In appearance, a perennial herbaceous plant that grows to about three feet tall, highly branched, yellow to orange, cylindrical, and aromatic rhizomes are found, partially describes turmeric. It does not grow in the wild but it is cultivated. However, it is a key ingredient in many Asian dishes, imparting a mustard-like, pungent, earthy aroma slightly bitter flavor to foods. It is widely used as a spice in cooking but there are many other uses, including health benefits. Here Leah Groth, Prevention.com, reflects on the safety of turmeric taken in the form of supplements:
“Many people assume that herbal supplements, such as turmeric, are safe to take without a doctor’s approval. After all, the vibrantly hued, exotic-tasting herb has cultivated quite the hype in the wellness world, with experts touting its turmeric’s health benefits, including the ability to fight cancer, heart disease and Alzheimer’s disease with all of anti-inflammatory and wonder.
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However, according to a shocking new report, turmeric isn’t always safe—and can be downright hazardous to your health. One elderly woman may have even suffered some serious damage to her liver as a result of taking turmeric in capsule form.
According to the findings, published in BMJ Case Reports on September 10, a 71-year-old woman was taking the supplement (as well as 20 other medicines and supplements) for her heart health and subsequently developed autoimmune hepatitis — liver inflammation as the result of your body’s immune system turning against liver cells. The condition can ultimately lead to cirrhosis of the liver and eventually liver failure.
The woman had been taking the supplements for eight months when a blood test revealed her liver enzyme level was elevated and she was diagnosed with the condition. According to the report, she hadn’t told her doctors she was taking turmeric supplements, and therefore, they had no idea what was causing her health issues.
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After doing some online research, she discovered that turmeric can potentially cause liver problems and stopped taking them. The doctors continued to monitor her for the next three months, without ever knowing that she had been taking the supplements. Luckily, her liver enzymes went down. When she finally told them about the turmeric, it led them to believe that the supplements were responsible for her liver damage.
There were may have been physical indicators as well. “A substance that looked like turmeric was seen in areas of the liver injury, although we could not determine with certainty if it was turmeric,” coauthor of the report Janet Funk, MD, a professor at the University of Arizona, tells Prevention.
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Read More … Article Source: https://www.prevention.com/food-nutrition/a23505656/turmeric-supplements-liver-disease-hepatitis/
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