Dr. Sunil - Is It Bad For You? Approved by Dr. Sunil

Is Turmeric Bad For You?

Also Known As: Curcuma longa



Short answer

For most people, turmeric is extremely beneficial. It’s often recommended to be included in diets for people with certain medical conditions because of the multitude of benefits.



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Long answer

Many health professionals boast about the benefits of adding the spice turmeric to your diet regularly, and for good reason. Studies have shown that turmeric alone can be more powerful than some major medications, including blood thinners, antidepressants, and anti-inflammatories. Turmeric is formed from the rhizomes of the turmeric plant, Curcuma longa, with curcumin being the active ingredient.

Let’s look at numerous benefits turmeric can offer. Turmeric naturally thins your blood with studies showing it to be just as effective, if not more effective, than some of the commonly prescribed medications. Aside from that, turmeric has very little adverse side effects, most of which appear when too much is consumed. Similar to anti-depressants, turmeric can correct depression issues as effectively as Prozac. The natural option seems like a no-brainer here!

The anti-inflammatory action of turmeric is it's most powerful. In fact, curcumin is accepted as the most effective anti-inflammatory agent in the world! Umm…Why do we still veer towards over-the-counter and pharmaceuticals for inflammation? This action best benefits those with arthritis, ulcerative colitis, chronic pain, high cholesterol and can even help prevent cancer - which often begins from inflammation.

Turmeric can lower cholesterol by improving liver function. This improved liver function also helps to detoxify the body by helping to form the enzyme glutathione S-transferase (GST). Cholesterol is lowered by increasing the number of LDL receptor mRNA which helps the liver process more "bad" cholesterol at one time.

Some people that should be aware of the potential side effects of the regular consumption of turmeric are those that are pregnant, have diabetes, stomach or gallbladder issues, and those that take blood thinning medications. Pregnant women should avoid this spice as it can stimulate the uterus at an unwanted time. Turmeric can interact with antacid medications to increase stomach acid production and cause pain. It can also worsen gallstones and bile duct obstruction.

People with diabetes can actually benefit greatly from turmeric as it can lower blood sugar and reverse insulin resistance. However, if you have diabetes and are taking medication for it, you shouldn't combine that medication with turmeric as it will amplify the effect. On the other hand, if you trying to manage your diabetes with diet alone, using turmeric has been shown to be 400 times stronger than the most common diabetes medication, Metformin.

Turmeric can also be applied to the skin for pain relief, reduce swelling and bruising, treating ringworm and infected wounds, and inflammatory skin sores like acne.

Possible short-term side effects

  • diarrhea
  • nausea
  • dizziness
  • hypotension
  • allergic reaction
  • uterine contractions in pregnant women
  • interacts with certain medications
  • worsen gallbladder issues


  • powerful anti-inflammatory
  • antidepressant
  • improves liver function
  • decreases cholesterol
  • helps detoxify the body
  • thins the blood
  • lowers blood sugar
  • promotes skin health
  • natural pain reliever
  • reduces swelling / bruising
  • treats ringworm / infected wounds

Our Wellness Pick (what is this?)

Organic Turmeric Powder

  • Rich in curcumin
  • Gluten-free
  • Non-GMO
  • Organic certified
  • 2 lb bulk pack
Learn More!

Thank you for your feedback!

Written by Kristin Brown, DC, MS
Published on: 07-11-2016
Last updated: 12-01-2023

Thank you for your feedback!

Written by Kristin Brown, DC, MS
Published on: 07-11-2016
Last updated: 12-01-2023

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