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Turmeric Powder

Turmeric Powder

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Family: Zingiberaceae

Scientific names: Curcuma longa 

Authority: L.

Synonym: Curcuma domestica Vahl

Zulu name: umthumerikha

Other names: turmeric (English) borrie (Afrikaans) terre merite (French) haldi (Hindu)

Description: C. longa is a perennial herb that grows to about 1 m in height. It is widely cultivated in the tropical regions of Asia, predominantly China and India, with India as the world’s largest producer of turmeric. The plant’s root is harvested and then ground to produce a bright mustard yellow powder known as turmeric. Turmeric is extensively used as a condiment, food preservative, colouring material, cosmetic, medicine, and for religious ceremonies and festivals. The following list outlines the uses of turmeric powder:

Uses of turmeric:

  • It is used to add colour and flavour to food.
    • Turmeric is added to rice to make it yellow in colour. It is also used to colour cheese, ice cream, cakes, juice, candy, yoghurt, etc.   
    • Turmeric is added to food as a flavouring spice.   
  • It is used to make a refreshing Indian beverage, known as haldi doodh (turmeric milk).
    •    Haldi doodh is made with full cream milk, turmeric, nutmeg, pepper, cardamon, and toasted nuts.
  • It is used as a cosmeceutical to brighten and beautify the skin.
    • Turmeric is mixed with honey to make a face mask. It is mixed with moringa and applied on the skin.  
  • It is used to treat dermatological conditions. Turmeric contains antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties that are useful for speeding up the process of wound healing and calming pores on the face to reduce acne.   
  • It is used during the Hindu festival known as Holi, a festival of colours, love, and spring.  
  • It is used during a pre-wedding Hindu ceremony known as the Haldi ceremony, a cleansing ceremony for the bride and groom to be. The ceremony cleanses the couple of Buri Nazar (evil eye) and evil spirits and prepares them for a life of prosperity. The powder is made into a paste that is applied on the bodies of the bride and groom. The paste is made by mixing the powder with rose water and sandalwood powder.           
  • It is applied over septic wounds to speed up healing.
  • It is mixed with the juice of Indian gooseberry and honey to treat the discharge of pus through urine. 
  • It is mixed with slaked lime to make a remedy to treat swelling and sprains caused by an injury.
  • It is mixed with ghee and hot milk and taken to treat cough.
  • It is used to treat digestive problems.  
  • It is used to make essential oils. 

You can buy turmeric on the IMTHI YESINTU SHOP:

Turmeric Spice Powder (100g)Turmeric Powder Refill

Safety precaution:

The use of traditional medicine in prescribed dosages will yield good results. Misuse and abuse may lead to complications. Speak to your doctor or a herbalist for the best outcomes. You can also visit the imithiyesintu website and social media or email: to learn more about traditional medicine.

Reference and further reading:

  • Ammon, H.P. and Wahl, M.A., 1991. Pharmacology of Curcuma longa. Planta medica, 57(01), pp.1-7.
  • Araujo, C.A.C. and Leon, L.L., 2001. Biological activities of Curcuma longa L. Memórias do Instituto Oswaldo Cruz, 96, pp.723-728.
  • Krup, V., Prakash, L.H. and Harini, A., 2013. Pharmacological activities of turmeric (Curcuma longa Linn): a review. J Homeop Ayurv Med, 2(133), pp.2167-1206.
  • Omosa, L.K., Midiwo, J.O. and Kuete, V., 2017. Curcuma longa. In Medicinal spices and vegetables from Africa (pp. 425-435). Academic press.
  • Prasad, S. and Aggarwal, B., 2011. Chapter 13, Turmeric, the Golden Spice. Herbal medicine: Biomolecular and clinical aspects.
  • Qasem, M.A.A., Alhajj, M.S., Jer El Nabi, A.R. and Al-Mufarrej, S.I., 2016. Effects of dietary supplement of turmeric powder (Curcuma longa) on blood biochemistry parameters and antioxidant activity in chickens. South African Journal of Animal Science, 46(2), pp.204-213.
  • Velayudhan, K.C., Dikshit, N. and Nizar, M.A., 2012. Ethnobotany of turmeric (Curcuma longa L.).
  • Verma, R.K., Kumari, P., Maurya, R.K., Kumar, V., Verma, R.B. and Singh, R.K., 2018. Medicinal properties of turmeric (Curcuma longa L.): A review. Int. J. Chem. Stud, 6(4), pp.1354-1357.

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