For a few years now I have touted the benefits of this powerful root herb, Turmeric. As an athlete always looking for the 'natural' way to curb inflammation; this powerhouse has done the trick time and again. I have now come to use Turmeric as a hedge against all the booger-eaters that I fly with on a weekly basis, as a great post workout high, and of course to keep me training without so many processed recovery supplements.
I am luck to live on Kauai where we have the largest Organic Turmeric farming operation in the world! Needless to say, if you venture into any juice bar here on the island you can always find some ready to go. The problem that I have found is that, if you were not raised in an Indian Household, you probably don't know much about Turmeric nor do you know how to integrate it into your diet.
Luckily, I got you! Here are a few ways you can get your hands on some of this powerful root;
1) Search it out in your local special grocery, whole. Turmeric looks like ginger except that it has a orange/yellow appearance. Like Ginger, you buy it loose in the smaller bins usually where the other herbs are in the vegetable area. Try to find the stalks that are firm.
2) The easiest way to find it is to get it in the herb section already pre ground. Though it is not widely used in western cooking, you shouldn't have a hard time finding it in any grocery store. My suggestion is to always go for the brand that is of the highest quality. Glass jars will hold freshness in more than plastic when it comes to buying herbs from the store.
3) Turmeric Oil is something that I have not used but it is out there. Buying herbal oils can be beneficial because of the potency but that can also be a caution as well. Before you go injuring a ton or taking a bath in it, try a few drops and see how your body reacts. Buying oils of any kind is like buying any high quality product, treat it with care.
Now for integrating it into your nutrition;
1) Cristin has always used it on roasted veggies. As you drizzle your oil on them, salt and pepper them, you can add a dash or some shavings onto the veggies to bring out color and spice to the veggies while roasting. Il get into it later on but pepper and turmeric are a vital match so try it out.
2) Cook Turmeric into your rice. As the water level begins to drop and the rice is cooking, I suggest adding a couple tablespoons of Coconut oil and Turmeric to your rice. As my kids know, eating bland rice day after day can be boring so Turmeric can help boost flavor and color.
3) Soups and curry are the traditional ways that I have seen Turmeric used. You know the yellow curry... yep that is Turmeric (and/or Saffron). Coconut Milk is rich in flavor and pairs well with Turmeric. But even if you are making a chicken soup, dash a bit in with your other herbs and you will get a nice spice and all the great health benefits.
4) Smoothies are a great way to disguise lots of things. A few pieces of fruit in a smoothie will release natural sugars that take over the entire flavor. It does not take much, only a teaspoon of Turmeric to get the anti-inflammatory benefits so put it in your concoction and kick some serious ass!
5) If you are a juicer... Juice it! As a post workout shot it will be absorbed by your GUT quickly and all the nutrients will boost your brain power, muscle recovery and make you better looking too!
Lastly, lets talk pairing with pepper (curcumin) and Omega-3 fats. Pepper activates the bioavailability of Turmeric, opening your GUT receptors and allowing for more absorption. In a similar fashion, fats like Coconut oil and Olive Oil assure that many nutrients (not just Turmeric) are absorbed in the digestive system and don't just pass through. This way your liver and GUT will benefit not just your bacteria!
So get out there and grab some today. Experiment in the kitchen and use Turmeric in your Post workout routine. You will surely feel the difference.
Lat Band Mobility
Leg Swings X10
Side LungeX 10
Elbow To Instep X10
Fig 4 Drill X 20m
Single Leg Lateral Hop X 10m (each Leg)
Squat Therapy X10
Spend 15 minutes Working for Quality
-Deficit Handstand Push Ups (strict) X5
:30 Handstand Hold
- 4X Superman to Hollow Hold
10X V Ups
5X Muscle Ups (or progression; pulling, pushing, transition/mobility)
Run 3 Miles
Bike 1 Mile