Turmeric? Tumeric? Turmer-what?

Turmeric.

We’ve been hearing about this super food for months, but what is it? A powder? A root? A magical health elixir?

Thankfully, the JUARA Turmeric Benefits Guide is here to answer all of your questions!

So, let’s start with the basics. What is turmeric?

Part of the ginger family, turmeric is a native plant to southeast India. Turmeric is most popularly used in two forms: raw and dried. Turmeric has been used for almost 1000 years in cuisine, medicine, makeup, skin care, and clothes dying.

What are the health benefits of turmeric?

When ingested, turmeric has historically been used to heal stomach and liver ailments. Turmeric powder concoctions have been used to bring down fevers. It can also be used as an anti-bacterial salve on open wounds. Those who consume turmeric on a regular basis report a reduction in arthritis pain, heartburn, sensitive stomachs, headaches, colds, and menstrual cramps. It may also help those with diabetes, depression, Alzheimer’s, and certain types of cancer. How? New research showed that daily turmeric ingestion decreased DNA damage by half in a test of blood cells exposed to oxidation. (Percival SS et al. Bioavailability of herbs and spices in humans as determined by ex vivo inflammatory suppression and DNA strand breaks. J Am Coll Nutr. 2012; 31(4):288-94 in Greger M, Stone G. How Not to Die. Flatiron Books, New York 2015, p352.)

What can turmeric do for my skin?

Turmeric, with its anti-inflammatory and redness reducing properties, can be used to treat a variety of skin conditions including eczema, allergic hives, and even chicken pox! Turmeric is also a great treatment for acne, as it is both anti-microbial and anti-inflammatory (not to mention anti-oxidant and anti-neoplastic) (Vaugh AR. et al. Effects of Turmeric (Curcuma longa) on Skin Health: A Systemic Review of the Clinical Evidence. Phytother Res. 2016 Aug;30(8):1243-64).

Effects of Turmeric (Curcuma longa) on Skin Health: A Systematic Review of the Clinical Evidence.

. The JUARA Turmeric Antioxidant Radiance Mask maximizes the healing properties of turmeric by combining it with kaolin clay!

Are there any side effects of ingesting or topically applying turmeric?

There are no known side effects for applying turmeric directly onto the skin. When ingesting turmeric, however, it is important to remember that turmeric is a blood thinner. Consuming turmeric daily makes it more difficult for your blood to clot, so lessen your turmeric intake if you take medicine that thins your blood, or speak to your doctor.

 

Do you still have questions about Turmeric and its uses? Leave a comment on our Facebook page!

5 Principles of an Effective Core Skincare Regimen

“Regimen” may sound restrictive and boring, but a consistent daily regimen is in fact your skin’s best friend.  Like with anything in life, a consistent regimen tells you over time what’s working and what needs change because it gives you a solid benchmark to start from.  In that way, it not only helps your skin, but it also helps you to get to know your skin better.  How to get started?

Select 4-5 products for daily use that provide a solid framework for your skin type and address your top concerns.  You can add extra treatment products, like masks or special items, once you feel comfortable with your core and confident that you will stick to it AM and PM.  Here are the key elements and principles in a great core:

1. Cleanse:  Gentle is King

A good cleanser removes dirt and make-up without stripping skin.  Feeling refreshed is good.  Feeling “squeaky clean” is overkill.  When you strip your skin of its own natural lipid barrier, it’s hard to add it back through product. With a good cleanser, your skin should still feel comfortable and not taught for a whole minute or so after cleansing and before applying a moisturizer.

2.  Tone: Focus on Hydration and Skin-Friendly Ingredients

All skin types, including oily skin, can get dehydrated.  Dehydration means that your skin is lacking water and can result in fine dry lines, irritation and redness.  Look for a toner with water-binding ingredients, like Hyaluronic Acid or Tamarind Seed Extract.  It will plump skin and keep it soft and supple while also making your moisturizer more productive.  Avoid irritating and drying ingredients like alcohol.

3.  Treat: Commit to an Antioxidant-Rich Serum

Antioxidants help prevent premature skin-aging and can even reverse existing signs of aging, such as dullness, lines and wrinkles, large pores and loss of firmness.  They also improve redness and other signs of stress.  Serums, which are highly concentrated formulations, are great ways to provide skin directly with an extra dose of antioxidants and nutrients.  What specific ingredients to look for?  Botanicals rich in antioxidants include Turmeric, Clove Flower, Indian Gooseberry, Tea Extracts, Goji Berry and Kombucha.

4.  Moisturize:  Enhance and Balance 

Whether you have dry or oily skin, the point is to help your skin reach and maintain a healthy balance.  If you are dry, choose a moisturizer that enhances and helps rebuild your skin’s own lipid barrier with ingredient that are rich in essential fatty acids, phyto-sterols and/ or ceramide (e.g. Candlenut Oil and Rice Bran Oil).  If you are oily, look for ingredients that help purify pores, reduce shine and balance sebum-production (e.g. Ginger, Cinnamon).

5.  Protect Daily

Whether you prefer a straight sun screen, a moisturizer or foundation with built-in protection, or a protective powder, consistency is key.  Look for a minimum of SPF15 for daily use and make sure it provides broad-spectrum (meaning UVB + UBA) protection.

Recipe Spotlight: Turmeric Eggs & Tamarind with Brussels Slaw

One of my favorite jamu (herbal tonics) from Indonesia is the Kunir Asem. It is a combination of Turmeric and Tamarind blended in a superjuice (as I like to call it) with water, lime, a pinch of salt and palm sugar (or agave/honey.) Together, turmeric and tamarind together have a positive effect on your digestive system and helps fight inflammation in your system. But sometimes I don’t feel like making up a beverage – it’s not so convenient, but I know what is – breakfast. And brunch. We all enjoy it so why not combine that Indonesian grassy spice of turmeric and the tangy sweet flavor of tamarind fruit in our everyday routine? Make the exotic accessible in this easy to make recipe I created this weekend on my own leisurely brunch – and for sure I’ll be making it again!

And for all things JUARA Skincare that contain Turmeric, click HERE to see and learn about how Turmeric can benefit your skin! (I, for one, made the recipe below after applying the Turmeric Antioxidant Radiance Mask for a full experience and inspiration!)

Scrambled Turmeric Eggs with Tamarind Sauce – Serves 1.

Ingredients:

2 eggs

3 tablespoons of milk

1 clove garlic, finely chopped (or garlic powder as a shortcut)

2 big pinches or 1/2 teaspoon of turmeric powder

pinch of sea salt

generous crack/shakes of black pepper (helps turmeric be more bioavailable and easily absorbed by the body)

coconut oil (to heat in the pan, plus it’s good for you and turmeric is also more effective when mixed with a fat/oil)

Optional: Add a 1/2 teaspoon of Garam Masala or Everyday Spice mix (from Trader Joe’s or of your choice)

1 teaspoon (or more, to taste) Tamarind Sauce/Tamarind Chutney found in the Asian/Indian section of supermarkets. Often the sauces are pre-made, great for dips, sauces or condiments.

Scramble the eggs, milk, garlic, turmeric, salt and pepper (and optional spices) together. Heat coconut oil in a pan to medium, and scramble the eggs until fluffy and cooked. (You can always vary by making it into an omelette and adding spinach too).

Brussels Slaw – Serves 1:

3-4 Brussel Sprouts, raw, finely chopped

1 tsbp pepitas (pumpkin seeds)

1 tbsp Olive Oil

Juice of 1/4 Lemon

Sea Salt & Pepper to taste

Optional: Add baby kale or chopped cucumber for additional greens or crunch

Blend all ingredients together and serve. Add more lemon juice, or any other ingredient to flavor the brussel sprouts to taste. This is supposed to be a clean, light and fresh salad to complement the richer flavor and softer texture of the scrambled eggs.

How to serve: Plate the scrambled eggs on a plate, and top with tamarind sauce. Surround the eggs with a ring of brussels slaw. Enjoy the delicious texture combination and healthy flavors together!