If you are struggling with health symptoms of any kind, then you are also dealing with some level of inflammation. Therefore, this turmeric smoothie for inflammation will be a great addition to your diet. Inflammation is the body’s natural defence mechanism against foreign invaders such as viruses and bacteria and communicates to the immune system to heal damaged tissue. If for some reason the issue is unresolved, the inflammatory process lingers and can persist for months or years. This results in chronic, low-grade inflammation which damages tissues and can be associated with diseases like rheumatoid arthritis, cancer, heart disease, diabetes, asthma, and Alzheimer’s.
Diet plays a major role in helping to heal the root cause of inflammation and brings the body back into a balanced state. A plant-based diet rich in fruits and vegetables with antioxidants and flavonoids helps to protect against inflammation. Whereas a diet high in fat, processed foods and meat is associated with increased inflammation. Foods have the potential to either aggravate or reduce inflammation, so it’s important to consider what you’re eating.
It has been shown that combining turmeric with some type of fat and black pepper enhances the bioavailability of curcumin. I don’t add these ingredients to the smoothie as I follow the principles of food combining for optimal digestion. I also understand that some people are sensitive to pepper. But you are more than welcome to add black pepper and a healthy fat to this smoothie if you like.
You can use either fresh turmeric root, or a powder, although fresh turmeric does retain more of its nutrients than dried turmeric which has been cooked and processed. Take note of the conversion rate: approximately 1 tsp of dried turmeric equals 1 tbsp of fresh turmeric.
Each of these ingredients have amazing anti-inflammatory properties, and combining them increases their benefits.
Anti-inflammatory benefits of the ingredients
Pineapple has a unique mixture of protease (enzymes) called bromelain, which is well known for its anti-inflammatory properties. Bromelain decreases the majority of inflammatory mediators and has been shown to play a significant role as an anti-inflammatory agent in various disease conditions. The stem of a pineapple contains higher amounts of bromelain compared to the fruit, so be sure to juice the stem.
Turmeric is the king of anti-inflammatory foods. It contains a natural compound called curcumin, which has significant anti-inflammatory properties. Curcumin has high antioxidant activity and works by regulating inflammatory signalling pathways and inhibiting the production of inflammatory mediators. It has been proven to prevent a large number of inflammatory-related diseases, including bowel disease, arthritis, psoriasis, depression and atherosclerosis.
Oranges are high in vitamin C which has a crucial role in helping with conditions linked to inflammatory processes due to its anti-inflammatory and anti-viral properties. The flavonoids in orange juice have also been shown to play a role in positively changing the inflammatory status of the body. Keep in mind that it’s best to drink this juice within 30 minutes of making it because most of the vitamin C content in orange juice will be lost after being squeezed.
Bananas are an excellent anti-inflammatory food. It has even been suggested that they have a similar effect to aspirin and ibuprofen; two popular anti-inflammatory drugs. These drugs have potential dangerous side effects, so bananas are a great natural alternative. Bananas contain beneficial bioactive compounds which show antioxidant behaviour. They help reduce oxidative stress in the body and degenerative conditions like inflammation.
Turmeric Smoothie for Inflammation
- 1 orange peeled
- 2 cups pineapple
- 2 large bananas fresh or frozen
- 1/2 tsp turmeric powder or 1.5 tsp of grated fresh turmeric
- Blend until smooth and creamy