The Difference Between Turmeric and Curcumin

The Difference Between Turmeric and Curcumin

May 10, 2024

What is Turmeric?

Turmeric is a spice derived from the underground stems (also known as rhizomes) of a plant called Curcuma longa, which belongs to the ginger family.  

Turmeric has been used for thousands of years in traditional medicine, culinary practices and religious rituals. 

The active compound in Turmeric responsible for its therapeutic properties is Curcumin.


What is Curcumin? 

Curcumin is a polyphenol with powerful antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties, making Turmeric a popular ingredient in both traditional and modern medicine. 

As well as its cooking uses, it is used in traditional medicines such as Ayurveda and Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM).  

It has been employed to treat various ailments, including digestive issues, respiratory conditions, skin problems, and inflammatory disorders. 

Today, Turmeric is widely recognised for its health benefits and is available in various forms, including fresh root, dried ground powder, supplements (capsules or extracts), and infused products like teas, juices, and skincare products. 

The benefits of turmeric have resulted in numerous studies to be carried out, exploring its effects on conditions such as arthritis, heart disease, cancer, Alzheimer's disease and more.


Benefits of Turmeric  

  1. Turmeric is known for its strong anti-inflammatory effects. It helps to reduce inflammation in the body, making Turmeric supplements beneficial for individuals dealing with conditions like arthritis, inflammatory bowel disease and other inflammatory disorders. 

  2. Curcumin is a potent antioxidant, meaning it helps to neutralise harmful free radicals in the body. It aids in protecting cells from oxidative damage, which can contribute to aging, chronic diseases and various health issues. 

  3. Turmeric supplements are often used to alleviate joint pain and stiffness. By reducing inflammation and oxidative stress, they can help improve joint mobility and overall joint health. Therefore, it would be useful for individuals dealing with arthritis or joint-related conditions. 

  4. Turmeric has traditionally been used to support digestive health in Ayurvedic medicine. Curcumin helps stimulate bile production, which aids in the digestion of fats. Its anti-inflammatory properties can soothe the digestive tract. It may be beneficial for individuals dealing with digestive issues like bloating, gas and indigestion. 

  5. Curcumin has been shown to modulate the activity of immune cells, helping to enhance the body's immune response. By supporting immune function, Turmeric supplements can help strengthen the body's defence against infections and illnesses. 

  6. Emerging research suggests that Turmeric may have neuroprotective properties, making it potentially beneficial for cognitive health. Studies have indicated that Curcumin may help protect against age-related cognitive decline and support overall brain function. 

  7. Some studies have suggested that Curcumin may help support weight management. It may help reduce inflammation linked with obesity and metabolic disorders, support fat metabolism and weight loss. 

  8. Turmeric supplements may also promote healthy skin due to their anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties. Some people use Turmeric topically or take supplements to help manage skin conditions like acne, eczema and psoriasis. 

  9. Curcumin may have beneficial effects on heart health by improving endothelial function, reducing inflammation and lowering oxidative stress. These effects may help lower the risk of heart disease and support overall cardiovascular health. 

Turmeric Supplements 

Turmeric supplements offer a natural and versatile way to support overall health and well-being. However, it's essential to choose high-quality supplements from reputable brands to ensure potency and efficacy.  

Additionally, consulting with a healthcare professional before starting any new supplement plan is recommended, especially for individuals with underlying health conditions or those taking medications.


Curcumin Benefits 

As well as the benefits listed above, the advantages of curcumin also include: 

  1. Gene Expression: Curcumin can change how genes work and impact the activity of different signals and factors that control things like inflammation, cell growth, cell death, and other body functions. 

  2. Interactions with Enzymes and Proteins: Curcumin can mix with lots of different things in the body, like enzymes and proteins, and change how they work. It can affect enzymes that cause swelling, stress, and how cells communicate.


What is Turmeric?


Curcumin Supplements 

Curcumin is available in various forms, including supplements and curcumin powder. However, it's essential to note that the bioavailability of Curcumin can be limited.  

HealthAid® Curcumin 3, a game-changer in the realm of natural health supplements. 

It is sourced from India, and carefully crafted to deliver the purest and most concentrated form of Curcuminoids, with 95% concentration. What sets it apart is its unique blend of three key chemical compounds: Curcumin, DemethoxyCurcumin, and BisdemethoxyCurcumin.  

Recognising the importance of bioavailability in unlocking Turmeric's full potential, HealthAid® has integrated the highest quality of Piperine extract into its formulation.  

Piperine is the active ingredient found in black pepper, it enhances the absorption of Curcumin, ensuring that each dose is optimised for maximum effectiveness. 

Here are just a few ways in which this superior supplement can elevate your health and well-being: 

  1. Symptom Management: If you suffer with joint pain or are struggling with digestive discomfort, its anti-inflammatory properties offer relief and support. 

  2. Cellular Protection: In today's fast-paced world, our cells are constantly overloaded by oxidative stressors. Curcumin 3 acts as a shield, safeguarding your cells from oxidative stress, slowing ageing and promoting energy. 

  3. Digestive Support: Say goodbye to bloating and stomach woes. Its gentle yet effective formulation can help alleviate digestive discomfort, restoring balance and harmony to your gastrointestinal tract. 

  4. Muscle and Joint Health: Whether you're an athlete or maintain an active lifestyle, Curcumin 3 offers support for muscle and joint health. By minimising inflammation and promoting recovery, it enables you to move with grace and ease, free from the constraints of discomfort. 

  5. Cognitive Enhancement: With its neuroprotective qualities, this superior supplement supports brain function, enhancing cognitive clarity and potentially reducing the risk of neurodegenerative diseases. 

Curcumin Side Effects

While Turmeric is generally considered safe for consumption in culinary amounts, high doses or long-term use of Turmeric supplements may have potential side effects or interactions with certain medications.

Related Articles


  1. Anand P., Kunnumakkara A.B. et al. (2007). Bioavailability of Curcumin: Problems and promises. Molecular Pharmacology.  7(4), 807–818. 

  2. Basnet, P., Skalko-Basnet, N. (2011). Curcumin: An anti-inflammatory molecule from a curry spice on the path to cancer treatment. Molecules  11(16), 4567–4598. 

  3. Colitti, M., Gaspardo, B. et al. (2012). Transcriptome modification of white blood cells after dietary administration of Curcumin and non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drug in osteoarthritic affected dogs. Vet Immunol Immunopathol. 147(34), 136–146. 

  4. Gupta, S.C., Patchva, S. et al. (2013). Therapeutic Roles of Curcumin: Lessons Learned from Clinical Trials. AAPS Journal.  15(1), 195–210 

  5. Hewlings, S.J., Kalman, D.S. (2017). Curcumin: A Review of Its’ Effects on Human Health. Foods. 6(10), 92-99. 

  6. Holt, P.R., Katz, S. et al. (2005). Curcumin therapy in inflammatory bowel disease: a pilot study. Dig Dis Sci. 50(11), 2191-2193. 

  7. Kuptniratsaikul, V., Dajpratham, P. et al. (2014). Efficacy and safety of Curcuma domestica extracts compared with ibuprofen in patients with knee osteoarthritis: A multi center study. Clin. Interv. Aging. 14(9), 451–458. 

  8. Lin, Y.G., Kunnumakkara, A.B. et al. (2007). Curcumin inhibits tumour growth and angiogenesis in ovarian carcinoma by targeting the nuclear factor-B pathway. Clinical Cancer Research. 7(13), 3423–3430. 

  9. Marchiani, A., Rozzo, C. et al. (2014). Curcumin and Curcumin-like molecules: From spice to drugs. Curr. Med. Chem. 14(21), 204–222. 

  10. Panahi, Y., Hosseini, M.S. et al. (2016). Effects of Curcumin on serum cytokine concentrations in subjects with metabolic syndrome: A post-hoc analysis of a randomized controlled trial. Biomedical  Pharmacother. 2016, 82, 578–582. 

  11. Sahebkar, A., Serbanc, M.C. et al. (2015). Effect of Curcuminoids on oxidative stress: A systematic review and meta-analysis of randomized controlled trials. J. Funct. Foods.  5(18), 898–909. 

  12. Sahebkar, A. (2014). Curcuminoids for the management of hypertriglyceridemia. Natural Review Cardiology. 14(11), 121-123. 

  13. Shoba G., Joy D., Joseph T., Majeed M. et al. (1998). Influence of piperine on the pharmacokinetics of Curcumin in animals and human volunteers. Planta Medica. 8(64), 353–356. 

Images: Image by wirestock on Freepik Image by freepik


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