Turmeric For Healthy Skin
Is your skin giving you trouble? Maybe you should try treating it with some yellow gold! Turmeric is an amazing spice that's used in Asia to manage problem skin. Not only can it protect your skin from sun damage and hold wrinkles at bay, it can also balance oily skin and provide relief from acne. So go ahead and try a turmeric face pack - your skin will thank you for it!
You might know turmeric as the yellow spice that gives curry its vibrant color. But turmeric does not just perk up your food! This kitchen spice has always been valued in ancient medical sciences like Ayurveda for its many health-promoting properties, helping to treat conditions ranging from gynecological problems to infectious diseases.1
But that is not all. Turmeric can work wonders on your skin, too. In fact, it is traditional for brides in India to apply a paste of turmeric on their body a couple of days before the wedding. This is said to leave the skin soft and glowing. Now, who does not want that effect! So if you are fed up of expensive salon treatments and harsh chemical creams, it is time you checked out this amazing spice.
What Can Turmeric Do For Your Skin?
This versatile spice can be good for your skin in many ways. It can:
Protect Your Skin From Sun Damage
Sun damage can make your skin look old before its time. Over-exposure to sunlight can give you a tan, make your skin less elastic, and cause wrinkles as well as sun spots. But turmeric can help prevent many of these effects.
In one animal study, researchers studied the impact of long-term, low-dose ultraviolet B (UVB) radiation on the skin. It was found that when a turmeric extract was applied twice daily, the skin was protected from the loss of elasticity and skin thickening usually caused by long-term exposure to UVB light.
Turmeric also prevented the formation of wrinkles and larger blood vessels as well as tanning. Turmeric is thought to work by inhibiting an enzyme (matrix metalloproteinase-2) which can degrade collagen, the protein building blocks of your skin that keep it supple.2
Balance Oily Skin
If you have been struggling with oily skin all your life, turmeric may be the answer to your prayers. Oils are naturally secreted by the sebaceous glands in the skin to keep it supple and soft. However, excessive oil production can lead to an unappealing shine and make you prone to acne. Turmeric can address this problem.
A study that looked at the impact of turmeric extract in a cream form on oily skin found that, when applied twice daily for 4 weeks, it significantly reduced facial oils. The phytosterols and fatty acids present in turmeric may be responsible for this effect.3
Battle Skin Cancer
Turmeric can be used to treat cancerous lesions and may even inhibit skin cancer. A study found that turmeric extract, as well as an ointment of curcumin (which is a major component of turmeric), had a striking impact on external cancerous lesions.
As a result of using turmeric, almost all the participants experienced relief from itching. About 90% noticed that their lesions started smelling less while 70% of the participants found that their lesions were drying up.4
Animal studies show that the topical application of curcumin may inhibit skin cancer by influencing genes that can turn a cell cancerous.5
Psoriasis is an inflammatory skin disease that causes thick, scaly, red lesions on your body. This skin condition, which is associated with an increase in the activity of the enzyme phosphorylase kinase (PhK), is usually treated with phototherapy.
But this mode of treatment poses the threat of organ toxicity. Turmeric can provide an alternative and safer means of treatment. As one study showed, treatment with curcumin can help resolve psoriasis by modulating PhK activity.6
Boost Wound Healing
Turmeric has traditionally been used to promote wound healing. Researchers who treated women who had undergone a cesarean operation with a turmeric cream found that it could speed up wound healing, which was measured by parameters like swelling, redness, and bruising.7
Another study which looked at the effect of turmeric (taken orally) and neem oil (applied topically) on chronic non-healing wounds found that after 8 weeks of treatment this combination healed 70% of the participants.8
There is evidence that curcumin reduces inflammation and helps in the formation of new tissue to promote wound healing.9So the best remedy for those nicks and cuts could be sitting right in your kitchen cabinet!
Give Your Skin A Treat With Turmeric!
The antiseptic, anti-inflammatory, and pH balancing properties of turmeric can soothe blemishes and clear blotchy skin. But how do you use this wonder spice?
Traditionally, turmeric powder is mixed with yogurt and applied on the face to rid it of blemishes and sunburn.10 Turmeric tends to be a strong spice, so mixing it with honey, yogurt, or milk (rather than water) can tone it down in a face pack so you do not experience a burning sensation. Remember to do a patch test on your arm before you start, though.
A turmeric oatmeal scrub mixed with some milk cream can also help sort out those rough elbows or knees. Leave the scrub on for about 20 minutes and then wash it off with warm water for smooth, healthy skin.11
Do not worry if the turmeric gives your skin a slightly yellow hue. This usually fades on its own. You can also remove the turmeric stain by dipping a cotton ball in some milk and rubbing it off.12
References [ + ]
|1.||↑||Gupta, Subash C., Bokyung Sung, Ji Hye Kim, Sahdeo Prasad, Shiyou Li, and Bharat B. Aggarwal. “Multitargeting by turmeric, the golden spice: from kitchen to clinic.” Molecular nutrition & food research 57, no. 9 (2013): 1510-1528.|
|2.||↑||Sumiyoshi, Maho, and Yoshiyuki Kimura. “Effects of a turmeric extract (Curcuma longa) on chronic ultraviolet B irradiation-induced skin damage in melanin-possessing hairless mice.” Phytomedicine 16, no. 12 (2009): 1137-1143.|
|3.||↑||Zaman, S. U., and Naveed Akhtar. “Effect of turmeric (Curcuma longa Zingiberaceae) extract cream on human skin sebum secretion.” Tropical Journal of Pharmaceutical Research 12, no. 5 (2013): 665-669.|
|4.||↑||Kuttan, Ramadasan, P. C. Sudheeran, and C. D. Josph. “Turmeric and curcumin as topical agents in cancer therapy.” Tumori 73, no. 1 (1987): 29-31.|
|5.||↑||Kakar, Sham S., and Deodutta Roy. “Curcumin inhibits TPA induced expression of c-fos, c-jun and c-mycproto-oncogenes messenger RNAs in mouse skin.” Cancer letters 87, no. 1 (1994): 85-89.|
|6.||↑||Heng, M. C. Y., M. K. Song, J. Harker, and M. K. Heng. “Drug‐induced suppression of phosphorylase kinase activity correlates with resolution of psoriasis as assessed by clinical, histological and immunohistochemical parameters.” British Journal of Dermatology 143, no. 5 (2000): 937-949.|
|7.||↑||Mahmudi, G., M. Nikpour, M. Azadbackt, R. Zanjani, M. A. Jahani, A. Aghamohammadi, and Y. Jannati. “The Impact of Turmeric Cream on Healing of Caesarean Scar.” West Indian Medical Journal 64, no. 4 (2015).|
|8.||↑||Singh, Anjali, Anil Kumar Singh, G. Narayan, Teja B. Singh, and Vijay Kumar Shukla. “Effect of Neem oil and Haridra on non-healing wounds.” Ayu 35, no. 4 (2014): 398.|
|9.||↑||Akbik, Dania, Maliheh Ghadiri, Wojciech Chrzanowski, and Ramin Rohanizadeh. “Curcumin as a wound healing agent.” Life sciences 116, no. 1 (2014): 1-7.|
|10.||↑||Dueep Singh, John Davidson. Introduction to Ayurveda – Keeping Healthy the Ancient Way. Mendon Cottage Books. 2015|
|11.||↑||John Davidson, Dueep Singh. The Magic of Turmeric For Health and Beauty.JD-Biz Corp Publishing, 2013.|
|12.||↑||Ricci, Jeanne. “Skin Soothing Spice.” Yoga Journal (2003).|