For centuries in India, turmeric has known to treat various ailments by Ayurveda practitioners. Curcumin, found in turmeric may help lower the risk of Alzheimer’s disease by improving memory and mood in people with mild, age-related memory loss.
A study published in the American Journal of Geriatric Psychiatry examined the effects absorbed curcumin supplement on memory performance in people without dementia and its potential impact on the microscopic plaques and tangles in the brains of people with Alzheimer’s disease.
"Exactly how curcumin exerts its effects is not certain, but it may be due to its ability to reduce brain inflammation, which has been linked to both Alzheimer's disease and major depression," said Gary Small, from the University of California, Los Angeles in the US.
The researchers involved 40 adults between the ages of 50 and 90 years with mild memory complaints. Participants were assigned to receive either 90 milligrams of curcumin or a placebo twice daily for 18 months.
All 40 subjects received standardized cognitive assessments at the start of the study and at six-month intervals, and monitoring of curcumin levels in their blood at the start of the study and after 18 months.
Thirty of the volunteers underwent positron emission tomography, or PET scans, to determine the levels of amyloid and tau in their brains at the start of the study and after 18 months.
The people who took curcumin experienced significant improvements in their memory and attention abilities, while the subjects who received placebo did not.
The study shows that taking a safe form of curcumin could provide significant cognitive benefits over the years. Turmeric has proven to be one of the best spices to have numerous health benefits. Therefore, a certain amount of it must be added to your daily diet.