Many people have strong reactions to the spicy taste profile of ginger root, but what about turmeric root? While turmeric doesn’t have quite the shocking flavor profile as its cousin, internationally it is a very common culinary spice. Some curry lovers might not be aware that their favorite dish wouldn’t be possible without turmeric. However, turmeric has many uses that extend beyond the kitchen.
One of the lesser known uses of turmeric is has a supportive agent for your healthy-looking skin thanks to its active ingredient, curcumin. Potential turmeric benefits for skin include keeping a healthy vibrancy, supporting the development of new skin cells, and helping to even out your skin’s texture. In addition to its value as a nutritional spice, turmeric has certainly earned its reputation as a super herb.
Turmeric Benefits for Skin
There are times when everyone wishes they looked and felt more youthful. This is certainly true when it comes to skin health. However, many aspects of the body’s aging mechanism remain a mystery to the scientific community. People have looked to herbs like turmeric to support the body’s aging process and to help maintain the look and feel of already healthy skin.
One way that turmeric aids healthy-looking skin is by supporting against ultraviolet radiation that occurs when spending time out in the sun. One study suggested that turmeric’s ability to prevent UVB skin aging was due to its preventative role against the expression of MM-2, a gene which makes skin abnormalities possible. In an animal test, turmeric extract was shown to support skin health in various ways. The skin of test subjects didn’t show negative signs such as wrinkling, thickening of blood vessels, and unwanted skin color change.
Turmeric for New Skin Development
Potential turmeric benefits for skin include aiding your body’s natural healing process. The body responds to skin wounds with four overlapping stages of healing: hemostasis, inflammation, proliferation, and maturation. It is thought that turmeric may support the body during more than one of these stages. The curcumin in turmeric is said to balance the body’s natural response to healing skin wounds. Curcumin has been suggested to support tissue formation, collagen deposition, tissue remodeling, and wound contraction.
In addition to supporting the healing process, turmeric is thought to support scarring. One study measured redness, edema, ecchymosis, drainage, and approximation (the REEDA scale) to evaluate the wound healing process in three groups of women who had undergone Caesarean operations. It was found that the patients treated with turmeric cream experienced a faster healing process than those who were given a placebo.
Promoting Skin Oil Production
The skin is your body’s largest and heaviest organ, and keeping the skin functioning optimally can be a challenge. The body’s skin actually has three layers that work harmoniously. The middle and deepest layers, called the dermis and subcutis, have tiny ‘factories’ which produce oils. These Sebaceous glands help the skin stay malleable and keep it from cracking. As unpleasant as infection and irritation due to cracked skin is, an overproduction of skin oil is not desirable, either.
Overactive sebaceous glands can make skin feel oily to the touch and lead to unsightly skin blemishes. It is thought that turmeric has the potential to benefit the production of excess skin oils. In addition to spot-specific cleaning and the use of a toner to cleanse and open skin pores, turmeric has been suggested as a natural oil reducer. One method calls for mixing turmeric with a few drops of lemon juice and water to make a scrub. The paste is recommended to sit on the skin for 15 minutes before thorough removal.
Using turmeric as a face scrub is just one way to harness the herb’s skin soothing properties. In addition to using it as a food ingredient, turmeric can be taken in capsules, or in topical applications such as oil or cream. No matter the form, it’s important to take a recommended dosage of turmeric since an unwanted yellowing of the skin can occur if one is not careful.
There are many potential turmeric benefits for skin. Turmeric can be an exciting addition to your flavor palate, a creamy component to your nightly face care routine, or an aromatic oil with soothing properties. Whatever the method, leave it to this golden herb to keep your skin glowing and healthy.