Curcumin has always been considered a powerful anti-inflammatory agent in Chinese medicine, but not many people in the western world take advantage of using the ingredient for enhancing recovery after exercise. Curcumin is basically the active ingredient of the herb turmeric, which is a plant, related to ginger with a tough brown skin and makes that bright orange colour in a delicious warm curry. Curcumin has a strong anti-oxidant effect which allows for its ability to reduce inflammation after exercise, reducing muscle soreness after intense or unfamiliar exercise.
Based on the research study below, 5 g of curcumin was found to reduce pain related delayed onset muscle soreness (DOMS) in participants and even boosted small improvements in subsequent exercise performance.
What you need to know: If you are training hard or starting a new exercise programme supplement with 5 g of curcumin daily to delay DOMS and increase recovery power.
How to use: Add 2-5 g of curcumin to meals daily. Interestingly curcumin is not well absorbed by the body so take it with some black pepper which will increase absorption.
Recipe: Test out the amazing effects of curcumin right now by cooking this simple, tasty heart-warming curcumin rich soup.
The Science part: In a recent, randomised control trial published in the European Journal of Applied physiology 17 healthy men completed a bout of heavy unfamiliar exercise which included single leg press exercise. The participants supplemented with either 2.5 g of curcumin or a placebo twice daily 3 days before and 2 days after the exercise trial, This was a randomised control trial, which menus that each subject acted as their own control and took part in the trial supplementing with both the placebo and the curcumin but separated by a washout period of 7 days.
The results found that 5 g of curcumin reduced pain related to delayed onset muscle soreness (DOMS), with small improvements in subsequent exercise performance. The mechanism of action of the herb seems to be a reduction in anti-inflammatory markers after exercise.