Milky teas early in the morning, kadak ginger-elaichi chai for a mid-day refresher, coffee for a wake-up call in the evening, and haldi doodh (turmeric latte) for times when you are sick, blue or just need a booster shot - this has always been the beverage ritual at most of our homes since childhood.
Things have evolved and so have our tastes, with Gen-Z and millennials preferring artisanal, organic, handcrafted brews such as chai latte, green tea blends, and herbal infusions over milky chai. But guess what continues to hold sway as an elixir of health even today? That's right! Haldi doodh in all its vibrant yellowy glory. This is especially the case since the Covid-19 outbreak and the global pandemic, which has motivated many of us to focus on health and wellness.
The use of turmeric dates back nearly 4000 years to the Vedic culture in India, where it was not only used as a culinary spice but also had religious significance. It is estimated that Turmeric reached China by 700 AD. Soon after that it reached Eastern Africa by 800 AD, Western Africa by 1200 AD and Jamaica in the eighteenth century. In fact, according to Sanskrit medical records, turmeric has a long history of medicinal use in South Asia. Known as haldi in Northern India and manjal in Southern India, turmeric, today is widely cultivated in tropical regions. India produces nearly all of the world’s turmeric and consumes about 80% of it. Indian turmeric is considered the best in the world because of its inherent qualities and high content important bioactive compound curcumin.
But why is turmeric so widely cultivated and used?
It’s because turmeric has a whole host of medicinal properties, health benefits and wellness outcomes. Let’s look at a few of these benefit down below:
- Turmeric contains curcumin, an anti-inflammatory compound- Curcumin assists the body in fighting foreign invaders and plays a role in repairing damage. Since chronic inflammation contributes to some common health issues, including turmeric (curcumin) in your diet can help suppress molecules known to contribute to inflammation.
- Turmeric can increase the antioxidant capacity of the body- Oxidative damage is one of the mechanisms responsible for aging and many diseases. Free radicals, which are essentially highly reactive molecules with unpaired electrons, tend to react with important organic substances such as fatty acids, proteins, or DNA. The reason antioxidants are so beneficial for us is that they protect the body from free radicals. Curcumin is a powerful antioxidant that can neutralize free radicals and protect us.
- Curcumin may lower the risk of heart diseases - Heart disease, which is incredibly complicated, is the number one cause of death in the world. Curcumin may help reverse several steps in the process of heart disease. How you ask? By improving the function of endothelium, the lining of your blood vessels.
- Turmeric can help you combat viral infections- Sipping on some turmeric tea is a great idea when you’re feeling under the weather. The Curcumin content can help you fight off a variety of viruses including herpes and flu.
- Turmeric aids digestion- Not only does turmeric add flavour to food, it is known to aid digestion. Once again, it is the anti-inflammatory, antioxidant-rich composition of turmeric that makes it a good idea to include in food preparation. In fact, turmeric is used in Ayurvedic medicine as a digestive healing agent and is at times, used as to treat Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS).
Here are three turmeric-infused teas that we recommend-
Matcha Turmeric Moringa- The matcha turmeric moringa tea is a wholesome infusion containing three superfoods- matcha, turmeric, and moringa. Rich in antioxidants and amino acids, the health benefits of this tea are endless. Each sip brings with it the sharp, grassy notes of matcha, and the earthy flavour of turmeric. The tea is best brewed with one teaspoon of Matcha Turmeric with water at 85 degrees. Whisk for three minutes and you have a healthy, strong cup of tea.
Organic Green Tea- The Organic Green Tea represents the thousands of years of Ayurveda practice and is jam-packed with healthy ingredients. The goodness of green tea combined with the properties of Galangal and turmeric make it a refreshing, nutritious drink. The tea has the earthy aroma of ginger and galangal and possesses a hint of salt in the finish. All in all, the tea is perfect to be savoured after meals or as a midday energizer. This tea is best brewed with water at 100 degrees.
Masala Chai- The Masala Chai is a robust black tea that paired with earthy herbs and spices. The drink is packed with the goodness of healthy ingredients like organic tulsi, ginger, and turmeric which helps to manage stress and improve focus. The Masala Chai has warm, earthy flavours and is best brewed using one teabag with water or milk at 85 degrees.