Naturopathy: Does Turmeric Really Help With Lipedema Symptoms?

The (golden) milk does it?

Bloggers, fitness gurus & influencers struggle for the coveted topic; Many companies and drugstores are marketing a well-known spice - or even better - as a whole, ready-to-drink mix, powder or capsule on the market and are promoting a new miracle weapon in the fight against everyday ailments, cancer reduction, antioxidant therapy and stop the aging process. 

The talk is, you know it well, of turmeric or better still, the golden milk! 

But what about the miracle spice, what kind of ingredients does the plant have and what is the current scientific situation? And how does turmeric work for lipedema?

Turmeric (lat. Curcuma longa) put under the microscope 

The turmeric plant actually comes from India or Southeast Asia. The plant has been used there for over 5000 years in the ancient healing methods of traditional Chinese medicine (TCM) and in Ayurveda. In some regions it is even worshiped as a sacred plant. It actually belongs to the ginger family and is therefore closely related to ginger and cardamom! The rhizome is the part of the plant that got the whole thing rolling and gave the plant its fame and yellow-orange color. In Europe, we know this as a kitchen spice, especially in the popular spice mix Curry. 

What's in the wonder herb 

Mainly that Curcumin, namely about 60%, which in our case makes the plant so interesting. In addition, so-called curcuminoids (which provide the yellowish color), essential oils, starch, resins and actually caffeic acid and caffeic acid derivatives (did you know ?!). 

Turmeric in Ayurvedic medicine is considered the “king plant” and is said to improve the “radiance of the skin” (called Harida). Turmeric is also said to promote detoxification of the liver and gall bladder, has a warming effect, is antiseptic and cleanses the blood. In TCM, the plant is also considered to regulate “Qi”, is supposed to improve the functioning of the stomach, spleen and liver and is therefore used in TCM against general pain in the abdominal area, menstrual cramps and swelling. 

Curcumin as a vector of medicine 

As described above, the main ingredient in the turmeric plant is this Curcumin. And a lot revolves around this in particular. 

The curcumin is namely also the pharmacologically active component of the plant or the root. Believe it or not, curcumin has been part of numerous scientific works in the fight against our everyday diseases of civilization such as diabetes, stroke and heart attack, vascular calcification, inflammatory diseases (e.g. rheumatism) as well as intestinal and liver diseases and and and ... 

And it hardly needs to be mentioned how interesting just at this moment in life - with all the increase in chronic diseases due to an aging population and parallel to this, more and more media presence and the trend towards more conscious lifestyle & so-called superfoods - the topic around natural herbs and nutritional supplements has become in everyday life! 

Cucurmin has been featured in various studies on inflammatory bowel disease for a long time. I.a. of the Molecular Nutritional and Food Research, in which the test subjects (in this case, as always mice) were given certain doses of Cucurmin. Here it was shown that intestinal-damaging factors could be reduced and thus inflammatory intestinal diseases reduced. In this case it could be proven that cucurmin with its antioxidant, inflammation-modulating properties suppress the regulation of a molecule which is suspected to be involved in this inflammatory process. There are similar studies and results in the area of ​​joint diseases. The result was that many subjects' arthritis pain was relieved and joint mobility was improved. 

Great thing! But does turmeric also help with lipedema and lymphedema?

Who me already on Instagram follows, a little inner light may already arise. What I'm getting at is: Cucurmin can Relieve inflammatory responses, yes. Particularly in the case of chronic inflammatory diseases, it has already been demonstrated here and there that a daily intake of a certain amount in connection with absolutely necessary auxiliary materials can develop an antioxidant, analgesic and immunomodulating effect. And anyone who has read my account well before already knows that the development of lipedema, especially in further stages, has to do with an inflammatory component, among other things! (More information on the issue of "origin, genetics, nutrition & Co." will follow in the next few posts, otherwise it goes beyond the scope here.) 

Studies at the University of Leipzig as well as the so-called Phytopharmaka Cologne cooperation confirm, among other things, the effect of cucurmin on various target structures in the body. Here it goes always again about anti-inflammatory, antioxidant and enzyme-modulating properties. You notice it repeats itself. 

But: In all > 100 studies it is emphasized that no study has yet been 100% completed. With regard to other diseases such as lipedema, lymphedema…. no precise confirmation of the effect on the tissue can yet be given! 

And here comes the point, why it is so important to me to broach this precarious topic once and also to enter it provocatively. I am affected myself. As a scientifically working, reading person, I would like to say very clearly here, check for yourself whether Cucurmin have an effect on you can. Especially if you additional suffers from accompanying inflammatory diseases.

Someone who "only" has lipedema and possibly one of the lucky ones who does not suffer from additional lymphedema and inflammatory pain etc., Cucurmin is drunk alone or as golden milk, probably not bringing the desired effect in the fight against these complaints. 

What is so important to consider when taking Cucurmin? 

The difficulty in taking Cucurmin, and thus generally achieving an approximate effect, lies in the nature of things. Curcumin has a poor "bioavailability" in the body, which unfortunately is usually not mentioned publicly. This means that curcumin is extremely poorly soluble in water. It is only insufficiently absorbable in the intestinal mucosa and is in turn metabolized too quickly on the spot. The pharmacological metabolism of the substance is also dependent on the pH value and concentration.

As you can see, biochemistry is unfortunately not that simple in reality! 

The fact is: An uptake in the intestine that was only 4 times improved could be achieved through additional fat administration. Overall, according to the current state of science, an availability of the substance for the body of only about 20-30% can be achieved. 

The only additional improvement is a fat-to-piperine (black pepper extract) combination. But even this is still too low to prove that turmeric can be a panacea for lipedema or even cancer cells. Only newly researched micelle technologies, as they are currently known from the cosmetics industry, and which pack the active ingredient in the smallest of micro-molecules, promise hope of higher bioavailability for the body.

Please pay attention if you are interested in various preparations. Only then there is a possibility that the curcumin can be metabolized in the best possible way in the intestinal tissue. 

The bottom line on taking turmeric for lipedema

In summary, I hope that I was able to shed some light on and inform you. The difficult working conditions and the lack of information about them should not be concealed in order to perhaps build too much hope in the end. Nevertheless, Cucurmin itself is and remains healthy. There is no question that it strengthens the immune system and warms the body, especially in the cold season - together with ginger. In the context of inflammatory diseases, depending on the dosage, it shows antioxidant, cell-protecting properties. Thus, it remains a popular spice in natural medicine in TCM. It remains exciting to see what the turmeric-related issue is Lipedema will be revealed in the future! 

Thanks for reading and see you next time! 


If you liked the article, Simone would be very happy if you buy her a virtual cup of coffee!


Sources and studies including: 

  • American Botanical Council "Curcumin Exhibits Potential in the Treatment of Various Chronic Diseases" (Curcumin has potential in the treatment of various chronic diseases) 
  • Barry J, Ramamoorthy A et al., “Determining the Effects of Lipophilic Drugs on Membrane Structure by Solid-State NMR Spectroscopy: The Case of the Antioxidant Curcumin,” Journal of the American Chemical Society, March 2009, (Determining the Effects of Lipophilic Drugs on the membrane structure with the help of the NMR spectrometer: the antioxidant curcumin) 
  • Agarwal R et al., “Detoxification and antioxidant effects of curcumin in rats experimentally exposed to mercury”, Journal of Applied Toxicology, July 2010, (Detoxification and antioxidant effects of curcumin in rats exposed to mercury in an experiment) (Study as PDF ) 
  • SIEWEK: Exotic Spices Origin Use Ingredients. Springer-Verlag, 2013, ISBN 978-3-0348-5239-5, p. 72
  • Surh et al .: Molecular mechanisms underlying chemopreventive activities of anti-inflammatory phytochemicals: down-regulation of COX-2 and iNOS through suppression of NF-kappa B activation, Mutat. Res., 2001, 480-481: pp. 243-268

dr. nicole gerlach lipedema fashion

Author: Dr. Nicole Gerlach

Hi to all the lip girls out there! My name is Nicole Gerlach, I was born in 1983 and a passionate doctor. After a long pre-professional path through biochemistry, I have not only been involved in sports and nutritional medicine for almost ten years and previously worked on publications of various studies on Alzheimer's disease in Göttingen. After five years in the field of internal medicine, I am currently working in outpatient, general medical care. In addition, I have been able to gain experience in emergency medicine and phlebology / angiology, which, along with everything else, is most important to me and which is now the focus of my Instagram account @fragdochmaldiefrau_doctor, which I opened on August 21.08.2020, XNUMX, for questions and help on the subject of lip and lymphedema. A topic that is so close to my heart because I am an affected lipedema fighter myself and would like to share all of my knowledge and experiences with everyone who is affected and who are interested in medicine! Let's do it!

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