Depression is a disease that affects an estimated 350 million people all over the world. The World Health Organization reports that over 800,000 people die each year due to depression.
What is more, suicide is the second leading cause of death in 15 to 29 year olds. In fact, 7 percent of US adults (that’s 15.7 million people) had at least one major depressive episode in 2013.
Treating depression is very difficult because of the stigma put on mental health issues. One of the basic treatments of depression is using medications. However, there are many side effects that come with taking prescribed medications.
A large number of medicated patients complain that they don’t “feel the same” or that the medication makes them sluggish and tired all the time.
Fortunately, there are different studies that focus on the natural ways we can manage depression. In addition, there is one promising herb called Turmeric showing some very interesting results in a new research.
Turmeric is a herb that has been historically used to manage a variety of ailments. This is due to the active substance called curcumin. Curcumin is a very strong antioxidant which can help fight chronic diseases.
A study published in 2016 by Al-Karawi, Al Mamoori, and Tayyar concluded that curcumin administration helped significantly reduce the signs and symptoms of major depression.
Sanmukhani, et. al in 2014 had similar results, wherein curcumin could be used in conjunction with fluoxetine (a medication typically prescribed for depression, also known as Prozac) to manage the symptoms of MDD or major depressive disorder.
It was as equally as effective, if not better than Prozac in managing depression — without any of the unwanted side effects.
Turmeric is effective for people who are not diagnosed with a major depressive disorder but still suffer from mood swings or depressive episodes. Zhang, et. al. in 2014 published a study that concluded that curcumin’s neurorotective and anti-depressive ability could help manage mild, stress-induced depression.
Not only is turmeric able to target depression specifically, it can also promote neurological health and well-being.
This plant has other important uses.
This includes: management of indigestion, stomach ulcers, arthritis, heart disease, viral and bacterial infections, and even cancer. This is all due to the turmeric’s potent antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties.
How To Make Turmeric Lemonade
You can take turmeric in a variety of ways- either in capsule form, as a spice or as a drink. You can even chop small shavings of fresh turmeric onto savory dishes such as scrambled egg. It turns out that turmeric is pretty versatile as a drink.
You can make tea with it and drink it either cold or hot. You can even add it to cool drinks like lemonade. Dried or powdered turmeric will work well; fresh turmeric can be quite spicy so be careful when you use it. Turmeric lemonade is very popular because lemons are packed with Vitamin C and this helps boost immunity.
Squeeze a few lemons into a glass, add a teaspoon or two of turmeric, some honey and perhaps a pinch of black pepper or cayenne if you want to.
You can make the turmeric lemonade in advance and store it in your refrigerator overnight.