Food & Beverage Perspectives
curcumin_inflammation

Curcumin May Lower Inflammation

<p>Metabolic syndrome is host to a collection of unhealthy components, and, more recently, oxidative stress and inflammation have been proposed as new emerging components. Curcuminoids, which are natural polyphenols, have strong antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties that, when supplemented, may help these two proposed components.</p>

Metabolic syndrome is host to a collection of unhealthy components, and, more recently, oxidative stress and inflammation have been proposed as new emerging components. Curcuminoids, which are natural polyphenols, have strong antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties that, when supplemented, may help these two proposed components.

A new study published in Clinical Nutrition examined the effectiveness of supplementation with a bioavailable curcuminoid preparation on measures of oxidative stress and inflammation in patients with metabolic syndrome (published Jan. 7, 2015). The researchers’ secondary aim was to perform a meta-analysis of data from all randomized controlled trials in order to estimate the effect size of curcuminoids on plasma C-reactive protein (CRP) concentrations.

In this randomized, double blind, placebo-controlled trial, 117 subjects with metabolic syndrome were randomly assigned to curcuminoids (n=59; drop-outs=9) or placebo (n=58; drop-outs=8) for eight weeks. Curcuminoids were administered at a dose of 1 g/d, and were co-supplemented with piperine (10 mg/d) in order to boost oral bioavailability. Serum activities of superoxide dismutase (SOD) and concentrations of malondialdehyde (MDA) and CRP were measured at baseline and at study end. Regarding the importance of CRP as a risk marker and risk factor of cardiovascular disease, a random-effects meta-analysis of clinical trials was performed to estimate the overall impact of curcuminoid therapy on circulating concentrations of CRP. The robustness of estimated effect size was evaluated using leave-one-out sensitivity analysis.

The results. Supplementation with curcuminoid-piperine combination significantly improved serum SOD activities and reduced MDA and CRP concentrations compared with placebo. Quantitative data synthesis revealed a significant effect of curcuminoids versus the placebo in reducing circulating CRP concentrations.This effect was robust in sensitivity analysis.

These results mean that short-term supplementation with a curcuminoid-piperine combination can significantly improves oxidative and inflammatory status in patients with metabolic syndrome, and that curcuminoids could be regarded as natural, safe and effective CRP-lowering agents.

Curcumin's anti-inflammatory benefit is just one of its perks. As we dicussed in our Survival Guide: Flavors, ethinic cuisines are driving the flavors market and curcumin fits right in. Consumers are loving the wave of spicy foods, condiments and more that are hitting the shelves. Consumers are getting more and more daring with their taste preferences and its fun to see what the industry cooks up to meet their "hot" desires.

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