A compound in tumeric may help treat cancer, heart disease, Alzheimer's and many other chronic health conditions, a study found.
Researchers from the University of South Australia (UniSA) have found an active compound in the spice known as curcumin not only prevents deterioration of the mind, but also reverses the damage.
Study co-author Xin-Fu Zhou says the new formulation offers a potential solution for Alzheimer's disease.
"Curcumin is a compound that suppresses oxidative stress and inflammation, both key pathological factors for Alzheimer's, and it also helps remove amyloid plaques, small fragments of protein that clump together in the brains of Alzheimer disease patients," he says.
Through animal testing, the study found curcumin can be delivered effectively into human cells via tiny nanoparticles.
According to Dr Xin-Fu , curcumin can also help prevent the spread of genital herpes.
"Curcumin can stop the genital herpes virus, it helps in reducing the inflammation and makes it less susceptible to HIV and other sexually transmitted infections," Sanjay Garg, a professor of pharmaceutical science at UniSA, said.
Women are more susceptible to genital herpes. Curcumin however, can minimise genital inflammation and control against herpes infections, the study found.
But for those jumping with joy, tumeric has also been linked to elevated blood lead levels, according to a study released in 2019.
Lead consumption interferes with children's brain development and increases the risk of brain and heart disease in adults.