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Turmeric Can Prevent Heart Attacks


A new study from Thailand indicates that turmeric can help to reduce the chances of heart attacks in patients who have recently undergone heart bypass surgery. Bypass surgery can actually slightly damage the heart muscle as it is starved of blood flow at points throughout the procedure. This can lead to an increased risk of heart attack.

The pigment in turmeric – a bright yellow color – called curcumin, can help to reduce the risk of heart attack.

Researchers studied 121 patients who had bypasses at the Chiang May University Hospital between 2009 and 2011. 50% of these patients were given capsules containing curcumin four times a day, along with the regular medications. 13 % of the patients who had taken the capsules had heart attacks since the surgery, compared to 30% in those that did not swallow the curcumin capsules. Dr Wanwarang Wongcharoen, who headed the study, calculated that those people who took curcumin capsules had a 65 % lower chance of heart attack. (The different types of surgery were also factored in to this calculation).

Researchers say that the antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties of curcumins most likely helped to limit the damage in these bypass patients.

This was a small study, and more tests need to be done for there to be any confirmation that this type of spice therapy is effective.

More about Turmeric: Turmeric has a peppery, warm and bitter flavor and a mild fragrance slightly reminiscent of orange and ginger, and while it is best known as one of the ingredients used to make curry, it also gives ballpark mustard its bright yellow color.

Turmeric comes from the root of the Curcuma longa plant and has a tough brown skin and a deep orange flesh. Turmeric has long been used as a powerful anti-inflammatory in both the Chinese and Indian systems of medicine. Turmeric was traditionally called "Indian saffron" because of its deep yellow-orange color and has been used throughout history as a condiment, healing remedy and textile dye.

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