Turmeric for Rheumatoid Arthritis- Does it work? Is there difference between curcumin and turmeric. What’s the right dosage of curcumin/turmeric for Rheumatoid Arthritis. Are you Taking the Right Form and Dosage of Turmeric?
Rheumatoid arthritis is a growing concern worldwide. It is a progressive disease; what that means is that it slowly destroys your joint and causes significant pain and joint deformity. Inflammation is the major reason for the progression of Arthritis.
Turmeric for rheumatoid arthritis has been used for a long time in various Ayurvedic and Chinese herbal medications. It is well known for its anti-inflammatory properties. Since RA is an inflammatory condition it makes sense to use this herbal to control the symptoms and also to control their Arthritis from getting worse in the future.
Rheumatoid arthritis is becoming a leading cause of disability world over. Although there are new medications that can slow the progression of this disease; they come with a host of side effects.
Hence, most people are now looking for an alternative or natural ways to help control their disease and also improve the quality of life, especially joint pain.
So, turmeric is a common supplement or natural product that a lot of people use for pain and inflammation.
What research has shown that turmeric has various active compounds but the most efficacious for reducing inflammation is the curcumin compounds in turmeric!
Does Turmeric work ?
As with any herbal supplements, the bigger question always is — does turmeric really work for Rheumatoid Arthritis?
Fortunately, research has been conducted in turmeric and people suffering from rheumatoid arthritis.
One particular study compared the use of curcumin with diclofenac (pain medicine over the counter ). This randomized control trial compared the symptoms between these groups and found that after 8 weeks of treatment patients who were getting curcumin saw a significant improvement in their symptoms and the improvement was better than the pain medicine.
There was a meta-analysis that was done on curcumin and its efficacy in arthritis. Turmeric for both osteoarthritis or Rheumatoid Arthritis and that also found encouraging results of improvement in patient symptoms of arthritis after taking curcumin.
Another study not only showed improvement in subjective symptoms like the pain of the patients but also saw improvement in laboratory markers of inflammation in the blood and which signifies that it can help reduce inflammation and help with future prevention of their joints.
Turmeric / Curcumin for Rheumatoid Arthritis
Now turmeric is a spice that most people use in their food or as a supplement, but are turmeric and curcumin the same?
The answer is no turmeric and curcumin are not the same. Curcumin is a compound in termeric.
The Turmeric spice has variable amounts of actual curcumin in them. This variability can depend on which part of the world they come from, plant species and also how they are processed. So, not all turmeric are the same either.
But on average the turmeric spice will only have 3% curcumin by weight, which is very low. So if you have not seen any improvement in your pain or inflammation even after taking 1 tsp of turmeric every day is because the dosage of curcumin is not enough.
Dosage of Turmeric for Rheumatoid Arthritis!
The majority of the research studies believe you need to take at least 1000 mg to 2000 mg of curcumin supplement daily to see the benefits with Rheumatoid Arthritis.
Another problem is the absorption of curcumin in your gut. All the curcumin can’t be absorbed from the supplement, and so even though you are taking high doses of curcumin supplement but if your body doesn’t absorb it, it will not work.
But research has found a simple solution for it, you take black pepper or piperine with it and it increases the bioavailability of curcumin for the gut by 2000 percent.
Summary of Turmeric for Rheumatoid Arthritis —
So the bottom line is that it is good to have turmeric in your diet but it is very difficult to get the required amount of curcumin from turmeric spice alone to control or improve your RA symptoms.
So try to take Turmeric / Curcumin supplement which has 500 mg of curcuminoids in them and start with 1000 mg of curcumin daily and can increase to 2000 mg daily. Also look for a supplement that has black pepper or piperine added to it, if not can take black with your supplement and it works.
Turmeric has so many good benefits, especially for rheumatoid arthritis patients. It improves not only quality of life by reducing pain, but can also help with controlling the disease process better. But it is very important to take the right form of curcumin and in the right dosage to reap the benefits of this wonderful supplement.
Reference Research on Turmeric for Rheumatoid Arthritis:
- Amalraj A1, Varma K1 A Novel Highly Bioavailable Curcumin Formulation Improves Symptoms and Diagnostic Indicators in Rheumatoid Arthritis Patients: A Randomized, Double-Blind, Placebo-Controlled, Two-Dose, Three-Arm, and Parallel-Group Study.J Med Food. 2017 Oct;20(10):1022-1030. doi: 10.1089/jmf.2017.3930. Epub 2017 Aug 29.
- Oliviero F1, Scanu A1. Anti-inflammatory effects of polyphenols in arthritis.J Sci Food Agric. 2018 Mar;98(5):1653-1659. doi: 10.1002/jsfa.8664. Epub 2017 Oct 9.
- Daily JW1, Yang M2, Park S2.Efficacy of Turmeric Extracts and Curcumin for Alleviating the Symptoms of Joint Arthritis: A Systematic Review and Meta-Analysis of Randomized Clinical Trials.J Med Food. 2016 Aug;19(8):717-29. doi: 10.1089/jmf.2016.3705.
- Tayyem RF1, Heath DD, Al-Delaimy WK, Rock CL. Curcumin content of turmeric and curry powders.Nutr Cancer. 2006;55(2):126-31.