Aug 7, 2008

- Curcumin (Spices and Cancer?)

Curcumin, the yellow stuff in turmeric, may do in tumor cells. When researchers added the substance to cancerous pancreas cells, production practically shut down -- thanks to a clampdown on cytokines, chemicals linked to tumor growth and cell survival.

A review is shown again below for whoever missed our previous postings:


What are other names for this remedy?

Type of medicine: natural remedy
Scientific and common names: Amomoum curcuma, Curcuma aromatica, Curcuma aromatica salisbury, Curcuma domestica, Curcuma domestica valet, Curcuma longa, curcumin, diferuloylmethane, E zhu, Indian saffron, Indian yellow root, Jiang huang, turmeric root, tumeric, kunyit, yellowroot, Zedoary, zingiberene

What is curcumin?

Curcumin is made from the dried roots of the turmeric plant. The roots are ground into a deep yellow powder commonly used as a spice in foods. It has a bitter, peppery taste. It is also used to add color to foods such as margarine, cheese, and mustard. Turmeric is also used in some cosmetics.

What is it used for?

Curcumin has been used to:
  • treat heartburn and indigestion
  • treat high cholesterol and atherosclerosis (hardening of the arteries)
  • prevent gallstones
  • treat arthritis
  • treat cancer
  • treat cystic fibrosis
  • treat Alzheimer's disease.
The US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) does not approve uses for natural remedies. The FDA does not inspect or regulate natural remedies the way they do prescription medicines.

How is it taken?

Curcumin can be taken as a capsule or as tea. Swallow curcumin capsules with a large drink of water.

What should I watch out for?

Talk with your healthcare provider before taking curcumin if you have:
  • a bleeding disorder
  • diabetes
  • gallbladder disease
  • heart disease
  • high or low blood pressure
  • ulcers
Talk with your provider before taking this remedy if you are receiving chemotherapy or radiation therapy for cancer.
Females of childbearing age: If you are pregnant or breast-feeding, do not take this remedy without your health care provider's approval. You may use the spice in normal amounts.
Diabetics: This remedy may affect your blood sugar level and change the amount of insulin or other diabetes medicines you may need. Talk to your healthcare provider about this.
Talk to your healthcare provider or pharmacist about any natural remedy that you are using or considering. If your provider does not give you specific instructions, follow the directions that come with the package. Do not take more or take it longer than recommended. Ask about anything you do not understand. Remember:
  • Natural remedies are not always safe.
  • You should not take them if you are pregnant or breast-feeding without your healthcare provider's approval. They should not be taken by infants, children, or older adults without your provider's approval.
  • They affect your body and may interact with prescription medicines that you take.
  • Natural remedies are not standardized and may have different strengths and effects. They may be contaminated.

What are the possible side effects?

Along with its desirable effects, this remedy may cause some unwanted side effects. Some side effects may be very serious. Some side effects may go away as your body adjusts to the remedy. Tell your healthcare provider if you have any side effects that continue or get worse.
Serious: Unusual bruising or bleeding.
Other: Heartburn, nausea, diarrhea.

What products might interact with this remedy?

When you take this remedy with other medicines, it can change the way this remedy or any of the medicines work. Vitamins and certain foods may also interact. Using these products together might cause harmful side effects. Before taking this remedy, talk to your healthcare provider if you are taking:
  • blood-thinning medicines such as aspirin, heparin, ticlopidine (Ticlid), enoxaparin (Lovenox), dalteparin (Fragmin), clopidogrel (Plavix), and warfarin (Coumadin)
  • cholesterol-lowering medicines (statins) such as atorvastatin (Lipitor), lovastatin (Mevacor), rosuvastatin (Crestor), and simvastatin (Zocor)
  • diabetes medicines such as insulin, acarbose (Prandase, Precose), acetohexamide (Dymelor), chlorpropamide (Diabinese), glimepiride (Amaryl), glipizide (Glucotrol, Glucotrol XL), glyburide (DiaBeta, Micronase), metformin (Glucophage), miglitol (Glyset), pioglitazone (Actos), rosiglitazone (Avandia), repaglinide (Prandin), tolazamide (Tolinase), and tolbutamide (Orinase)
  • herbs such as angelica, anise, arnica, asafoetida, capsicum, celery, chamomile, devil's claw, ephedra, fenugreek, garlic, ginkgo, Panax ginseng, gotu kola, horse chestnut, horseradish, licorice, papain, psyllium, red clover, and willow
  • medicines to treat cancer such as cyclophosphamide (Cytoxan), doxorubicin (Adriamycin) and mechlorethamine (Mustargen)
  • nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) such as ibuprofen (Motrin, Motrin IB, Advil, Nuprin), naproxen (Naprosyn, Anaprox, Aleve, Naprelan), ketoprofen (Orudis, Orudis KT, Oruvail), nabumetone (Relafen), indomethacin (Indocin), ketorolac (Toradol), sulindac (Clinoril), piroxicam (Feldene), diclofenac (Voltaren, Cataflam), and oxaprozin (Daypro). 

1 comment:

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