You’ve probably all noticed how turmeric is the new popular kid on the health scene! The other day, Søren had a meeting with a professional trendspotter from New York and she confirmed that turmeric is now all over the place these days. Just like ginger was a few years back. Here in my part of the world, these trends seem to come a few years later. If ever.
Turmeric is a small root that gives the yellow/orange color to curry powder. Like ginger, it has all kinds of proven (and not so proven) health benefits. It’s especially known for its anti-inflammatory and anti-bacterial effects but has also shown some potency in the prevention of diseases like heart disease, cancer, depression, alzheimers, digestive issues, arthritis etc.
Even though there may be some truth to these claims, it’s in my Scandinavian genes to always be a bit sceptic when something sounds too good to be true. What is worth noting in this case is that the health benefits that are often claimed from turmeric really comes from Curcumin which is the main active ingredient in turmeric. Curcumin however is only about 3% of the turmeric root and studies are usually made with extract of curcumin and not with turmeric per se. That means that you would have to consume a whole lot of roots to reach the same amount of Curcumin.
MY NEW MORNING ROUTINE
But none the less, I really like both ginger and turmeric. I’ve recently struggled to find a green tea that suits my morning taste buds. I like the green teas with added flavor but many brands I try have become too sweet for me. Since I gave up sugar all together, my taste buds have really intensified. I prefer my morning tea with a bit more edge or bitterness. So I started adding grated ginger and turmeric to my morning tea and it has become something I look forward to every morning.
Please note that Curcumin needs fat to be absorbed into the blood stream. If you have this tea with your (high fat) breakfast, there’s no issue but if you have it as part of a very low fat meal or with no meal at all, you’ll need to add some fat for better absorption. This could just be a small handful of nuts or maybe a bit of oil. Studies have also shown that Curcumin is best absorbed if you combine it with pepper (or the active ingredient in pepper). Swallow a few pepper corns if you like or don’t if you think it sounds too crazy.
1 POT OF TEA
- green tea (unflavored – I use a green Sencha tea)
- hot water cooled to about 160°F/80°C
- 20g of freshly grated ginger
- 20g of freshly grated turmeric
2. Brew your tea as you would normally, leaving the ginger and the turmeric to soak in the tea water. Cooling the water to 160°F/80°C will prevent your tea to become bitter.
3. Let the tea steep for about 5 minutes before you drink it.
AN IMPORTANT TIP FROM ME TO YOU!
Consider using plastic gloves when handling turmeric or your fingers and nails will become bright yellow and look like you’ve spent your whole life smoking cigarettes. How I know this? Because I don’t have any plastic gloves and went to a birthday party last night with the yellowest fingers ever! Yes, that’s a true story!
YOU WANT MORE GINGER? Check out the hot ginger infusion!