Turmeric outperforms chemotherapies in treating cancer


Two research studies show that spices like turmeric outperform the conventional therapies in treating cancer. Studies report that chemo- and radiotherapy boost the growth of cancer stem cells. Thus they fail in treating the condition. However, these two recently published studies have revealed the cancer-fighting effects of turmeric. They state that turmeric can be used to treat the most lethal forms of brain cancer including glioblastoma.

Turmeric is an ancient yet popular spice of the Indian cuisine. This yellow-orange spice has emerged as a new health wonder. For thousands of years, it has been used as Ayurvedic and Chinese medicine. However, in the past few decades, the western world has also acknowledged the word of its powerful medicinal benefits.

In fact, turmeric has been declared one of the most frequently researched medicinal herbs. It finds extensive therapeutic use in the treatment of various conditions with no reported adverse side effects.

Curcumin is one of the active compounds in turmeric. It is responsible for most of the health-promoting effects offered by the spice. Curcumin, reportedly, benefits conditions like obesity, diabetes, cardiovascular diseases, neurological issues, cancer, and other chronic, inflammatory diseases.

Green Med Info links the ability of turmeric to prevent and treat over 800 different medical conditions and diseases. These two researches also add one of the deadliest forms of brain cancer i.e. glioblastoma to that list. It is an aggressive, fast-growing form of brain cancer.

Why are chemotherapies not suitable for cancer?

Chemotherapy, surgery, and radiation often opt as a treatment for cancer. However, these treatments are often reported to make the condition go even worse.

Most of the cancer patients are seen to develop resistance to these conventional, overpriced therapies. They may develop radio-resistant and chemo-resistant cancer stem cells. Moreover, glioblastoma tumors are packed with glioma stem cells. Thus, these treatments show little success in treating the condition. Note that people diagnosed with glioblastoma rarely survive longer than two years.

What do the studies say?

One research team analyzed a total of 19 test tube and five animal studies. They evaluated the ability of turmeric extracts to fight or prevent glioblastoma. The researchers found that curcumin inhibits the growth of cancer cells and induce cell death in certain subpopulations of glioblastoma tumors. Thus, it can serve as a potent therapeutic agent for treating cancer.

The other study was published in the journal Nutrition and Cancer. It discovered the possibility to get a bioactive dose of curcumin into human glioblastoma cancer cells via oral delivery methods.

Four days before surgical removal of brain tumors, the human volunteers for the study were given 70 milligrams of a curcuminoid combination three times in a day. During the surgery tumor and blood samples were collected for analyzing the curcuminoid concentrations. The tumors were found to have detectable levels of curcuminoids. This made the researchers conclude that oral treatments alter the energy metabolism of tumors.

Many other studies also reveal the potent anti-cancer properties of curcumin. However, curcumin extracts are still not being used in cancer therapy. Researchers suggest the pharmaceutical industries to make use of this wonder spice for treating cancer. It can serve as a convenient, natural and safe treatment for the condition.






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Areeba Hussain
The author is a Medical Microbiologist and healthcare writer. She is a post-graduate of Medical Microbiology and Immunology. She covers all content on health and wellness including weight loss, nutrition, and general health.


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