Posted Aug 27, 2009

Curcumin, a constituent of the spice tumeric, reduces inflammation in mice with a digestive condition similar to Crohn’s disease. “Crohn’s disease, a form of inflammatory bowel, can be aggravated or relieved by the sufferer’s diet,” says Christine Butts of Plant & Food Research New Zealand. “However, due to the number of genes involved, different people with different disease genotypes can be affected by different foods.”

Tumeric is something of a folk remedy for bowel conditions, and curcumin is a polyphenol that is supposedly antiinflammatory. With previous research showing it reduces some of the pathways for Crohn’s disease, curcumin was a logical subject for study.

However rutin, another food component that relieves symptoms in some sufferers of Crohn’s disease, offered the mice no significant benefits.

Butts believes the mice are only a model for certain forms of Crohn’s disease, but unfortunately we do not yet understand the condition enough to be able to assess what form an individual suffers from. Butts suggests that “there is no harm in trying” tumeric for those with Crohn’s disease, but there are also no guarantees.

Date: Aug 24

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