Greetings once again from your friends at TexStar Chiropractic here in Austin.
When you bought that little bottle of Turmeric, that golden yellow powder in the spice isle, you probably didn’t realize you were buying one of the best medicines that nature provides.
Turmeric can be found in all kinds of forms in grocery and health food stores ranging from whole roots, to the powdered spice, to teas and capsules. It’s found in nature as a flowering plant native to Southeast Asia. Its main use is as a spice but what makes it special is the high concentrations of curcuminoids. These little molecules are what give turmeric its power to help with everything from heart disease to arthritis.
Recently more and more evidence has been found that links large numbers of chronic diseases to abnormal inflammation in our bodies. The disease process that we deal with the most as Doctors of Chiropractic is arthritis or degenerative joint disease. This is where our experience have found the use of turmeric incredibly useful.
We see patients every day that are dealing with chronic pain. What makes our Austin-based chiropractic services special is that we offer great drug free treatment options to address these kinds of issues. We use joint manipulation to get damaged joints moving again. We coach people through strengthening exercises to help stabilize joints and restore proper biomechanics. We use different drug free chiropractic therapies to treat spinal pain, chiropractic treatment for knee pain, and a host of other conditions. We even have lasers that are specifically designed to treat inflammation in the joints. Sometimes even with all of these interventions we have patients that still have some level of pain after treatment and need to find healthy ways to control it. In the past we would usually recommend a low dose of over the counter anti-inflammatories, or in some cases we would refer patients out to a pain management doctor for stronger medications and possibly injections.
The reason we started looking into turmeric was that we kept coming across research showing how effective it is as an anti-inflammatory and we were becoming more and more aware of the damage that even over the counter nonsteroidal anti-inflammatories do to your stomach, small intestines, and kidneys. We also wanted to find alternatives to stronger pain medications like opioids. We found lots of great studies on turmeric and curcumin, but my favorite was a 2015 double blind trial published in the Journal of Clinical Nutrition. In the study participants had their blood drawn and then over an 8-week period half of the participants took a one gram capsule of turmeric and the other half took a placebo. At the end of the trial both groups had their blood drawn again and the turmeric group showed a significant reduction in three major blood inflammatory markers while the control group showed no major change.
After reading that study, we started recommending turmeric to outpatients and we began searching for a high enough quality supplement that we could endorse. In 2018 we finally found Turmeric Forte from Medi-Herb and saw what it could do for our patients with residual pain coming from chronic inflammation. We chose to carry this product because it is a highly absorbable formulation of turmeric combined with other curcuminoids. This particular brand can be found in our office (TexStar Chiropractic) or at People’s Pharmacy on South Lamar but there are lots of other good turmeric supplements out there that you can find at any local health food store like sprouts, central market, or whole foods.
If you are suffering from a nagging injury or pain from chronic inflammation, this unassuming spice may be a great option for you. If you are taking any other medications especially blood thinners consult with your physician before starting any new dietary supplements or over the counter medications.
Here at Austin’s TexStar Chiropractic, we take a holistic approach to drug-free pain treatment. We can help. Contact us to learn more and start your path toward pain reduction and a better quality of life.