This Common Spice Duo Is A Natural Miracle Worker For Inflammation
Black peppercorn and turmeric are two spices we’re all about in the kitchen. Freshly cracked black pepper is one of those kitchen staples that’ll make anything from a spinach salad to scrambled eggs taste almost restaurant-quality with a sprinkle of salt and a drizzle of EVOO (extra virgin olive oil). Turmeric is equally as versatile, whether you use it to make tea, give a color boost to your marinades or to flavor a latte. When the two spices are used together, the duo can have powerful health benefits that you’ll want to cash in on.
The main active ingredient in turmeric is called curcumin, a bright yellow chemical. It comes with a ton of health benefits, ranging from anti-inflammatory effects to providing your body with a powerful antioxidant. Despite the beneficial properties, the amount of curcumin in turmeric isn’t all that high, at about three percent. This is when black pepper comes into play.
There’s a compound in black pepper called piperine, which slows your liver from metabolizing the curcumin too rapidly. When your body metabolizes something too quickly, it gets removed through your urine before your body can absorb any of those beneficial chemicals or compounds. The piperine in black pepper will increase the levels of curcumin in your bloodstream.
For every serving of turmeric you consume, you can try taking a quarter teaspoon’s worth of black pepper. Here’s a recipe for a turmeric paste that calls for turmeric powder, water, ground black pepper and either olive oil or coconut oil. Adding fats to the mix is another way to speed up the absorption process of turmeric, or any other nutrients, into the body.
Once you make the turmeric paste, you can keep it stored in a jar for about one to two weeks. You can add the turmeric paste to your smoothies, curries, salads or take it straight-up.
Bottom line: Black pepper helps to enhance the already existing health benefits of turmeric by slowing down the rate at which your body metabolizes it. Make the most of your turmeric and keep a jar of black peppercorns handy.