drugs like Lipitor are widely known to harm the kidneys and the liver, along with causing other harmful side effects.

Turmeric Can Help Prevent and Treat Cancer

Researchers have been studying curcumin as a beneficial herb in cancer treatment. It can affect cancer growth, development and spread at the molecular level. Studies have also shown that it can reduce angiogenesis (growth of new blood vessels in tumours), metastasis (spread of cancer), as well as contributing to the death of cancerous cells in the laboratory and inhibit the growth of tumours in test animals.

Evidence suggests that curcumin may help prevent cancer from occurring in the first place, especially cancers of the digestive system. In one study of 44 men with lesions on the colon that sometimes turn cancerous, 4 grams of curcumin per day for 30 days reduced the number of lesions by 40%.

Cancer Research UK reports that a number of laboratory studies on cancer cells have shown that curcumin does have anticancer effects. It seems to be able to kill cancer cells and prevent more from growing. It has the best effects on breast cancer, bowel cancer, stomach cancer and skin cancer cells.

A 2007 study that combined curcumin with chemotherapy to treat bowel cancer cells in a laboratory showed that the combined treatment killed more cells than the chemotherapy alone.

The American Cancer Society reports similar results- curcumin interferes with cancer development, growth, and spread. It has the ability to reduce tumour size and kills cancer cells.

James A. Duke, PhD, said the effectiveness of curcumin against certain cancers compared favourably with that reported for pharmaceuticals.

Curcumin and the Brain

Many common brain disorders such as depression and Alzheimer’s disease have been linked to decreased levels of a hormone (BDNF) that functions in the brain. Curcumin can increase brain levels of BDNF. By doing this, it may be effective in delaying or even reversing many brain diseases and age-related decreases in brain function.

Alzheimer’s disease is the most common neurodegenerative disease in the world and has been linked with inflammation and oxidative damage. It has also been linked with a buildup of protein tangles called Amyloid plaques. Studies show that curcumin reduces inflammation, oxidative damage, and clears these plaques.

Curcumin is also a promising treatment for depression, showing similar improvements in patients as those taking Prozac.

How to Get More Turmeric in Your Diet

All of the above benefits are attributed to curcumin, however some studies have indicated that whole turmeric has more benefits than curcumin in isolation, so keep this in mind when including this powerful spice in your diet.

Add Turmeric to Your Meals

Turmeric can be added to savoury dishes to add flavour and colour as well as health benefits! Add turmeric to curries, meat rubs, marinades, sauces and salad dressings.

Use a Turmeric Supplement

The curcumin content of turmeric is not very high – around 3% by weight – so taking a turmeric extract containing mostly curcumin can help boost effectiveness.

Curcumin is poorly absorbed into the bloodstream so it’s also recommended that you consume black pepper with it to enhance absorption.

Drink Turmeric Tea

Also known as Golden Milk, turmeric tea is a great way to consume turmeric daily.

Wellness Mama has a great article on turmeric tea which can be found here along with recipes.
SOURCES

https://authoritynutrition.com/top-10-evidence-based-health-benefits-of-turmeric/

https://draxe.com/turmeric-benefits/

http://www.mindbodygreen.com/0-6873/25-Reasons-Why-Turmeric-Can-Heal-You.html

https://www.davidwolfe.com/turmeric-golden-milk-before-bed/

http://foodfacts.mercola.com/turmeric.html

http://www.drweil.com/diet-nutrition/nutrition/3-reasons-to-eat-turmeric/

http://www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/306981.php

https://wellnessmama.com/223/turmeric-tea-recipe/

ORIGINAL POST: http://www.tmporganicsbutcherandsupermarket.com.au/health-benefits-of-turmeric.html

 

What to do with Christmas Leftovers

We can all agree that Christmas Day’s feast is delicious, but that doesn’t mean you have to live it all over again on Boxing Day. Here are some great ideas for sprucing up leftover ham, chicken and turkey to create new and exciting meals the whole family will enjoy.

Ham and Potato Cakes with Rocket Pesto

ham-potato-cakes-with-rocket-pesto-23601_l

Source: delicious. – January 2012 , Page 168. Recipe by Jessica Brook & Phoebe Wood.

Get creative with your festive leftovers to make these vibrant ham and potato cakes.

6 Servings

Ingredients

800g desiree potatoes, peeled, chopped
1 tablespoon wholegrain mustard
2 tablespoons chopped chives
1 egg, lightly beaten
150g leftover Christmas ham, roughly torn
2 tablespoons plain flour
Sunflower oil, to shallow-fry
1 bunch rocket
1 tablespoon toasted pine nuts
1 preserved lemon quarter, flesh and white pith removed, rind finely chopped

Wild rocket pesto
60g wild rocket
2 tablespoons toasted pine nuts
1/4 cup chopped chives
Juice of 1 lemon, plus wedges to serve
100ml extra virgin olive oil

Method

Step 1
Place potato in a saucepan of cold, salted water, bring to the boil, then cook over medium-high heat for 10-12 minutes until tender. Drain and cool.

Step 2
Meanwhile, for the pesto, place rocket, pine nuts, chives and lemon juice in a small food processor and whiz to combine. With the motor running, add the oil in a slow, steady stream until a coarse pesto. Season and set aside.

Step 3
Transfer the potato to a bowl and roughly mash with a fork or potato masher. Add the mustard, chives and beaten egg. Season with salt and pepper and stir to combine. Fold through the ham. With damp hands, form the potato mixture into 18 even patties, about 2cm thick. Lightly dust in flour.

Step 4
Add 2cm oil to a frypan and place over medium heat. In batches, cook potato cakes for 2 minutes each side or until golden and warmed through. Remove with a slotted spoon and drain on paper towel.

Step 5
Toss the rocket with the pine nuts and preserved lemon rind, then serve with potato cakes, rocket pesto and lemon wedges.

Shredded Turkey Burritos

shredded-turkey-burritos-13537_l

Source: Super Food Ideas – December 2007 , Page 21. Recipe by Liz Macri.

Makes 12

Ingredients

2 teaspoons olive oil
1 red onion, finely chopped
1 tablespoon chopped pickled jalapeño chillies
2 teaspoons ground coriander
400g can diced tomatoes
420g can red kidney beans, drained, rinsed
1 3/4 cups shredded cooked turkey (see note)
12 burrito tortillas
1/2 cup sour cream
1/2 iceberg lettuce, finely shredded
3/4 cup grated tasty cheese
1/2 cup fresh coriander leaves

Method

Step 1
Heat oil in a saucepan over medium heat. Add onion. Cook, stirring occasionally, for 3 minutes or until soft. Add chillies and ground coriander. Cook, stirring, for 1 minute or until fragrant. Add tomatoes and beans. Simmer, stirring occasionally, for 3 to 5 minutes or until mixture has thickened. Add turkey. Simmer for 5 minutes or until heated through.

Step 2
Meanwhile, heat tortillas according to packet directions. Place on a flat surface. Spread each tortilla with 2 teaspoons sour cream. Place lettuce, turkey mixture, cheese and coriander leaves along centre of each tortilla. Roll up tightly to enclose filling. Serve.

Fruity Turkey Tagine

fruity-turkey-tagine

Source: Good Food magazine, November 2014

Freshen up Christmas leftovers of turkey, carrots and parsnips with ras el hanout in this sweet and spicy Moroccan stew.

Serves 4-6

Ingredients

1 tbsp olive oil
1 red onion, thickly sliced
3 carrots, thickly sliced on the diagonal
3 parsnips, thickly sliced on the diagonal
2 garlic cloves, crushed
2 tsp ras el hanout (common North African spice, available at major supermarkets)
500ml turkey or chicken stock
400g can chopped tomatoes
400g can chickpeas, drained and rinsed
140g mixture of dried apricots and prunes, roughly chopped
300g leftover turkey, cut into chunks
Good drizzle of clear honey
½ small bunch coriander, roughly chopped
1 tbsp flaked almonds
Couscous, to serve
Greek yogurt, to serve

Method

Step 1
Heat the oil in a large saucepan, add the onion and cook gently for 8 mins or until softened. Add the carrots and parsnips, and cook for 8 mins until starting to soften and brown a little. Stir in the garlic and ras el hanout, and cook for a further 30 secs. Tip in the stock, tomatoes, chickpeas, dried fruit and 150ml water. Season, bring to a simmer and cook for 25-30 mins until the vegetables are tender.

Step 2
Add the turkey and simmer for 5 mins to warm through. Stir in the honey, then scatter over the coriander and almonds just before serving with couscous and Greek yogurt.

Jumbo Turkey Samosas

jumbo-turkey-samosas

Source: Good Food magazine, December 2014

Use up leftover cooked potatoes and turkey in these spiced filo pastry parcels, then serve with tangy mango chutney.

Serves 4

Ingredients

3 tbsp curry paste (we used korma)
2 tbsp mango chutney, plus extra to serve
2 tbsp natural yogurt from a 150g pot (serve the remainder)
200g leftover cooked potatoes (roasted or boiled are fine), chopped into small chunks
250g cooked turkey or chicken, chopped into small pieces
250g frozen peas
Bunch coriander, chopped, plus a few leaves picked to serve
270g pack filo pastry (6 sheets)
4 tbsp vegetable oil
1 egg, beaten
1 tbsp sesame seeds

Method

Heat oven to 180C.

Step 1
In a large bowl, combine the curry paste, mango chutney and 2 tbsp yogurt, and mix well. Fold in the potatoes, turkey, peas and coriander, then season well.

Step 2
Cut the sheets of filo in half lengthways so you have 12 strips – keep the pastry covered with a tea towel while you work so it doesn’t dry out. Layer up 3 sheets of filo, brushing a little oil between each sheet. Pile a quarter of the filling in the top corner of the pastry in a triangle shape. Fold the pastry over to encase the filling, then keep folding until the parcel is sealed and the filo is used up. Brush the final edge with a little beaten egg to help stick the pastry together. Repeat to make all 4 jumbo samosas.

Step 3
Lay your samosas on a baking sheet and brush each one with more beaten egg, then sprinkle with sesame seeds. Bake for 35 mins or until the samosas are golden brown and the filling is piping hot. Serve with the remaining yogurt, some mango chutney and coriander leaves.

Get into TMP Organics this week to stock up for Christmas!

View original article here.